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European Destinations: A Partial Checklist

European Destinations: A Partial Checklist

There are so many places on this continent that we want to visit. I wasn't too sure how we'd be able to settle on where to go first.

Last week, we finally wrote out a list, chose a weekend to travel and investigated flights. And this past Sunday, our first trip beyond the borders of France was booked. We're going to Rome!

Source: Bud Ellison

Source: Bud Ellison

We're heading in just over a month for a long weekend. I can't wait to eat all of the pasta, wander around the worn streets and tour classical sites like the Colosseum and Sistine Chapel (cue mental preparation for the oh-so long lines). I can tell Steve is looking forward to it because he already added Italian to his daily Duolingo practice. I also studied Latin in high school, so I'm hoping to brush up on it (just a bit) and revisit some of those old history lessons.  If you've got any recommendations for us, please share!


As I mentioned, we finally wrote out a list of places to visit while we're living on this continent.  It's by no means comprehensive, but at least a good starting point for a checklist. 

Here they are (in alphabetical order):

Amalfi Coast, Italy

It looks unreal - it's hard to imagine that so much gorgeous actually exists in one place. We strongly considered it for this first trip, but ultimately decided to go back in spring or summer so we can take advantage of nice weather.


Who doesn't want to visit Amsterdam? With it's gorgeous canals, a plethora of bikes and vibrant flowers, we're definitely going it a priority. Fun fact: apparently Amsterdam is a city of cats.


It's the largest city on the Mediterranean coast with nightlife that lasts until dawn, tons of ogle-worthy architecture and tapas everywhere. Yum.

Bruges, Belgium

I'd like to see the charm of Bruges from its canals and the impressive panoramic view from the top of the Markt. Steve and I will be making an appearance at Breydel de Coninck for their famed mussels and bottomless frites. 

Budapest, Hungary

So many people I've met are in love with Budapest. I don't know much about it other than spas, history and architecture, but It will be fun to explore for ourselves.


Everything I've seen about this place is beautiful: the beaches, the sun, the medieval walled-city of Dubrovnik, the Plitvice Lakes National Park...

More of France

We hope to see all the different cities and towns in France like Alsace, Strasbourg, Marseilles, Nice, Burgundy, the Loire Valley, Fontainebleau and many more.


One of my dear childhood friends is half-Turkish. As a kid, I had no concept of Turkey even though she went so often. Now that I'm older, I'm definitely intrigued by it's colorful culture. We're planning to join a newer friend (and her husband) in Istanbul this summer; she visits her family there every year and can give us a more local perspective.


When I was younger, a family from Ireland moved in across the street. I adored their brogues and starting dreaming of when I would visit. I can't wait for the greenery, the cliffs, the castles, the pubs filled with music. I'll be happy wherever - Dublin, Belfast, Galway or any of the small towns in between. There's also a Game of Thrones tour that I might be interested in...


London is so close and a ton of music festivals and concerts land there all the time. I have my Songkick app set to notify me of shows held in London (along with Paris). I think music is always a good excuse for a quick jaunt.

Kaiserslautern, Germany

This is my grandmother's hometown. She moved to the US with my grandfather at 18 and has only been back a handful of times. I want to see her town and experience the culture that she came from. And I'll be sure to load up on bread because she always talks about the bread.


I'm sure Oslo is a wonderful, if expensive, city. But my motivation for visiting Norway is for the train rides. To see the changing landscape of the Norwegian fjord and visiting tiny towns along the way would be incredible.


And a few others on our list:

Copenhagen, Denmark
Florence, Italy
Berlin (a repeat)
Lisbon, Portugal
Stockholm, Sweden
The Alps
Venice, Italy


So many destinations already! I really hope that we are able to visit each and every one. Are there any places we should add to the list? Or recommendations for the ones listed above?


Vocab for today:

  • voyager - to travel
  • le vol - flight
  • Rome, Italie - Rome, Italy
  • touristique - tourist
  • histoire - history
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