It's not everyday that I get to give myself something I really, really, really love. More often than not, I always end up sacrificing what could make me happy for the benefit of those I love. I have just been pondering lately why I cannot, even just once, give in to my simple pleasure which is to travel, travel and travel some more. And so, after much consternation and an approval from hubby (There, I did it again. I just can't find myself deciding what I think I will be happy about without feeling guilty and asking permission from my boss - my hubby. I just always have to put my hubby and daughter in the equation when decision making rolls in... even in travels), I am, together with my close pal of 15 years who is likewise, celebrating the same birth month as I am, will embark on our Euro Trip for 2015!
I hope this one is just not a plan. I have already made hotel bookings as early as now because April is a high season due to spring time. We have not finalized the itinerary yet but we already made our budgets and we are both sticklers for following budgets. We're talking about not-so-fancy hotels but it should be in the city centre, inclusion of tours, Eurorail ride (oh, this one is something I haven't tried while visiting other countries in Europe few years ago and I really want to sit in even the cheapest coach available just to get a good view of the splendor of Europe), daily expenses like food and local transportation fares and flights.
We're both thinking of maximizing the week-long leave we have already blocked for 2015 so we can enjoy 3 countries within that time frame. Which countries? One is definitely Netherlands. I have been going on and off with the plans to travel to Netherlands since 2 years ago. It was supposed to be a birthday gift last year and the year before that but I always find myself traveling somewhere else the last minute. This time, I have already laid the plans, plotted the dates on my calendar on when to do this and that and there are plenty of other logistics to note of, like my expiring residence visa here in the UAE which I have to renew first before I can apply for a Schengen visa. The other 2 countries might be Belgium and France again since they are the closest, or Denmark and Germany on the east. I have to consider the strict budget again when I choose which destinations. I have been to both France and Germany but my friend hasn't. So, we'll come to know around January. However, the hotels in Eastern Europe is a lot cheaper than the ones in the west and northern part so we are considering a flight from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport to either Prague, Warsaw and Budapest rather than via rail to save time.
I'll finalize the itinerary around January to see if there are changes in the rates of hotels in all those countries. My friend doesn't mind if I take the rein on the planning thing since this was supposed to be a trip by myself. Knowing myself, I don't think I'll jump on the opportunity to travel alone because even if there are monopods available so I can take a snapshot of myself, I don't think it's fun to be alone in Europe or anywhere else for that matter. Nope, I'm not a lone traveler and I prefer to enjoy the experience with my family or friends.
So, I hope this dream of a Euro Trip this spring in 2015 will materialize. I'm 90% ready! I'm just waiting for the appropriate time to actually go and apply for a Schengen. I'm excited!!!