When Lisa and Alex told me they decided to move to Italy earlier this year, my first word was not “Congratulations!”, they were rather: “You better have a guest room for me!”
Some friend, huh?
I was obviously (half) joking about the guest room bit and of course I congratulated them. I wasn’t really thinking of visiting them this year, then I realize this would be the PERFECT opportunity to go to the European Christmas markets, something I’ve wanted to do for years now. I had the brilliant idea of asking my brother to come along for the ride. You should know that it’s very hard to get my brother to travel, so you can imagine my excitement when he agreed and I got right to work to find us flights (before he changes his mind).
Anyways, we are leaving this Saturday (!!) and these are the adventures we have coming up:
Day 1 – 3 – Genova with Lisa and Alex
This will be a mini reunion of sorts. I haven’t planned anything in the city and have left everything entirely up to them. If you know me at all, I rarely travel with no plan. This is a first and I’m actually kind of liking it.
Day 4 – 5 – Milan and Bergamo
My brother has never been to Milan, but I have – though with a less pleasant experience. We’ll spend a day wandering around the Duomo, have some risotto ala Milanese and an aperitivo. I’m thinking of doing a day trip to Bergamo, a small city just outside of Milan.
Day 6-8 – Zurich, Switzerland
My brother will remain in Milan on his own – I’m quite nervous about this, but I suspect he’ll be OK – while I continue on to Zurich. I booked myself an AirBnB and will be figuring out all kinds of ways to stay on budget in one of the most expensive cities in the world.
Don’t worry I’ve packed my instant noodles and oatmeals for those days I just don’t want to eat out.
Days 9 – 10 Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
I was going to do Innsbruck, Austria, but seeing as the AirBnB hosts I messaged didn’t reply, I changed my game plan and decided to check out Luxembourg instead. I have no expectation of this city. It seems like there are many fortifications and museums, both of which don’t interest me. We’ll see what I find.
On the plus side, it’s a + 1 on the new country count!
Days 11 – 13 Cologne, Germany
From Luxembourg City, I am taking the train to Cologne, Germany, where supposedly the best Christmas markets in all of Europe is located. I am SO excited to drink all the glühwein, eat all the spaetzle, and ogle at all the Christmas lights. Oh yes, and of course, the Kölner Dom and a glass of Kolsch are not to be forgotten.
Day 14 – Amsterdam
I decided to fly out of Amsterdam because flights were coming up to be cheaper and I figured I can give the city a second chance. I’m really only there for 12 hours if that. I am looking forward to walking the alleys and eating those Belgian fries with mayonnaise (OMG SO GOOD!)
Follow the adventures along on Instagram where I’ll be sure to bombard you with Stories and pictures.