If your stationed in Europe, and especially at Spangdahlem your going to want this book! You can get it at the BX (I know at Spangdahlem & Ramstein for sure, not sure about the other bases here) but if you attend the Newcomers Briefing here on Spang and go to the spouses’ pull out session after lunch, you can get one for free 🙂 I have also heard you can get a copy at the AFRC if you missed it in the Newcomers Brief. If not head over to the BX and grab a copy, it will be $10 well spent!
Why do you need this book? Because it has TONS, and I mean TONS of information. Although it was last updated in 2011-2012, and I was told the group is not here to update it anymore, it will still provide you with some much needed info. We have 2 of them one for each car, but really it means 1 stays in the ‘Yeti’ and one in the house for now, and if we take the car I take it with us.
This is the Table of Contents and you can see it covers all kinds of information that you need to know. From getting started here, German phrases, to planning day trips to explore, plus MUCH more. This is packed full of great stuff that you might not even know you ‘should’ know. Like on pages 30-31 you can find the addresses how to get to the bases around here, had I known that and looked it would’ve saved us SEVERAL times of getting lost on the way to basketball games 😉 I will be using it from now on for sure!
This book covers so much of Europe that it’s valuable to anyone stationed here, because the countries are so close many of us plan on visiting and do visit the surrounding countries as well. You can see from the picture above (right side) all the countries that it covers.
My favorite part is the list of Day Trips and Tours that are within a reasonable distance (i.e. less than 3 hours) from Spangdahlem. There are 55 day trips listed and it’s my goal to visit almost all of these over the next 3 years while we are here! I also plan on blogging about them as well, for those of you who want to visit them vicariously 🙂
These are some of the day trips listed, it gives an approximate distance from Spang, a short blurb about them and where to locate them in the book, where additional information can be found. I will say that I am a research snob and while I use this book to help plan our day trips and extras to see on other trips, I also use additional books and the internet as well. Mainly Rick Steves, because I LOVE his info and I’ve bought a few DK Eyewitness books a friend showed me. I also use the internet, yes I know I have issues 😉 If you love Rick Steves as much as me then you may be as excited as I was to find that he has a FREE Audio tour app, wahoo! It’s mainly for the bigger cities but it can’t hurt to have too much info right 😉
Also I’ve found that the book does not contain ALL the places that we want/need to go, for instance I was surprised that there was NO info for Ansbach and there are bases located in that area. We had to go there for basketball so I was stuck with doing research online but it would’ve been helpful to at least have had the base info readily available.
Also while the book may not be updated anytime soon, or ever, there are generally websites, emails, and phone numbers listed with the info you can always check and verify if the information is still correct such as hours, costs, ect.
As you can see from the picture above when we visit one of the places on the list I highlight it and write down any relevant info I want to remember at a quick glance.
The first one we got to cross off was our Vianden trip to see the castle, I’ll be posting about Heidelberg soon as we recently crossed that one off. 2 down 53 more to go!
If your in Europe don’t miss out on snagging a copy of this book! It will provide you with valuable information that you can quickly access and maybe even prevent you (or us!) from getting lost finding other bases in the area. It’s also a great way to get ideas and locations to start your bucket list. Get out there and explore!