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Central, Eastern Europe Itinerary

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Jul 27th, 2013, 06:44 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1
Central, Eastern Europe Itinerary

HI, I intend to backpack to the below cities for about 3-4 weeks in Sept/October.
I'm wondering if the itinerary below is workable (is the route and number of days ok?), whether are the overnight trains available daily for those i indicated overnight in train and whether there is any rail pass that I can use.

This is my first trip to Europe

Berlin (2 nights)
(train- 2 to 3 hrs)
Dresden (1 night)
(train 2hr 20 mins)
Prague (3 nights)
(bus 3 hrs)
Cesky krumlov (1 night)
(bus 3 hrs)
Vienna (3 nights)
(train 6 hrs)
Ljubljana (1 night)
(bus 1hr 20 mins)
Bled (1 night )
(bus 1hr 20 mins)
Ljubljana (1 night in train)
(overnite in train- 11-14hrs)
Budapest (3 nights)
(train 2 hrs)
Eger (1 night)
(train 2 hrs)
Budapest
(bus 6 hrs)
Krakow (2 nights)
(overnite in train 12-13 hrs)
Berlin (2 nights)

Thanks for the advice!
EuniceFoo is offline  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 06:51 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 14,852
Certainly an interesting trip for a first timer to Europe. There is a fair bit of traveling in this but I guess you know. My thoughts are

1) post it on thorntree as well to see what they think
2) Eger and Bled is a one nighter each so about right.
3) Cesky Krumlov not so sure what you want to do there, it is a spa town and that's all, lets see what others say
4) Not sure what the pollution is like in Krakow (some years since I went) if that is a problem to you (high sensitivity) you might want to re-think

keep the back light
bilboburgler is online now  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 06:51 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 14,852
sorry "pack" light
bilboburgler is online now  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 07:24 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,190
I had trouble understanding your itinerary so I put it in another format to make it easier for me.

Some quick thoughts:

Bled is so close to Ljubljana that you should not move hotel but take a day trip to Bled.

Same with Eger.

Think about it this way - if you were going to some place that was 1.5 or 2 hours from your home would you get a hotel room for the night? It's easier on you to stay put for another night and uses less time.

After deducting travel time, you only have half a day in Dresden and Cesky Krumlov. You need a bit more time in Budapest, Prague, Vienna, and Krakow.

You mention the bus/train times but are not allowing time to get to and from the bus/train stations plus time to pack/unpack, check out and check in from hotels. Plus waiting time at the bus/train stations as you can't just show up at the time the bus/train leaves. Need to allow for delays getting there and arrive about 10 minutes before your departure time to find train track, perhaps pickup a sandwich at the station, etc.

I'm guessing Berlin is your arrival city. Don't split the Berlin time; save Berlin for the end of the trip since you're departing from there. Arrive Berlin and go immediately to Dresden. If you have an overnight flight you'll be tired the first day so you might as well relax and nap on the train and pack and unpack one less time.

It doesn't look like there is any real night train from Ljubljana to Budapest; they all have changes. There is a train at 23:54 with one change in Salzburg but it's at 4AM. Not good.

Pretty much the same with Krakow to Berlin although the transfer is a 6AM but it's only a 6 minute transfer. I would not depend on Polish trains to be on time. You need to check frequency of the next train to Berlin so in case your train is late getting to Kutno you can get another train without waiting hours.

Use this site to check scheduling for European trains:
http://www.bahn.de/i/view/USA/en/index.shtml

And this site for lots of good information on train travel.
http://seat61.com/

Here's the way I laid out your schedule:

Day 1 – Berlin
Day 2 – Berlin
Day 3 – Travel to Dresden (half a day)
Day 4 – Travel to Prague (half a day)
Day 5 – Prague
Day 6 – Prague
Day 7 – Travel to Cesky Krumlov (half a day)
Day 8 – Travel to Vienna
Day 9 – Vienna
Day 10 – Vienna
Day 11 – Travel to Ljubljana
Day 12 – Travel to Bled
Day 13 – Travel to Ljubljana
Day 14 – Travel to Budapest
Day 15 – Budapest
Day 16 – Budapest
Day 17 – Travel to Eger
Day 18 – Travel to Budapest
Day 19 – Travel to Krakow
Day 20 – Krakow
Day 21 – Travel to Berlin
Day 22 – Berlin
adrienne is offline  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 07:47 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 327
We just went to Ljubljana from Budapest and did this thru Zagreb (the alternative is back to Vienna). I loved Zagreb (not that you need another city.)

You are backpacking... What do you like to do? I am wondering if you should leave off a city.... But not obvious which one!

Also, you should go on from Eiger to krakow... No need for the backtrack to Budapest.

I agree to aggregate the Berlin days at the end.
centraleurope is offline  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 09:38 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 66,678
So many trains in eastern and central Europe you may want to investigate the European East Railpass, valid for hopping on any train any time in Poland, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia and hungary - check these IMO fantastic sites for lots of great info on trains in those countries - www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com - check all gthree sites commercial links to RailEurope for current pricing on the Eastern European Railpass.
PalenQ is offline  
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Jul 27th, 2013, 12:09 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 66,678
You could do some overnight trains like the long-haul bus ride between Budapest and Krakow - take the overnight train and save money on a night's accommodation and travel time as well - practically saving one whole day!
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