Right! Now that all our accommodation has been booked, let me fill you in on the details of our European adventure. As previously posted, Paris will be our first stop!
Paris - We will have 6 days to explore Paris including one day at Versailles. Detailed plan to come!
Disneyland - We didn't count on staying at the Disneyland Hotel for 4 days...However, when a "pay for 2 nights and stay for an extra 2 nights for free" deal came up, I couldn't resist! We plan on using one of those days to hire a car and visit Fountainebleu and surrounds, as well as going to the outlets at La Vallee Marne.
Carcassonne - From Disneyland Paris, we will catch the train to Montpellier, pick up a car and drive to Carcassonne, just because we love the boardgame that was named after the famed walled city...We will only be here for one night.
Montpellier - We will stop here for 1 night as we head east towards Provence
Arles - Arles will be our base for exploring Provence, with details to be finalised. I fear this will very much be weather dependent. Pray that the Mistral will not rear its ugly head. After 5 nights here, we will commence our drive up the French Alps to the ski resort of Valmorel.
Valmorel is Club Med's newest ski resort. By all reports, it appears that it suits beginner to intermediate skiers which is us! As parents, we are looking forward to the all inclusive break. It will certainly be special spending Christmas and Elliot's birthday here.
Venice - At the end of our 7 days at the Alps, we will drive to Geneva to catch our flight to Venice where Malcolm's parents will join us. We will welcome in 2013 in the city of love...
Bologna - We begin our southbound trip with a train ride to Bologna. After 2 nights, we will continue with another train journey, continuing south towards Florence.
Florence - My parents, brother, aunt and cousin will be joining us in Florence to complete the gathering of the family! We have 6 nights in Florence. We're planning on a day trip to Lucca and Pisa as we didn't get an opportunity to visit them when we were last in the region on our Mediterranean cruise. How can we NOT take a photo of Jonah holding up the leaning tower of Pisa?!?!?
Rome - We have booked a private transfer for the whole tribe to take us from Florence to Rome. We will be stopping at Siena and San Gimignano enroute to Rome. We will have one full day to enjoy the Eternal City before we board our 11 night cruise on the NCL Jade.
Holy Land cruise- It is very special for the children to be on a cruise with both sets of grandparents visiting such exotic ports. We'll be visiting Turkey, Cyprus, Egypt and Israel. I am personally really excited about Israel and visiting the towns and places associated with the early years of Jesus.
Post cruise - We've booked a private transfer from the port to the airport with a tour of Orvieto and Civita di Bagnoregio in between. Then sadly, its time to fly home...Our parents, however, will both be kicking on. One set will head to the middle east whilst the other set will go to Asia. Darn those people!