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19 years old from the UK, I have always loved a good book and a cup of tea, and am often asked to recommend books I have loved, thus created this blog in order to share my thoughts with whoever is interested. Please share recommendations if you wish!

Monday, 31 August 2015

Interrailing through Europe: My guides and how I used them

So as very few of you will know this summer I spent a few days short of a month travelling on trains through Europe with my sister. This was an INCREDIBLE experience and I hope it explains my absence! I just want to clear up firstly- Interrailing is the same exact thing as Eurail(ing?) except you buy an 'interrailing' ticket if you live within the EU rather than a 'Eurail' ticket.

We flew from the UK to Paris before travelling on to Barcelona, then Nice, Milan, Venice, Florence, Rome, Vienna (where we did a trip out to Salzburg), Munich and finally Amsterdam. We did two night trains (where you sleep overnight on the train) as well as regular trains. It was such a brilliant experience and I'm so glad we went- I shall try to stay clear of all the 'cliche' rubbish in this post but it truly was unforgettable and one of the best months of my entire life.

Books took up a big part of my trip- not just books I read along the way but also guides! Obviously it was unrealistic to think I could take lots of individual city or country book guides, especially due to lack of space when you are living out of a back pack for a month, and I know I could have downloaded lots of ebook versions but, for me, a physical all inclusive guide book was what I wanted. I was generously given a guide called 'Europe by Eurail' written by LaVerne Ferguson-Kosinski (2015- 39th edition) by my parents. This book was incredible.

It includes up to date timetables, ticket prices for thousands of attractions as well as buses/metro tickets and discount city cards. it also offers brilliant recommendations for things to do, especially if you are short of time which for us was incredibly useful. It was this book that suggested the trip to Salzburg where we did one of my top three things in the whole trip- having lunch in a huge beautiful fortress overlooking the whole of Salzburg and the mountains. I will never forget that experience.

This guide, which we nick named 'the book', became what we really relied upon- from working out how to get from the airport to our hostel to figuring out how to budget for the trip. I wanted to talk about it in a whole post because honestly I would say this book (or a similar book-but this one is amazing) is vital when planning and travelling a trip like this. The suggestions allowed us to see some unbelievable places that we never even would have thought to go see- from attractions, hidden gems, places to eat and even places to stay.

As well as the guide book we took a pocket phrase book. For us this was really important as I can speak (some) Spanish and my sister can speak German but that was it, and it was great to be able to at least attempt to order food/converse a bit. The guide we took was fine- they are all pretty similar and ours had big sections for menus and ordering drinks and food which was helpful. I would say a phrasebook is really important and we used ours A LOT.

If anyone has any questions, or is interested in hearing more about the trip (not really sure how interested people are!) then feel free to leave a comment, send me an email at lizzyisreading@hotmail.com or tweet me @lizzyisreading

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