My Dream Euro Road Trip

February 22, 2016

I have never been bitten by the travelling bug. I have never suffered from a bad case of wanderlust. I have never had this overwhelming urge to see the whole world and experience every culture and different viewpoint that the world has to offer. Call me boring, call me close minded. Whatever. I like my home comforts and being close to my nearest and dearest, being able to visit them at the drop of a hat.

However, one night whilst out on a spontaneous drive with Kami we began talking about the ultimate road trip that we'd take if we had the money. We don't have the money. We probably never will but that wasn't the point. We let our minds wander, our imaginations get the better of us and mapped out a road trip across Europe, starting in Glasgow and ending in Tallinn, Estonia. Well, I say ending in Tallinn but what I really mean is that would be the point at which we begin to return home.

The beautiful daydream goes a little something like this...

 photo Road trip.jpg

We would start by buying a camper van. For such a long time Kami and I have wanted to tour the UK in an old VW camper van but for this longer road trip we're thinking something more luxurious. I mean, we probably have come into some serious money to complete this trip so we might as well dream big, right? 

The camper van would be loaded with clothes, food and perhaps even Roxie. The logistics about travelling across Europe in the summer with a dog essentially in a tin can have still to be worked out. Either she would make the trip with us or she would stay with family for the month or so that we were gone. I mean, I would rather she did come with us but I imagine exploring some places with your four-legged, best friend is a little challenging. 

Anyway, we'd pack the camper van and set off from Glasgow with blue skies overhead, the windows down, the wind blowing through my hair. It's a daydream, remember? If I can't daydream about nice weather in Scotland then I'll go crazy. We would stop for the night somewhere near London before really getting started on our trip in mainland Europe.

Over to Calais we would go and into France, albeit only to stop briefly at Dunkirk, before spending some time in Belgium. We would visit Bruges, Ghent, Brussels and Antwerp making sure to explore all the hidden gems of each of the cities before bidding farewell to Belgium and heading into the Netherlands. Our Dutch stop would be in Eindhoven where we wouldn't stay long before heading into Germany.

I think we would probably spend a couple of days visiting Germany beginning in Düsseldorf. To be fair I don't know much about Düsseldorf (or many of the cities on our trip) but that is half of the fun of this trip. We'd be able to explore and take in the wonderful architecture whilst learning the history of each of the places we visit. From Düsseldorf we would travel to Hanover to take in the Old Town Hall or the Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen. Simply exploring and investigating all that the city has to offer.

It is obvious that whilst being in Germany we would obviously visit Berlin. My in-laws have been to Berlin in the past and loved it. I'd love to see the Brandenburg Gate and visit the places that we once East or West Germany. The East Side Gallery sounds particularly interesting as it a section of the wall covered in artwork of over a number of international artists. As a history lover, Germany seems to be rich in history and I would be eager to investigate some of the World War I & II memorials and such.

We would then leave Germany and head into Poland, more specifically Łódź. The architecture in Poland looks incredible and I'd be eager to see as much of it as possible. I can imagine there would be a lot of strolling along little streets, snapping pictures as we go. Oświęcim, or Auschwitz, would also be on our list of places to visit in Poland. It may sound morbid or distasteful but this is a place that I have wanted to visit for many years. I hear it is a truly humbling and haunting experience to visit the place where so many lost their lives. On our second day in Poland we would travel to Warsaw for some extra exploration.

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TALLINN, ESTONIA

Next on our list would be Kaunas in Lithuania, just an hour's drive from the capital of Vilnius which we would also visit. I'd want to see Kaunas Cathedral Basilica as from the little research I have done it looks beautiful before comparing it to the Romanov Church with its green onion domes in Vilnius.

Leaving Lithuania behind we would enter Latvia and head straight for its capital, Riga. I'd love to visit the Museum of Occupation and delve into Latvia's past under Nazi, then Soviet, rule. We could take a walking tour of the city before heading back to our camper van and getting back on the road.

This is the part of the trip that I am more familiar with, not so much the travelling aspect but the places. From Latvia we enter Estonia - one of my favourite places on the earth.

We'd start by having a little trip to a tiny little place called Mõisaküla. Mõisaküla is where my gran and her family lived. Unfortunately, despite being to Estonia twice before I have never been able to make the trip to Mõisaküla. With a population under 900, it doesn't have much to offer to tourists but there is a small museum that even hosts a small display my great uncle (I think), Richard Vastrik, as he was an Estonian weightlifting champion.

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PARNU, ESTONIA

From Mõisaküla we would travel to Pärnu, the seaside capital of Estonia to spend a few days by the beach. We could wander through Koidula Park before hitting up the shops in Pärnu town centre, have a meal at Kuursaal and I could reacquaint myself with the many little streets from holidays since passed.

We'd reach our final destination with a two hour drive from Pärnu to Tallinn where I would insist that we explore the Old Town to its full potential. From the Town Square to Toompea, the Nevsky Cathedral to the bright pink facade of Toompea Castle (the parliament building), Kiek in de Kok to the Viru Gate, this UNESCO World Heritage site is something to be marvelled at.

Tallinn would be our end point before we began the journey back to Scotland. This is still to be thought about although it would probably involve a ferry to Helsinki and travelling through Finland, Sweden, Norway and down through Denmark. After all, it is a dream European road trip. Maybe I'll save the homeward journey for another time.

If I ever do manage to do this incredible Euro Road Trip then I'll make sure to blog about it. Hey, I could even call it Tomans on Tour...

If you could go anywhere in the world, road trip or not, where would you most like to visit?

Wherever possible I avoid using anyone elses' pictures so as to avoid copyright and as such I know this post is a little sparse in photos. The ones I have used are my sisters and my own however I've created a PINTEREST BOARD for my dream trip if you want a little nosey at all the places I've mentioned.
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1 comment :

  1. I love dreaming up trips! I think this would be a great trip. I could happily do something similar, although I'd like to do it by bike!

    ReplyDelete

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