Honeymoon in Western Europe? Help us plan!

posted 3 years ago in Honeymoons
Post # 3
Member
4513 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I love Barcelona! IMO you need 5-6 days to really see a lot of the sights without being crazy rushed. Go to all the Gaudi sights, they are ahhmazing. Madrid is nice if you are really into museums, but for a honeymoon I would personally skip it. Seville is lovely though. Portugal is gorgeous and the perfect pairing with a trip to Spain.

I love love love Nice. Be aware, if you aren’t already, that the beach there is rock and not sand though. Four days in Nice is enough. Provence is beautiful.

Personally I’m not a big fan of Belgium, but to be fair I’ve only been once.

I think Prague would be a great, romantic honeymoon destination. Dubrovnik looks amazing to me, but I haven’t been. Nothing seems to ever trump Italy, for me. It remains my ultimate favorite.

My biggest suggestion, which it seems you might already be doing, is do not rush. Don’t do 6 cities in 2 weeks or any of that business. Its exhausting and you end up  not seeing a lot more than just the big sights/”attractions.” I’ve done it and only have regrets. My best trips have been the ones where we could be leisurely and really enjoy our surroundings. Get lost down little cobblestoned alleyways and such rather than running from sight to sight.

Post # 5
Member
264 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@futuremrsk18:  Hi, I have been to most of these places but it depends what type of holiday you enjoy and also what sort of weather you are wanting.

The places that you have chosen are really quite different. Also each are very different in price e.g. Switzerland is very expensive whereas spain is a lot cheaper in comparison.

If you want cities I think places like Prague, Krakow (poland), Budapest, Vienna, Geneva, Amsterdam, Dubrovnik and Monaco are all amazing.

I have been to Barcelona but I really don’t think that it needs more than a few days, It is beautiful there but I do think that there are nicer places to see as well if you only have 2 weeks.

I absolutely love Slovenia and Croatia, they have the most amazing scenery but are not too good in way of beaches although they do have some that are gorgeous.

Portugal, Spain and France have the best beaches and weather of the the places on your list. I recently stayed in Lagos Portugal and loved it. The best beach location in europe in my opinion is Sardinia, amazing but expensive though.

The only place that had disappointed me is Italian cities… I went to Rome and Naples there was just so much graffiti and bashed up cars everywhere. I love places in Italy like Sardinia and Lake Garda though.

Switzerland and Austria are absolurely stunning definetly go to either one of those.

If you reply with what sort of holidays you enjoy i.e. beach, lakes and mountains, warm/cold/hot and time of year e.t.C i will be able to give much better advice.

But I would be careful with your 2 weeks estimate, you should take your time to enjoy these places and not rush from one place to the next. Try go to countries that neighbour each other and if possible go for 3 weeks.

Post # 6
Member
5421 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2014

@futuremrsk18:  Of those, I’ve been to Barcelona and the South of France, and love both, and also Brussells, but I was much younger.

I know people who have been to Madrid, Vienna, and Amserdam; I tend not to hear great things about Madrid, but everyone I know who has been to Vienna and Amsterdam has loved both.

Finally, I second the suggestions that @tails:  has made; I’ve not heard great things about Naples and Rome, and also Venice, but people rave about Florence, Tuscany, Sardinia, Lake Garda, and Sorrento/the Amalfi coast. Prague, Krakow and Budapest are also worth a look from what I’ve heard.

She is also spot-on about leaving enough time; in 2 weeks, I would do a maximum of 3 places, and would ensure they were closer together. Remember you will lose time travelling, so will likely end up with 4 days, if that, in each place if you attempt to do 3 in 2 weeks. I think that something like 18 nights would be more comfortable, giving you 5-6 nights in each place you choose, and making things more relaxed.

Post # 7
Member
177 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

@futuremrsk18:  Ever considered a Meditteranean cruise?…. would get to see lots of Europe that way!

However if not, then definitely Barcelona – it is a really gorgeous city, with lots of history and heritage, as well as a great European feel. One of my favourite European cities!

Amsterdam is also a must – you could do a nice long weekend here. You can hire bikes and cycle round the city. It’s a lovely place to go (I live in the UK so it is a frequent weekend trip for lots of people from here!)

One great thing is that flights around Europe from country to country aren’t too expensive if you go with low cost carriers (and sometimes at slightly more awkward times of day!).

Moving more away from the West of Europe slightly, Dubrovnik in Croatia is one of my favourite cities at the moment – it is an old walled city where you can walk up along the walls and is absolutely gorgeous in the summer.

As has been mentioned – part of where you go really depends on the time of year you are planning on coming to Europe…

Post # 8
Member
9529 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Your honeymoon sounds amazing!!! I’ve been to some of these places, so I’ll give you my impressions:

I loved Madrid. Very old world feeling. We also did an awesome day trip to Toledo. Barcelona is now really high on my list of places to visit – my best friend also really recommends Majorca, which is an island off the coast of Spain.

I spent about a week in Amsterdam and just loved it. We were visiting friends but we probably could have been happy with 4 days there. The city has a nice mix of history and art and food and party. We also really loved our day trip to Haarlem. If you end up going to Amsterdam, let me know and I’ll find the name of this amazing steak and frittes place that is close to the Reiksmuseum and the Van Gogh museum. A lot of Dutch food is a bit blah, but this place was stellar!

I really enjoyed Belgium but I wouldn’t spend more than 2-3 days. Maybe 1 day in Brussels (the historic center is awesome and we did a fantastic walking dinner tour thing), 1 day in Brugge (very touristy but very fun) and maybe a day in Ghent (I didn’t do this). Most of the things we wanted to do in Belgium were edible – mussles, beer, chocolate, frittes, waffles – the Belgians really know how to eat and drink. 

 

Post # 9
Member
1988 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

@futuremrsk18:  If you’ll allow me to toot my own horn a little, I have a suggestion. Go to Slovenia! 🙂 Lots of history, gorgeous scenery, especially if you’re into romantic lakes, waterfalls and mountains, great food, spectacular wine, friendly people and a good central location (4 hours by car will take you from Ljubljana to Vienna and in under 2 hours you can already be in Venice!). Italy, Austria, Hungary and Croatia are all neighbouring countries so you can see a lot of Europe from here. 

I’ve always wanted to go to the South of France – my parents went there for an anniversary years ago and still can’t stop talking about it! If you choose to go there, you’ll love it for sure. 

@tails: “I absolutely love Slovenia” Yay, thank you! I don’t know why but I’m always so excited when someone says they like where I live! lol 

Post # 10
Member
264 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@MsMeow:  Hi, I love Slovenia so much that its where I am getting married next year. We have chosen to get married in Lake Bled… I am sooo excited 🙂

You are so lucky living there.

I agree Slovenia has everything, lakes, mountains, ski, beach, caves, castles, medieval towns e.t.c and it is has such a perfect location, you can be in either Italy, Austria, Croatia or Hungary within not long at all as its such a small country.

Another city I forgot to add to my list is Berlin, everyone seems to be moving there these days.

You should also look into interail train passes as well as flying can take up so much time with having to be at the airport 3 hours before departure and everything.

 

Post # 12
Member
9529 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

I’ve never rented a car in Europe. The public transportation is usually good in larger cities. Bikes are a must in Amsterdam.

Post # 13
Member
1988 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

@futuremrsk18:  If you’re looking for mountains, lakes, hiking and great food, you really should come to Slovenia then! lol The country is very small and has great public transport system so you don’t really need to rent a car – but if you want to, it’s not a problem either, it’s a very easy process. There’s a Sixt rent-a-car located at the central train station in Ljubljana, for example. For all I know, renting a car is quite similar in Austria too – no biggie. In Ljubljana, you can also rent bikes, and you can do so in the area surrounding Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj too. Lake Bohinj is gorgeous and if you want to so some hiking, the surrounding area is beautiful, especially in the autumn when all the woods are changing colour. There’s a well marked, easy and very safe hiking trail that leads right to a beautiful waterfall, it’s really quite spectacular. 

If you’re interested, just message me, I’ll be happy to tell you more. 

I have no experience with renting cars in other European cities because my SO and I drive there and use public transport once we arrive. Vienna’s public transport, for example, is excellent! It really is a great city to visit too, especially if you like Sacher cake 🙂

Oh, and have you considered visiting Germany at all? If your FI is a beer lover, he would LOVE Munich! It’s a beautiful place too, I felt like I walked into a fairy tale a few times – there’s a Hansel & Gretel house! Also, great shopping 😉

I hope that helps a little. 

Post # 14
Member
264 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@futuremrsk18:  Ok so lakes, mountains, hiking e.t.c Then I really feel like you should start in Croatia, then to Slovenia, then to Austria. Then as it seems that Amsterdam is quite high on your list you should get a flight fro Vienna to Amsterdam. In Europe we have really good public transport in the popular cities and we also have loads of low cost airline like easyjet and ryanair that make travelling in europe very affordable.

Ok so in Croatia you could visit their best lakes, ‘Plitvice lakes national park’ and the ‘krka national park’. The plitvice isnear Zagreb so you could get a train from there to Ljubljana in Slovenia. In slovenia you should visit the caves, Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj, do lots of hiking in the Triglav national park and Julian alps, raft down the soca valley e.t.c I really reccommend the Emerald River Adventure in starting in Lake Bled Slovenia, http://www.3glav-adventures.com/bovec.html

I think then from  Ljubljana  that its fairly easy to get a train to Vienna which you do overnight, spend a few days there, you can even get a boat to the Slovakian capital Bratislava in under an hour (i think 30 minutes as they are so close) but I think only visit Bratislava as Vienna is the nicer place to stay.

Then get a low cost flight to Amsterdam and spend a few days there… its a nice relaxing place to finish.

I would definetly go as early as you can in September as the weather will be much better, in October its ok but much more chance of cold and rain.

So I would get a car in Croatia and Slovenia, public transport is good but a car would allow you to see a lot more places in less time. I would use an overnight train to Vienna unless you want to drive through and see the amazing scenery on the way. If you are planning to base yourself in Vienna I wouldn’t advise a car as everything can be seen on public tranport including Bratislava. I believe that you can rent a car in one country and return it to the company in a different country which is something to look into.

So flight to amsterdam with either jet2, easyjet, or ryanair. And don’t bother hiring a car in amsterdam, public transport is fine, you can get tram passes or rent a bike which is fun.

 

Post # 15
Member
3084 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

@futuremrsk18:  I’m staying in Barcelona for part of my honeymoon. We are staying at hotel jazz which was really reasonable (a lot cheaper than our hotel in Rome). I always wanted to go to Madrid and nice too. I would choose that one! 

Post # 16
Member
5087 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2014

Portugal has won my heart several times over. The Algarve is stunning. The restaurants, shopping, beaches, the marina, the locals are so friendly. I would love to have my honeymoon there. 

I’ve heard such good things about Slovenia. My friend got married there, her wedding video was stunning. The scenery is beautiful. 

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