The times they are a-changin’.

This post seems to be older than 14 years—a long time on the internet. It might be outdated.

Only a week and a half until I leave for Europe (well, me and Mom. Brian and Dad leave a few days later because Brian has an Ultimate Tournament in Minnesota)! I fly SEA > LAX > LHR on the way to Europe and then LHR > IAD > DEN on the way back. Ironically, the first time I’m East of Colorado I go straight to London and then only get to stop in DC for a few hours during my layover.

As of now, I’ll be visiting Scotland, Ireland, Italy, and Switzerland…all in two weeks. I don’t plan on bringing my Tablet as of now, but I’ll try to post with pictures often.

For that have gone to Europe before, what would suggest seeing (particularly in the areas I’m planning on going to)?
What can you tell me about Internet Cafes? How much do they cost, what OS do they use, do the frown about using USB sticks?
Also looking to get a cell phone while we’re there. Again, how much? Anything weird about them? Anything to be aware of?


6 thoughts on “Europe”

  1. Some tips:

    In Italy, no matter what else you do, go to Florence. Go to the Uffitzi, the Duomo, and pretty much anything else you can make it to. In Ireland, I hear the Aeryn (SP?) Islands are really awesome, and that Dublin is kind of overrated. In Scotland, you should obviously go to Harris, which is near Innismoore. Actually, I’ve never been, but I think I’m required to recommend it.

    Regarding technology, almost every single cafe that I went to wasn’t actually a cafe, but just a room with some computers. At least 95% of them ran XP, and if they didn’t, they were running some earlier Microsoft OS. They’re generally pretty inexpensive (between two and five Euros an hour). The hardest part about it is the non-English keyboard layout. You expect certain keys to be in certain places, and they’re not, but generally the layout is about the same. I didn’t use one, but I think most places are cool with USB sticks. The thing about these Internet stores (for lack of a better term) is that they’re everywhere, so if you don’t like the one you’re at, you can always look for another. Often, one’ll be right down the street.

    Don’t bother with a cell phone. I was there for three and half months and didn’t need one. They’re about 50-70 Euro to buy, and then you have to get some sort of service plan. The hassle of re-selling the phone isn’t worth the convenience it would provide. Furthermore, quite a few of the Internet stores have Skype installed on their computers, so often, you can just use that.

  2. I don’t know anything about Europe but if you have a decent layover in DC and you are at Reagan International the Metro system in DC (which is sweet) is right there and you could easily go into the city. Even if you don’t have time to check out a museum or something you could atleast wander around. There is one station right by the Washington Monument on the mall.

  3. In Florence, you should climb to the top of the Duomo. It doesn’t cost very much, but it is a steep and long climb. On top you get a 360 view of the entire city and you can see The Last Judgement (the fresco on the dome) close up. Right next to the Ponte Vecchio is one of the most famous gelato places, which I would also recommend. Going to the Academia to see the David is a must. The copies in Palazzo Vecchio don’t even compare.

    If you go to Rome, be very careful on public transportation. Nothing in your pockets because pickpocketers are very talented. St. Peter’s is a must and the Trevi Fountain is a quick sight to see. Everywhere you go, order the Chianti (house) wine because it is usually cheap and is almost always very good. Those are the major tips. Learn some basic Italian because it will be helpful although a majority speak English. I’m jealous, I would love to return to Italy.

  4. Morgan:
    “Don?t bother with a cell phone. I was there for three and half months and didn?t need one.”

    It’s more for intra-family communication so that we can split up and do different things and then find each other again.

  5. Well, I travelled practically every weekend when I was there. It’s not that I wouldn’t have found a cell phone useful, it’s just the costs associated with it made not such a great option for me.

    However, if you’re dead set on it, many American phones can be converted to receive European signals through use of some sort of Sim card. This is especially true if the phone is a newer model. Anyway you go, it won’t be cheap.

    But, like I said, for my money, I’d rather set up rendezvous times with my travelling companions.

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