Monday, June 16, 2008

wanderlust

I have the travel bug quite badly. Later this summer, I'd like to go somewhere with museums and historical sights, and a laidback culture. It's a bonus if the destination allows me to get by in English or Mandarin (or high-school German).

I'm considering the following:

Germany. I could visit the Google Munich office.


Russia with my dad (who speaks rusty Russian):


Washington D.C.:


Cornwall, England.


Votes on which one will be most interesting?

39 comments:

Andreea said...

Well, since you asked, I would definitely say Russia. I couldn't explain why, maybe because it's more exotic and different than anything else? (at least I think so, I have yet to go there myself :P ).


Have a happy holiday whatever you decide!

PS I cannot believe I am about to leave a comment on your blog, I've been reading you for so long ... :D :D

JohnMu said...

How about the Zurich office? Use it as a staging point to head over to Germany or even east through Austria?

Anonymous said...

Italy.

Anonymous said...

I'd say go for England. That's probably the most romantic place of all u mentioned. Russia can get pretty dangerous and weird - only a few places downtown Moscow are beautiful, the rest has that communist look, with graphitti, and cheap apartment buildings..
Washington DC, u know, nothing new to expect. Germany would be an interesting trip, but not too romantic. I liked how tidy and clean their small towns are.
And the highway with no speed limit!! That was awesome.
Personally, I'd go for England, Cornwall. But maybe I just watched too many movies:))
Why don't u consider Brazil, for example? Or Amsterdam?
:))

Jorge De Castro said...

I fell in love with Munich when I was driving through Bavaria and saw the castles of King Ludwig II rising through the clouds, fairytale like. It's a beautiful love story too, no doubt worth visiting

bene said...

I'm headed to the Isle of Skye, which, incidentally, Google Maps thinks is a bit further south than it actually is

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Isle+Of+Skye,+UK

UK and Ireland are fantastic places to visit. Spend a month in a city, else you're missing most of it.

David said...

Cornwall in summer is lovely. I used to go there for summer holidays as a child. Haven't been for 18 years or so maybe. Ah wistful memory.

Jeremy said...

I'd vote for Scotland, but perhaps you've been there and it wasn't an option listed. If not there, then Cornwall sounds pretty cool.

René said...

Munich!
It's just beautiful, especially in summer!
Don't think that English should be a problem there, given the fact that don't-know-how-many tourists visit it.
Mandarin will be difficult, though, but I guess it will be at all of the given choices

Wes Bigelow said...

I took a road trip out to Washington DC this last year and found it to be a wonderful place. I spent 5 entire days walking around the city and there were still museums and sights I didn't hit.

The National Gallery is worth seeing. The zoo has some really cute pandas. Hardly anyone seems to go here, but the Freer Gallery has a beautiful collection of art and statues from Asia and India.

There is a restaurant named Teaism by the Navy Memorial-National Archives, with delicious food (try the Indonesian tempeh/stir fry dish, it's wonderful!).

Almost all museums are free as well. And I like that African countries seem better represented here than on the West coast (in cuisine and actual people).

John K. Lin said...

Out of those choices, I think Russia would be the most interesting - though I have never been to Cornwall, England nor Germany.

Washington, D.C. in the summer is a bit too hot and humid IMHO, plus, D.C. is pretty easy to get to.

If you go to Russia, definitely make sure you get to St. Petersburg and just not visit Moscow. And while you are in St. Petersburg, you are not too far from Tallinn, Estonia.

The only downside is that Russia / Moscow can be really, really expensive for foreigners (that is what I hear now from a Googler who has had to travel to Google Moscow for work)

Anonymous said...

I'd go to Russia.

Alex said...

Weren't you planning to learn Italian and go to Italy?

Anonymous said...


Ireland
? There's Google Ireland to use as an excuse to visit, of course.

Anonymous said...

I think Niniane mentioned she was planning on going to Italy in the winter.

Joanna said...

Come to Washington DC Niniane. I'll play hostess!

Anonymous said...

Barcelona! Good museums, can get by with english. Good beach, lot's of fun...

Dilip P said...

You could visit INDIA ! I'm sure it won't be a bad idea and you'll be pleased at the end.

Niniane said...

I've been to India and Barcelona. They are good places, it's true.

Melinda O said...

You really haven't been to DC? You should probably go, just to see the important things. But I wouldn't expect it to be a glamorous or romantic vacation.

Anonymous said...

I'll vote for DC - it's so beautiful & endlessly fascinating - e.g., the Smithsonian museums, the incredible memorials (esp the FDR), the Kennedy Center, the Capitol, the Tidal Basin, the wonderful neighborhoods surrounding Metro stops, Georgetown, biking / boating along the Potomac -- I think you'd have an amazing time!!

ati-anta-gata said...

Russia. And that's right; if you go there visit Moscow and St. Petersburg. Moscow is a capital city when St. Petersburg is cultural capital city they say.

And about that communist look mentioned above... yes, it is still there in some places but I don't think it will scare Chinese girl ;)

Todd B. said...

Why choose? Go to them all!

Thampan said...

not relevant here .. but thought you may want to buy this ( see the pic at the link):)

http://indiauncut.com/iublog/article/the-google-saree/

arkivarie said...

Come to Sweden!!! You can get by just fine with English and, once you get out in the countryside, everything is romantic and charming. Plus, it's very peaceful and safe here; very little crime and lots of sun.

Anonymous said...

Why not Mexico? You can practice your Spanish and many other languages will be easier.

Sascha said...

Hm...since beeing from Germany, Bavaria, I'd say Munich is always worth staying - anyway I wouldn't go to England. You know...raining cats and dogs.. ;-)

And if you would make it to Munich, I would show you some lederhosen ;-)

happy holidays! =)

residue said...

Try Antarctica: cold, desolate and unforgiving. Just like your soul. :)

Niniane said...

Nice.

I do want to go to Antarctica. It's best in Jan / Feb from what I heard. Maybe in 2009...

residue said...

In all seriousness, I'd like to go there some day too (to study soil microfauna). There are some rather expensive cruises that will take you by South Georgia (a former whaling station) and the Falklands, en route to Antarctica, with some layover time spent in Argentina.

pokai said...

I went to DC in Jan and it was fabulous. All the Smithsonian museums are free. If you fly into National, then you can take the metro from airport to Georgetown hotels (10 minutes). Then its 10 minutes on metro from Georgetown to museums. Also, catch a concert at Kennedy Center. Food, shopping, and bars in Columbus Circle and Georgetown were great too.

Anonymous said...

Cornwall, England!

mtbouchard said...

Frankly, Moscow is dangerous and expensive. I've been there twice - once in winter and once after getting there by train from Beijing. All the hotels were "booked" as well. St. Peterburg does have the best museum in the world, The Hermitage - yes, better than the Lovre, or Uffizi in Firenze.

Of your choices, I suggest Munich because its very cool. The best science museum in the world is there - the Deutche Museum - which I think you would appreciate a great deal. I spent two days there; they have everything since time began to a Cray. Central Munich is pretty and the beer halls amusing, but you can also take a day trip to Vienna which is just amazing. Or Saltzburg (Mozart's town) is two hours away, and is beautiful and has a summer festival as well.

So, two great cities and countries in one.

Out of your box, I'd suggest Stockholm, because it is so beautiful, peaceful, and people so cool (and the weather is right).

Have fun whatever you choose Niniane.

Anonymous said...

I'd say DC is just too hot to be enjoyed in the late summer. The end of September is probably a more suitable time.

Munich is navigable with minimal German, though I expect that there will be some language barriers. Help for overcoming them is available from the forum for English-speaking expatriates in Germany is www.toytowngermany.com. You'd probably find Munich laid back too. (Some would say, to a fault, compared with someplace like Berlin.) In addition to the Deutsches Museum, I can recommend the English Garden, which is one of the biggest parks in the middle of a city, has many different little attractions, and is beautiful. Also, as has been pointed out, summer is the best time to visit Munich -- the weather is great and the days are very long. (I remember daylight until ~9:30 sometimes.)

I've never been to Cornwall, but do not underestimate how culturally different it will be on the basis that they speak almost the same language as we do.

Both Cornwall and Munich would have the advantage of easy weekend trips to other parts of Europe.

:: jozjozjoz.com :: said...

I'd vote against Cornwall because right now the dollar is too weak to lift a finger!

I have no idea how strong the dollar is against Russian currency, whatever that is...

If you choose DC, you have no currency conversion issues! :P

Anonymous said...

England is so beautiful.

You can see the treasures of the entire world that they have plundered all in one place.

Windsor Castle is like a fairy tale until you wander endlessly through room after room of stolen artifacts.

Treasure upon treasure misappropriated from India, Hong Kong, Africa, Greece. Ireland, Scotland.. Incredible.

There national museum is as amazing.

It makes you realize the pain of so many endured so that a select few by birthright can be so wealthy in such a filthy way.

Why do we worship these families with so much blood on their hands?

So much suffering yet it makes many women dream of being the princess with no conscience.

It is however one of the best trips I have ever taken.

I prefer self made princesses like Niniane :-)

Joseph Hunkins said...

Niniane are you sure that's a pic of Cornwall? Looks sort of like the Great Wall of China?!
http://flickr.com/photos/joeduck/2420801726/

Fedor Gavrilov (aka "Dorfe") said...

Russia is great, but also visit Ukraine, it's not expensive and very beautiful :)

Imi said...

You can find interested museums in Hungary. There are a lots of beautiful places, especially The Big Plain. See puszta.comfor more info...