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Prague, Vienna and Budapest

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My husband and I recently returned from a wonderful 14-day trip to Budapest, Vienna and Prague, and I thought I would share some information for anyone travelling to those cities.

Before we left on our trip, I researched hotels and guides on many sites, including Fodors, Rick Steves and Tripadvisor. It paid off!

We had Bela Lukacs in Budapest. Thanks to MZREDHEAD on Fodor's, I contacted Bela, and he was great. Not only did he pick us up at the airport at midnight (our British Airways flight left Heathrow at 9:30 p.m.)for a fraction of the taxi cost at the airport, he also picked us up at our hotel the next day for a wonderful city tour. The following day, he took us on the "Danube Bend Tour." It was lovely, and we were able to experience the countryside. Bela's easy to talk to and has a great personality. He was so flexible and fun to be with. Also, he picked us up at our hotel and drove us to Vienna in less than three hours (he also stopped before we got into Vienna so my husband could get Euros at the ATM). His E-mail is www.goumbare@freemail.hu.

We stayed at the Le Meridien Budapest in an Executive Suite. The hotel, the concierge and the service were fantastic.

In Vienna, we had accommodations at the Hotel Imperial. We were booked into a Deluxe Room. Because they had no non-smoking rooms available, they put us in a Junior Suite. Great hotel and service (room service was over-the-top)!
The best Internet access with high-speed dial-up for free.
When we arrived in Prague, it was one of the most beautiful days of our trip. It was October 24th, but they had a record day of 70 degrees! We were booked into the Hotel Savoy (wonderful hotel up by the Prague Castle, but removed from the Old Town -- if you don't want to walk too much or have to call a cab you may want to book in Old Town -- but the No. 22 tram stops right in front of the Hotel Savoy). We were picked up at the airport by Chris at www.prague-airport-shuttle.com. He was waiting for us, and gave us great information about Prague on our way to the hotel.

Now, the best thing about Prague is that we hired SARKA PELANTOVA(pronounced "Sharka" in Czech)at www.saraguide@volny.cz. She was recommended highly on Rick Steves' Graffiti Wall and on Fodor's. By the way, Sarka is recommended in Rick Steves' Eastern Europe book. Sarka was just incredible. She is around 27 years old, but holds many degrees, and she is a licensed guide. Sarka was so open and honest about the history of the Czech Republic (she's so much fun to be with and so protective of her clients). She attended school until the age of 12 under the socialist/communist government. Then in 1989 (Velvet Revolution) Czech gained independence. We had wonderful conversations about her parents experience and also her 92 year-old granny!

My husband and I had incredible insight into Prague's history both past and present with Sarka. She guided us through the Lesser Town, Old Town (Charles Bridge, St. Vitas Cathedral, astronomical clock tower, etc.) and also a day trip to Cesky Krumlov (better prices on everything you want over Prague) and Ceske Budejovice (the original Budvaiser Brewery). I could go on and on!!!! We just loved her!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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