Itineraries of our Trips
Emily uses an airline vacation agency to book our flights and hotels (3 star) (Delta Airlines mostly). This gives us the advantage of having the major airline vacation agency's clout as a lever to get good service. We let them book our automobiles and train passes for the same reason. Emily and I book our hotels on our side trips. We usually book a 4 star motel close to the center of town, we can splurge for one or two nights a trip. On this page you will find itineraries of some of our trips.
We plan the agenda and select the places to visit. Emily plans the shopping. We work as a team. The reason we like to go it alone can be best described by this story. We were standing outside of the Sistine Chapel as a tour guild was giving instructions to her group; we knew she was the guild because she had a pointer with a piece of ribbon on it stuck into the air. She explained that they were going into the Sistine Chapel, gave a short history, and said, "We will meet at the door on the other end in 15 minutes". Emily and I spent at least an hour seeing one of the great achievements of Michelangelo. FIFTEEN MINUTES !!! We follow our own time table. This does require more study; but, we learn more about the cities and sites we are going to visit.
We use DK Eyewitness Travel Guides. I have found them to be concise and correct. We take the guides and our planned agenda on each trip. If a site is closed, we can usually find another site near to us. These guides are very thorough and we have used some several times. We have found that if we e-mail a town's chamber of commerce the towns will send numerous brochures about their sites and hotels. We go to the WEB for train schedules this gives us the times between cities. The WEB has several mapping programs for land travel; these sites have been a tremendous help to estimate our travel times. The WEB is a great help in planning trips to sites and museums, we look the site up and print what we need. We feel like all this planning makes our trip more interesting and challenging. Maybe these itineraries will help you. We hope so.