Inter-railing is the ideal solution for those looking to travel around Europe cheaply and easily. However with so many diverse countries and wonderful cities to choose from, it can be difficult to decide on the best route.
Choosing where to go
An inter-railing ticket lasts for a month. The first thing to decide is whether to concentrate on just one or two countries or to try and see as many of the great cities as possible. For the former option then Italy is a good choice. It has beautiful scenery, famous cities including Rome, Florence, Pisa, Naples and Milan. Alternatively you could spend your month in Spain and move from mountains to beach resorts and visit a range of interesting towns from Granada to Barcelona.
However with a month to travel around Europe concentrating on just one country could be seen as a wasted opportunity with so many great cities to visit. These could include Paris with its wonderful architecture, museums not to mention bars and restaurants. Follow the relatively sedate French life with a trip to the lively capital of Germany Berlin. From being a divided city, Berlin has transformed itself and the former drab east is now the centre of a lively and cosmopolitan night life. It is full of lively bars and clubs open to all hours of the morning. Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and has long been an essential stopping point on an inter-railing tour. It is no longer quite the cheap city it was but it still has beautiful buildings and the famous Charles Bridge. From there you could continue with the former eastern European theme and visit the city of two parts Buda and Pest situated on either side of the Danube. There are of course many other great cities of Europe which could be included such as lively Amsterdam, or picturesque Vienna.
Whichever route you choose it is wise to break up the cities with a little bit of down time in a small country town or a few days by a beach or lake somewhere. Large cities are wonderful but a month moving from one city to another can be exhausting and after a while they can merge into one.
Although most inter-railers try and keep their luggage to a minimum, as they have to carry it everywhere for a month, it will still probably contain valuables. Items such as mobile phones, cameras, credit cards and kindles are now standard for most people. However, if they were stolen they would cost a considerable amount to replace. Travel insurance is therefore advisable and also covers issues such as injuries and emergency medical care. The easiest way to ensure you are covered is to buy travel insurance online before you go to give you peace of mind.
Finding somewhere to stay when you arrive in a strange city can be daunting. However in all cities there are a variety of hostels which provide good, clean, comfortable and cheap accommodation often very centrally. In the summer they can get very full so it is advisable to try and arrive as early as possible as this is the best time to find a bed.
Inter-railing is a wonderful way of travelling across and seeing Europe for those with the time to do it.