The Ultimate Euro-Vacation: 6 Countries in 23 Days

March 27, 2019

This past summer, I found myself in a sticky dilemma. Our middle daughter had just graduated from college and her travel plans with friends were not panning out. As her mother, I felt awful that none of her friends or her boyfriend could take time off from jobs, committed internships, or other travel to celebrate.

That’s where Inspirato’s California team stepped in and helped me plan an epic mother-daughter adventure, taking us through Europe, all while staying in beautiful hotels with bespoke planning and attention to detail. In retrospect, this was the best decision I made about the trip.

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We began with a four-day biking trip and excursion in the Netherlands followed by a train to Bruges, Belgium, for two nights in a 500-year-old hotel within walking distance of the town square. From Belgium, we flew to Zurich and stayed at the Park Hyatt in an incredible suite with amazing concierge staff that set us up with a day excursion to Lucerne. We loved eating fondue in the historic section of town, seated along the water from where we could watch the beautiful swans and busy tourists.

Next was a train to Geneva, where we stayed on the lake at La Réserve. From Lucerne we took a day-trip to Chamonix, France, and rode the Mont Blanc cable car up to an altitude of 12,600 feet for a stunning view from the top of Europe. There’s no other view like it in the world.

Next were Florence, Tuscany, and Rome, with many sights in between. We rented a car and drove along the Italian coast. We stopped in Siena and passed acres of sunflowers. Baha, our concierge at the Portrait Firenze in Florence, was fabulous with his suggestions for restaurants, places to shop, and the best gelato, along with securing museum tickets, train tickets, and arranging for our rental car. From Rome, we flew to Split, Croatia, and visited friends for a few days before traveling to our final destination, Paris.

Highlights for us were Italy’s food and art, architecture and sights in Croatia—especially Plitvice Lakes National Park—and Switzerland’s beautiful, scenic landscapes, especially viewed from the windows of our train. We also loved our cooking class in Florence and limo ride in Rome for a day of sightseeing.

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We had a blast and there was never a dull moment—it felt as if we were contestants in the Amazing Race TV show with the intensity of our itinerary. Back home, we were thrilled to learn that we inspired another mother-daughter duo to contact Inspirato for their own version of our trip. Now my younger daughter expects me to do the same when she graduates from college. I say, “Let’s go!”