Now that the pages of the calendar have slipped into a new year, it’s the time of year to reflect back and dream forward (and start back to the gym!). I’m not going to rehash the places I visited in Europe during 2012 but just need to say, if you’ve not been to Germany you must put it on your list for this year. Make sure to cover the touristy areas such as Munich, Ludwig’s Castles and the Rhine River but also leave time to explore the country’s lesser known jewels as this is where Germany shines!
Make sure you visit those small Bavarian villages, be amazed by the wines Germany offers, taste beer fresh from the keg, follow Luther’s footsteps into Erfurt and beyond, travel along the many scenic routes like the Romantic Road, explore the beaches of the Baltic and North Sea for a taste of sea side Germany and don’t forget the diamonds in the rough that were once part of East Germany.
But now that we’re a few days into January, I’m dreaming of my travels in 2013. I have not made any travel plans yet but I am dreaming of where I’d most like to go and have narrowed down my list to these 5 areas.
Dordogne Valley France
Small villages, rivers, canoes, hot air balloons, wine and prehistoric history all combine to make the Dordogne Valley call to me. I could see myself spending time driving from village to village enjoying the lovely markets, wines and cuisine along the way. Adding in days lazing in a canoe along the Dordogne river or visiting the national parks and gardens. There are many castles and churches to be visited too!
When I think of Ireland I see green rolling hills, smiling people, lochs, fog, turbulent oceans, pubs, beer and music… and castles waiting to tuck me in at night! Along with general sight seeing, I’d most like to enjoy evenings in those famous Irish pubs drinking the local brew while humming to wonderful Irish music. I’m not a huge whiskey fan but I would enjoy touring a whiskey factory and sampling this distilled wonder. I’ve always thought I’d probably like whiskey if I was drinking it in Ireland J Besides this, I’d love to drive around the country gazing at the scenery and learning about her history while spending of my nights in some of the many bed and breakfasts that dot the countryside (when I’m not staying in a castle, of course!).
I’ll admit it, pictures and movies talk to me! So as I was watching “The Last Holiday” before Christmas I was reminded of how much I’d love to visit Karlovy Vary and even stay at the Hotel Pupp! But that would just be a start to my visit of the Czech Republic. Of course, I couldn’t leave without visiting Prague but I really want to visit the areas outside the capital city. Plzen for its beer would definitely be on the itinerary along with the castles, forests, gorges, mountains, caves, architecture and history that Bohemia and Moravia are known for!
Sud Tirol Italy
I’m a mountain girl and those gorgeous and jagged peaks of the Dolomites have beckoned me for years. I would love to stand in an amazing green meadow surrounded by the soaring mountains. Of course, I’d also love to sample the local wine, enjoy the cuisine, learn about the history and legends and visit the small villages that sit so cozily at the foot of the Dolomite’s. There will also be time for a little hiking which would only make the trip complete.
You didn’t think I could make a potential travel list without including spots in Germany did you There really is so much of this country I haven’t been to but I think I’d really love to travel along the Alpine Road into Prien visiting Chiemsee, Berchtesgaden and any number of small lovely villages along the way. Or maybe I should finally break down and visit those lovely Christmas markets!
Boy this is going to be a tough decision!
What are you European travel dreams for 2013?