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Raileurope.com: See Europe by train
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Old 06-01-2004, 04:33 PM   #1
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I really need some advice on an issue about my intended travel guys. Im planning (this summer) to trek europe for 6 weeks and then onto hong kong, singapore, sydney, buenos aires and sao paulo for another 6 weeks (3 months intotal).

Am I being realistic?

Ive never done this before and have heard a mixture of stories ranging from the careful to the careless. I know its a thing to discover for yourself, so im not overly fussed about taking some precaution but going about my journey. Im travelling on my own so am a bit afraid (sorry folks). Please, what are the major do's and dont's?

Thanks a many

LT.
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Old 06-01-2004, 06:18 PM   #2
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Well, I'd say there are about as many different do's and don'ts as there are STYLES of traveling. It's going to depend on what you're comfortable with. Some people prefer a detailed itinerary or plan, with X number of days here and there. Others prefer a rough skeleton itinerary, i.e., I'm going to this region for about a week, then a few days or so here, then a week here, etc. And others are free spirits and have no plans, going where the whim (or peope they meet and latch onto) take them.

I would say my biggest major DO is to read up on your destinations. Guidebooks are generally VERY helpful in giving you the feel or tips on certain countries. I like to read Fodors for the sights, and what I term the realistic ones (Lonely Planet, Rough Guide, Let's Go) for the details...how easy it is to get from here to there on public transport, how safe areas are, whether some are worth it or too touristy, suggestions on places to stay or eat (which tend to be subject to changes since publication dates), and so on.

I would say one DON'T is, if you're going in high tourist season to a popular place, don't go without reservations for a place to stay -- at least for the first night or two. If you'd rather not be nailed down to place you're going to spend a week, get two nights in a place then search out other accomodations once you get there.

DO take plenty of film...you shouldn't have to buy it over there.
DO try to meet the locals, it is with them that you can get a true sense for a place.
Do pack lighter than you think you'll need, but be prepared for inclement weather.
DON'T be worried when you get nervous...we all do...

I'm sure others will chime in soon...

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Old 06-02-2004, 08:36 AM   #3
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i think you should kick sydney off so you can dedicate yourself to just three continents, one per month... nice and smooth. i'm jealous of your three months, you lucky bastard - welcome to the boards!
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Old 06-02-2004, 02:12 PM   #4
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Hey, thanks for the replies people. although I have purchased the Europe guides (shoestring, eastern europe), I take the valuable advice for the south east 'cause I really dont know what the score is over there apart from ideas and shared experiences from other travellers.

I think leaving Sydney is probably going to be more expensive (and perhaps a waste?) if im in that part of the world anyway, as it appears no more the expensive (on flights etc) because of the jet across to South America.

I am back on the drawing board and using anytime I have left to do some more reading....god this is more organising than the local brewery, but thanks for the tips.

I know, I know, alot have said the same for the three months away. Still, its proving more expensive than a new bathroom, but something no money can buy.

Thanks again.....you really are nice people arent you. [quote]Be yourself and your own reach to know, how far your genius taste and learning go. Launch not beyond your depth but be discreet, and mark that point where sense and dullness meet. Alexander Pope: The canterbury Tales.
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Old 06-12-2004, 08:46 PM   #5
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hey lone!

I'm not sure if you're still checking for replies but I figured I'd give ya one.

I like Joanie's idea of limiting yourself to three continents. But before you leave the first thing you should do is buy your plane tickets. Doing this now (I don't know when you're leaving though) will make wandering around the airport looking for empty seats a hell of a lot easier. Sure it limits your time in a place but you can make a basic plan. Plus it gives your parents (not sure of age - but yea), friends, g/f or b/f, etc. a basis of where you'll be...so they arent freaking out.

As for skipping Syndey...I wouldn't. It sounds like you're doing an around the world trip. (to which many sites reserve flights for you - check out lonely planet's website) When I was looking yesterday they gave me different cities and i could ask them to look up dates, etc. It cost about $3,600 for all the flights. It was like Philli, London, Egypt, Bangok, Syndey, San Jose(Costa Rica) and LA. Plus all this little lay overs in different regions...pretty cool.

Also if that doesn't float your boat shop around for flights from Singapore to Buenos Aires. Some might include stops (most do probably) in Australia. You might end up with a 12 hour layover and get to see Syndey after all and for possibly cheaper - since you're skipping paying for a room - sleep in the airport!
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Old 06-13-2004, 08:07 AM   #6
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And unless you need a lot of security (a cafully planned schedule), I would go with WWM's number 2 personnality type (rough skeleton itinerary)... You'll need to be flexible! You will meet interesting people, or locals will tell you 'you must visit this place!!!'...and many pther things will call for a change of plans...And what isn't planned is usually what makes the best experiences!

And don't worry about being a bit afraid, I wouldn't consider you human if you weren't heheheh!
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Old 06-20-2004, 06:55 AM   #7
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Blink and Mocs, thanks for the posts. Here is what ive decided:

I am a UK resident and although Europe was a big thing, ive gone for the initial advice of sticking with 3 continents and kicked Europe of the list altogther (aside a weekender in Amsterdam for all the right reasons).

I booked an itenary with STA Travel (excellent service, full flexibility, worldwide and cheap! - $2000 or 1300 GBP) for this:

London - Hong Kong - Thailand - Malaysia - Singapore - Sydney - Auckland - Santiago - Buenos Aires - Sao Paulo - Rio de Janerio - London.

I am travelling on land between Thailand - Malaysia - Singapore and Sao Paulo - Rio.

All this is booked and confirmed with a $20 or 15GBP charge for an changes to the itenary.

I take your point for the booking in advance and so have booked the hostels for the 1st 2 days of arrival in certain countries.

As for Europe, I should hope to do that at some other stage as it is quite close to home and I dont particularly fancy seeing the ruins and expense after the Euro 2004 (though I love football) and the Olympics. Plus I dont know if Ill ever get the chance to see the world in this way again with 3 - 6 months off aside (I am 30 by the way and just about everyone who knows me knows I am going AWOL for a while).

While on the subject, during my planning for Europe, I realised that the Inter-Rail or for the US dudes the Eurail pass was a bit of a con. I found that buying a ticket from point to point was cheaper AND more flexible as you dont HAVE to fit it all in for before the ticket expires. Also, should you want to stay a bit longer somewhere and therefore use more available time, you may find that alongwith you are using up the sell-by date on the ticket. Finally, you CANNOT use the ticket for every journey in certain countries. Therefore, you will probably end up buying a ticket in addition anyway. Dont know if anyone knew this, but I though id share it.

Ive bought the Lonely Planet guides (how good are they?!!) and feel im on the way there already but just cant shake of these damn nerves!!!

Anyway, thanks once again for ALL your help and advice. I really do thank you guys for having such a cool website (and name), cause otherwise I would probably had turned green by now!

Cheers and speak to you when I hit my first stop.....June 28th - go-on my son!
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Old 07-27-2004, 11:21 AM   #8
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lonely-

Please keep me updated on your trip!!! I would like to know about all your adventures while there/when you return!
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Old 07-29-2004, 12:31 PM   #9
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Dude cheers too the rough skeleton planning type my advice is you know where you wanna go just hop on the plane and dive into it . The way I see it is that if you have a riggid plan already set, you probably arnt gonna get as much out of it cause you can be flexible and stray off the beaten path, but all the power too those who like plans. Anyways the thing I like about you schedual is its kinda like the amazing race your gonna be all over the globein tons of diffrent countrys and have nothing but stories too tell when your done, so go out there and giver cause its about the stories you can tell and the memories you have
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Old 12-26-2004, 08:12 AM   #10
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Hey guys, its lone here back again after that crazy trip around the globe. Well, recalling that moment when I was absolutely shitting myself against this lonely trek around the most oscure places on the planet....I remember my first flight to Hong Kong..what on Earth am I doing???!

Guys, and anyone reading this hoping to go for the first time...imagine living your childhood dreams in lands where you are the boss and make and change whatever you want in your life....go where you want, meet all those crazy people just doing the same - alone, with friends..who cares cause no-one else does.....I think once you have travelled, all life and our conception of the world, it all changes, it only gets better.

I started in Hong Kong for a week and explored pretty much what it had - Kowloon, New territories, Hong Kong Island, lantau island, Lamma island...it pretty cool though the hummidity is scarier than the typhoons! Anyway, the list (over 6 months went as follows):

Thailand (Bangkok, Ko Phangan, Phuket and Krabi), Malaysia (KL), Singapore, Australia (the East Coast from Mels - Cairns), Chile (Santiago, Vina Del Mar, Vallparaiso, The Andes climb, Chiloe - Castro), Argentina (BA, Patagonia, Barilloche, Iguacu, Missiones, Salta, Tucuman and Quilmes), Uruguay (Colonia, Montevideo), Paraguay (Asuncion), Bolivia (Santa Cruz - Valle Grande, La Paz), Peru (Cuzco - Machu Picchu), Brasil (Iguacu, Sao Paulo, Rio - Leblon, Ipanema, Copacabana).

I had such an awesome time that I am crying for being back here to the usual..but hey, talk of those memories, Im sure they'll keep me going until I go again..soon.

Thanks guys, I now know what you meant by having a good time and meeting people and experiences that nothing else ever will measure up to.

Nadeem
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Old 12-26-2004, 10:00 AM   #11
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Sounds like an awesome trip ...Lets see some pics!!!
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:42 PM   #12
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*speachless* ............

i wanna do something like that eventually, in like...10 years or something, haha. TO!!! Dubai, Brasil, Argentina, Cape Town, India, Shanghai, Tokyo....Ibiza()...alllll over Iberia(that's a trip in itself), Romania, Turkey, Croatia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Brussels.....hahaha, I'm just like reciting the atlas now. Point is I'd go anywhere!! haha.
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Old 12-27-2004, 04:10 AM   #13
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Lonely,

That's awesome!

So, tell us a bit about Patagonia and South America. How did you get around way down there, how expensive was it, and how would you recommend your fellow TPers to do it?

And I agree...let's see some photos!

Congrats, man...

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