*This post was originally published on Tuesday, March 31.
It’s that time again. Time to pull out a map and choose your next big overseas vacation … or maybe, your first big overseas vacation. How exciting!
I recently received a message via Facebook from someone asking for tips on where he and his soon-to-be-bride should visit in Europe. And it got me to thinking.
For many Americans the idea of a European vacation-no Clark Griswold jokes, please-can be intimidating and somewhat overwhelming. Should you visit The City of Lights? The Eternal City? Paris? Rome? Oh wait … never mind.
The bottom line is it is a tough choice.
So I will tell you as I told my newest Facebook friend … “your options are limitless.”
Here are Five Tips to Help You Decide Where to go in Europe
1. Consider the Seasons
The man who messaged me wanted tips on where to go for his honeymoon, so it is expected he will take his trip immediately following his wedding. Therefore, the date is more or less, set and the seasons in Europe won’t likely change.
2. Think About the Weather
Seasons and weather go hand-in-hand, but the thing you should consider is what type of weather you prefer. For example, if you are getting married in August and detest hot weather, then southern Italy and Greece aren’t likely your best options, whereas the average August temperate in Paris is 75 degrees and Sweden averages 64 degrees.
3. Brainstorm Your Favorite Activities
Spend a few minutes and write down some of things you most enjoy. Do you love the outdoors and feel alive when you are hiking through rough mountains? Do you prefer snow sports or water sports? Maybe you love big cities and would rather spend your days shopping and museum-hopping than lounging on a beach with not-so-tanned tourists?
4. Follow Your Instincts
Think about any countries you have ever felt drawn to and ask yourself why. Maybe your great-great-grandfather was from Ireland and you’ve always wanted to kiss the Blarney Stone? Maybe you studied Renaissance Art in college? Maybe you love nothing more than hanging out with friends and eating Spanish Tapas?
5. Look at Your Budget
I know this is the ugly part, but it does matter. Some countries and even regions are more expensive than others. Norway, Sweden and Denmark are pretty pricey, while Eastern European countries rank among the most affordable for Americans and Canadians.
What do you consider when choosing a new European destination? How do you choose?
Until next time … Buon Viaggio!