Recommend me a long vacation...

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Kamera RAWr, Jul 23, 2008.

  1. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #1
    So here's the scoop. I've been working at the same place for 5 years and I'm getting pretty burned out (yeah, 5 years isn't that long to some of you! :p). Well, I've decided pretty firmly that I plan to quit by years end. I have a few plans already for a little travel, but will have around $10,000 (U.S. mind you) left to do extra travel. What I'm looking for is some idea of places I could go where that money would last me at least 2 months or longer, the longer the better.

    Here's some starting criteria (may get updated as we go along):

    *I like a good mix of urban living and also going out to the countryside.

    *Would like a place with a decent night life, when I feel like going out.

    *Decent-Good public transportation or reasonable car rental prices.

    *Accommodations wise, I like guest houses/B&Bs or self-catering apartments.

    *Friendly people is a must :)

    *Relatively safe

    There's just some stuff for starters. As far as a particular region in the world, I'm pretty open minded. I'm looking forward to hearing some great suggestions! :D
     
  2. furious macrumors 65816

    furious

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    #2
    I would go to France.

    But if you enjoy camping that money would last you 6 months.
     
  3. mithrilfox macrumors regular

    mithrilfox

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    #3
    Come to Japan. Even in the bigger cities, there's always mountainous areas within 2-3 hours tops. Great public transportation for getting anywhere a tourist/vacationer would want to go.

    Hit up the onsens. Those are the public baths. The best are the natural kind that are outdoors (don't worry, it's hidden away from view; the women's side is always very well hidden, while the men will sometimes be able to see people in the distance somewhere... which means with binoculars, they can see you too!).

    You can also go to the sentous, which are indoor baths that are constructed to imitate real outdoor ones. Relaxing in the water is awesome. Hot, super hot, cold, super cold, tea, electro-shock, jets... any kind of bath experience you could hope for. The bigger ones also have saunas and cold rooms. It's fun relaxing in the extra hot tub until you get dizzy, then getting into the mildly cold room. Catch of course is you gotta be comfy getting naked with other guys. Don't worry, strange things virtually NEVER happen.

    There's castles, shrines, temples, lots of Japanese delicacies, tons of crap to buy, and other random experiences. Lots of groups hike up mountains and you could join one. I've heard good things about the night life, but I am not a "night life" type of guy; I'm married and prefer to keep mainly to myself, so hitting a nightclub is the last thing I want to do.

    If you like anime, collecting figurines, or video games, you'll have a field day at places like Tokyo's Akihabara or Osaka's Den-Den Town.

    If you want any more information let me know via PM.
     
  4. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #4
    France? He said he wanted friendly. :p Just kidding. Some really good friends of mine are French.

    Do you want to go on a cultural adventure, cultural shock, or do you just want to bum around? If you just want to relax, then the Caribbean is a good, cheap place to go. Portugal, perhaps? You can travel around from there, but it's not the best place for sand, sun, and surf. I've never been to Portugal, but I did live with Portuguese people before, and they missed home a lot. Nice people, but temperamental.

    There are so many places in the world. You'd need to give us more info on what you'd like to do.
     
  5. Kamera RAWr thread starter macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #5
    I hear Japan is also crazy expensive ;). Thats one of the main things that deters me from Japan at this time.

    Well, I'm a pretty laid back individual. I enjoy going out and seeing the sites, walking around, going out on a Friday or Saturday night sometimes, doing some photography. A cultural experience would be fine... culture shock, who knows.
     
  6. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #6
    Generally speaking, they're wrong. ;)

    You want to live in cheap accommodation, and Japan has lots of "Business Hotels", where they essentially give you accommodation in a hotel room but little amenities beyond the room and bathroom. It would cost like $40-60 per night.

    Meals? Many restaurants exist where meals are $5-8 or so. No time to sit down and eat? No problem. Every convenience store sells decent 'pocketable' meals for a few bucks. A 7-11 in America is nothing like a 7-11 in Asia. ;) Fantastic value, and it's not necessarily bad for you, either. This is unlike Europe and North America, where 'cheap' usually means 'unhealthy'.

    The bad thing is that you need to pay to get into museums, but oh well. Take photos outside of all the temples and such. You don't need to go into all of them, just some of them. ;)

    From there, you could go to Indonesia (avoid Bali), Thailand, and Malaysia. Awesome, cheap, but not necessarily as safe (generally speaking) as Canada, Japan, etc.
     
  7. Kamera RAWr thread starter macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #7
    Sounds as if those business hotels might be a tad spartan for me. TV might sweeten the deal for those boring evenings, haha
     
  8. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #8
    It would never be a good vacation place for me, however it sounds like Spain might be right up your alley.

    There's a nice mix between large cities and rural areas, great historical monuments, public transport, friendly people (so I hear), and if you sleep all day and do nothing but party all night you'll fit right in. :p
     
  9. Gray-Wolf macrumors 68030

    Gray-Wolf

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    #9
    A cabin way up in the mountains. The peace of nature is the best for healing.
     
  10. gauchogolfer macrumors 603

    gauchogolfer

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    #10
    I'd go to the Basque region of France/Spain. Bilbao, Biarritz, St. Jean de Luz, etc. have good nightlife, and the camping/countryside there is great. You can stay in B&B type places there for pretty cheap, and they are usually nice.
     
  11. aethelbert macrumors 601

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    #11
    Switzerland is a pretty neat place to go. Although it's probably not the cheapest (depends on where you go/if you play the game right), there's an excellent mix of sprawling cities and gorgeous landscapes.
     
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #12
    Last time I went, Switzerland was really expensive.

    They have TVs, and the fancy toilets. They just don't have the room service, spa, bag boys/porters, fancy lobby, etc. ;)

    They have TV, pay per movie, etc.
     
  13. Melrose macrumors 604

    Melrose

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    #13
    I would recommend flying to San Diego, renting a nice car, and setting off on a road trip up Hwy 1/101 to Seattle. Follows the coast just about the whole, entire way. I'd love to do that sometime.

    ...or go hole up in a Venice hotel for a week. Either one.
     
  14. iMacZealot macrumors 68020

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    #14
    I like hopping around Southeast/east Asia. Two years ago, I spent a few days in Singapore, which is a nice, clean city with plenty to do, and then I took a flight to Siem Reap in Cambodia to see the ancient temples of Angkor, as well as Cambodia in the 21st century. It was a very interesting and life-changing experience.

    Last month, I went to Hong Kong (great city, but may drain your funds if you stay too long), Singapore again, Jakarta (don't go there, dirty and nothing to do), Bali (gorgeous, I'd definitely recommend it), Osaka (nice, less busy, cleaner version of Tokyo), Kyoto (classic Japan), and Tokyo (what you'd expect.)

    Europe is also very nice. I spent three weeks wandering the British Isles. The French and Italian rivieras are to die for. Bavaria is also very nice. The only problem with Europe is that the Euro is so strong against the dollar.
     
  15. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #15
    Nice suggestion.

    Road trips can be fun. There is so much beautiful scenery to see in the US.
     
  16. teleromeo macrumors 65816

    teleromeo

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    #16
    Greece.

    Very friendly people, lots of sun an ancient culture everywhere. Also Islandhopping is a must.
     
  17. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #17
    And it still is.

    Germany might be a nice compromise: it's very much like Switzerland in many ways, but a little nicer for the wallet.
     
  18. Kamera RAWr thread starter macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #18
    Lots of great suggestions so far. Although I must say that I think most of Western Europe is a little too expensive, I'd probably burn through my money far too quickly. I will however take a look into Spain, thanks to the suggestions of EricNau and gauchogolfer.

    Abstract and mithrilfox, you got me giving Japan a second look ;) :D

    IMZ, funny you should mention Cambodia, was talking to a guy at work about Cambodia, where he's from. Says its pretty cheap and can be rather interesting place to visit. Also having a look into it.

    On another note, does anyone here have any experience with "couch surfing"? If so, I'd love to hear about it.

    Also would appreciate any helpful info about South America as well :)
     
  19. iMacZealot macrumors 68020

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    #19
    It's very interesting. It's not a place where the average tourist would go to (though you will find some Korean tourists there and a sprinkle of Germans, but Germans are everywhere :)). The temples are jaw-dropping, and it's such a cool experience to just be out in the jungle and seeing people living so simply. I stayed at Le Meridien Angkor, and I paid about $90 a night for the absolute best hotel I've ever stayed at. If you do decide to go to Angkor, I'd recommend taking a swing to either Hong Kong or Singapore to fulfill your city criterion. You could also consider going to Bangkok as well, but I've never been there, so I can't comment on that. Singapore is probably the least expensive of the three, and seeing the Botanic Gardens, Boat Quay, and the zoo there is worthwhile, among other things.
     
  20. Kamera RAWr thread starter macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #20
    Update

    Rather than start a new thread, I thought I'd update in this one.

    So, I've been doing lots of searching around and thinking and I've come up with a few ideas. Two that I'm rather curious about are Australia and New Zealand. What are your takes on these places? What are the costs of living in those countries? Anyone have any helpful hints or advice? Thanks :)
     
  21. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #21
    What about the Balkans and parts of south east Europe generally? I have worked there quite a bit for more than a decade. They have the ambience of Europe (with a sort of Alice Through The Looking Glass twist), are quite reasonably priced, full of history, the locals are very very hospitable, food is good, scenery stunning, and (because of the 1990s war) they are largely free of tourists (which used to be a mainstay in Tito's time).

    Slovenia is magnificent (a sort of cross between Italy, Austria and Switzerland); Croatia is amazing - the whole coast is spectacular and unforgettable, soaked in history, Roman, Ottoman, Habsburg - the peninsula of Istria, city of Split, and town of Dubrovnik are all incredible. Belgrade (capital of Serbia) is an incredibly lively European swinging capital, full of coffee culture and cosmopolitan in atmosphere. Parts of Bosnia are beautiful, too, and Kosovo, believe it or not, has amazing mountainous scenery. I also really loved Montenegro - extraordinary scenery - just spectacular, very friendly people, lovely historic towns, beaches, mountains, gorges, and all pretty much undiscovered.

    Just a thought; I envy you such wonderful anticipation and wish you luck with your journeys. Cheers
     
  22. dilailamams macrumors member

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    #22
    nothing for fun in japan . only i remember is that everything was *unkin expensive...
     
  23. nnfaris5 macrumors member

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