A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about preparation

Today marks the 1 month mark

Exactly 1 month from today, I will be sitting on a plane bound for Germany. Excited? Yes! Scared? Yep. Happy? Hell ya!

Posted by CanaGerm 13:25 Archived in Canada Tagged preparation Comments (0)

3rd weekend plans

For my 3rd weekend in Germany I would like to stay local. Not in Stuttgart but in the country that is. That is why I am choosing Cologne (Koln) & Frankfurt. I was told by my friends here and in Germany that Koln is really nice and is a must see. So, of course I have to see!

These are my plans for April 18-19 weekend.
I plan on taking the ICE train (or using my Eurail pass-if I get one) to Koln Saturday morning. I contemplated Friday night but I would have to spend money on accomodations and since Koln is only 2.14 hours away, there is no need. Right now, it looks like I would do the following for my Koln/Frankfurt weekend:

-Saturday: Catch the 5:51am train ex Stuttgart to Koln. Arrive 8:05am. Take a gander around the city, do a city tour, take lots of pictures.
-Catch the 6:54pm train to Frankfurt. Arrive 7:51pm.
-Check into a hostel close to the city center
-Sunday: Take a 1/2 day tour and set out on my own
-Catch the 6:40pm train. Arrive in Stuttgart at 9pm.

Interesting to note: The cost to see both Koln and Frankfurt is the same price if I choose to visit Koln only.

I will wait to book this trip when I get to Germany as sometimes the ICE has seat sales and I am hoping I will be lucky. If not, the price will more or less be the same as what is posted now.

Posted by CanaGerm 12:17 Archived in Canada Tagged preparation Comments (0)

1st Holiday - Easter Weekend - Possibilities

Basically from the get-go, I have a long holiday weekend upon my arrival in Germany. Great, right? Well, I am trying so hard to plan a trip. The choices are plentiful but the same time limiting. I want and need to fly out of Stuttgart as the train is apparently 5 walking minutes away from my hotel and the airport is about a 10 minute ride. So, getting to the aiport is easy from what my friend, B, told me. My sources are Grman Wings and Air Berlin. I have noticed that the flights prices inter-Europe aren't great but they aren't horrible either BUT the taxes is what makes travel very expensive. The days of euro 25.00 trips are over. At least for right now.

So far, for April 10-13 long weekend, the contenders for visits include:

-Barcelona, Spain. Why? Everyone says it is amazing there. It is a must see for Spain and Europe in general. So far the flight and hostel prices aren't bad. They aren't good either but I expect this. It is a holiday weekend after all.

-Toulouse, France. France? Enough said. It looks so goregous here and they seem to have some really great day tours which I would like to take.

-Split, Croatia. I have a slight facination with this country for some weird reason. When I was booking my trafalgar tours vacation, I was really excited about this destination because of it's uniqueness with its red topped homes and beautiful green, lush mountains. I read really good things about this place so it will stay on my list.

My list is short as I don't want to give myself too many options so as to not confuse and stress myself out with all the great possibilites. I would like to book my ticket by the end of February so I will sure to update you'all once I do.

To Do List:
--Complete extensive research on the above 3 possibilities
-Finalize my destination
-Book flight our April 10-13, 2009
-Book a hostel for 3 nights that is close to the city centre
-Book at 2 seperate day tours (I will feel safer in a group setting than exploring on my own-also, I might get lost)

Posted by CanaGerm 12:47 Archived in Canada Tagged preparation Comments (0)

First weekend Plans

As I advised, I will be arriving in Germany April 3 therefore I will have the entire weekend to explore the city. From what I hear, the first two weeks is like the honeymoon stage for the introduction. My collegues will apparently show me around, take me to some great bars, tell me where to eat, what beer to drink etc.. After those 2 weeks, it is all over. I have to basically fend for myself in a way. I think I will have friends but I can't expect them to hang out with me all the time-people do have lives. So, that brings me to planning my time when I'm actually in Stuttgart. We can start at the first weekend.
NOTE: I will print off all my "things to do" and keep them in a book so when I get to Germany I am not scrambling. I will also look back on my blog as a reference guide to jog my memory.

I can almost certainly assume that Friday April 3 will be spent getting groceries, being shown around and having a bit of fun-during the day. After my collegues leave, I will most likely spend my time unpacking, and getting acquainted with my bed. :) I will be up over 24 hours at this point and I will start running fast and hard as of the Monday, when I start work. So, getting rest is imparative. Before I start my first work week though, I have Saturday and Sunday to get through. In a strange foreign land with no family, friends (well, only a few) and none of my creature comforts...I will have to get something so I won't get sad. And, exploring is first on my list.

Saturday April 4

Ludwigsburg is apprx 4 minutes away from my hotel via the s-bahn. From my research, there are a few castles in Ludwigsburg which is super exciting to me. I mean, CASTLES!!!! The main attraction is The Residential Palace!! Cool. I think I will spend my entire Saturday exploring this place. There are guided tours which are under 10euro so that is doable. Ludwigsburg also boasts the beautiful Blooming Baroque and Fairy-Tale Garden. The gardens open at 7:30am daily which is great for me since I plan on being in the city no later than 8am. There is a porcelin manufacturer on the grounds also but I don't know if I will visit this place. I am so not into art. In order to fully enjoy Ludwigsburg, I plan on taking my sweet time walking around, taking pictures and enjoying a nice meal. Nothing overly expensive but something classically German.

Sunday April 5

Right now I will keep Sunday open as I think I might be beer-tasting with my friend but if not, here are some of my vast options.
- Killesbergpark. This is a public park which is apprx 8km from my hotel.

-OR, I might visit the Wilhelma Zoological and Botanic Garden instead. I spoke about this before on this blog. I plan on making it a leisurely day full of picture taking, people watching and acclimating myself in the German culture. It will be an early night though as the next day will be my intro into my company, Stuttgart style!

-OR, I might take a Stuttgart walking tour. There are many to choose from including:
1) Stuttgart City Tour - EUR 18.00
2) City Walk. I am leaning toward this one as it seems to give more history and insight into the city which might bemore beneficial for my needs.
3) Some tour at the numerous wine gardens.

If all else fails and I can't see why that would happen, I will hire out a bike for the day and just cycle around exploring on my own. Of course, I might get lost so this may not be the best idea.

Some might think these are some grand plans for a person who will have only just stepped off a plane after flying over 7 hours but I must reinterate something here. I only have 3 months in Germany and I can't afford to waste one minute of precious time.

Posted by CanaGerm 09:55 Archived in Canada Tagged preparation Comments (0)

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