Thank you, thank you, thank you, Rick Steves (and our friends who recommended Rick Steves – you know who you are). With such little time to plan this travel dream suddenly becoming reality and no definite focus, we consulted our friends who had toured Europe just two summers prior. Besides getting some great first-hand travel advice, we learned of the Rick Steves travel books. The books have suggested schedules of how to plan your time depending on how many days you can visit a particular destination and a three-point rating scale for sights: “don’t miss”, “try hard to see”, and “worthwhile if you can make it”. This was invaluable for our flexible schedule and limited knowledge on certain destinations – being able to accurately pencil in destinations on the calendar. Besides the plethora of information he provides on a specific destination, he also offers great travel advice in general. We learned a LOT of great travel techniques from the Rick Steves books, particularly “Europe Through the Back Door” for getting a crash course right before the trip. If you’re thinking about traveling to Europe, I highly suggest picking up some of his books. I could go on and on about how much I love his books, but I’ll leave it at that for now and will probably touch on more specifics in future posts.