Grown-Up Family Vacation?
March 7, 2007 10:40 AM   Subscribe

This summer my 25 year old brother will be out of the Army and about to go into law school (I am 27). My parents think this is a great time for a family vacation. The question is: where do we go?

For some reason it's hard to pick a place because between the four of us, we're well-traveled. Together we've been to London, Paris, Madrid, Munich, Prague...My brother's been to China, I've been to Italy several times, my parents were recently in Latvia and Russia...

I'd prefer to take a trip that's relatively exotic, because our parents will be paying for it and if I'm going to get a free trip, I'd rather have a super awesome one I probably won't afford on myself anytime soon, rather than one to Paducah.

Some criteria:

No Asia, no Africa. We're not trying to fly anywhere that takes more than 9 hours (we're in Chicago).

Urban areas preferred. We're not hikers nor hanging out in cabins/on the beach people.

We like eating and we like drinking.

It would be great if we could go somewhere that lends itself to various sub-trips. Our original plan was to go to Poland--we're of Polish descend and thought it would be cool to go to Warsaw and Krakow and also Vienna while we were at it, but it's really difficult to get flights to Poland from Chicago this summer.

So! We're very spoiled children, obviously. But my poor Dad is getting frustrated with our lack of ideas for other trips so I figured some of you would have some suggestions I haven't come up with?

(my parents nixed Turkey for some reason, also, and were also fairly recently in Hungary).

posted by clairezulkey to Travel & Transportation (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: PS I should have amended that "not hikers" to include the fact that my mom is kind of a priss so definitely not looking for anything very 'rustic'.
posted by clairezulkey at 10:45 AM on March 7, 2007

Greece. Athens, Thessoliniki, and the islands. Read more here and here. Was there with my grown-up family on vacation this past November and it was beautiful. Will be a lot more crowded in the summer but beautiful nonetheless.

And many months later I'm still yearning for the food/drink we had at so many wonderful places there...
posted by allkindsoftime at 10:51 AM on March 7, 2007

Response by poster: Thanks! I've been there but my parents haven't. I think it'll be a tough sell with my Mom (I'm really painting her here as a harpie. She can be stubborn) but I think Athens and Delphi at the very least would get her going. Maybe if I stuff her with enough olives and ouzo she'll quit her bitching!
posted by clairezulkey at 10:55 AM on March 7, 2007

Berlin? Barcelona? Dublin? Stockholm?
posted by zeoslap at 10:55 AM on March 7, 2007

Argentina! (Buenos Aires + environs). It's got it all: urban, nature, wine, food, arts, culture, etc etc.
posted by AwkwardPause at 11:03 AM on March 7, 2007

how about something in the Scandinavian areas? I know there are cruises that go around to the various glaciers and the like.

After you can go to Amsterdam/Denmark/Sweden. There are urban scenes a'plenty there.
posted by jourman2 at 12:09 PM on March 7, 2007

And yes I know Amsterdam is a city, not a country - momentary slip of the brain.

stupid brain
posted by jourman2 at 12:11 PM on March 7, 2007

I can't believe its ever hard to get flights from Chicago to Poland.

But if you want something different, try urban Iberia: Madrid. Barcelona. Lisbon. Great food, wine, nocturnal life, culture, etc. A little exotic, but basically safe. May be a little outside of the 9 hour window though.
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 12:41 PM on March 7, 2007

For urban, try a city in Brazil.

Costa Rica isn't urban, but it has lots of cultural and touristy stuff that isn't hiking or beachy.

If you insist on something more European, how about Reykjavik?
posted by Sprout the Vulgarian at 1:20 PM on March 7, 2007

why not take a luxury cruise on the Mediterranean?
spa amenities. daily jaunts to the islands. excellent food and drinks. 24 hour room service. maybe a night or two at either end of the cruise at a beautiful hotel in athens?
posted by jessica at 1:38 PM on March 7, 2007

posted by caddis at 1:47 PM on March 7, 2007

posted by xo at 3:01 PM on March 7, 2007

What about New Zealand? Granted, it's garnered a bit of an adventure tourism, rustic allure, but there are tons of things to be done that are pretty-yet-cushy, the whole country can be traveled in a day if you have to, so everything is pretty close for side-trips, it's pretty cheap, really friendly, and they have amazing wine.

Take a cooking class in Nelson (I've done it, it's amazing), take a boat trip in the Sounds, fly through the mountains, etc. etc.
posted by craven_morhead at 3:09 PM on March 7, 2007

Cruise the Baltic. You can hit Poland, Sweden, Denmark, Latvia, Estonia, Russia, Finland, etc.
posted by Frank Grimes at 6:06 PM on March 7, 2007

What about New Zealand?

NZ is a great tourist destination, but a tad more than nine hours from Chicago.

In your position I'd be leaning towards Scandanavia, which seems fairly different to the places you've all already been without being rural or boring.
posted by shelleycat at 10:10 PM on March 7, 2007

Response by poster: hey! It turns out my dad was able to get us tickets via Dublin. So we'll randomly be hitting up Dublin, Krakow and Warsaw. Thanks so much everyone for your suggestions. I'll raise a glass of pivo to you.
posted by clairezulkey at 2:23 PM on March 8, 2007

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