Friday, 24 August 2012

Luxembourg

Travel Tips to European Countries: Luxembourg

 File:Flag of Luxembourg.svg

About the country

File:L-Luxembourg12.JPG
One of the Europe’s smallest sovereign states is The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The north part of the country is blessed with greenery and hills. The Ardennes provides great scenic view. The country is small and all the tourist attractions are within reachable limits. It snows during the winters in Luxembourg, but isn’t as cold as its neighboring countries and the summer is warm which comes in May and lasts till September. Incase of emergency dial 112 or 113.

Culture

Generally handshake is used to greet people. Although majority of the locals speak English, Letzeburgesch is the national language of Luxembourg. French and German is also spoken by many Luxembourgers. When appearing as a guest at someone’s house, it is a good practice to bring along gift or flowers. People are expected to dress in smart casuals, but it would be best to turn up in formals when attending social functions, or clubs. It’s not advised to smoke in public places.

Shopping

Crystals and porcelains of Villeroy and Boch are very famous and the earthenware pottery from Nospelt is a shopper’s must have item from Luxembourg. VAT of 15% is applied to all items purchased other than that from campground, hotel, and restaurant, which charge 3%. Tipping is exempted.

Site Seeing

The capital, Luxembourg is a place to be. Stay for a day or tea to explore the city. Village of Viaden has a cliff top castle which is a famous landmark.

Taxis can be hired to move around the city. They charge 10% extra from 10 pm to 6 am and if hired on Sunday, an extra 25% extra will be charged if hired for the whole day

Accommodations

Luxembourg has many luxurious hotels, most of which are located in Lux City. Other options are guesthouses which are beautifully decorated with flower and plants.

Travel

The national airline which operates here is Luxair. There are flights from London to Luxembourg every hour. The Luxembourg airport is at a distance of 5km from the city and it takes about 20 minutes to reach there. There are provisions such as duty free shops, bank, tourism information and car hire for the passengers.
Eurostar provides a fast railway service from London, Paris, Belgium, France or Brussels to Luxembourg. Bookings can be made via telephone and £5 fee is charged for telephonic booking. Check out for offers which are provided on some of the routes. To travel within the country, Inter-Rail pass can be bought which gives the offer of unlimited train travel for 29 countries of Europe.

When driving on road, it is recommended to take the train or ferry service when passing the channel between Dover and Calais. Check out for vacancy before hand especially during the rush hours. While driving, drivers should stay on the right side and there are strict rules for drinking while driving and seat belt.

 Duty Free Items

1. 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco
2. 1liter of spirits or 2liter of sparkling wine or 2liter of liqueur wine and 2liter of non-sparkling wine
3. 50g of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette
4. 500g of coffee and 200g of coffee extract
5. 100g of tea and 40g of tea extract
6. Tobacco and Alcohol can be carried by visitors over 17 years of age only.  

           




Italy

Travel Tips to European Countries: Italy

File:Flag of Italy.svg

About the county

File:Colosseum in Rome, Italy - April 2007.jpgItaly, the birthplace of pasta and pizza provides a wide range of choices for artwork lovers to experience. A temperate climate exists here with very hot summers and not so cold winters. The weather is the best in spring and autumn with pleasant temperatures and scenic views. At that time of the year, the place isn’t crowded much and things can be enjoyed in leisure.  Incase of emergency call 112. For fire call 115 and for ambulance call 118.

Culture

File:San Quirico d'Orcia - Chiesetta Val d'Orcia.jpg
Italian is widely spoken and is the official language. English isn’t very familiar to the locals. Family ties are of utmost importance here and hence social courtesies mean a lot to the locals. There is a great impact of the Roman Catholic Church on the culture here. There is a high content of chlorine in tap waters, so bottled water is recommended for staying fit during the trip. Since Italian is spoken on a wide scale, it is highly recommended to learn few common Italian phrases which can be of great use. Social gatherings call for formal wear, but one can dress in casuals otherwise. At some religious places, sleeveless shirt and shorts are frowned upon. So they are better avoided. Purses and wallets should be well guarded and in case of any theft, police should be informed about the incident.

Site Seeing

File:MountBlanc04.jpg
The first thing to check out is the leaning tower of Pisa, where Olympics originated. At places like museums and art galleries, photography, especially flash photography is restricted. Check out the ticket counter for more information. Italy should be majorly discovered on foot for a thorough viewing of all the beautiful buildings and monuments. Coaches and trains are a good option to get to a tourist spot.

Shopping

File:Roma-palazzaccio.jpg
Shops here are open from 9am to 8pm, closed for lunch. Quality of goods is great although the prices are very less. Items like crystals, lacework, leather good, and jewelry can be bought at the stores. Remember to hold on to the receipt. Tipping of 10% is customary along with the service tax levied on the bill. Italy is famous for top designers of the world, so do buy clothes and accessories to update your wardrobe. Cruises have formal gatherings in the evening, so ensure to buy a cocktail dress or some formal wear, though casuals can be worn at other times.

Electricity

The voltage used is 220 volts and 50 Hz frequency.

Getting there

File:Portofino52000.jpg
Alitalia is the national airline of Italy.  Many other flights connect to Italy from USA, Canada and Australia and there is big competition to attract passengers giving a wide range of offers to travelers.  Rome airport is located 26 km away from the city and it takes 45 minutes to get there from the airport.  Trains connect directly to Termini Station from where one can take taxi to get to their destination. Duty free shops, bank, car hire and restaurants are the other services provided at this airport. Milan has another famous airport here, which is at a distance of 45km away from the city.

Brindisi, Ancona, Naples and Venice are the major seaports of Italy. Italian State Railways connects many European cities. But, Eurostar provides the fastest train service.

If choosing to drive, don’t forget to carry international driving license and international insurance certificate. Roads connect Italy to France, Austria and Switzerland. Many coach services are provided from the neighboring countries.

Duty Free Items

1. 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 250g of tobacco
2. 2liter of wine and 1liter of spirits (over 22 per cent) or 2liter of fortified or sparkling wine
3. 50g of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette; 500g of coffee or 200g of coffee extract (if over 15 years of age)
4. 100g of tea or 40g of tea extract
5. Gifts not exceeding €89.96 (if entering from an EU country), €175 (if entering from a non-EU country).







Thursday, 23 August 2012

Iceland

Travel tips to European Countries: Iceland

File:Flag of Iceland.svg

About the country

File:Iceland2008-Sudureyri.JPGOfficially known as the Republic of Iceland, is located in northwestern Europe. It comprises of the island of Iceland and its outlying small islands in the northern Atlantic Ocean between Greenland, Norway, Scotland, Ireland, and the Faroe Islands. Iceland’s glassy glaciers, hot thermal springs, spectacular geysers, active volcanoes, lava fields, stunning waterfalls and snow-capped mountains, indeed makes it the original 'land of fire and ice'. 

File:Bolungarvik 02.jpgIceland is a very large island with a unique landscape which is rugged and colorful with black lava, red sulfur, hot blue geysers, rivers, waterfalls, bays, fjords and green valley. The capital of Iceland is Reykjavík which is also the largest city of Iceland. Nearly half of Iceland’s population lives around Reykjavík. The popular tourist attractions are centered also centered on this city. The most famous attraction is Gullfoss double-tiered waterfall which is set off with an outstanding rainbow and hot springs of Geysir. 

People might wonder what one can do in Iceland. If you hear the list you will be amazed that there are so many things to do and see here. From watching whales to chic fine dining, hiking, seeing Europe’s largest glacier Vatnajokull, fishing in rivers, horse riding, rafting, exploring the landscape on a snow scooter, shopping designing wear, Summer Solstice Festival, visit island of Grimsey to cross the Arctic Circle, visit medieval farm at Stong and what not, the list is endless.

File:Haskoli Islands main building.jpgPopulation 
& Languages

The population of Iceland is only 299,388 and the official language being spoken is Icelandish. English, Nordic languages, German are also widely spoken. 

Electricity

The voltage is 220 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. The types of plugs used are Round pin attachment plug and "Schuko" plug and receptacle with side grounding contacts.

File:Erupting geysir.jpg
Geographic Location

It is located in northwestern Europe. It comprises of the island of Iceland and its outlying small islands in the northern Atlantic Ocean between Greenland, Norway, Scotland, Ireland, and the Faroe Islands. It is strategically located between Greenland and Europe

Climate
File:Akureyri rainbow.jpg
The climate of Iceland can be termed as temperate with damp and cool summers and mild and windy winters. The highest temperature recorded was 30.5°C (86.9°F) on 22 June 1939 at Teigarhorn. The lowest temperature ever recorded was -38°C (-36.4°F) on 22 January 1918 at Grímsstaðir and Möðrudalur.

Local Customs
File:Reykjavík séð úr Hallgrímskirkju 6.JPG
Like any other country Iceland has its own customs too and normal courtesies should be followed. Handshaking is customary. Visitors are invited to homes when on a business trip and normal courtesies should be observed. The people pay careful attention to their appearance and, as for most Western countries, casual wear is widely acceptable. Service charges are included in the bills most of the time and tips are not expected.

Attractions

Reykjavik Attractions – Hallgrimskirkja Church, National Museum of Iceland, Botanical Gardens and the Einar Jónsson Museum

Travel
File:Thorarinn thingvellir.jpg

By Air – The national airline of Iceland is Icelandair which operates to many internationsl destinations such as Amsterdam, Baltimore, Boston, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Halifax, London, Minneapolis, Orlando, Oslo, Paris, Stockholm and Washington, plus other destinations in the summertime only. Other international airlines operating from Iceland include Air Greenland (website: www.airgreenland.gl) and Iceland Express (website: www.icelandexpress.com). 

File:Thorfinn Karlsefni 1918.jpg



Other, predominantly Scandinavian, carriers also operate services. Some airlines like Condor and Corsai, operate flights during the summertime. Flights also operate to the Faroe Islands and Greenland during the summer months. Major airport is Keflavik International Airport (KEF) located at 31 miles south of Reykjavik.




Duty Free Items
1. 200 cigarettes or 250g of other tobacco products 
2. 1 liter spirits and 1 liter wine, or 1 liter spirits and 6 liter beer; or 1 liter wine and 6 liter beer; or 2.25 liter wine 
3. Food items up to 3kg not exceeding kr13,000
4.   Permits from Post & Telecom Authorities are required for cordless phones,   remote controls or radio transmitters. It is not required for a GSM mobile phone 

Prohibited Items

Un-canned goods, meat or dairy products, Narcotics, pornography, firearms, ammunition, weapons, eggs, plants, endangered species, fireworks and alcoholic beverages that contain more than sixty per cent alcohol.

Hungry

TRAVEL TIPS TO EUROPEAN COUNTRIES: HUNGRY

File:Civil Ensign of Hungary.svg

About the country

File:Hunyad Castle TB1.jpgAlso known as the Republic of Hungary or Hungarian Republic, Hungary is a landlocked country located in Central Europe and bordering Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia. Budapest is the largest city and also the Capital of Hungary. One of the key reasons why Hungary is popular is its hospitality to tourists. Also one can find an ideal mix of history and modern day in Hungary. While Hungarians proudly stick to their old Magyar Tradition they also keep them abreast with current fashions across the world.


File:DonauknieVisegrad 2.jpg

Most visitors flock to see Budapest, a truly world class city situated on River Danube which enchants everyone with love and music. The city is a blend of culture and outstanding beauty making it the right place for tourists. The city has been a paradise for writers, musicians and artists who were greatly influenced by this graceful city. If you travel west in Hungary Lake Balaton is popular with tourists. Local cuisines include halászlé (fish soup) with pasta and goulash (gulyás) soup.

Population & Languages

File:MagyarBank.JPGThe population of Hungary is Roughly 10 million and the official language being spoken is Hungarian.

Electricity
The voltage is 230 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. The types of plugs used are Round pin attachment plug and "Schuko" plug and receptacle with side grounding contacts.


Geographic Location
File:Hévíz fürdő.jpg
Hungary is a landlocked country located in Central Europe and bordering Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia. River Danube and River Tisza divide the country into three large regions. The country is strategically located astride main land routes between Western Europe and Balkan Peninsula as well as between Ukraine and Mediterranean basin



Climate
File:Hills in baranya county, hungary.jpg

The climate of Hungary can be termed as Temperate with hot summers and cold winters. The average annual temperature of Hungary is around 9.6 °C. The maximum temperature in summer can be 43 °C and as low as -30 °C. The summer average is 26 to 36 °C and winter average is 0 to -16 °C.

Local Customs

File:Parlement van Boedapest gelegen aan de Donau.jpg
Like any other country Hungary has its own customs too. It is customary to handshake. It is customary to make the toast and return. It is customary for guests to offer gifts to the host of a meal. Smoking is prohibited in most public areas.  But travelers can smoke in long distance trains. Casual dress is acceptable in most places and formal for special occasions. Tipping up to 10 to 15 percent is customary for all services including restaurants, bars, clubs, taxis etc.

Attractions

Budapest 
File:Esterházy-kastély (4051. számú műemlék) 2.jpg* Castle Royal Palace
* Fisherman’s Bastion
* Matthias Church
* Gellért Hill
* Chain Bridge
* The Great Synagogue and Jewish Museum
* Parliament Buildings
* Statue Park
File:Budapest Chain Bridge1.jpg
Eger 
* Eger Castle 
* Szépasszony Valley (Valley of the Pretty Woman)

Lake Balaton 
* Hévíz
* Keszthely

The Danube Bend
* Esztergom
* Szentendre
* Visegrad

Travel

File:Szeged400.jpgBy Air – The national airline of Hungary is Malv which operates flights from more than forty cities across the world. Other international airlines operating from Hungary include Aeroflot, Air France, British Airways, easyJet, KLM, Lufthansa, Sky Europe, Swiss, United Airlines and Wizz Air. Ferihegy Budapest International Airport (BUD) is the biggest airport which is like ten miles southeast of Budapest.
By River - There is a daily hydrofoil service run by MAHART connecting Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest in the months of April to October.

By Rail – The country is part of the extensive network of trains connecting the European cities. Hungary is connected to 16 European cities and there are 47 international trains daily to Budapest by direct rail link. 

Duty Free Items

1. 800 cigarettes or 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars or1kg smoking tobacco for EU countries.
2. 200 cigarettes, or 100 cigarillos, or 50 cigars, or 250g of smoking tobacco for Non-EU countries.
3. 10 liter of spirits with more than 22% and ethyl alcohol, or 20 liter of beverages less than 22% alcohol content, or 90 liter of wine or 60 liter of sparkling wine, or 110 liter of beer for EU countries.
4. 1 liter of spirits and 2 liter of wine for Non-EU countries.
5. 50g perfume or 250 ml eau de toilette
6. Gifts , Food, fruits, medications and flowers for personal use of value up to €175 

Prohibited Items

Un-canned goods, meat or dairy products, Narcotics, firearms, ammunition, weapons, eggs, plants, endangered species, fireworks and alcoholic beverages that contain more than sixty per cent alcohol.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Netherland

Travel Tips to European Countries: Holland 

 File:Flag of the Netherlands.svg

About the Country 

File:Den Haag Binnenhof.jpg The summers are cool here but the winters are severe with some chances of snowfall. Rainfall can be expected in any month of the year. Dutch is the official language here. English, French and German are the other languages that are spoken, out of which English is widely spoken. Incase of emergency call 112.



Culture 

Handshake is the commonly practiced form of greeting. Although tipping is not mandatory, but it’s better to pay rounds figure in restaurants and taxis. A humble gift should be taken to the host’s house always when invited for a meal. Informal clothes are worn on a daily basis, but people are expected to turn up in formals
 at social functions and smart restaurants.

File:Nijlânnermolen Workum.jpgShopping 

Pottery of Delft, Makkum and Workum is a must buy. Silverware from Schoonhoven, crystals from Leerdam
and diamonds from Amsterdam are highly recommended.


Site Seeing 

Apenheul Primate Park is a place to visit which is a home to more than thirty species of mammals. It remains closed during the winter. De Hoge Veluwe is the oldest and largest park of Holland. Bicycles can be used to explore the 5,500 hectares of the park. Paleis Het Loo is a magnificent Palace surrounded by gardens and
remains open year round except on public holidays.

Electricity
230 V and 50 Hz 

Travel 
File:Kubuswoningen in rotterdam.jpg
The national airline that operates in Holland is KLM-Royal Dutch Airlines. It connects to almost all the major cities of Europe, North America and Asia. Amsterdam Airport is the hub for many international and local flights. It is located at 15 km away from the city and it takes 20 minutes to reach there by train. The Airline, KLM, provides bus service every 15-30 minutes which takes passengers to some of the famous hotels of the city. Public buses can be availed too, to reach destination. Trains connect to Amsterdam’s Central Station and Zuid Station. Taxis take tourists to almost any location. The Airport features duty free shops, banks, showers, business center, baby rooms, and car hire.


File:A square in the center of the Hague.jpgRotterdam airport and Eindhoven airport are 8km away from the city. Trains and buses operate every 15 minutes to transport passengers to their hotels. Facilities such as duty free shops, eateries, car rental, and internet can be availed at these airports. No departure tax is implemented on passengers at any of these airports.

The main sea ports are Hook of Holland, Vlissingen and Rotteradm. Stena Line, P&O ferries and DFDS seaways provide ferry service to get to Holland. 


File:Utrecht Canals - July 2006.jpgIf traveling by railway, Eurostar provides the best service and connects to all the major cities of Europe. It provides high grade services. Good offers are provided on regular basis and to utilize them they should be monitored from time to time. Unused tickets are easily refunded. The Inter-Rail pass can be bought to avail the unlimited second class train travel within 29 European countries.

Top class road network connects Holland to majority of cities in Europe. They are well maintained and signs are posted every where for safe driving. 120kph is the speed limit while driving on highways. Many car dealing agents exist if opting for car-rental. Some of them are Avis, Europcar and Budget. 

Cycling is also a major means of transportation in Holland and is part and parcel of daily life. Tourists can
hire cycles from the airport or other service providers with some money-deposit.

Duty Free Items 

File:Hollande04.jpg1. 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 250g of tobacco
2. 50g of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette
3. 1liter of liquor or 2liter of sparkling wine or liquor wines and 2liter of non-sparkling wine
4. 100g of tea or 40g of tea extract
5. 500g of coffee or 200g of coffee extract

Greece

Travel tips to European Countries: Greece
 

About the county

File:Parthenon.JPGBeing one of the earliest civilizations known to human kind Greece is a country with rich history, heritage and culture. It is the place where Byzantine Empire once ruled and also great Ottoman Empire. It is also considered to be as the birth place of Democracy. 



File:Thessaloniki White Tower and promanade.png 
Athens is the capital city of Greece. The Olympic games originated in Greece. Not only that, it was the world center for western philosophy, political science, astronomy, mathematics, major scientific studies and what not. It is also known as a Mediterranean country as it has Mediterranean Sea in the south. It is a popular destination for world tourists in that region known for its beautiful beaches, reach history and charming villages. The Greek islands are one of the most wonderful places to be explored by Cruise or Yacht. The trip of Greece will definitely be one of the most memorable to remember in one’s life.



File:Meteora Agios Triadas IMG 7632.jpgPopulation
& Languages

The population of Greece is around 11 million and the official language being spoken is Greek. The other popular languages are English and French.

Electricity

The voltage is 220 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. The types of plug used are round pin with attachment, round pin with ground, Round pin plug and receptacle with male grounding pin and "Schuko" plug and receptacle with side grounding contacts.

File:Ναυάγιο Ζακύνθου.jpgGeographic Location

It is located in Southern Europe bordering the Aegean Sea, Ionian Sea and the Mediterranean Sea between Albania and Turkey. It is situated in the southern side of Balkan Peninsula. It is also bordered by Bulgaria and Macedonia in the southeast.

Climate

It has three distinct climates namely Alpine, Mediterranean and temperate climate with mild and wet winters and also hot and dry summers due to Mediterranean affect. Alpine system is seen in mountainous regions. The temperate climate is seen near border along Macedonia. Athens has both temperate and Mediterranean weather.

Local Customs
File:BrugPatras.JPG 
The Greece is a place with strong historic and cultural background. There are different traditions and customs in different parts of the Greece. The throwing back of a hand is considered to be a negative gesture here in Greece. Casual dress can be worn most of the times. Smoking is prohibited in public transport services and public buildings. Tipping 12 to 1 percent is customary in restaurants, hotels and taxis.

File:Santorini Fira2 tango7174.jpgAttractions
* The Olympic Games in Athens (the spot of the historic 2004 Olympic Games)
* Mardi Grass Celebrations in February
* The Parthenon in Athens
* Skiing in Arahova Mountains between October and March
* Easter Celebrations
* Thessaloniki’s White Tower and country’s rich Byzantine culture
* The south of Corinth
* The beaches in Lesvos
* The wine vineyards in the countryside
* The islands near the Aegean Sea
* The wildlife preserve in Alonissos (Sporades Marine Park)
* The famous, Moni Panagia Chozoviotissa, a Byzantine monastery in Amorgos

Travel

File:Amphitheatre in Epidavros.jpgBy Air – The national airline of Greece is Olympic Airlines. Many popular airlines like British Airways and Delta Airlines operate daily flight from Athens. The biggest airport is newly constructed Athens International Airport which is located like 17 miles northeast of the city. The other international airports of Greece are Heraklion (Crete), Thessaloniki (Macedonia) and Corfu (Kerkira).

By Sea – The popular Greek ports include Corfu, Heraklion, Igoumenitsa, Patras, Piraeus (Athens), Rhodes, Thessaloniki and Volos. Shipping vessels and ferryboat lines link these ports with Italy, Croatia, Cyprus, Russia and Turkey. Some of the popular cruises operating in Greece are Celebrity Cruises, Costa Cruises, Crystal Cruises, Festival Cruises, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Silversea and Swan Hellenic. 

By Rail – If one is coming from UK, the best way is to take Eurostar train to Brussels or Paris and from there take connecting train to Greece.

File:Hellenic Parliament from high above.jpgDuty Free Items

1. Up to 200 cigarettes or 250 gm tobacco
2. 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars
3. 1 liter spirit over 22% or 2 liter wine
4. Perfumes – 50 gm or 250 ml
5. Gifts up to €175

Prohibited Items

Narcotics, firearms, ammunition, weapons, most meat and dairy products, eggs, plants, endangered species, fireworks and alcoholic beverages that contain more than sixty per cent alcohol.

Germany

Travel Tips to European Countries: Germany

 File:Schwarz Rot Gold.svg

About the country

File:Reichstag building Berlin view from west before sunset.jpgThe Federal republic of Germany is the most influential country of Europe. It has witnessed the most controversial facts of history like Nazism, Holy Roman Empire and the building and demolition of the Berlin wall. With many magnificent castles it has wealth of art and culture. German is the widely spoken language in German, but outsiders can find many English speaking locals especially in the common tourist destinations.

Weather

The weather here is very unpredictable as there is a possibility of rain almost all months, so carry clothes accordingly. April and May are the months of spring which brings in full bloom of fruits and flowers. Months from May to September have very fine weather with sunny skies and offers the best time for traveling and site-seeing. People who have a passion for sports like swimming, hiking, and cycling can have the best time here during these months. Winter sports can be enjoyed at the resorts in the months from November to early March. The temperatures are below freezing and the days are too short (comprise of only six to eight months) in winter.

Local Customs
File:Köln Panorama.jpg
Locals greet each other by handshaking and saying Guten Tag. To say goodbye, people use Auf Wiedersehen. Guests are expected to bring uncovered and odd number of flowers, especially roses, when visiting someone’s home. The guests are welcomed with either food or refreshments. At the table, hosts say ‘Guten Appetit’ to which the guests should reply with ‘Ebenfalls’. Smoking should be better avoided in public areas. Locals dress informally but certain occasions like opera, theatre, certain restaurants and social functions call for formal wear.

Electricity

220 V, 50 Hz

Moving Around
File:Hamburger Rathaus von St-Petri.jpg

The best way to get around is to buy the Welcome cards or the city passes which allows the customer to access unlimited bus facility in many cities of Germany. It also gives special offer on certain tourist attractions. For flexibility one can rent-a-car or go for chauffer driven cars. Along with the rent, VAT of 16% is payable. Car insurance should be available before hand in case of any accident. The speed limit within the cities is mostly 50kph and 100kph on the highways.
Nine stars

The nine stars of Southwest Germany comprise of Baden-Baden, Freiburg, Heidelberg, Karlsruhe, Heilbronn, Mannheim, Pforzheim Stuttgart, and Ulm. They are considered to be some of the beautiful cities of Europe. Each of the cities play a vital role in the culture of Germany. Baden-Baden has few of the finest resorts and also has Europe’s second largest opera and concert hall. Freiburg is known as the historic city center and is famous for cobblestone mosiacs, open streams and ancient alleys. Heidelberg has world famous castles and Germany’s oldest university. Karlsruhe has the famous museum Center for Art and Media. Look out for various amusements along the Nectar river of Heilbronn. Pforzheim is the capital for watches and jewelry. Stuttgart is famous for theatres and opera.  Ulm is the birth place of Albert Einstein and is also house to the world’s tallest hurch spire.

Travel
File:München Panorama.JPG
The national airline that serves Germany is Lufthansa. Bwelin-Tegel airport is situated at 8 km away from the city and it takes about 20 minutes to reach there. There is a provision of duty free shops, banks, post office, eateries, conference hall, and car hire and tourism information for the passengers.

Another busy airport is the Frankfurt airport which is located at 13km away from the city. Buses take about 20 minutes to get there. Taxis are available at any time. The Intercity railway network at the airport also provides international services to Hungary, Switzerland and Austria. The facilities provided here are duty free shops, left luggage, restaurants, banks, conference halls, post office, car hire and tourism information. No departure tax is levied on the passengers.

Those wishing to travel by sea can avail the ferry connections to Finland, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Latvia, and Norway.
File:Berlin Unter den Linden Potsdamer Platz.jpg
Eurostar provides railway service to and from Belgium, France and the UK. Booking can be made by telephone. The Inter-Rail offers unlimited second class train travel within 29 European countries. The Eurailpass offers unlimited first class train travel within 17 European countries.
EuroCity and InterCity trains have a restaurant on board, providing food and drinks. InterCity Express target the business class and provides services such as fully equipped office, conference compartments, etc. Tourist over 17 years of age can carry alcohol and tobacco with them within permissible limits.


France, paris

Travel Tips to European Countries: France

File:Civil and Naval Ensign of France.svg

About the country

File:Douaumont Ossuary cemetery.JPG
The crowd is attracted to sparkling ski slopes of the Alps, sunlit vineyards and sun-baked beaches of this beautiful country. France is a country which draws more tourists than any other country. It is easy to see why this is the case given France’s great reputation for fine wines, good food, high fashion and relaxed lifestyle. But while France is undoubtedly a place to eat and drink till your heart is content, there's much more to this fascinating country than only cutting-edge cuisines. Spring is the best time to be here, and those interested in winter sports can drop at the Alps and Pyrenees with some polar gear. The summers are very hot and winters are moderate. An all-weather coat and pair of comfortable shoes are a must. Women, especially, should carry cocktail dresses as some of the restaurants ask for it. When visiting any religious site, refrain from wearing sleeveless shirt and shorts, as they are disliked at such places.

File:Tour eiffel at sunrise from the trocadero.jpg 
Culture

English is widely spoken here, although French is the official language. Handshaking is
customary greeting and women should be kissed on both cheeks and should be addressed
as Monsieur or Madame. French people are popularly known for their like for stylish sportswear
and of course perfumes. Nudism is allowed on some beaches only. Social functions, fine
restaurants, and clubs call for more formal dressing. When at a formal dinner, wait till the host
gestures to start the dinner. Smoking is banned in public places.



Site Seeing


File:Mont Saint-Michel France.jpgParis, the city of love, is a massive city with many attractions in reachable distance thanks to the
highly efficient public transport system. It boasts of more than 80 museums and 200 arts
galleries.

A trip to Disney land and the magnificent Eiffel tower will make the trip worthwhile.
The attractive tourists spots are the Arc de triomphe which spans over the tomb of an
unknown soldier, the forbidding gothic architecture of the Notre Dame cathedral, the picturesque
Sacre Coeur, to Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, the Moulin Rouge and boat tours along the
Seine. Get the Carte Musees-Monuments pass, which gives access to 70 monuments and
museums.

 Paris
File:Paris Night.jpg
View over Paris, at dusk, from the Maine-Montparnasse tower

Shopping

Although service tax is included in the bill, a humble tip won’t cost much. An extra dollar can be given as tip to the waiter. A tip of $2 can be left for the bus drivers.                                    

Electricity

220-volt, 50-cycle AC current
.
Getting There


File:Bora Bora - Mt Otemanu.jpgThe national airline that operates here is Air France. Many low-cost airlines, too, provide services from UK. Paris-Charles de Gaulle also known as Roissy-Charles de Gaulle is the major airport of France, which is 23km away from the city. Coaches, taxis, limousines services are provided at the airport. The railway facility provided by the airport, claims to reach all the terminals within eight minutes. These trains run 24 hours. The other airports that offer flight services are Paris-Orly, Marseille, Bordeaux, Nice, Lyon and Toulouse.

Ferry and cruise trips can be made from ports such as Atlantic, North Sea, Mediterranean, and Havre.

Duty Free Items

1. 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 250g of tobacco
2. 1liter of spirits over 22 per cent or 2liter of alcoholic beverage up to 22 per cent
3. 2liter of wine
4. 50g of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette
5. 500g of coffee or 200g of coffee extract
6. 100g of tea or 40g of tea extract

Food and agricultural products should be avoided.