Last time I went to Europe, I did a post on my basic travel itinierary. I’ve gotten some messages and emails from people asking if I’d do the same thing this time around- so here it is! This trip was very different from my first one with Kasey. Rather than flying everywhere, I trained to pretty much every city this time around and I LOVED it. The train from Zurich to Lake Como was so incredibly beautiful and I’m so glad I was on the ground seeing the sites and not up in the air. I definitely recommend training yourself between Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, and all of those central countries, as the views are actually perfect.
I have never trained around Europe before, so when I was buying tickets, I didn’t take into consideration which country I was buying from. With that being said- make sure you buy tickets through the country’s site in which you’ll be departing from so you can print them off at the station!
For example, when I was in Zurich and needed to get to Lake Como, I had purchased my ticket through Trenitalia- an Italian train ticket company. While it’s the same train leaving from Zurich, I wasn’t able to print the ticket off in Switzerland, so I had to BUY a new train ticket for the same train for the sole purpose of having a ticket to hold and get checked. Also, when in Germany, I had purchased my ticket through the Austrian site, OBB, as I was heading to Vienna. Problem was that I couldn’t print my OBB ticket off at the Germany train station! Yikes! Luckily the ticket man took pity on me and let me just print the ticket off at the Salzburg station when we arrived. Here’s a list of the countries I visited and their online ticket shops for future reference!:
Also note that I didn’t get a Eurail pass. While these are great if you’re traveling for a long time and not sure where you’ll end up- it didn’t make sense for me to get one as I planned this trip to a T. I ended up saving well over $300 in comparison to buying a Eurail pass just by booking the tickets individually ahead of time.
Route– Washington DC to Zurich
Booking Site– Student Universe
Airline– Air France
Travel Time– 7 hours to Paris, 1 hour layover, 1.5 hours to Zurich- Total time:
Cost– ~$450 with travel insurance
None, did an Air BnB trade- couples portraits for a 2 night stay! I stayed here with Anna + Christopher!
Day pass for the tram, food + drink (it’s quite an expensive city- a chai tea latte at Starbucks was $8!)
Route– Zurich –> Lugano –> Como
Booking Site– Trenitalia
Travel Time– Approximately 5 hours
Note: Could not print the ticket at the Swiss station, so I had to buy a NEW ticket for $99! Still have to contact the station and get a refund, boo.
€3 bus ticket up to Menaggio, €7 ferry ride to Varenna, LOTS of pizza + pasta + wine. (Wine was cheaper than water, by the way! €3 for a half a liter!)
Generator Venice, €34 per night
€7 ferry ride from train station, day pass for the ferry, food + drink!
Route– Venice –> Verona –> Munich
Booking Site– Bahn
Travel Time– Approximately 8 hours
Euro Youth Hostel, €20 per night
BEER. BRATS. PRETZELS. Did I say beer?
Note: I had this train ticket mailed to me, so I already had it printed when I was in Venice.
Route– Munich –> Salzburg –> Vienna
Booking Site– OBB
Travel Time– Approximately 4 hours
Hostel Ruthensteiner, €18 per night
€7 all day metro pass, food + drink
Note: This ticket should have been previously printed or purchased through Bahn, as I was leaving from Germany.
Overnight Sleeper Train:
Route– Vienna –> Frankfurt –> Brussels –> Bruges
Booking Site– OBB
Travel Time– Approximately 12 hours
Bruges –> Brussels Train:
€5 day bus pass, food + drink
Note: Do not stay in Brussels, spend more time in Bruges.
London Victoria –> Kemble (Cotswolds) Roundtrip Train:
Cost- approximately £50
None, stayed with a great friend in the city!
£30 Taxi to Bibury (styled shoot location), Oyster card (so convenient!! only £5 and it’s refundable if you turn the card back in!), food + drink
Note: More reason to not enjoy Brussels- they wouldn’t check me into my flight even though I still had 45 minutes until departure! No one was at security and I could have easily made my flight. Had to rebook for $80 and wait 10 hours for the next flight- such a pain. Out of the dozens and dozens of flights I’ve taken in my life, this was the first time I’ve “missed” one!
I hope this might help anyone looking to train around Europe this fall, next spring, or even summer! Go book that ticket- it’s worth it!!