So we landed in the airport around 11:00, and by a unanimous vote decided to rent a car instead of shllepping around with the luggage and all. we went outside the airport, and after a quick investigation discovered that the local agencies offered a much cheaper deal than the international ones. We got a nice Nissan Micra for 31 euro per day, gas not included, and headed on west to Chania.
We drove on a curvy road with the sea on our north, along the side of mountains and downward close to the water, and than back up again. The sea was glittering and we took our the time, and arrived to Chania only in in the afternoon. We park the car in Talo park, very close to the Venetian harbor, and went out to get ourselves a hotel.
We landed in Amsterdam (Schiphol Airport) on 11:45. We left the airport around 13:00 with a rental car. There are also intercity and sprinter trains between Amsterdam and Haarlem Central Station almost every 10 minutes. From Amsterdam, it's a 15 minute trip, and the price is 3.80€. Taking the train from Schiphol directly, you’ll have to change lines at Amsterdam Sloterdijk. With a car the drive was about 20 minutes.
Plane ticket: After several days of inquiries and reading background material, I decided the best destination to land, in terms of cost, is Casablanca. I purchased an airline ticket through www.kayak.com with Turkish airlines for a 15 day trip.
It's very easy to get around Morocco. The train network is good and orienting oneself is very simple. The same goes for the bus system.
The main bus company in Morocco is CTM: http://www.ctm.ma/
The train company is ONCF: http://www.oncf.ma/Pages/Accueil.aspx
You can buy a first class or regular (second class) ticket. I found that the regular class seats are comfortable enough when you travel between cities.
Some information about traveling times between the destinations:
As for the prices:
Another link with more information about the trains:
Our way to Siena started in the Terni-Spoleto area. In order to get to Siena, there are two main options - use the A1 highway and drive north all the way, or use the country road which starts at road SS75, going through Perugia and the large lake Trasimeno.
Anyways, we're taking about 200 km on either case, both on main roads that, without stops, will take you around two hours an a half. The difference? A1 is a toll road, and requires less thinking while driving on it.
We chose the A1 because we didn't want to mess with the whims of our British GPS, Debbi :-) The nice part is that, when you leave A1 finally, you start driving to Siena on roads marked SS, which means main roads in the same country, but not highways.
This road passed many small towns along the way, up and down, and revealed new views, hills and fields. Since we bought supplies at Spoleto, (a COOP super market,) we could stop with an instant decision, making the cliche a reality...
BTW, Italian wine is also tasty in plastic cups :-)
Your best investment, naturally, is to buy a daily ticket to the public transportation, Biglietto Giornaliero. You can buy it at every kiosk, it costs 6 Euros, and it's valid till midnight. If, like us, you'll stay for two days, you'll need to buy two of these.
If you'll arrive, like us, from the outskirts of the city, this ticket will get you on a bus, and then on an above ground train, which passes above the roads and through the suburbs.
We continued on the stunning road near the river, admiring along the way, the green color of the river and the spectacular rocks. We arrived at Split, the second biggest city in Croatia and the Capital of Dalmatia. We found a good parking spot in the bay near the old city.