Roadtrips offer you the opportunity to explore places you perhaps never would. My friends and I embarked on a roadtrip to Lisbon, exploring some of the major cities on our route.
We started planning about 3 months in advance, each person was assigned a city to search for accommodation and places of interest. We tallied the costs of accommodation, estimated the fuel consumption, tolls and had a good idea how much was involved.
Day of Departure
We bought groceries for the road and had a list of items we needed to carry along. Very important was our passports and residence permits.
It was a Friday, so we left early in morning to avoid the traffic.
CITY 1: VERONA
After 5 hours on the road, Verona was our first stop. A small city in Italy famous for the setting of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and its amphitheatre built in 1st century.
CITY 2: MILANO
The city of fashion and design.
CITY 3: MONACO
Not your typical road trip destination. Especially not with the van we were driving and our dressing was definitely not for the Monaco lifestyle. 😛
CITY 4: Marseille
The multicultural port city and the second largest in France.
CITY 5: BARCELONA
One of our favs! It was so lively and the food was inexpensive and very delicious. We stopped in town to get a caricature of us.
CITY 6: MADRID
Spain’s capital! We definitely had to visit the Real Madrid stadium. We could not go in because the queue outside was too long.
CITY 7: LISBON
Our destination city!
GETTING BACK TO MUNICH
CITY 8: PORTO
Porto! A coastal city in Portugal known for its wine and bridges. 🙂
CITY 9: SAN SEBASTIAN
It was so cloudy when we got here. We missed seeing the beautiful beaches.
CITY 10: BORDEAUX
Port city in Southwestern France. One of the best cities for our roadtrip break.
CITY 11: GENEVA
Quick stop to see the UN headquarters in Europe.
We were on the road for 10 days and drove 8000km. We spent most of the day on the road or exploring the cities and the nights sleeping in hostels, rented apartments (Airbnb) and hotels. It was an exciting and memorable journey for us!
Planning a trip with your friends? Here are some tips based on our experience:
- Have a plan. Our plan was to drive by road from Munich, Germany to Lisbon, Portugal
- Find interested persons. You may have to be careful here. Since most of your time will be spent on the road, travel with people you actually like and can tolerate
- Get the group committed not only by word of mouth. To show our interest and commitment, we all transferred money to one person. This money counted towards the total sum for each person. It also reduces the burden of paying a large sum at a go
- Prepare for those who may back out. Have a plan B
- Split the organizational tasks. Each of us was responsible for one or two cities. This person searched for accommodation and places of interest in the cities. Someone was responsible for renting the car and we had designated drivers who felt comfortable driving
- Book accommodation on time. Late reservations may result in higher costs
- Estimate the cost and make room for unforseen costs: We had an estimate of the total cost (accommodation and gas)
- Take breaks and be spontaneous! 🙂
Happy Roadtripping! 🙂