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Itinerary for Eastern Europe - south or north? (and which parts?)

WhereForArt

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  • Added on: June 15th, 2008
I just booked a trip to Vienna for April/May 2009 (around 17-18 days total, not counting travel time to/from US). I picked Vienna because I used FF miles and that city worked out the best for using the lowest amount of miles. Now I'm trying to figure out where to go. I've begun with a tentative itinerary:

Vienna, Budapest, Krakow, Prague, Munich, Slovenia, Salzburg, back to Vienna

I threw in Munich since it's close and I've never been to Germany - and have never been to any of the other cities, either. I would love to get some feedback as to the feasibility of this - I know I might have to drop a city or two and if so, am trying to figure out which would be best to drop (or add). I will have to leave from Vienna as well, so I'm trying to loop my itinerary in a sort-of circle.

Another option is to head south instead and spend the time traveling through Romania/Montenegro/Croatia, then head back up to Vienna at the end.

Any thoughts? By the way, I am a solo traveler (female) and will be traveling by train, mostly.
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Mardee

Travels in Turkey 2007
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It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to. ~J.R.R. Tolkien

my2thhurts

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  • Added on: June 15th, 2008
What are you interested in doing while you are there? Are there museums or certain types of museums that you really want to see? Are you looking more for night life? What about side trips or, my favorite, just sitting around enjoying the city?

Whether you are interested in touring WWII history, medieval history or find some good bars, all of East Europe has a lot to offer. There are castles, painted monasteries, old villages, ports, beaches and mountains.

How many cities you visit all depends on how fast you like to travel and whether or not you like to stick to a tight schedule.

If you tell us what you would like to do while you are there and you will probably get better ideas.

WhereForArt

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  • Added on: June 15th, 2008
I enjoy doing a lot - I'm sort of a Type A personality when it comes to traveling, although I do like to relax a bit on occasion. Smile I'm older - in my late 40's, and I'm not looking for night life - I'm more the type to explore historical sites (I love history), visit interesting places (like a city market or beautiful piece of scenery), and then in the evening settle down to a nice dinner and some wine, then call it a night. I will visit museums on occasion, but can easily pass them up to spend time elsewhere.

I don't necessarily like doing all the "touristy" options and also love to take the occasional side trip to some peaceful out-of-the way area. I love cities, but also love browsing rural areas. I've been to most of western Europe (except for Germany, Austria and Scandinavia), and went to Turkey last year. This will probably be my last trip to Europe for awhile as I want to start exploring more of Asia and South America.
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Mardee

Travels in Turkey 2007
Easter in Italy

It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to. ~J.R.R. Tolkien

my2thhurts

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  • Added on: June 15th, 2008
I think you can plan a great trip. I have traveled through most of the areas you are talking about. I am 45 and the people in East Europe love meeting anyone. What I have found interesting is meeting locals my age and talking to them about how they grew up and what they learned on "the other side of the curtain."

If you like countryside and history, I strongly recommend Romania's Painted Monasteries. You can take beautiful train rides across the country to these beautiful sites. You will also be close to the Black Sea and great beaches.

Bulgaria and Moldova are close by. If you are a wine drinker, you really need to try the local wines, especially in Moldova. Both countries have beautiful country and lively cities.

Depending on your route and time you might want to consider visiting Ukraine.

Keep in mind that travel by train and bus in some of these regions can slow you down a bit. But that too is pert of the adventure.

DreamerHelen

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  • Added on: June 15th, 2008
Well I can fully recommend both Krakow, Munich and Salzburg..

It does really depend on whether you're into WWII History as you'll find a lot in those places.

Salzburg is absolutely beautiful, I recommend you do a Sound of Music Tour (just to be really touristy!! LoL) and visit the Fortress, not to mention Mozart's House where he was born and a few other bits and pieces.

Krakow is gorgeous, very oldy worldy...I recommend Auschwitz (be prepared, it's not at all touristy and is very sobering), the Salt Mines and a Tour around Krakow itself. Also recommend (although not been myself) a tour up into Zakopane and the Tatra Mountains.

Munich is wonderful and rich with History. There is, of course, Dachau to visit while you're there. Not to mention the Hofbrauhaus (famous beer hall) and all the WWII history that you can bear LoL...There is a tour group called Radius Tours, they are in the main train station and well worth a look as they do some wonderful tours. Oh and there is also the Fairytale Castle, Neuschwanstein.

Hope this helps a bit!! Smile

Cristina Puscas

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  • Added on: June 16th, 2008
I'm Romanian and also traveled to Budapest. I'd recommend Budapest for its lovely architecture, great restaurants, baths...and everything else! Totally worth your time. I can go there every week and not get bored!

Romania is beautiful especially if you visit Transylvania and the Medieval towns of Sibiu, Brasov and Sighisoara.

There are low-cost airlines which fly between Vienna and Romanian cities or you can get to Budapest and then grab a flight from there. Wizz Air, Blue Air and Carpatair are just few of the options.

let me know if you need more help
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~"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." -Confucius

Craze_b0i

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  • Added on: June 18th, 2008
Never done Munich or Saltzberg. But out of the rest of your list Budapest, Krakov and Prague are all outstanding. Vienna is ok.

Budapest, Prague and Vienna are all relatively close. However to get to and from Krakov you probably need sleeper trains.
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C-and-C

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  • Added on: June 19th, 2008
My boyfriend and I travelled through Europe extensively last year. We went to the cities you listed in the following order:

Ljubljana, Slovenia (3 days)
Budapest, Hungary (7 days)
Krakow, Poland (4 days)
Prague, Czech Republic (5 days)
Vienna, Austria (3 days)
Salzburg, Austria (2 days)
Munich, Germany (4 days)

I think it might be difficult to cover all this in 18 days. I'm not going to say you CAN'T do it, but it might not be as enjoyable.

All of these are amazing places to visit, but we really enjoyed Prague (we heard a lot about it and it lived up to its expectations), Krakow (amazing square, architecture, extremely cheap) and Munich (great parks and beer houses for relaxing, especially English Gardens.)

Budapest is wonderful, but I felt it took more time to explore and get around- you may want to cut that out if you want to see the other places. I'd spend the least time in Austria- not to say that it isn't wonderful. Vienna is very grand with its buildings and museums, but you could get a feel for it in a couple of days. Salzburg is extremely touristy with The Sound of Music and Mozart tours.

Slovenia is very nice- Llubljana reminded me of a mini Amsterdam with its canals, and still feels undiscovered. We also enjoyed Lake Bled- beautiful scenery. But if your time is limited, you might want to omit for now.

Hope this helps...
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WhereForArt

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  • Added on: June 19th, 2008
Thanks, you guys! You've given me a lot to start with! I definitely don't want to cram too much in, so I might have to limit the cities. I probably will spend the least amount of time in Vienna - I would like to see it, but the main reason I picked it was because it fit my schedule best (and allowed me to use the least amount of miles). Smile
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Mardee

Travels in Turkey 2007
Easter in Italy

It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to. ~J.R.R. Tolkien



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