MY WIFE AND I ARE PLANNING A TRIP TO EUROPE IN MAY. I HAVE LIVED IN LONDON AND TRAVELLED TO EUROPE A COUPLE OF TIMES, ONCE DRIVING AND ONCE ON A TOUR. MY WIFE HAS NEVER BEEN. WE HAVE ABOUT FOUR WEEKS AND I AM THINKING OF HIRING A CAR IN THE UK FOR ABOUT NINE DAYS AND THEN TRAVELLING TO FRANCE AND SPAIN OR ITALY. WOULD YOU RECOMMEND RAIL, A TOUR OR DRIVING IN EUROPE?
S. CLARKE, KENSINGTON
My own preference would be to go it alone, and with a car. You're an experienced traveller, you've probably a good idea of what you want to see in Europe and where to go, so solo is the way, although you might like to include a city tour in places you're not familiar with. May is a lovely time to travel in the southern parts of Europe you'll be visiting, and exploring the countryside and stopping off at villages and out of the way places that are not served by trains is probably going to be one of the highlights of your trip. Considering the time you have available, you might find that a leasing deal will suit your needs. Take a look at the website of Sydney-based globalCARS (globalcars.com.au), they've had a lot of experience putting Aussie drivers behind the wheel in Europe and they can advise what might work best for you, and no hidden extras.