Topic Wiki

Still in progress... 3.5 weeks done, 2.5 to go!

As per a great suggestion from Joe, here are the links to each city's TR:
Israel: Part 1
Israel: Part 2 (very short)
Israel: Part 3 - Eilat
Israel: Part 4 - Ein Gedi/Dead Sea
Madrid
(Pics from Israel and Madrid)
Barcelona
Seville
Gibraltar
Rome
Florence
Pisa
Venice
Switzerland

Trip planning thread: http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=37776.0
There you can find all the info about how I booked what. May take some searching in there.
« Last edited by @Yehuda on October 29, 2015, 05:06:09 PM »

Author Topic: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report  (Read 70050 times)

Offline SOS

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #225 on: May 03, 2015, 01:32:07 AM »
Wow I didn't think we would ever see the next installment

Offline Yehoshua

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #226 on: May 03, 2015, 01:52:15 AM »
Wow I didn't think we would ever see the next installment
The next one is the one I want to see the most (in terms of what's included ;)), although at this point in time the Paris one would be a lot more practical.

Offline AI-TRAVEL

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #227 on: May 03, 2015, 02:05:48 AM »
Wow really nice!

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #228 on: May 03, 2015, 07:07:37 AM »
Wow, great installment @Yehuda! Thanks for the shout out.  You're right, I did stock up, but my stock piles are dry now. I have to wait another 8 weeks until I can stock up again  :).
Wow I didn't think we would ever see the next installment
Wow really nice!
Thanks guys! Glad you enjoyed.

The next one is the one I want to see the most (in terms of what's included ;)), although at this point in time the Paris one would be a lot more practical.
I think you're forgetting I went to Florence and Pisa before Venice ;)

Offline Yehoshua

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #229 on: May 03, 2015, 09:59:22 AM »


I think you're forgetting I went to Florence and Pisa before Venice ;)
Valid point. Ok, so I'm waiting for Venice.

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #230 on: May 04, 2015, 03:50:55 PM »
Florence

As previously written, we rented a car in Rome and drove up Italy, stopping in Tivoli, Florence and Pisa on the way. If you were to drive straight from Rome to Florence, you can do it in under 3 hours. Because there weren't any hotels in Florence that had cheap points options for the points we had, we stayed the night in the city of Arezzo at the AC Hotel Arezzo. Arezzo is basically on the way from Tivoli to Florence, so we figured it would be a good place to spend the night, and it was. The hotel was like all the other ACs we stayed in sleek, modern, and just a generally nice hotel, and we paid with a Marriott free cat. 1-5 certificate for the night.

In the morning, we set out for Florence, about an hour's drive, making our total time on the road from Rome to Florence about 4 hours - so, as you can see, our stops really weren't too far out of the way. We passed by another toll (4 euro), so in total, we paid about 21 euro in tolls going from Rome-Florence. Not sure how much it would be if you drive straight.

Our first stop was the Great Synagogue of Florence, which has short tours every 1/2 hour alternating between English and Italian. I believe the Shul's website is where I found out about a nearby parking lot and paid 21 euro for the day. The Great Synagogue doesn't allow pictures inside, unfortunately, so we had to check our phones, etc. by security. The entrance ticket cost about $7 a person (tour or no tour), and it's valid for a few other Synagogues in Italy, including Venice (although we didn't end up taking a tour there). Just like in Rome, the Shul is enormous and gorgeous. The interior is much less colorful than Rome's, but it's almost entirely designed out of wood and is beautiful in its own right. We happened to get there just in time for an English tour, so that was great, but the tour wasn't incredibly spectacular - just a local talking briefly about the history of the Shul. I believe she mentioned that during WWII, the Shul was captured by the Nazis and used as a storage place for motorcycles and other war materials and, for some wonderful reason, was never destroyed. Again, IIRC, a fire took down some of the building at one point, but the community raised the funds necessary for the repairs. After the tour, you can go upstairs to see the "museum", which is really just a small room with some Jewish/Shul-related artifacts (with English captions/explanations). The museum is not "must-see". Next to the Shul is Ruth's Restaurant, which has had (see the Florence thread) controversy over its Kashrus, so we just avoided it. There is a Chabad house just down the block as well, but it was closed when we were there (not that they would have had food anyway).


Great Synagogue of Florence, exterior

From the Great Synagogue, Google Maps helped us make our towards Ponte Vecchio. We passed by a small convenience store that had the cheapest water and soda we found on our entire trip. We stopped at some shops selling clothes outside and just wandered the streets until we made our way to the bridge. The streets of Florence have that wonderful charm of European cities. We passed by some of the famous Florence museums, but we decided to pass on them. We saw the fake David statue as well as a few others just chilling in the square. As you get closer to the bridge, you notice that you're basically walking into a busy market. Stores and salesmen are selling all sorts of items from clothes to jewelry to food, and it's fun to walk through. We weren't looking for anything in particular, and we didn't end up buying anything. The bridge is cool in that it's a pedestrian bridge that has built-up storefronts on both sides that kind of enclose you in this bridge-market. Unfortunately, I didn't get a good picture of the bridge. However, I did get a nice shot from the bridge looking out (to a different bridge in the distance). Pretty sweet timing that the kayaker was just passing by.


View from Ponte Vecchio

We continued to walk around Florence as we headed back to our car. I believe we ate lunch back in the car from stuff we picked up at the grocery in Rome. Half a day in Florence was great. If you're into art, the museums here could help you fill a full day and even make staying the night worthwhile, but we weren't so interested and just enjoyed our morning. Off to Pisa!

Offline morgs

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #231 on: May 04, 2015, 04:04:24 PM »
Wow the installments are coming to quick for me to keep up with ;D. Thanks so much for still putting the effort in to finish this up-really enjoyable read!!

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #232 on: May 04, 2015, 04:13:00 PM »
Wow the installments are coming to quick for me to keep up with ;D. Thanks so much for still putting the effort in to finish this up-really enjoyable read!!
Hehehe :)
My pleasure. I hope to keep moving forward now that busy season is over. It will probably still take a long time, though. We're 3.5 weeks into the trip. 3 more to go! lol

Offline morgs

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #233 on: May 04, 2015, 04:19:41 PM »

It will probably still take a long time, though. We're 3.5 weeks into the trip. 3 more to go! lol
according to my calculations about another 10 months (assuming there are no extra interruptions of course) ;D ;D ;D

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #234 on: May 04, 2015, 04:22:33 PM »
according to my calculations about another 10 months (assuming there are no extra interruptions of course) ;D ;D ;D
Well I have 5 weeks if I want to finish it before the 1 year anniversary of the beginning of the journey.

Offline morgs

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #235 on: May 04, 2015, 04:25:20 PM »
Well I have 5 weeks if I want to finish it before the 1 year anniversary of the beginning of the journey.
then y'all better get workin'!!!

Offline Ergel

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #236 on: May 04, 2015, 04:46:27 PM »
A shame you didn't go see the David. It's really a site to behold, even if you don't like art
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #237 on: May 04, 2015, 04:53:50 PM »
A shame you didn't go see the David. It's really a site to behold, even if you don't like art
I thought about it, and I think I found entrance tickets for something like $15-18 a person, but just couldn't justify it. I'm not sure that we really would have been wowed. We saw famous sculptures in the Louvre and only because my wife studied them in Art History did we feel a need to stand there for more than a minute. So I imagine - and yes, I know I didn't go - that seeing the David would have been similar, except very pricey.

Offline Ergel

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #238 on: May 04, 2015, 04:57:42 PM »
I thought about it, and I think I found entrance tickets for something like $15-18 a person, but just couldn't justify it. I'm not sure that we really would have been wowed. We saw famous sculptures in the Louvre and only because my wife studied them in Art History did we feel a need to stand there for more than a minute. So I imagine - and yes, I know I didn't go - that seeing the David would have been similar, except very pricey.
It's hard to explain if you haven't seen it. But it's like no other piece of art that I've seen
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline @Yehuda

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Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon Trip Report
« Reply #239 on: May 04, 2015, 04:59:15 PM »
It's hard to explain if you haven't seen it. But it's like no other piece of art that I've seen
I hear ya.