My style of travel planning is to first read guidebooks, tag anything that looks of interest, and then look at a map to see what logically goes together and checking dates and opening times to avoid disappointment. I find useful web pages, and put together a document of useful information from many sources. It's important to incorporate the interests of those I'm traveling with, and allow for the inevetable jetlag, museum-head, or serendipitous discovery.
I've taken a first stab at Amsterdam. I've never been, although Larry has for business. Dan will be spending a day in the city with his bike group, so I want the things he'll do with them (Anne Frank House, Van Gogh Museum) to be fresh for him.
Draft Amsterdam Itinerary
arrive in morning. Take train to Centraal station, walk to apartment (10-15 minutes)
Walk around area, get groceries, see nearby market
Lunch out, rest a bit
Afternoon—independent walking tour of central historic district.
10—pick up Canal Bike http://www.canal.nl/en/product.php?pr_id=146&cat_id=7&theme_id=2
(canal bike 2 hours?)
Head over to Alber CuypMarket http://www.amsterdam.info/shopping/albert_cuypmarkt/
Anne Frank House (open till 10, can reserve online http://www.annefrank.org/content.asp?PID=754&LID=2
Larry and Dan meet up for either 11 am bike tour with
or 1 pm bike tour with http://www.yellowbike.nl/en/biketours/big-city-tour-amsterdam
Amy goes to Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum.
Meet back up 4 pm. Vondelpark
Thursday—Daytrip to Gouda.
Cheese market 10-12:30, Weighing House and cheese museum, Stroopwafel bakery tour, St Janskerk
Friday—Get to Schiphol so Dan can meet up with bike trip at 8:30. Amy and Larry take 9:20 train (downstairs) to Paris.