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Travel Questions Frequently Asked Karen

TRAVEL QUESTIONS FOR KAREN:

Dear Travelers,

I hope you will understand that because of the overwhelming number of questions received each day it is impossible for me to answer every one. I will select questions to answer based on what I believe will benefit and interest the greatest number of travelers. Also, please make your questions as specific as possible and know that I do not have the luxury of time to plan or detail personalized travel itineraries.

If your question is not selected, I sincerely apologize, as given the time, I would answer them all. If your question is selected you will be informed that it is published on our website as well as receive the answer by email.

Kindest regards,
Karen

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Category: France

Question:
My wife and I are planning a September trip to France and would like to spend about a week in Dordogne. Really enjoyed your itinerary. We will be doing this either before or after an Off the Beaten Path tour through the Bordeaux vineyards. Can you recommend a private driver/guide? Best, Herb Coulter
Asked by Herbert Coulter [Apr 12, 2012]


Answer:
Dear Mr. Coulter,I personally do not know someone in the region to recommend but, I do have a few suggestions.First, places you stay are often an incredible resource for local recommendations - they know the best regional restaurants, markets, festivals and even guides (might prove to be someone's cousin or uncle!) I would definitely ask your hotelier if they know someone.Second, we work very closely with Marie Notot who resides in the south of France. She contributes to both our research and editorial and has launched her own company, Elegant Europe to assist with personalized travel needs. She is lovely, extremely reliable and very knowledgeable and efficient. You can reach her by email:  marie@elegant-europe.com  I sincerely cannot recommend her services highly enough!Lastly, local tourist offices are also an incredible resource and if there are local guides, they will have solicited them to get the word out.  It is also always great to use someone who might have had the opportunity to recommend someone more than once - they should have some knowledge of just how good someone is based on traveler comments.If you do find a wonderful guide - please know that we would love the feedback and recommendation to share with other Karen Brown Travelers!  Enjoy one of my favorite regions of France!Karen http://repwatchestore.com/?cat=9

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Category: Italy

Question:
How can I contact Borgo Elena by email to make reservations for a week in Cortona?
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Apr 5, 2012]


Answer:
Their email address is: elenabaracchi@libero.it You can also simply click on the CONTACT FOR RESERVATIONS AND INFORMATION button on their property page. Using our form will identify you as a Karen Brown Traveler!Their website URL on www.karenbrown.com is:http://www.karenbrown.com/B_and_B_Guide/Italy/Tuscany/Cortona/Borgo_Elena/584.php Regards,Karen http://repwatchestore.com/?cat=8

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Category: Switzerland

Question:
Have I mssed your announcement for Switzerland 2012?
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Apr 2, 2012]


Answer:

Dear Cynthia, No you haven't!  All our titles are converting to Electronic books for 2012 - and I thought they would be done by now - but they are all still a work-in-progress.  They will be fantastic with interactive links and maps, they are just just taking a while to complete.  In the meantime, I would encourage you to take advantage of the incredible sale on our 2011/11 editions.  Switzerland is only $5 (plus shipping) through our website store and to be honest, there are not dramatic changes to the 2012 edition.

Kindest regards,

Karen

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Category: Italy

Question:
Dear Karen, My husband and i are going to Italy this October. We land in Rome on the 7th, and fly back on the 17th. Our thought is to stay in Rome and Positano. We would like to spend approx. 5 nights in Positano as well as a few nights in Rome (we have been to Rome before). We'd also like to go to Pompeii (and possibly Herculaneum),visit towns along the coast and Capri. I've looked at your "Highlights of Southern Italy" tour and would do a modified version of that. My first questions concern the itinerary. What is the best way to structure this? Should we go to Positano directly from the airport, or break up our time in Rome? Should we stop in Pompeii on the way to or from Positano, or go there as a day trip from either Rome or Positano? Next, how would you suggest we travel? We are not opposed to renting a car and driving (we have driven before in Italy), but don't know if it's advisable for this trip. We may want a car to visit towns once we're in Positano. I know there are trains to Naples or Sorrento, but we'd prefer not to have to deal with our luggage in stations, on a train, etc. (on other trips, we've encountered steps in both the stations and on the trains themselves, and little room for luggage). I'd appreciate any suggestions you may have. Your books have never steered us wrong, for both lodging and touring!
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Mar 26, 2012]


Answer:

I will attempt to address your questions in segments:

QUESTION 1: My first questions concern the itinerary. What is the best way to structure this? Should we go to Positano directly from the airport, or break up our time in Rome?

RESPONSE:  I would go directly to Rome first. You will probably be tired from your flight and there is a very convenient train that goes quickly into Rome from the airport. Another reason I would go directly into Rome is that it is almost impossible to drive into the heart of Rome—much easier by taxi or train.

QUESTION 2:  Should we stop in Pompeii on the way to or from Positano,or go there as a day trip from either Rome or Positano?

RESPONSE:  If you are driving, I would suggest stopping at Pompeii en route to Positano. If you are not driving, there are a lot of tours that go from Rome to Pompeii. Or, you can ask at your hotel in Positano about hiring a car and driver.

QUESTION 3: How would you suggest we travel?

RESPONSE 3: It sounds like you want to base yourself in Positano, which is a lovely village. However, the parking there is very difficult since the town is built into a steep hillside. However, public transportation is also complicated since there is no train service to Positano. You could take a train to Naples and connect with
another train to Sorrento and from their take a taxi to Positano. When you are in Positano, you will find there is bus service that runs along the Amalfi Coast so you wouldn’t have to have a car once you are there.


CAPRI: You also mentioned including Capri. There is frequent ferry and hydrofoil service between Naples and Capri, and also good service between Sorrento and Capri. There is also ferry/hydrofoil service in high season once a day between Positano and Capri but if the weather is stormy, sometimes the ferries cannot dock in Positano so the service is cancelled. If you go to Capri just for the day, the town is really crowded with day tourists. It is much more magical if you can spend a few days there to enjoy the island in the morning and the
evening when there are less people.

Thank you for using our recommendations and enjoy your time in Italy!

Best, Karen

 

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Category: Britain

Question:
We are planning a 2-week trip through England and Scotland and need to set up a road trip. This is our 1st trip and need suggestions.
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Mar 22, 2012]


Answer:

There are so many wonderful regions in Britain it is hard for us to decide for you where you would like to go, as two weeks does not afford time for an all-comprehensive trip. I would suggest you review the itineraries as featured on our website to get an idea for the areas that appeal to you. 

That being said, most people on their first trip to Britain spend a few days in London, journey into the Cotswolds and then continue up to Scotland either via the Lake District or Yorkshire.

Once you have had a chance to decide where you want to focus your trip, we can perhaps, better assist you with specific questions.

Kindest regards,

Karen

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Category: General

Question:
hI kAREN I am new to your web pages and was looking for information on the Baltic States. When I click on this topic it does not open to a page can u help please Lynn
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Mar 21, 2012]


Answer:

Dear Lynn,

I must apologize - this section of our website is so new - with limited information BUT I didn't realize that the provided links resulted in error messages.  Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention.  I will get our tech team on it right away! 

For ease of your own reference, I will provide below direct links to the different countries:

Estonia:  http://www.karenbrown.com/Regional_Trip_Planner/Baltics/_Estonia/510.php

Latvia:  http://www.karenbrown.com/Regional_Trip_Planner/Baltics/_Latvia/511.php

Lithuania:  http://www.karenbrown.com/Regional_Trip_Planner/Baltics/_Lithuania/512.php

As you travel the Baltic States we would welcome it if you wanted to share your discoveries with our world! 

Thank you for your interest in our recommendations, again, I wish we had more information on the Baltic States to share - it is an area we have only begun to research but, wanted to share the little we have explored.

 Kindest regards,

Karen

 

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Category: California

Question:
I purchased the San Francisco to Los Angeles via the Coast.   I have six full days. Can you recommend stop over cities along the route?  We do have tickets for Alcatraz and Hearst Castle.
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Mar 20, 2012]


Answer:
I will assume six full days equates to eight nights....so based on what we recommend for pacing in the itinerary, I would suggest:1) two nights in San Francisco to afford one full day of sightseeing; 2) two nights in the Carmel/Monterey area - they are in close proximity so either serves as a great base for exploration: Monterey, Cannery Row, Aquarium, 17-mile Drive, Carmel (town and beach), Carmel Mission, Point Lobos3) One night in Big Sur or Cambria to convenience your tour of Hearst Castle4) two nights in Santa Barbara 5) one night Replica watches uk before Replica handbags outlet your departure which I assume is out of LAXHope this helps!Thank you for purchasing our itinerary and following our recommendations! Kindest regards, Karen 

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Category: General

Question:
We have purchased and used your guides with great enthusiasm. This year my husband and I are researching a possible trip to South America. I know that you specialize in North America and Europe travels but with the closure of book stores and reduction of travel books everywhere I was wondering if you had a source to recommend for travel to Argentina and Chile. Thanking you in advance.
Asked by Joyce Edelson [Mar 3, 2012]


Answer:

Thank you so much for using our guides and "with great enthusiasm!!!"  It is nice to have such kind, loyal travelers roaming the world!  I wish I had a contact to share for South America.  We desperately want to research for our own Karen Brown World of Travel but, have not yet begun and so I cannot offer any personal recommendations at this time.  A suggestion would be to contact a travel agent membership association in your area and ask for the name of an agency that specializes in South America.

We would welcome any discoveries you might want to share with the Karen Brown World of Travel!

Kindest regards,

Karen

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Category: Spain

Question:
We will be traveling to Spain in May and spending 2 weeks.  After spending 2nights in Madrid at Villa Real,  we will head (don't know yet whether car ortrain) for a week in San Sebastian.  We plan on day trips from there.  Then we have 3 days before we head back to Madrid.  We can't make up our minds onwhether to go to Segovia or Santillana del Mar or where?  Is Santillana toofar for a day trip out of SS?  Would love an update and any suggestions.  I tried to create a profile, but it didn't seem to work.  I will need to buy amap.Thank  you for your attention.Mulberry outlet Replica watches uk Rolex replica Designer replica handbags
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Mar 2, 2012]


Answer:
Driving to Santillana del Mar from San Sebastian is going to take about 2 1/2-3 hrs. You might consider returning to Madrid going from San Sebastian to Santillana del Mar and then on to Segovia and back to Madrid. This adds probably 3 maybe 4 hours of driving time but allows you to visit and drive a different region of Spain - and even Pamplona if you want to visit the land of Hemingway and the location of his The Sun Also Rises with the running of the bulls. Otherwise, in our opinion, Pamplona is a large city and probably not worth the visit. Maybe spend your day trips going in different directions like across the French border to Biarritz, Bayonne, Sare, Saint Jean Pied de Port. The French beaches are gorgeous and the towns are charming.  Inland towns still boast lots of Basque history and tradition. Have a great trip!

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Category: General

Question:
When will the 2012 travel guide ebooks be available?
Asked by Sandra Schumaker [Feb 16, 2012]


Answer:
We are hoping for end of March, early April.  If you are on our mailing list you will be one of the first to know!  Thank you for your interest. Best, Karen

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