2017 European Vacation

Grindelwald - Camping at the base of the EigerGrindelwald - Camping at the base of the EigerI am a bit embarrassed to admit that after decades of criss-crossing the United States and discovering its many wonders, we were finally going to Europe! Herb had been there several times on business in his 20s, but I, for whatever reason, had never been. Needless to say, I was very excited and spent the months preceding it pouring over every European guide I could get my hands on -- I will try to include some of my favorites in the BOOKS section of our site. We spent many an evening with Rick Steves, or at least the YouTube version, virtually tagging along with him through countless European cities and villages. It was going to be hard choosing what to include in our 4 ½ week journey.

Finally, we narrowed it down to Bavaria, Austria, Northern Italy, and Switzerland. Herb’s parent were born in Germany, and German was actually the first language he spoke, so we thought it would be fitting to start our first European trip in the Motherland. I started doing some German language tapes and practicing on Herb. It was amazing how much came back to him. For decades, he had forgotten that he could speak German, but there it was, deep in the recesses of his 5-year old brain just waiting to come out again.

As far as method of travel, we decided to rent a motorhome of sorts - we are RVers after all. We thought it would be a better way to absorb the cultures of the countries we were visiting, rather than being surrounded by fellow Americans on a tour. Camping is really popular in Europe, and we wanted to recreate like the locals and see and do what they chose to do in their leisure time. Plus, as I will talk about later, the campgrounds we stayed in were amazing - beautiful facilities, restaurants on site, and easy access (either walking or by public transportation) to cities and attractions. Camping probably cost us on average about 35 to 40 Euros a night.

After a bit of research, we chose to rent a Possl 2 WIN from McRent (https://www.mcrent.eu/) for which we paid $2,900 for 27 nights, which works out to about $107 per night. The camper was 6-meters long, but each of those meters was used very efficiently. Herb was worried I would be unhappy with something so much smaller than our Lazy Daze, but I am a reasonable person, and knew he would be much less stressed driving something this size on the narrow roads we would encounter. All the motorhomes in Europe are so much smaller than those in the states.

Rather than picking up the camper right away, we thought it would be wiser to transition more gradually into the new time zone, so we spent a few days in Munich before picking up the van. There’s nothing like a good beer garden or two (or three) to get the system back in sync.

You can download a detailed pdf Road Trip Travel Itinerary or zipped Microsoft Streets and Trips Travel Road Map file for this trip using the links shown below.

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Europe_2017C_Itinerary.pdf164.34 KB