Just got back from Spirit of Europe!


#1

If anyone has any questions?[br][br]My Tips:[br][br]dont over plan / research. The tour leader makes everything so easy, everything is done for you. Of course you do need to have yourself sorted, but its so cruisey.[br][br]Take at least 6GB of memory cards.(And dont let anyone borrow your camera - no matter what)[br][br]I spent about $160.00 of credit??? Not sure how, I hardly used my SIM. I would prob recommend the vodafone SIM.[br][br]I’m damn glad I took a credit card as well. I also took a Debit Card (NAB Gold) I had $5000, I have $2600.00 left, and I didnt hold back on anything. - BUT you cannot get a balance from ANY ATM. So make sure you know your internet banking details. I was spending blind.[br][br]Ipod - Only for if you want to put your playlist on the bus stereo (I wish I had brought mine to do this) You will not use your Ipod otherwise.[br][br]Dont go to the toilet on the Berlin Pub crawl - They left me behind.[br][br]There is a cool pub up the rd (10metres) from the Budapest hostel. Its made to look like a submarine (its underground) Go to the Baths in Budapest - It may be very confusing, and the staff rude, but well worth it.(I have foot massage, full body massage and Bath entry)[br][br]Jungfru is awsome, but in my mind a little overpriced. But its great if you havnt seen snow before. Skydiving was the highlight of the trip. You can get photo’s or a dvd. (Stephan is the best jumper/camera)[br][br]The breakfast at Prague plus hostel is average. Most places were good, but be ready to eat ALOT of ham and cheese for breakfast (or cornflakes) No Tea (drink) they tend to only drink Coffee.[br][br]Make sure you get rid of all your swiss francs, Poland Zcholty and Cezch crown before leaving each part. I carried around SO much change, cause the exchange places dont take change only notes.[br][br]Use the Metro system whereever you go, it is so fast and efficient.[br][br]Rome, Venice and Vienna are awsome.[br][br]Be aware shoppers - Everything, everywhere is closed on Sunday’s.(even markets) We got caught in the French Riveira and Vienna.[br][br]The sex show in Amsterdam is very average,but the small tour afterwards and the surroundings are funny. the concert in Vienna is awsome.[br][br]Any questions??[br][br]Spirit of Europe 23rd June 2009


#2

Hi,[br][br]Thanks so much for all the info. I leave for Spirit of Europe tour in 3 weeks. Very excited. I noticed your blogs before you went and your questions were very similar to mine. You have pretty much answered every question. [br][br]However just a few:[br]Is it worth pre-booking tours etc before you go. I am a little concerned about standing in queues?[br][br]Were the tour staff strict on the baggage limit?[br][br]Did the all the hostels etc have washing facilities?[br][br]Thanks again for the blog![br][br]Spirit of Europe Aug 18 2009


#3

I pre-booked the Vatican. We went on a wed and the pope was there. Im am sure that the tour will go there, as long as its not when the vatican is closed. We went in at about 10:45 and there was no queue, but when we came out at like 12ish, the line was massvie. The tour goes at about 9:30am. We saved money by pre-booking with rome museum, but we missed the pope (saw him in the wax museum anyway,lol). But we also didnt have to sit through the whole guided tour. We went at our own pace. (we only bought entry tickets, not a guided tour, but the rest of the group paid 36euro for a guided tour)[br][br][br]We joined in Paris, so Im not sure what they did at the begining, but they never measured or weighed our bags. By the end mine was very heavy - about 29kgs, and I also bought another big bag, as I ran out of room - I took a suitcase.[br][br]I think all but 1 hostel/hotel/cabins had washing facilities. Most of them supplied washing poweder or you could buy it.A couple didnt, so take a little. I only used mine once.[br][br][br]Also some of the showers are weird/broken/no hot water. Wash wash hair when you can. Your tour leader will let you know if Prague doesnt have hot water.[br][br]We had Amy - she was absolutley awsome, and Tony for a driver.[br][br]We bumped into about 5-6 other topdeck tours on the way and had a ball. Only a couple of contiki, which was good.[br][br][br]Spirit of Europe 23rd June 2009


#4

Hi Tahlia,[br][br]Thanks a bunch for giving awesome feedback on your tour! l’m going to do the same tour as you but in September.[br][br]In terms of packing, do you think you were on target? l’m also planning on bringing a suitcase and while l’m trying to pack lightly l don’t really want to be “roughing it”.[br][br]Also, how many occasions where there that you had to get dressed up? l’m debating whether or no to bring my heels. For example, with the casino in Monaco, how dressy is that? Will a black pencil skirt with a black t-shirt and some black ballet flats and accessories do the trick, or would heels and a LBD be better? [br][br]Thanks a bunch and sorry for bombarding you with so many questions![br][br]Philippa[br][br]Philippa[br]Spirit of Europe 1st September-24th September 2009[br]Studying in London October 2009-January 2010[br]Countries l’ve been to: New Zealand, Hong Kong, America and Eygpt[br]Countries l’ll be going to: England, France, Switzerland, Italy, Aaustria, Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, The Netherlands


#5

Hi Pippa,[br][br]All good :)[br][br]I packed light, as thats what everyone/thing said to do. BUT I didnt have enough clothes :slight_smile: BUT at the same time it meant I could buy cool clothes over there :):):)[br][br]I didnt have enough T-Shirts, Jumper (I only packed a jacket), Needed a Casual Dress, my fav jeans got a bum hole so I had to buy new ones (and ladies if your short-europe sells short jean sizes - woot woot).[br][br]I would deff bring heels. I brought small heels. I wish I had brough small and big. I aslo took classy flat sandles, one pair comfy thongs and walking shoes. I mostly wore my thongs. - Bandaids[br][br]I brough two classy dresses, and used them both alot.You can always dress down with leggings, flats etc. I think I wore my dresses about 4-5 times.[br][br]I wish I had brought a waist belt. [br][br]A MUST - A clutch with a shoulder strap. But a good sized clutch, not a tiny one. Big enough for passport and camera +.[br][br]Monaco - I would dress up. Im not going to tell you what its like, you’ll see for yourself, but it is a nice casino and area. I wore a silk black and cream dress with heels and big red leather bag (I bought in Paris)[br][br]But I also went to the Cabaret in Paris, Monaco, Some resturants, orchastra etc so I wore nice dresses each time. Some girls went the full fledge, and some only had jeans and a nice top. But I think that dresses are deff appropriate. Depends what options you do.[br][br]Note: Bring crease free dresses (Most of the time you have to get changed on the bus, so you cant iron, plus there are no irons in hostels/hotels etc)[br][br]ALSO - If anyone goes to Venice (Al Dora I think), can you ask if they have some cream bra straps - I left mine there (victoria secret) and they cant be bothered looking for them. I was in room 26.[br][br]Spirit of Europe 23rd June 2009


#6

Sooo helpful - thanks![br]Juliedel, I’m on that tour with you too. The countdown has started!


#7

With the obvious exception of the dress stuff thanks for the info. Still trying to work out how much I can jam in my bag and keep enough room for the copious amounts of crap I will no doubt buy.[br][br]Kyla I am on the same tour too, can’t wait.


#8

My bad, I’m on the Spirit of Europe leaving on 1 September.


#9

Hi Tahlia,[br][br]Thanks for all the feedback!! [br]I’m doing a different tour but read that you used the NAB Gold Debit Card… There is so much mixed information on the forums and net about this account so i’d just like to know how you found travelling with it?[br][br]Thanks,[br]Carly[br][br][br]Grand European[br]25 August 2009


#10

thank you thank you thank you for all the wonderful feedback i feel so much more at ease now knowing all of this info as you answered most of my questions especially about the bags & weighing in etc.[br][br]I was also a tad nervous about what to pack yet since reading this i have realised that Philippa we’ll obviously have to bring a couple of dress’s at least & a pair of heels (which i had packed already as im heading to USA first before i join the trip so they were a must)[br][br]Tahlia if we come across your bra straps i will let you know :)[br][br]Cheers[br]Mel


#11

Thanks for the great tips and experience of the tour Tahlia.[br][br]I’ve got the NAB Gold Banking card as well.[br]Did it work at most ATM’s in Europe?[br]Is it actually free of Conversion and Exchange fees? [br][br]cheers [br][br]Warren[br][br]---------------------------------------------[br]Spirit of Europe 18th Aug 2009