Road trip from Channel Tunnel to Northern Italy..IDEAS NEEDED!(10 Posts)
We are starting to think about summer hols 2016 and for last 2 years we have driven down to Loire or Dordogne in France. This year we fancy something a bit different! Has anyone here done a road trip from Channel Tunnel, across France through Switzerland to Northern Italy?
Any suggestions for an itinerary - places to stop along the way? We want the journey to be very much part of the holiday rather than a mad dash to get there. Also, where did you spend the majority of your holiday? Switzerland or Northern Italy? Or somewhere else? ALL ideas very welcome. We are planning on going for 3 weeks. 2 children under 10. Would love to hear your experiences. Thanks all.
We spent a while thinking about doing this for this summer too but decided against it when we put the different places ( wasn't just Italy) we planed in to viamichllin and worked out that it was 50odd hours driving altogether and that was just just getting to the various stops. We do France every year too but it just seemed too much!
We do it in the other direction every year (we live in Italy). We often stop off for a few days in Alsace to break the trip.
We do it often, but Holland to Italy and vice versa. The last time we did it in a day (8am to 10pm) but the last bit across Switzerland felt interminable. Other times we've stopped off in Strasbourg or Antwerp or, if doing via Germany, Frankfurt, Stuttgart etc. depending on how much of a rush we're in. We tend to avoid France as the tolls are expensive except for the stretch from Mulhouse to Strasbourg which is free (we already pay enough in tolls in Italy so try to save elsewhere!).
Switzerland is lovely but €€€€€, you get far more for your money in Northern Italy, depending where you're thinking of going. Were you thinking of doing the lakes or the mountains? There are loads of resorts near the Swiss border which are picture box perfect and well equipped for trekking and biking but at a fraction of the price you'd pay over the border.
The Black forest is on your way and Europa Park near Strasbourg. It's my favourite theme park with some great shows.
Thank you so much for your replies everyone. Izlet I love the sound of the picture box perfect resorts near the swiss border, this sounds just what we are after - please can you tell me some place names? Would consider lakes & mountains.
Think going through Germany might be a good bet!
We did something similar years ago pre-DC. We stopped over in Rheims and did a tour of the Taittenger champagne caves then on through France to another stop at Besancon where there is an amazing hilltop citadel with tigers in the moat. The Franche-Comte area is stunning and I remember this being the area we said we would love to revisit.
We travelled into Switzerland and on into Montreux then over to Interlaken where we stayed for a few days.
On the way back we travelled through Germany and stayed in a gorgeous place in the Black Forest (one of the wellness resorts) then back up with overnights in Luxembourg and Belgium (can't remember places, sorry).
Not exactly but a few years ago we drove through the tunnel to Tuscany with one over night in a Eurocamp near the Swiss Border. Had a lovey day the next day, bought groceries in a French supermarket just after we left and stopped at a nice lake for a picnic lunch in Switzerland before continuing the drive down into Italy.
What I would recommend is going from Switzerland (Ticino region) to Italy via Lago Maggiore. The first quarter of the road in your direction goes along the Swiss side, up in the mountains, then you enter Italy for the rest; it's about an hour from Milan. You can get a ferry from Verbania which takes you around the islands in the middle of the lake, the Borromean Islands, which are soooo cute. I'd have loved to spend a night on one of the islands.
We've also done the journey from France to Switzerland via Chamonix and then over the mountain pass to Montreux; again stunningly gorgeous and there's loads for families to do in summer in Chamonix, we went there when the DC were 11 and 7.
Izlet is right about the cost in Switzerland; it's exorbitant.
Another route would be straight through Austria, maybe take in Innsbruck or even Salzburg on the way down, then over the Brenner Pass through to Alto Adige / Südtirol.
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