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Budapest-Prague-Vienna: Your top choices?

Budapest-Prague-Vienna: Your top choices?

Oct 2nd, 2005, 06:51 PM
  #1  
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Budapest-Prague-Vienna: Your top choices?

This will be our first trip to central Europe (8 nights, Budapest-Vienna-Prague) and we're (as usual) relying on the suggestions of Fodorites. Since most posts here are for Prague, I would appreciate suggestions for Budapest and Vienna. We've booked hotels and city tours, plus Terazin and Karlstein Castle, and Jazzboat in Prague, and will be taking the train between cities. We're interested in maybe taking a bus or bike into the countryside near Budapest . . . I've read restaurant reviews for Prague but would like to have other ideas for Vienna and Budapest -- low-key, not too pricey, just neighborhood places. Thanks!

Pittsburgher is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 12:17 PM
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4th attempt at posting. If all for come up, it is because Fodor's like to swallow replies and then regurgitate them at random.

Here is what some Viennese friends sent me when I asked for a reminder of where we ate:

the name of the heurige was "zum weihrauch" - here their homepage http://www.zumweihrauch.at/essen.html
and the name of the bar with there selfbrewed beer is fischerbräu -
here their homepage http://www.fischerbraeu.at/

To that I would add Kent, a Turkish restaurant with a pleasant outdoor eating area.

You might want to look at my Austria-Vienna trip report:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...2&tid=34600618

and also the end of my Hungary & Romania trip report:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...2&tid=34659808

Michael is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 01:15 PM
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Budapest is a very beautiful city at night, all lit up. I suggest you try to take in a city view at dusk from Buda side, either from Fisherman's Bastion (good view of the Parliament) or further south in front of the Royal Palace, where you get a great view of the Chain Bridge (lit up at night) with Parliament behind it. I got some good dusk photos there last month - trying to get them on my website...

Andrew
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Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:06 PM
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Thanks to both of you. Any other suggestions?
Pittsburgher is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:30 PM
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I may not be able to give you the kind of feedback you want because I did my trip mostly solo and didn't really do many sit-down restaurants. Slow table service is much more frustrating when you are by yourself!

I used Rick Steves's Best of Eastern Europe book as my primary guide and it was pretty good (actually I used 2004 which was fine except all the prices had gone up!). I also bought maps ahead of time of Budapest and Prague and they were helpful, though you can get tour maps of your own when you arrive. I bought the day travel cards in all three cities (or whatever the best deal was for the period I was going to be there) instead of messing with individual tickets. Prague is small but it's still nice to use Metro and the trams, because you get tired. Budapest is big so public transit is more essential.

In Budapest I also went for a soak at Szechenzyi Baths near Hero's Square (in the park behind it) - a place where mostly locals go, but it is really part of the Budapest experience and I'm glad I went. The House of Terror was pretty cool but many of the videos (of talking head interviews) are in Hungarian so not of much use unless you speak Hungarian.

In Prague I took only one walking tour - the Revolution Tour from Praguer.com - and found it slightly disappointing. A friend did the Pub Crawl Tour and found it very good. I considered taking the Hammer and Sickle tour in Budapest (which included a visit to Statue Park) but the whole thing was four hours and seemed way too long so I passed on it.

Andrew
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Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:35 PM
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Just got back from all 3 of these cities last Thursday. Your biggest problem is that you have too many cities in too short of a time. We enjoyed Prague a great deal and had too little time in Budapest. The earlier suggestions here are good. We stayed at the Taverna Hotel ---great location but just an OK hotel. Do try to get a meal in at Fatal on Vaci Utca---it has great food (I've never seen a schnitzel as big as a pizza before!). The chicken kabobs and the steak/onion plate were also wonderful. This place is probably intended to be a tourist destination but our Hungarian friends in Michigan gave it great reviews. Just a warning, they don't do plastic!

In Vienna we had an out-of-this-world meal at Drei Husaren (Weihburggasse 4, A-1010 Vienna Tel: +43 1 512 10920) Fantastic service and some of the best food we ate in Europe. This may be more than you want to spend for the meal, but definitely worth it!!!
RandyK is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 04:18 PM
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Seeing Budapest at night is really a beautiful site - and Andrew's suggetions of where to get great pictures is perfect. Walking along the Embankment(Pest side), you'll encounter plenty of places to eat. Near Heroes Square, and around the corner from (and the sister restaurant to Gundel), is Baglovar (Owls Castle). A-1 food, service and setting! On the Buda side, we ventured to Nancsi Neni (Aunt Nancy's) for a wonderful meal. Unless you have a car, taking a cab there will be your best (and quickest) option.

If you have any interest in history, then both Statue Park and The Terror Museum are well worth seeing. You can rent an audio headset at the Terror Museum that will guide you through the museum in English. The museum is quite moving-I would allow about 2-3 hours for this visit.

Eight nights between 3 cities, not counting transit time between each will give you a very quick feel for each city-but hardly time to really venture out and explore. That's when you return and really explore a destination, right!

Oh, and wear comfortable shoes - you're going to need them! ENJOY!!
Debs is offline  

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