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kerbie18

International travel ideas

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Okay, in the first week of April I will have a 9 day window to take one of my daughters on a fun spring break trip. We have already set foot in all 50 states and most of the Caribbean countries, it was a previous goal of ours, so looking at further goals.

I traveled to several European countries in my youth over 20 years ago. I'm considering taking my daughter to Europe on vacation, but the whole Muslim invasion gives me pause. Any advice besides just stay home? Any safer countries that are fun?

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My wife says Argentina and Brazil. She traveled all over South America but loved those two the most. 

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Italy: Rome, Florence and a beach city. Could squeeze Paris in too by trainetc.

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Finland Norway and Poland. Of course that's more my bucket list but....

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What do you guys want to see? City? Beach? Road trip? Museums? A particular theme (like if that kids wanted to do museum tours or something food oriented)? Mind sharing what airport(s) you're near?

My default "tropical" answer is Belize - English speaking, stable/safe/secure, easy to get to from the United States.

If you're on the West coast, there's some *smoking* airfare deals right now to Asia, especially Japan.

Iceland seems to be "trendy" at the moment as a vacation spot, but I've heard food and hotels are stupid expensive there and it's getting a bit over-touristed.

Wildcard idea: Israel - Go, spend a day or two seeing the historical sights in Jerusalem, a few days around Tel Aviv (great Western city with good food, shopping, beaches), and then round out the trip in Eilat (beach resort city on the sea).

See if your daughter has been really into something lately - do a three day cooking academy in Italy, or see a live show of a movie she likes, etc.

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I would have normally never considered going to Japan until my daughter got stationed here.

But it's been a nice trip.

Almost non-existent crime and some unexpectedly beautiful scenery.

Went to the countryside today to visit Lake Motosu near Mount Fuji and we had a picnic and did a cave tour.

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Spring is the best time to visit Japan, I've been told.

Downside is that my ticket was $1100 and the flight was a looong one.

Do NOT go through Korea.  The 2hr flight from Seoul to Tokyo was torture.  The planes for that trip are designed for Asian folks.  I literally didn't fit and could not even lower my tray.

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Really enjoyed Japan. Most of my Navy career was in west pac so lots of visits but never stationed there. Get away from the bases and it is beautiful. Easy travel, good food, and I never felt out of place or spooked. Since your son in law is in the Air Force I sorta assume you are up north. My visits were southern or Yokosuka.

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Several years ago my mother had the opportunity to spend a month in Germany accompanied by my aunt that was originally from there and still has family there.

They stayed with my aunts family and saw the country from a totally different perspective than most tourists ever get the chance to.

I would love to do something like that, but have never really had a desire to travel to other countries otherwise.

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4 hours ago, flags said:

Really enjoyed Japan. Most of my Navy career was in west pac so lots of visits but never stationed there. Get away from the bases and it is beautiful. Easy travel, good food, and I never felt out of place or spooked. Since your son in law is in the Air Force I sorta assume you are up north. My visits were southern or Yokosuka.

Having been in the Navy and visited lots of bases and ports, I have been pleasantly surprised at the lack of trashiness around the Yokota AFB area.

Every other base I've been to had the neighborhoods outside of the gates filled with seedy car dealerships, strip clubs, bars, tattoo shops, and drunk and disorderly military members.

Yokota has a couple of businesses like that, but I have yet to observe any embarrassing Americans.  

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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, Moeman said:

Italy: Rome, Florence and a beach city. Could squeeze Paris in too by trainetc.

What this guy said.  That is a trip of a life time.  I've been to all these places several times. 

Paris is not describable.  But i am half french and speak the language fluently.  Normally they think I'm Dutch.  I have no idea why.

But Paris...is special...despite it's problems.

I've been to 28 countries. Some of them the State Department would encourage you NEVER to go to. 

Rome, Florence?  Paris? 

Yeah, when do I go again?

Edited by Historian

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New Zealand is beautiful and you could get your daughter a a Nephrite Jade necklace there too. Lake Taupo is the largest lake in Oceania and worth seeing. Here is a Whale bone amulet I picked up there. 

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Just a warning: 

When I visited Alaska, I bought A LOT of ivory carvings and fur clothing (I met most of the artists).  I was scheduled to fly from AK directly to "the States" and everything I bought is perfectly legal here.

But I was warned that if the plane should happen to be forced to land in Canada,  I would have to go through customs and almost everything I had is illegal there and would be confiscated.

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20 hours ago, Presguy said:

What do you guys want to see? City? Beach? Road trip? Museums? A particular theme (like if that kids wanted to do museum tours or something food oriented)? Mind sharing what airport(s) you're near?

My default "tropical" answer is Belize - English speaking, stable/safe/secure, easy to get to from the United States.

If you're on the West coast, there's some *smoking* airfare deals right now to Asia, especially Japan.

Iceland seems to be "trendy" at the moment as a vacation spot, but I've heard food and hotels are stupid expensive there and it's getting a bit over-touristed.

Wildcard idea: Israel - Go, spend a day or two seeing the historical sights in Jerusalem, a few days around Tel Aviv (great Western city with good food, shopping, beaches), and then round out the trip in Eilat (beach resort city on the sea).

See if your daughter has been really into something lately - do a three day cooking academy in Italy, or see a live show of a movie she likes, etc.

Nearest major airport is Louisville, KY for me. 

We actually already did Belize. It's a beautiful place indeed, but depressingly poor as well. One of my kids was more concerned with feeding the starving stray dogs than anything else.

Your other suggestions raise some possibilities, thanks!

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2 hours ago, Historian said:

What this guy said.  That is a trip of a life time.  I've been to all these places several times. 

Paris is not describable.  But i am half french and speak the language fluently.  Normally they think I'm Dutch.  I have no idea why.

But Paris...is special...despite it's problems.

I've been to 28 countries. Some of them the State Department would encourage you NEVER to go to. 

Rome, Florence?  Paris? 

Yeah, when do I go again?

I've been to Paris myself, 25 years ago. It is indeed a wonderful city. I worry about the more current dangers there. I'd be traveling unarmed (I am rarely unarmed) with a 12 year old girl. How safe is Paris today, really?

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52 minutes ago, Huaco Kid said:

Just a warning: 

When I visited Alaska, I bought A LOT of ivory carvings and fur clothing (I met most of the artists).  I was scheduled to fly from AK directly to "the States" and everything I bought is perfectly legal here.

But I was warned that if the plane should happen to be forced to land in Canada,  I would have to go through customs and almost everything I had is illegal there and would be confiscated.

Our previous trip to Alaska was on a cruise ship,  just quickly hitting 4 coastal ports. It's on my bucket list in the far future to live in Alaska for a month or two.

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I'll add to my Israel idea that, if you go to Eilat, you can do day tours to Petra in Jordan and see once-in-a-lifetime attactions. It's heavily touristed and Western safe, but it "exotic" enough that it makes great stores and Instram for when the kids get back.

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Argentina.  Lived there for five years.  Like having slices of Europe all in one place.   La Boca section of Buenos Aires is like stepping into Italy.  Go to Hurlingham, and expect to see the Queen having tea.  In Bariloche, you'll think you're in Germany.  Great food, great wine, plenty of people watching.  Best of all, you don't get jet lagged traveling back and forth.  Dollar goes a long way there.  Safer than Brazil.  Note that the seasons there are reversed.  They are coming into spring.

Edited by dudel

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10 hours ago, kerbie18 said:

I've been to Paris myself, 25 years ago. It is indeed a wonderful city. I worry about the more current dangers there. I'd be traveling unarmed (I am rarely unarmed) with a 12 year old girl. How safe is Paris today, really?

Paris has the same problems as every other major city in Europe and like many large American cities...there are places that it's not safe to go. 

If you stay to the major tourists areas you'll have plenty of cops and military personal (even the legion) around and you won't have many issues.   Be aware they have a lot of pick pockets in Europe.   

My daughter is roughly the same age as yours and is just now ready for that kind of trip.   I want her to visit her grand mother's home and meet some relatives.

The big issue is the French countryside.   You may not want to go home after seeing it. 

My mother's village is from the 12th century and has a population under 500.  I could gladly...sell everything...and move there and just be.

 

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