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How to travel like a local and avoid the tourist traps

Published: 21 Jul 2013 18:22 GMT+02:00

With so many places to see and so little time how do you ensure you pick the right destination? And once you are there, how do you know you have seen or experienced all the best bits?

It's all about travelling smart; choosing your destination to match the type of holiday you want, and once you are there, tapping into local knowledge so you get to see all the stuff that the guidebooks don't mention.

It's everything that makes travelling with an experienced operator like Contiki so great - decide where you want to go and they do the rest. As we like to say, you have one life, one shot, so make it count! #NOREGRETS

So go ahead and make your choice from our pick of the best of Europe.

Sun & Sea – Croatia

Croatia really is the hidden gem of the Adriatic. With glistening turquoise waters, a Mediterranean climate and beaches to rival any paradise this side of the equator, the Croatian islands offer everything the sea and sun seeker desires. And if you really want to experience something unique, check out Contiki’s Croatian Island Cruising trip. With accommodation aboard an 'A' class boat and a private beach party making up just some of the highlights, you can rest assured that you are going to have a truly exclusive experience.

Bratwurst & Beers – Germany

If knowing how to pour a good stein is the making of the man, then Munich flows with more testosterone than a rugby team on a stag-do. Beer and bratwurst are a rite of passage in this city made famous by Oktoberfest - a 16-day homage to the wobbly stuff. In Germany visitors can enjoy a year-round dedication to serving up the finest thirst-quenchers you’re likely to find on the continent. So if raising a glass with the locals in a backstreet taverna is your thing, then take a look at Contiki’s Eastern Road trip.

Wine & Dine – France

If you are more gourmet than grab and go, perusing Parisian courtyards and roaming the Riviera might be more to your taste. There is no doubt that France is for foodies and what could beat finding a hidden corner in a bistro and sitting down to a meal of camembert, coq au vin and crème brûlée? Feeling full? How about sleeping it off in Contiki’s own château? Some experiences are hard to put a price on, but Contiki’s European Highlights trip gives you unrivalled access to some of the best accommodation and restaurants on the continent.

Museums & Markets – Denmark

If it's bargains you love, then Copenhagen has flea markets you can get lost in for hours. Add to that museums celebrating everything from Viking bloodshed to the production of Carlsberg, and a contemporary art scene to rival that of Paris you’ll have culture (and a couple of beers) oozing out of every pore. Contiki's Scandinavia trip has something for everyone, whether it is shopping in cosmopolitan Copenhagen or sailing through the breath-taking Norwegian fjords, memories will be made thick and fast on this trip.

Culture Vulture - Greece

With ancient temples, palaces and citadels everywhere you turn, it's hard to ignore Greece's mythological heritage. It is easy to spend several days walking through ruins, stumbling over breath-taking sculptures and discovering what made this country the birthplace of modern society. Add to this a rich culinary culture, and some of the most passionate people you will ever meet and you have the perfect break for anyone who loves to immerse themselves in all things 'other-worldly'. Anyone can visit these world-famous sites, but on Contiki's Spotlight on Greece trip, it is the addition of a highly experienced local guide that will take your experience to a whole new level.

Can’t choose?

Contiki offers over 90 trips across Europe, with over 1,000 definite departures and six travel styles to suit your budget and timeframe. Whichever you choose, it is the exclusivity offered on all Contiki tours that make you feel like you have been given a backstage pass to Europe. Whether it is skipping the queues at the Eiffel Tower, exclusive use of a beachside resort in Greece or your own chef cooking up a storm in a French château (where you are spending the night of course), it is exclusive treatment as such that sets the Contiki experience apart from the rest.

Discover your next adventure at contiki.com or check out our amazing Last Minute Deals.

Article sponsored by Contiki

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