So, as you saw, our last night in Italy was positively amazing--but the next day, our last morning in Italy, was not. We missed our flight! For reasons that can be basically summed up as being irresponsible. Hey, it happens. From that morning and our trip as a whole, here are some travel tips for traveling abroad.
-arrive to all airports 2-3 hours earlier. No matter what! Add more time if you need to return a rental car
-find your gate before shopping or eating, just to gauge how far away it is
-when booking your flight, remember that if you book 3 flights home and miss one, 3 change fees will occur multiplied by your number of passengers. It may be easier just to pay a little more for a direct flight when planning your travel
-in foreign countries, try to speak their language. This is really hard for me because I get really embarrassed. However Aaron is pretty bold and always tries hard, which everyone appreciates
-to check bags versus carry-on is up to you. Sometimes checking bags is nice to be able to bring souvenirs home
Travel tips for London
-stay as close to the historic areas as possible - Tower of London, Westminister Abbey, those are a good area to stay in. London is a huge city, much bigger than NYC, so just staying in the city is not enough
-I found the bus pretty easy to navigate so don't shy away from it. The subway was okay too but the bus just seemed to be so straight forward
-everyone talks about fish and chips, but London also has fabulous Indian food so eat that too!
-British people have a very dry sense of humor. Good Morning Sacramento wasn't having it when they interviewed Cara Delevingne
-I never figured out how to order coffee in London. Apparently "coffee" isn't clear enough like it is here. Drip coffee worked for one place, but as for the others, I still have no clue. People eventually just make you an Americano because "you're American after all" but in America, Americano isn't our go to coffee. Our go to coffee is coffee and the Brits don't understand that. I still like them though :-)
must do: Tower of London, British Parliament or Westminister Abbey (both buildings are pretty similar)
Travel tips for the Amalfi Coast
-don't ignore the small places. Neill booked some bed & breakfasts in Italy I would have never considered - they were so small and something about being in a foreign country made me nervous. However they were awesome! So was their food. At home, when I think of hotel restaurants I normally don't think much, but the hotel restaurants in Italy were top notch.
-driving in Naples is very scary. I made Aaron do it as I insisted on getting pizza from L'Antica Pizzeria Da Michele but he was really frazzled and possibly traumatized from it all. I don't think he would ever recommend it!
-in Positano, we just parked our car for the entire time. However it was nice to have as we used it to travel to Herculaneum
-Going to Positano in the summer: I debated this one a lot. I was really worried about the crowds, but I also really wanted to swim in the Mediterranean. Positano was pretty crowded, but we really didn't mind. I attribute this to our hotel, La Fenice. With air conditioning (key!), our own pool and private beach, it was heavenly. If we hadn't of had those amenities we would have been battling the crowds at the beaches or restaurants all day. The water was so warm and pleasant in July, a summer trip was definitely worth it.
-going to Capri: as I said in my original post, Capri is like an Italian Fifth Avenue. It was just full of shops and nothing else. If I did it again I think we would have just paid for a boat tour along the coast instead. We loved seeing the sights along the boat and swimming in the sea
must dos: boat tour + swim, Path of the Gods
enjoy your travels and comment with any questions!