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Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Mumbai, India
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Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Hi! I plan to travel with my family including two young kids (11 & 8) for around 15 days using my Alfa Romeo 147.

1. I plan to cover Sestri Levante (near Genoa), - stay for 2 nights,

2. Monaco, Nice - stay for 2 nights covering Cannes from there.

3. Nice to Zermatt - Don't know which route is the best and where to park - because I don't think car driving would be possible till Zermatt. - Stay for at least 1 night.

4. Zermatt to Geneva - We have already stayed in Geneva for a week in 2010 but can take a break for a night and re-visit major attractions.

5. From Geneva which Route is better for Netherlands for Going - which places to cover on the way and for how many days?

6. Netherlands - 2-3 nights - Please suggest which places other than Amsterdam..

7. While coming back from Netherlands I would like to stay in paris for 2-3 nights..

8. From Paris to Rome - which routes and places to cover.

I look forward to the advice of experts and experienced members of the forum.

Thanking you in advance.

Lewes, United...
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1. Re: Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Hi

Welcome to the Road Trips forum.

I have to assume this is a summer trip plan as poor weather in the mountains and possible short term road closures would not make this a viable trip plan from perhaps mid November to early May, but you don't say.

I'm sorry but I don't personally think this is a great plan at all. First, it's about 4.5K kms in 15 days, not counting side excursions for local visits. This distance by itself, spaced out evenly, could work if you are prepared to use the various types of express roads that link major cities within Europe, but ........

The trip plan starts off OK in terms of distance covered per day as far as Geneva, but it is a hugely illogical itinerary because, to get from Nice area to Zermatt area, you'd need to back track almost as far as Genoa, before you can then continue north towards Zurich. This is because the Alps are in the way and there are no direct roads heading north from Nice area. The nearest you can get by car to Zermatt is Tasch, where you need to leave the car in an expensive car park structure and take the train shuttles into town. Depending on where you stay, you then need a taxi the rest of the way.

As you have visited Geneva before, I assume you know about the vignette required to drive in Switzerland? Maybe you flew previously.

It's after here that your plans seem to seriously unravel to me. Suddenly now you start adding really long drives. I would estimate that the drive from Geneva to Amsterdam would take a minimum of 10 hours, plus toll charges as you pass through France to Luxembourg to Belgium to reach Amsterdam.

The drive from Amsterdam to Paris is pretty easy, I remember doing effectively that route with my parents well before there were the roads that exist today for a long weekend!

However, driving from Paris to Rome for your last day is utter madness. I would expect the journey, as it's around 1,400 kms to take a minimum of 15.5 hours and cost well over 100 Euros in tolls. You would not have time to stop anywhere on the way back, even if it were viable, it will be just one long blur on express roads with lots of traffic.

Now to look further at your actual list of destinations and durations. To visit any one city or town, you need 2 nights there to see the place, more is always better.

You have a single night in Zermatt. It seems a lot of complexity, hassle and cost those last few kilometers for a single night there. What would you expect to have time to see and do? The cable cars for the views don't run in the evenings for the most part.

While you have 2 nights in Monaco or Nice, you need a day for each town, and you plan to also visit Cannes.

Amsterdam and Paris are not car friendly cities, you need to do homework on where to park and where to stay and how to get around. Also, 2, maybe 3 nights in each is still short changing those wonderful cities to me personally, and it's an awful long way from Rome to drive and just catch a quick glimpse of each, but it's not my road trip.

I'm not sure why you tell us your car model. Would you expect that to make any significant difference to this road trip?

What do I suggest? Tell us what you want from your trip. Road trips always work best within Europe if your emphasis is on smaller towns and non express roads to allow you time to enjoy the roads and scenery and to explore small places that are more accessible by car. Don't try to be too ambitious on number of destinations and distances, you cannot see everywhere, accept that and see where you can get to enjoyably and more slowly. After all, it's supposed to be a holiday, not a race.

SWT

Edited: 18 May 2014, 17:40
Mumbai, India
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2. Re: Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Hello SWT,

Many Thanks for your valuable inputs. I can extend the trip by few days -up to 20 days.

I can skip NICE/Monaco and drive straight to Tasch from Sestri Levante.. start early and spend 2 days there.

From Tasch we can drive down to Dijon, France via Geneva, and take a night -break.

Next morning we can start for Brussels and stay there for 2-3 nights.

Next - Brussels to Amsterdam - Stay there for 3 nights

Amsterdam - Paris - Stay there for 3 nights.

Paris - Montrueux (Swiss) or any other place for a night halt.

From Montreux to Genoa

Genoa to Rimini for 2-3 nights

Back to Rome.

You are right, last time I visited Swiss from India through flight, and didn't use Vignette. I will surely buy vignette.. is it available on the entry boarder? Can I buy online ( I noticed it on Swiss Raiwaysl website - Motorway Vignette -Euro 33.34).

We would definitely like to explore interesting places / smaller towns on our way... and won't mind spending some more time for it's worth.

I look forward to your valuable advice.

Thanks & Best regards,

Bharat

Lewes, United...
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3. Re: Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Yes, you can buy the vignette for Switzerland online, you just need your car plate details. Check the websites, some charge in Euros, others in CHF. Most don't seem to add a fee, it seems. You can also buy it on the day of travel near the border, but where seems to keep changing.

You may have added more days but you've added more stops, so it all comes down to the same problem of not enough time anywhere, and still far too much driving on boring, often expensive roads. And, as I said before, city to city to city trips don't make good road trips in my personal view because of traffic and parking issues, they are always more pleasurable if you take things much more gently and enjoy scenery, small destinations and avoid cities. However, it's your trip, you can do as you please.

SWT

Mumbai, India
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4. Re: Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

Hi SWT.

Thanks for your reply.

Yes I have added more stops to avoid longer drives per day... A friend suggested me to include .. Luxembourg on the way to Brussels ... Ghent and Bruges on the way to Netherlands..

Of course, we have already visited these cities (Amsterdam, Paris, Geneva) earlier - objective of traveling by car is to explore beautiful smaller towns near these cities..

You may suggest some names - which fall en-route.

Thanks again.

Bharat

5. Re: Any suggestions for a round trip: Rome-Netherlands Mid July

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