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Road Trip! Western Europe

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning
21 replies 9.1K views
Pricy147Pricy147 Forumite
1.3K posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning
Thinking of going away for a week, and trying something different. Decided upon a week jolly around western europe with some places in mind.

Currently think of a drive from sunny Swansea >>> Dover >>> Calais >>> Luxemborg >>> Venice >>> Milan >>> Pisa >>> Monaco >>> Marseille. Also thinking of driving through Verona, Brescia and Turin.

Think of overnight stays in Luxemborg (x1), Venice (x1/2), Milan (x1/2), Pisa (x1), Monaco (x1), Marseille (x1). Seven overnight stays. Big drives on Day 1 (Swansea > Luxemborg), 2 (Luxemborg > Venice) and 7 (Marseille > Swansea). But can share driving and just take our time!

Few questions I have;

1) Anyone know of a website which will calculate mileage for driving between several european and UK cities. Most route maps allow one via or so.
2) Can anyone recommend cheap ferry crossing companies which include taking you car across? I here Tesco clubcard vouchers can be converted - anyone with experience?
3) Any experience or recommendations for any of the places I'm thinking of going / any strong recommendations for particular places / must see's, etc? e.g. Leaning Tower of Pisa, etc. Been to Paris before so thats why thinking of Luxemborg.
4) Anything to avoid or I should be aware of!

Any previous experience or links would be much appreciated!

Thanks in advance!
To Stooze or Not To Stooze - Theres only one option :D
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Replies

  • will-he-payitoffwill-he-payitoff Forumite
    736 posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts
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    Just come back from Milan, i woulnt advise driving in Milan or Venice. Last year we got cheap flights to rome stayed a week then hired a car and drove up to venice via florence and pisa. flew back from venice. Got talking to a guy on the camp site in venice who had driven down and it had cost him double in petrol and overnight stops also i wouldnt call 10 days driving a holiday
  • Pricy147Pricy147 Forumite
    1.3K posts
    Why did it cost double in stops and petrol? Did he under-estimate?

    I'm calculating roughly;

    7 overnight stays @ ~£40 per night (B&B): ~£280
    ~2400 Miles. I get ~400 miles per tank @ ~£45 per tank: ~£270
    Evening Meals, etc ~£40 per day: ~£320
    Ferry ~£100

    So approx ~£1000 for a week for two. Certainly would be looking to bring this down via Tesco vouchers for Ferry, and cheaper meals / overnight stays where possible. So hopefully ~£800 for the week.

    I know you can fly somewhere cheaper - but fancy this as a change and you also see a lot in the space of a week!

    Anything wrong or missing in my calculations? I have world-wide travel insurance which covers myself and partner, and car is company owned - so a phone call will sort the insurance out for nothing.
    To Stooze or Not To Stooze - Theres only one option :D
  • will-he-payitoffwill-he-payitoff Forumite
    736 posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts
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    No it was double the cost of our trip, and you could look on the rac site I think your last journey is 18 hours driving time
  • albaladalbalad Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Pricy147 wrote: »
    Anything missing in my calculations? .

    time to relax !

    I love to drive , even in france and italy . But i would halve the number of stops , to give yourself the chance to enjoy the places you are visiting .
    I wouldn't think of driving all the way down just to visit pisa without popping over to Florence or Rome , why marseille ? -that a long detour and makes it a very long homeward trip
    "The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page."
    happy travels !!
    "No matter where you go, there you are."
    albalad
  • pompeyrichpompeyrich Forumite
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    Via michelin site HERE is good for journeys across Europe. On the home page, click options just under the driving direction bit, then on the next page click show / hide stopovers, you can then add 2 stopovers to your route and it will show hotels at these stopover places. On this page you can also choose your type of route, quickest, shortest, avoid tolls etc. and at the bottom you can choose miles, the default is km, GBP for £ and even the cost of fuel per litre.
  • mcfiscomcfisco Forumite
    2K posts
    Try mappy.com

    Just fill in the itinerary down the left hand side - if you click 'vias' it opens up to as many as you want.
    You can also get it to calculate fuel, tolls etc.
    I have long known that it is part of God's plan for me to spend a little time with each of the most stupid people on earth.
  • Pricy147Pricy147 Forumite
    1.3K posts
    Thanks for the tips all.

    Thinking it through a little more, and looking at some of the sites above in more detail - thinking of extended the holiday by one day, and also travelling up to Dover the Friday night following work for an overnight stay before an early start on Saturday morning. Thinking of getting the worst of the driving done on Day 1/2. Now thinking of the following;

    Day 1 (Friday Night): Travel to Dover from Swansea and stay overnight (approx 4 - 5 hours)
    Day 2 (Saturday): Travel from Dover >>> Monaco (approx 12 hours)
    Day 3 (Sunday): Spend day in Monaco and stay overnight
    Day 4 (Monday Morning): Travel to Pisa / Florence (If close by)? (approx 3 - 4 hours)
    Day 4 (Monday Afternoon): Spend day in Pisa / Florence and stay overnight
    Day 5 (Tuesday Morning): Travel to Venice (approx 3 - 4 hours)
    Day 5 (Tuesday Afternoon): Spend day in Venice and stay overnight
    Day 6 (Wednesday): Spend second day in Venice and stay overnight
    Day 7 (Thursday Morning): Travel to Milan (approx 3 - 4 hours)
    Day 7 (Thursday Afternoon): Spend day in Milan and stay overnight
    Day 8 (Friday): Travel to Luxemborg (approx 10 hours) and stay overnight
    Day 9 (Saturday): Spend day in Luxemborg and stay overnight
    Day 10 (Sunday): Travel to Dover (approx 4 hours) then onto Swansea (approx 4 - 5 hours)
    Day 11 (Monday): Sleep!

    Seems reasonable - and cramming quite a bit into the space of 10 days. Only need 6 days from work too including a day of rest when back. Anyone done any of the above drives - are they feasible - seem to be on the routemaps and mostly motorway too!

    Any tolls / taxes I should be aware of?

    Also - if one place is better to stay than another - I could always change the second day stay from Venice to something else!
    To Stooze or Not To Stooze - Theres only one option :D
  • JimzJimz Forumite
    11 posts
    I've driven around Europe a few times and loved every minute, so I think you'll have a great time.

    Couple of tips.

    Rather than going the traditional Dover - Calais route, why not try Norfolk Lines Dover - Dunkirk service. I think it takes an extra hour, but I've found them cheaper, pleasant and often quieter. I think they have an offer on at the min £19 each way for car +5 passengers. Check their web site.

    If you are a confident driver see if you can fit in a trip over the alps through one of the mountain passes (not the tunnels). The views are spectacular..! If you've ever seen the original Italian Job - just like the beginning..! Do some internet searching for ones which are on your route. (I drove the Passo Stelvio - amazing atmosphere and views, but maybe slightly off your route.)
    If you do this remember that miles tick by very slowly so allow lots of extra time.

    Get a GPS with European maps. They will save you time and take the stress out of driving. Also dont forget to upgrade your breakdown cover and insurance. (Your policy will cover you in Europe but maybe only third party).

    Good luck, I'm sure you'll have an amazing time..!
  • While in Venice, visit the Islands you can get a ticket which will let you hop back and forth. Murano and Burano are good but Torcello was less so IMHO.
    I have a cunning plan!
    Proud to be dealing with my debts.

  • Pricy147Pricy147 Forumite
    1.3K posts
    Jimz wrote: »
    I've driven around Europe a few times and loved every minute, so I think you'll have a great time.

    Couple of tips.

    Rather than going the traditional Dover - Calais route, why not try Norfolk Lines Dover - Dunkirk service. I think it takes an extra hour, but I've found them cheaper, pleasant and often quieter. I think they have an offer on at the min £19 each way for car +5 passengers. Check their web site.

    If you are a confident driver see if you can fit in a trip over the alps through one of the mountain passes (not the tunnels). The views are spectacular..! If you've ever seen the original Italian Job - just like the beginning..! Do some internet searching for ones which are on your route. (I drove the Passo Stelvio - amazing atmosphere and views, but maybe slightly off your route.)
    If you do this remember that miles tick by very slowly so allow lots of extra time.

    Get a GPS with European maps. They will save you time and take the stress out of driving. Also dont forget to upgrade your breakdown cover and insurance. (Your policy will cover you in Europe but maybe only third party).

    Good luck, I'm sure you'll have an amazing time..!


    Seen the ferries to Dunkirk - prob is - for those prices the times are very unsociable - basically late at night or mid morning. Does seem a little cheaper to Dunkirk though!

    I do fancy a trip through the Alps - just depends how much time I have! Is it expensive to go on those routes (any fees?)
    To Stooze or Not To Stooze - Theres only one option :D
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