First of all, the entire European Union (EU) covers an area roughly 40% of the United States. Travel is less expensive, and, of course, distances are relatively short. Public transportation, especially rail service, is dramatically more available than in the US.
And, although we are not counting countries we fly over, we are including Iceland. We may only be at an airport there, in Keflavik, Iceland, near Reykjavik. We have layovers there coming and going, and the airport there wants you to come back and stay, so they have a very comfortable terminal, with promotional movies and more. So, we’re counting that as our first country on this trip.
The other “debatable” countries, certainly not to their residents, are Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican, the latter two contained within Italy’s borders. (By the way, Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican all are not members of the EU but have EU agreements, such as open borders, and more; Iceland will be the only country we will visit on this trip outside of the EU)
But most of the rest are familiar and will be visited in this order: Denmark, Sweden, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Italy, France, and Spain.
Our trip has a tight schedule, but schedules may have to give way to things beyond our control. As we write this, there are transportation issues throughout eastern and western Europe due to the ongoing refugee crisis, and today alone, this is affecting areas in many of the countries we plan to visit.
An interactive map of our trip can be found here, but you need to copy and paste to your web browser BOTH LINES BELOW (don’t just hit the linked part).
https://secure.travellerspoint.com/member_map.cfm?user=the europe trip&tripid=796695