life . . . [my upcoming european travels]

The count down is on till our first ever European adventure! I am beyond excited to be leaving March 1st with my hubby for Europe, who I finally convinced after years of bugging to pull the trigger and book our tickets ;0 Not that he didn't want to go, but one might say he is the practical one and I am the dreamer/do-er . . . . always ready to dive right in. We certainly plan to do just that - dive right into the experience and it should be quite the adventure!

Traveling has always been a favorite of mine, it started young while road tripping with my Grandparents and continued with visiting many fun American cities plus some International tropical beach vacations. This trip is sure to be VERY different, new cultures, new languages, different lifestyles plus we will be on the move (not relaxing on the beach). Which is fine by me, as we wanted to be sure to make the most of our trip after the LONG expensive flight all the way there ;)

The first step was to determine a route - where to fly to and which cities to visit. I would love to see them all! But choices had to be made . . . we decided to mix the popular destinations (Paris, Barcelona) with a couple more random cities (Lisbon, Brussels). Keeping in mind possible train routes and overnight train options. Which are a great way to save money while fitting extra destinations in your itinerary because you sleep in a mini hotel room aboard while traveling to your next city overnight. Our final travel route is - Lisbon, Madrid, Barcelona, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam.

After the destinations were decided it was time to jump into researching and planning our itinerary. There is a LOT of info out there (loving the Rick Steve's guide book & t.v shows for tips) but I actually found it a bit difficult to compile and organize it all. But I do love a good list ;) so trust me I have made MANY! We wanted to be sure to know all the sightseeing options, best places to visit, drink and eat without having to waste precious time while on vacation trying to figure it all out. So I booked all the hotels, train tickets and major sights (the Eiffel tower!) in advance if I could. Then all that is left to do when we are there is check out list of options, decide what we feel like doing and go have some fun! Plus take a billion photographs ;0

I am sure not all will go as planned, but it will be an adventure! We are looking forward to experiencing the different cultures, learning the history, relaxing with some beverages, tasting great food and seeing many important sights. I plan to share photos and details when we return in March.

Sooooo anyone have any great travel tips, advice, packing tips or must see spots in Europe? I would love to hear about your adventures . . . European or not as the travel bug has got me and I already look forward to planning many more trips in the coming years. :)