When Michal and I travel to several places in Europe, we like to call it our European Adventure.  So far we’ve had European Adventures in 2008 (London, Paris, Prague, Krakow) and in 2010 (Lisbon, Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, Berlin).  This year we are preparing to embark on European Adventure 2012.

Within the last few weeks, Michal and I have been attempting to narrow down the list of places we want to see in Europe this year to a reasonable few.  An added perk this year is that one of my best friends, Adam, is joining us for a portion of our trip.  (I have literally known Adam my whole entire life and honestly do not know what life is like without him in it.)  Between the three of us, we have narrowed down our choices to the French Rivera and Croatia.  Last Saturday, Michal and I spent hours in Barnes and Noble looking through travel books on Croatia and quickly decided that we would skip the French Rivera this year and instead spend a couple of week exploring the beautiful country of Croatia.  Luckily, it was pretty easy to convince Adam to postpone the French Riviera to another time.

At this point in time, we have ideas of places we want to go while we’re there.  So far this list includes the coastal city of Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar, Plitvice Lakes National Park (thanks, Levi!) and possibly the island of Krk.  In the past, Michal and I have tended to only spend a couple of days in each place which resulted in little relaxation, lots of blisters, pure exhaustion and honestly just not enough time to explore and soak up the culture.  This year, we hope to slow down a little, but there’s so much to see and so little time and limited resources, so we’ll see how it goes. We’re at least starting with good intentions. Now comes the fun (or not so fun) part of coordinating travel dates, purchasing tickets and finding places to stay.

While Michal would be fine with just purchasing the initial ticket to Europe then figuring out travel arrangements to other cities and accommodations on the fly, that just doesn’t work for me.  I am not the type of person who need to plan every second of their trip, but I do need to know that I have tickets to get there and a place to rest my head at night.  Those two things are what I refer to as my safety net.  Maybe that makes me less adventurous to some, but it keeps me sane.

Oh, once we leave Croatia, Michal and I are considering taking a train from Croatia to Poland.  For those of you who don’t know, I hate trains.  So the fact that I’m considering spending several days on one is a miracle in itself.  If we do go along with this semi-thought out plan, I would finally get to experience the South part of Poland which I have not seen in the past 7 years because of my intense resistance to spending 12 hours on a Polish train to get there.  Whether this specific addition to our trip happens or not, this summer will surely be a summer of adventure and exploration!