I’ve been on vacations that were planned to the minute (a cruise and a bus tour of Great Britain) and ones a bit more free-form (Paris with a friend’s family). I vastly preferred the trip with my friend’s family.
Perhaps it was because they had been to Paris before, but they weren’t dead-set on seeing as much as possible in five days’ time. We had broad plans, such as seeing Notre Dame and the Louvre, but we weren’t frantic about it. It probably helped things that none of them are compulsive shoppers and so we didn’t end up hitting every gift shop in the city, as would have happened if I had been with my mom.
The bus tour was the antithesis of this. While it was convenient not to worry about transportation and accomodations each day and night, it was a pain in the ass not to be able to linger anywhere that caught our fancy. The first day, we left London late. Our time at Stonehenge was cut in half, because there was itenerary to follow and we had to get our full time at Hampton Court Palace. Not to knock Anne Boleyn’s garden, but I would have appreciated a chance to get closer to Stonehenge.