Motor Trip Covering Five Countries
In this section, and in several to follow, we will tell you what we did, and at the end of each of these extended excursions, we will analyze what we could have done differently. These
can be a "model" for you when you plan trips of your own.
Europe is quite compact, and lends itself to the exploration of more than one country at a time on the same trip. I start planning our trips a year or so in advance, hoping
to catch and eliminate screw-ups. Despite the best of plans, however, things happen. Here is a fairly complete re-telling of one of our more complex trips:
I suppose I was in a more adventurous mood than usual when I planned this overly ambitious road trip through Europe. We picked up a car in Amsterdam and drove into Belgium, then
south through France. Leisurely touring several French cities, we continued our route across France, through the Pyrenees into Spain. We crossed Spain, going ever south, towards the Mediterranean, then
hopped a flight across to Morocco.
We stopped in dozens of cities and towns, took hundreds of photos. Included here are some of the best, though certainly not all.
Every 10 years, there is a huge floral exhibition in the Netherlands, called Floriade. Actually, it is the largest public event in the Netherlands, and if you are considering going there,
plan accordingly, as the next one will be in the spring of 2012. Millions of people attend it, and if you are a flower buff (or not) it is well worth your effort. There are hundreds of displays, with the
highlight being the display of Dutch tulips. More than a million bulbs are yours for the enjoying and photographing.
Please be aware that the country is small and hotel accommodations are not as available as in large American cities. Plan accordingly and allow ample lead time to avoid disappointment.
We picked up a car at the airport and drove a short distance out of the Netherlands and into Bruges, Belgium. A village begun around 650AD, it became one of the most important trade
centers in Northern Europe during the 13th to 15th centuries.