to go or not to go? austria? italy? cyprus? switzerland? greece?

posted 10 years ago in Honeymoons
Post # 3
Member
133 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2008

Europe is in general expensive. But you can find bargains in almost every European country if you are willing to cut your hotel costs. If you already are planning to fly all the way to Europe, my pick would be definetly Paris. You can find fairly priced appartments to rent for a week that are cheaper than most hotels. Paris is and will be the most romantic capital in Europe. Just perfect for a honeymoon!

Italy can be very very hot and sticky during summer time. In some cities such as Rome you have to cope with smog. Venice is overpriced but definetly worth a trip. Pick Switzerland only if you love the mountains and the countryside. Switzerland is very expensive as well. If you go there make sure to get on top of the Mont Blanc in France. From Geneva it is not very far and there is one bus shuttle company that offers this trip (not cheap but worth it if you opt for Switzerland). Greece has stony beaches and can be unbearable hot during summer time such as Cyprus. But among all the places you suggested Cyprus is probably the cheapest but it would not be really my pick. If you pick Austria pick Vienna. Weatherwise it is okay and Vienna has alot to offer cultural wise. Prague (Czech Republic) or Amsterdam (Netherlands) may be another option. Many Europeans love to go there. Prague is somewhat similar to Vienna but I believe it is a bit cheaper. Amsterdam is also called the northern Paris. Hope that helps!

 

 

 

Post # 4
Member
139 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

Can I offer some advise as a European? Ok, good.

 

First, price.  Contrary to popular belief, not every European country is on the Euro, so the exchange rate to dollars will not be the same everywhere.  Countries that are not on the Euro (and may therefore feel cheaper to Americans) include: Czech Republic, Slovakia, all of the former Yugoslavia (Croatia is especially lovely and would be a wonderful honeymoon location), Iceland (expensive, but that is our honeymoon destination), the UK.

 

There are many wonderful places to visit in Europe that you did not mention.  Portugal is fantastic, Lisbon is a vibrant city, and it is less expensive than the major cities in Spain (e.g. Barcelona, Madrid).  Great beaches in Portugal, fantastic culture, delicious food.  I’d highly recommend that.  As I said above, Croatia is also lovely.  Consider somewhere on the Dalmatian Coast that is NOT Dubrovnik or Split, and you’ll find better deals and just as beautiful scenary and access to the islands. Istria is also lovely.  If you want to consider Greece, have you thought about other Mediterranean Islands?  Corsica, Sardinia, Malta?  All are lovely, and aside from Corsica, may be less expensive than Greece.  What are you top priorities from a honeymoon destination?  I’d be happy to discuss more with you (PM me!). 

 

 

 

Post # 5
Member
73 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

Have you thought about Turkey.  I understand that it is beautiful and less expensive than Greece. 

The most expensive parts of travelling (ANYWHERE) are the travel (i.e., flights, cars, train) and lodging.  To keep your costs down, stay outside of the major tourist areas, or think about staying in self catering apartments or bed and breakfasts.   There are tonnes of resources for finding these types of accomodations. 

Good luck!

Post # 6
Member
536 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2018 - The Desmond Hotel in Malvern, PA

Of the places you mentioned, I have been to Austria (Salzburg and Vienna) and Italy (Rome).  Rome was stunning and I am hoping Mr. Cupcake and I can go there in our first few years of marriage.  It is my favorite place on earth.

My best friend/MOH lives in Salzburg and I visited her 4 years ago.  It is so lovely and quaint and I highly recommend it.  I was not as excited by Vienna, although the weather was not very nice when we were there.  I just thought Salzburg had much more of that European feeling.  

If you go to Rome, I have a great aunt (my grandmother’s sister) who owns a B&B next to the Spanish Steps.  I stayed there when I was there, and it was fabulous.  PM me if you want her contact info.  She is American but has lived in Rome for 50 years so she knows the language and the lay of the land, but it was also nice to not have a language barrier when needing information.   

Post # 7
Member
133 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2008

Oh and before I forget. There are many low budget carriers that offer inexpensive one way tickets or roundtrip tickets within Europe. A one way ticket costs in average with one of the airline companies below between 20-50 bucks including tax. Not kidding. They are good and reliable. Just do not expect any food and drinks for free. Also: they do not have assigned seatings as well. And they only fly to smaller airports but with a great connection shuttle service to any major city. Check them out:

http://www.ryanair.com

http://www.easyjet.com

Good luck!

Post # 8
Member
179 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2008

I absolutely loved Greece- beautiful weather and georgeous islands- for example the island of Santorini had 4 diff types of beaches- stone beacj, white sand, black sand and red sand- AMAZING to see in real life!! and the sunsets were to die for and there were bars and great fresh foods. . . also, if you book early you can find good deals on flights and take the Hellas fery between idlands for relatively cheap prices.

Post # 9
Member
123 posts
Blushing bee

As other girls already mentioned, think outside the box. Most Americans want to go to Ldn/Paris/Spain/Rome driving already high prices even higher. Prague is gorgeous and still cheaper, Portugal is amazing if you want sea side location, Montenegro is the new hot spot that is yet to become excessively touristy, and as mentioned before, Croatia is reasonable if you venture off the beaten path. Travel magazines such as Budget Travel, Travel and Leisure and the Traveler often feature not so known destinations around Europe, you may want to check them out at your local book store or online. Good Luck and have fun !

Post # 11
Member
98 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Italy can definitely be done inexpensively, if you stay away from the super touristy areas.  Public transportation in Italy is clean, safe and will get you just about everywhere you’d want to go.  Gas is SO expensive that renting a car really doesn’t make sense these days AND parking can be an issue.

Instead of staying in Rome or Florence, look into getting a self-catering apartment in one of the charming little surrounding cities and taking the train in to see the sites.  Homelidays (homelidays.com) and Vacation Rentals By Owner (vbro.com) are ones that we’ve used with great success.  You can even find a bargain in the bigger cities, if you are willing to swap amenities and space for convenience.

Food and drink is cheap in Italy compared to the states– but again, you just avoid "menu touristico" and menus printed in 5 different languages.  Learning a wee bit of Italian will save you big $$$.

From personal experience, I would NOT recommend Malta unless you are going to go first class there.  We did it, not really "on the cheap", but inexpensively and it was pretty bad.  Plus, the Maltese dollar is pretty strong against the US dollar.  It was stroger than the Euro when we were there (3-to-1).

Post # 12
Member
72 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: February 2018

I think Italy would be perfect for a honeymoon.  Personally, I would stay away from the big cities- and go for a quaint town for your honemoon!  My fiance and I went a few summers ago, and spent the first part of the week in Tuscany, in a city called Porto Santo Stefano!  Everything was AMAZING- the food, our little villa, the sunsets!  Then, for the second part of our trip we did the touristy spots- Rome and Florence, and I just didn’t enjoy them as much.  Or, if you want to see the big cities, you can do like we did and get a little bit of both.  Good luck with everything!!

Post # 13
Member
104 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

Yes the dollar stinks right now and it does make planning a european vacation a bit daunting. But really once you have your plane tickets and a place to stay you are really set!  As many people have told you the big city are tourist traps (just like they are here in the US) and everything will cost you more. But venture out into the countryside and you can enjoy a hunk of cheese, loaf of bread and a bottle of wine while staring at castles!

Someplace that no one has mentioned is Scotland… totally lovely! We just went in October– Talk about reasonable. We did stay in a timeshare which meant we had kitchen facilities for a few dinners which we used! IT was fun going to the grocery store– very different then here at home! But it also allowed us to pack a lunch a few times–nothing better than packing a picnic and hopping in the car to visit Castles!!  We bought 3 day passes that let us go to various locations throughout the country at a reduced price…. AND THERE IS SO MUCH TO SEE FOR FREE!!( YES FREE)– We did rent a car… but only filled it one time (way better gas mileage over there) and we literally drove from coast to coast.  They speak english (albeit alittle different with the accent) so getting around was easy– the countryside was wonderful– the beaches were wonderful.. And if you like to sightsee there is literally something to see in every town.

 

 

Post # 14
Member
98 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2008

I second Portugal.  One of the most inexpensive European destinations and cheaper airfare than Turkey or Croatia, which would be my other choices.  Lisboa is so romantic and gorgeous and full of dancing and drinking and the southern coast–Sagres and the small towns toward Spain after Faro–are wonderful.  Never made it north, but the forests there are supposed to be incredible.

Post # 14
Member
94 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

This is an extremely old post but just bumping to see if anyone has any information on cheaper European cities for a honeymoon 🙂

thank you…

Post # 15
Member
1340 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Mwenje:  In general the south is less expensive than the north.  And Eastern Europe is less expensive than Western Europe.  You can stay in a palace for under $250 a night or a perfectly decent, clean, well located but modest hotel/apartment for under $40 a night in places like Poland, Hungary, Romania. I recently heard Romania described as the new Italy or maybe it was a region of Romania described as the new Tuscany, I can’t remember.  The article compared the Romanian countryside/hilltowns to Tuscany of 20 years ago (before it became so heavily touristed).  If you want a skiing honeymoon look at Slovakia instead of Switzerland.  If you want a beautiful city of light look at Budapest instead of Paris.  If you want the beach go to the Algarve region instead of Nice.  Etc, etc.

But really, you can visit pretty much anywhere inexpensively.  Airfare is a fixed price, not much you can do about that.  But the rest of your budget can be stretched as far as you make it stretch.  I stay in beautiful private villa with a giant terrace over the mediteranean for $120 a night and eat very well for 30 bucks a day in Italy.

 

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