Karen Brown’s Travel Guide - Hotels in Travel Questions for Karen Recommendtaions Travelers Trust Member or Property

You Are Not Logged In

Click Here To Login

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

You Must Login To Ask A Question

Category: General

Question:
We are big fans of your site and your books. We are planning a 10-day trip to Germany this December, and will be traveling as a family of 5: 2 parents and 3 daughters ages 15, 18, 20. Our oldest is currently studying at Freiburg so we will begin our trip there. We are customizing your itineraries for Bavaria and the Black Forest. Our main question is the season--many of the recommendations apply to the more popular seasons of summer and fall, so we are unsure how traveling in December would change those. We're liking the idea of Freiburg, a day trip to Strasbourg, Munich and Salzburg, and lots of exploring in between. However, is it wise to drive through Bavaria in winter? And where would you spend Christmas?! Thanks!
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Oct 15, 2009]


Answer:

What a wonderful opportunity to spend the holidays with your family in Germany and Austria.  Your main concern about traveling is truly always an issue in winter - particularly if you are traveling the smaller country roads and in the mountains.  That being said, it takes a major storm to shut down principal roads.  To ease your concerns and any travel issues, I would recommend traveling as much as possible by train.  The train network is not as extensive in the Black Forest, nor in the countryside of Bavaria, but you could most definitely span the longer distances by train, taking advantage of Rail Europes Drive/Rail packages (allows you train travel and a few days car rental at destinations between rail segments).  

BLACK FOREST:

FREIBURG is a lovely city!

In the black forest, I particularly like the towns of STAUFEN and TRIBERG

A nice place to stay as a family would be the Romantik Hotel Spielweg in Munstertal

BODENSEE:

You might want to go south from the Black Forest to the Bodensee - Meersburg is a lovely town and we have two great hotels, Stein am Rhein and Schaffhausen (both on the Swiss side of the lake) and then on to Bavaria.

MUNICH:

A favorite place that would be great for a family is the Hotel Torbrau

BAVARIA:

You don't want to miss Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau (both properties are lovely Hotel Muller and Schlosshotel Lisl & Jaegerhaus) and Berchtesgaden (hotel that would be nice is Alpenhotel Zechmeisterlehen in Schongau am Konigsee)

In terms of Christmas - I would personally stay in Salzburg - I love this city and it would be so magical at the holidays and/OR one of our absolute favorite properties is outside Salzburg (about an hour) on the Wolfgansee (Lake) on the outskirts of St Wolfgang - the Landhaus zu Appesbach.  They do rooms on a pension basis and the accommodation and dining is wonderful.  Our friend, Max is the manager and if they are not already booked for the holidays - you would love the Landhaus zu Appesbach.

Hope the above recommendations prove of some help!  Thank you for using our guides and recommendations. Happy Holidays!  Karen

 

 

hermes handbags


Category: General

Question:
Karen is it possible to rent a car in a country in Europe and drop it in a different country such as Cannes to Milan.
Asked by George Lee [Oct 5, 2009]


Answer:

Dear Mr. Lee,

Each car rental company has their own policies and fees. I would recommend contacting AutoEurope and ask them to help you select a rental car company that best suits your needs. They do not have their own fleet of cars, but, rather, represent lots of companies - so they can truly help you best evaluate the best match.  They are not trying to sell you their rentals.

You can reach them by calling 1-800-223-5555. Be sure to mention you are a Karen Brown Traveler (ID number 99006187) for preferred customer rates.

Thank you for using our recommendations.

Kindest regards,

Karen

hermes handbags


Category: France

Question:
I would like to make a recommendation for your book. My husband and I stayed 3 nights at a charming chateau in Normandy that we feel your readers would like. How do we go about this? Joyce Coughlan
Asked by Joyce Coughlan [Oct 1, 2009]


Answer:

Dear Joyce,

We and our readers would be thrilled if you would share your recommendation! Thank you!  To do so, go to our Community page- Reader Discoveries (link below)

http://www.karenbrown.com/user_discovery.php

If the property you want to recommend is already in our database, you can then post a review based on your own experience.  If not, it will become a Reader Discovery on our website - with thanks and credit to you.

If I can be of further assistance, let me know.

Kindest regards,

Karen

hermes handbags


Category: Germany

Question:
I was reading through your list of places in Germany and now cannot find it - it was a hotel that has a view of the famous Cinderella castle from it's property. We are try to plan a trip from Munich Germany - head to Garmisch and then into Austria and up to Praha. We have 12 days and want to spend the majority in Prague for my niece is studying there. Any insight would be greatly appreciated
Asked by Kim Santonastaso [Sep 28, 2009]


Answer:
I believe the property you are looking for is a property in Hohenschwangau which is where Mad King Ludgwig's castle - Neuschwanstein - is located that is said to have been the inspiration for Disney's Sleeping Beauty Castle. We recommend two properties, Schlosshotel Lisl & Jaegerhaus and the Hotel Muller. Both are located right in this little village within walking distance of the castle. In terms of recommendations for your trip - I would say Bavaria which would include Munich and Mad King Ludgwig's Castles, Berchtesgaden, on to Salzburg (which is a wonderful city), if you want to detour into the countryside of AUstria, a favorite is located in St Wolfgang, Landhaus zu Appesbach - in the vicinity of Salzburg with a gorgeous setting on the lake, and then cross over into the Czech Republic, stopping in Cesky Krumlov, located only about a two-hour drive north of Linz in Austria before continuing on to Prague. You will find more detailed recommendations for the suggestions above on our website. Thank you for using our recommendations and enjoy your trip! Karen

hermes handbags


Category: France

Question:
We are planning a small family wedding for our daughter in Paris, France. We expect 30 - 40 people. We would like a well located, charming hotel which serves breakfast and possibly has a restaurant. Also, we need a great, casual place for dinner in either a restaurant or hotel which will accommodate a group. Thank you, Gina
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Sep 24, 2009]


Answer:

Dear Gina,
Do you have a preference for arrondissement? Also, are you looking for moderate prices or an ultimate splurge?
Even though I am not certain of your preferences in terms of location or price, I am confident in recommending a few personal favorites:
Saint Germain Left Bank Hotel (link below) is well located at the heart of the left bank. They serve a wonderful buffet breakfast in a garden courtyard. Rooms are priced well for value. Family owned, they are very service oriented. If you consider this hotel, I would recommend you contact the owner, Mr. Tiel directly.

http://www.karenbrown.com/Hotel_Guide/France/Ile-de-France/Paris/Saint_Germain_Left_Bank_Hotel/3410.php
Another one on the left bank - but not quite as well located, but very charming is the Hotel Duc de Saint Simon (link below). It is located on a quiet street of the same name, very intimate, beautifully decorated and although, breakfast is not included in the rate it is offered for a price and they also have a wonderful little bar.
http://www.karenbrown.com/Hotel_Guide/France/Ile-De-France/Paris/Hotel_Duc_de_Saint-Simon/1652.php

In both cases, the hotels are not large - you, in fact would probably need to reserve most of the rooms. Therefore, I would contact them asap. They will also probably require some sort of non-refundable guarantee as it will be necessary for them to reserve the majority of their rooms and if you cancel they might not be able to re-coop lost reservation requests. This would probably not be the case with a larger hotel.
In terms of restaurants, I would most definitely consult with the hotel of your choice. Even though I do have a few thoughts, you will want a restaurant convenient to the hotel and the hotelier can best advise you based on your budget and preference in terms of cuisine.
What an exciting time for you and your family! I wish you all the best and your daughter and future son-in-law much happiness!
Thank you for using our recommendations,
Kindest regards,
Karen
Karen Brown Herbert
Karen Browns Guides
www.karenbrown.com

hermes handbags


Category: Italy

Question:
Hi Karen, I am a fan of you and your books which I have used on previous trips to Italy, England and California. In Italy, we especially enjoyed your recommendations for Venice and Florence - well-priced and lovely. My husband and I and two other couples are planning a trip to Tuscany in the fall of 2010. Our plan is to rent a villa in a town, shop at the local food markets, do some cooking, visit some wineries, eat at local restaurants, take some day trips. What towns in Tuscany would you suggest for a week long visit - we don't want a big city or a tour bus stop, but we would like some amenities such as markets, restaurants and, of course beautiful scenery. Thank you very much. Kathy
Asked by A Karen Brown Traveler [Sep 23, 2009]


Answer:
Dear Kathy, Thank you so much for being one of our loyal readers! We appreciate it very much! In terms of your next trip - there is nothing better than settling in one place, making it your "home" which allows you to get to know a village, a neighborhood, its markets, the butcher etc. When you settle in one spot a definite plus is that the locals will share with you their favorites in terms of markets, restaurants, etc. It is hard for us to do so beyond what we recommend in our itineraries for Tuscany & Umbria unless we knew exactly where you are staying. In terms of where to stay, we have a number of properties that now offer self-catering accommodation - but our research until now has focused on inns, small hotels and bed & breakfasts. If you want to rent a villa, I would suggest contacting our partner, Nicole Franchini of Hidden Treasures (she researches our B&B guide to Italy). She is Chicago born, based in Italy and is familiar with lots of properties and can perhaps best help you select a place to stay. When you are selecting a place for more than just one night - it is a commitment in terms of time and money - you want to make sure it is right! Her contact information is published in our three guides to Italy: US toll free: (888) 419-6700, Intermational toll free (011) (800) 280-4200-4, email: info@htitaly.com. If you would like our itinerary recommendations, as you know they are published in our guides, but you can also purchase individual downloadable itineraries in in pDF format from our website. The itineraries you might be interested in are: Romantic Tuscany - Haunting Beauty of Umbria - Undiscovered Sabine Hills. Have a wonderful trip! Karen

hermes handbags


Category: Portugal

Question:
My husband and I have just returned from Guest House Douro, Porto. I would like to leave a review but it is not listed on your site. However, a guest at the time told me of your guide and I understood this guest house was listed?
Asked by Sylvia Ellis [Sep 22, 2009]


Answer:
Dear Sylvia, I am envious - the Guesthouse Douro sounds wonderful and I have yet to experience it myself! In terms of leaving a review - it IS on our site - perhaps you are spelling it different than what we have ... simply try Douro in the search box (upper right corner of any page on our website) and it should result with a match for the Guest House Douro. Once you are on their website page, go to the very bottom of the page and click: Login In To Leave Your Own Review. Once you post a review it comes to us so we can then send it on to the property for them to know and see and then we publish it to their website page. Eager to see another review for the Guest House Douro on our site! They obviously deserve the rave reviews! Thank you, Karen

hermes handbags


Category: California

Question:
Hi karen, Me and my wife are traveling in California by car for a month. We bought your book about California in The Netherlands and the B&B's you mention in the book are very pricy for our budget. So if you have a book or list with B&B's for low budget's I would be very pleased. We travel from San Francisco up north but we want to see Yoshimite Park and there we cant find low budget places to sleep. I hope you can help us with a list or site where we can find such places or any other ideas. We are traveling to the States the coming friday. Rob Roorda , The Netherlands
Asked by Rob Roorda [Sep 20, 2009]


Answer:
Dear Rob, Unfortunately, because our guides are a selective listing of what we feel are best for a given area in terms of location, ambiance, welcome and value - they are not necessarily the cheapest. However, some recommendations would be: www.cabbi.com California Association of Bed & Breakfast Inns - is a membership of almost all B&Bs in California - anyone can be a member - so you find all price ranges Specific to Yosemite, weekends are extremely hard, but you might want to try staying at the tent cabins in the park itself: www.NationalParkReservations.com And a wonderful, reasonably priced B&B in a town on the outskirts of Yosemite (Groveland) is the Hotel Charlotte. It is on our website (http://www.karenbrown.com/B&B_Guide/California/Sierras/Groveland/Hotel_Charlotte/7155.php) as a reader recommendation. They have attractive rooms, wonderful innkeepers, good food and a great price! Finally, for last minute deals, you can always go to www.hotels.com and www.priceline.com (where you can actually bid on rooms) and if you just want a clean room and comfortable bed, our motels offer incredible prices - such as Motel 6 - often under $50 a night. You won't need reservations - they are everywhere! I hope you enjoy your trip to California-this is a gorgeous time of year to come. If there are any other specific areas, I would be happy to offer suggestions. Glad you found our guide in The Netherlands! I didn't know it was sold there. Safe travels, Karen

hermes handbags


Category: Spain

Question:
I wanted to rent a Mercedes Van in Spain and several cars were listed- none of which was a Mercedes. I am finding it very difficult to rent a large van for 6 adults plus baggage in Spain. What do you recommend. Thank you Mary Ann Falciani
Asked by Mary Ann Falciani [Sep 14, 2009]


Answer:
Dear Mary Ann, Have you tried contacting Auto Europe? They don't actually have their own fleet of cars, but rather, represent many car rental companies and can help you select a company that meets your needs. If you have and they couldn't help you - please contact me again, I will do further research. Because you want a specific type of car, etc. I would contact them by phone. Their agents are very customer service oriented and definitely tell them that you are a Karen Brown Traveler for a preferred customer discount. Their telephone number is (800) 223-5555 - Karen Brown Traveler ID 99006187. Thank you for using our recommendations! Karen

hermes handbags


Category: France

Question:
Hello. we are going to France. The b&b euro prices that you quote, is that for the room or per person? Also, we want to go from Tours to Avignon or from Cahors to Avignon so that we can fly out of Nice instead of going back to Paris. Can we drop our car off in Tours and take a train that is non stop? All trains that I see route you back to Paris. What would you suggest?
Asked by nancy bromley [Sep 14, 2009]


Answer:
The prices we quote in our guide and on our website are based on rates given to us by the properties and unless otherwise noted are for two people sharing a room. Rates quoted for meals (table d'hote or breakfast) are per person. In terms of travel by train, you can search for point to point train connections and options on our website under Travel Tools - it will take you to Rail Europe's website - and it is possible to travel from the city of Tours via the southern route but you have to force it to do so by selecting an intermediary stop traveling the southern route-for example, Tours to Cahors, Cahors to Avignon. Rail Europe generates the most efficient itinerary and since Tours is so convenient to Paris, they route you via Paris. Once you are as far south as Cahors, Rail Europe generates an itinerary that takes you via Toulouse and then on to Avignon. You will need to make a connection in Toulouse. In terms of minimizing location charges with a car rental, I would contact Auto Europe (since they represent lots of companies and will help you shop the best deal based on your needs). It will all depend on where you are initially picking up the car and how long you are reserving the car as to whether or not you can drop it at the Tours train station without a charge. Definitely inquire about Rail Europes train and car rental packages - as they are geered for pick up and drop offs at train stations to accommodate their rail passengers. I assume you are then picking up a car rental in Avignon and delivering it to the Nice airport - again, I would ask Auto Europe to help you "shop" the best deal and also ask about Rail Europe packages. Flying out of Nice is wonderful - it is still a small city airport - easy to get in and out and there are great international connections! I often suggest that people use airports other than Paris - you save travel time back to the big city; expense to and from the airport, and the extra night that is usually required to accommodate your departure time. Also, when you contact Auto Europe (tel 1-800-223-5555) be sure to identify yourself as a Karen Brown Traveler as they will extend a discount. The Karen Brown ID number is 99006187. Enjoy your trip and thank you for using our guides and website! Karen the best s se

hermes handbags



Back to Ask Karen A Question