The fact that we were going on a trip wasn’t a surprise at all. We’d had it booked and locked in with srprs.me.
The real surprise was where we would be going on the trip.
Now after a series of wintry trips, I was in the mood for some sunshine. I also wanted somewhere with great food and amazing sights. Not that my previous trips had lacked in the amazing sights, of course, but I didn’t want to sacrifice being able to see an amazing place just for the sake of wanting a sunny trip.
Then there was also the fact that for this trip, I wanted to go somewhere I’d never been before.
Thankfully, when we booked our surprise trip with srprs.me, even though it’s all done online, there’s actually a physical person working behind the scenes for you (kinda like your own personal travel concierge). You even get a personalised page which you can share with friends and family – pretty handy for keeping everyone back home up to date with where you’re going (this was ours here).
None of it is automated (though you never have to do deal with that part) and I think this is a huge part of why it just works perfectly.
I’m up for a surprise trip (people have been surprising each other with trips for years) but there are some things I don’t need surprises on… like walking into a horrendous hotel (srprs.me will ask exactly what kind of hotel you’d like so you know you’re going to stay in a hotel you actually like)…. or like arriving at your destination in the wrong clothes (you’ll get updates on the weather at your destination so you know what to pack).
Effectively, srprs.me will keep the fun parts you need to be surprised with still a surprise till the last minute (or the last couple of hours – depending on how impatient you are 😉 🙂 ) and remove any unexpected surprises from the parts you definitely don’t want to be surprised about. Once you sign up, someone from the team will be in touch asking for exactly the kind of holiday you want (and the kind you definitely don’t want).
Like I said, it’s pretty much like your FREE personal travel concierge – it’s brilliant! You tell them your budget and at no extra cost – they sort out your holiday for you.
Anyway, back to our actual trip! 😀 😉
A few days before you leave for your trip, you get a letter in the post containing a scratch card. This scratch card is the key to revealing your destination.
There’s a 4 digit code in it which you enter on the website and voila – destination revealed! (I actually squealed in delight when I found out it was Verona – I’m a sucker for a good Italian city).
Now I was totally gonna carry on and show you what it was like to visit Verona (and all the amazing places you definitely HAVE to visit in the city) but I’ve just looked back up at all the stuff I’ve written above and I now realise there’s no way I can fit all of that into a blog post…we’d all be here all day if I even tried doing that.
Thing is, Verona was definitely something of a surprise destination for me in that I had no idea it was as huge (or as beautiful) as it was.
And yes, Italian cities are quite beautiful – they’ve been mostly preserved over time and have stunning centuries old buildings, delicious food and a suspiciously delightful amount of sunshine but even though I arrived expecting all of that, Verona was still so much more than we’d anticipated.
There are so many stunning sights to see here, so much so that we even though we visited (and intensely pounded the pavement) for 4 days – fine, we did spend half a day hot-tubbing, aperol spritz’ing and prosecco’ing it on our rooftop – so 3.5 days actually sightseeing, we still ended up missing out on some amazing sights in the city.
And they city is very walkable so you can’t even blame everything being too far spread out.
Just as a comparison, Florence is one of my favourite cities in Italy and one that’s very popular for travellers but I feel like you can (if you are intent on doing so), see all of the major sights in Florence over a weekend (2 nights) – you’d probably manage to see just half of the sights in Verona in that same amount of time – they’re that many sights!
Anyway, I’m gonna stop rambling now. 🙂 Over the new few days, I’m gonna break down what we got up to in Verona with srprs.me in a series of blog posts (as per usual). I’ve also got a couple of videos going up soon (will let you know when that’s up).
By the time I’m done with the blog posts, hopefully you’ll see why I couldn’t even attempt to fit it all into just one post.
Gotta run now – catch ya soon!