You will be bombarded with information all over the internet in planning for this trip. I’ve narrowed down a couple of the most useful websites that I used. This list is non-exhaustive and inclusion of the websites in this list is based on purely personal choice:
Flight search engines
Check the routes and rates offered by different carriers. It is still better to book using the website of the carrier itself.
Low cost carriers in Europe:
Aside from Easyjet and Ryainair, there’s a whole bunch of other LCCs in Europe. Find them here: http://www.etn.nl/lcosteur.htmTrains
Study your routes. Then find out which train operators travel from point A to B. Book using the ACTUAL website of the train operator.
Seat 61 – quite a long read about train travel in Europe read but very helpful.
Italian trains: Trenitalia
German trains: Dbbahn
My bookmarks for my Europe adventure:
Airbnb – homestay accomodations
Hostelbookers - Hostels. Requires a 10% downpayment. Good to filter the hostels available in each city. But compare the price offered in the website vs. the actual website of the hostel before booking.
Booking.com – Hotels and some hostels. No upfront fees needed.
For itinerary planning:
This map is very important for your planning:
The WhyGo series was very helpful in crafting my itinerary:
For itinerary comparison/Group tour options:
Since I was doing this alone, I needed some inspirational reading materials.
Thoughts on Europe and Backpacking: http://www.artoftravel.com/01people.htm
Solo Travel for women: http://www.women-on-the-road.com/solo-travel.html
Other helpful sites:
Knowing the time of the sunrise and sunset of each city/country will help you maximize your time spent in each place.
Everything your need to know about backpacking across Europe: http://www.backpackeurope.com