Extra day in Prague, Berlin or Krakow?

Apr 9th, 2014, 10:38 AM
  #1  
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Extra day in Prague, Berlin or Krakow?

So after playing with 2 different trip itineraries (they varied greatly) and wonderful responses from fellow Fodorites, I have put those on ice for the near future. This fall's trip will be landing in Prague and flying out of Krakow. Changes can't be made, flight booked already.

I'm looking at:

day 1: land in Prague @ 9:35 am, get to hotel by 11 am
day 2: Prague
day 3: Prague
day 4: Prague
day 5: Prague or Berlin ?
day 6: Berlin
day 7: Berlin
day 8: Berlin
day 9: Berlin
day 10: Krakow
day 11: Krakow
day 12: Krakow
day 13: Krakow
day 14: Krakow
day 15: fly back to Canada

I am looking at taking the train from Prague to Berlin (4h36 direct, seems very reasonable) and then flying from Berlin to Krakow (flight under $200, we are ok with that, vs the night train which doesn't appeal).

If it were you, would you spend an extra day in Prague or in Berlin? Not sure about day trips, usually find enough to do in a major city without daytripping. In Krakow, which I do want to allocate 5 days for sure, we'll be going to the salt mines and Auschwitz. Will research if we'll be doing this in the same day, or 2 separate days.

We are late 30s, early 40s, fit and like the city scene, shopping, cafes and good food, some museums but not too many (1-2 per city OK). We usually try to go to a show or play (saw Sister Act in Vienna without understanding German and it was awesome!).

Any help will be greatly appreciated, as I try to put the finishing touches on the trip. Thanks!
Ruby99 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 10:42 AM
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I'd add it to Prague and do a day trip to Cesky Krumlov (although a night there is better).
joannyc is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 11:06 AM
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some museums but not too many? A stopover in Dresden for just that perhaps?
Dukey1 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 11:46 AM
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<< In Krakow, which I do want to allocate 5 days for sure, we'll be going to the salt mines and Auschwitz. Will research if we'll be doing this in the same day, or 2 separate days. >>

Do these activities on different days as they each take a lot of time. The salt mine was 5 hours from Krakow and return. It would be too tiring to do both and you might be overwhelmed after Auschwitz and need some down time for the remainder of the day.

Can you increase the number of museums for Krakow as 1-2 is not enough. The Salt Mine and Auschwitz fills your quota. Don't miss the wonderful Krakow Under the Occupation Museum or the Synagogue Museum (very small). There's also Wawel which you might want to visit. Underground Rynek is another interesting museum which you don't see everywhere - it's the excavations under the Cloth Hall. If you can bear one more museum - the old University (by guided tour only). Yikes! I know it's 7 museums but they all are outstanding. And I haven't even mentioned the other, lesser museums in Krakow.

Sorry I can't answer your Berlin/Prague question but I'm planning my first visit to Berlin this fall.
adrienne is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 12:06 PM
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How are you going between Berlin and Krakow? fly or overnight train - I would perhaps land in Berlin, go via Dresden - a fantastic city for that extra day - and then Prague, which is closer to Krakow I think than Berlin. There is an overnight train Prague to Krakow.

for lots on trains in those countries check out these IMO fine sites - www.seat61.com; www.ricksteves.com and www.budgeteuropetravel.com.

Berlin offers so so much more to see and do then the others and is so so much bigger - Potsdam and Sans Soucci Palace and park is just a short S-Bahn ride away.
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 12:23 PM
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Thanks for the replies!

joannyc, I have heard wonderful things about Cesky Krumlov and will investigate further (time travel via train, etc). I'm trying to avoid too much moving around, but then again, the last trip (4 countries in 15 days) I just left my suitcase on the floor and picked my outfits from it without unpacking...

Dukey1, Dresden is also another one I'd love to stop at... it would fit perfectly between Prague and Berlin...

adrienne, I can do more than 1-2 museums... it's the art ones that turn me off somewhat after a while. My idea of a fun museum is the Abba museum in Stockholm, I loved it there... thank you for the great suggestions about things to do in Krakow! I can't wait to get there!

PalenQ, we are going to be flying from Berlin to Krakow. (Land in Prague, train to Berlin, then fly out via airBerlin. Yes, the overnight train would be cheaper, but for the amount of time we have, I prefer flying... there is a 9 am flight so really, other than waking up early to make the flight, we aren't losing any time that day since most days I don't get fully going until 10-11 am.
Ruby99 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 12:33 PM
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<< it's the art ones that turn me off somewhat after a while >>

I have not mentioned even one art museum in Krakow. For art, I would look at the Art Nouveau stained glass windows in the Franciscan church and the unusual Stations of the Cross with people in modern dress. Try to get into St. Anne's church at the university. I've tried twice to get inside but could only peer through the glass in the door. It's pastel Baroque and the bits I saw were beautiful.

You'll probably want to avoid the 19th century Polish art museum on the top of the Cloth Hall.
adrienne is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 01:02 PM
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I vote yes.

Oh, your question was which one city you should spend an extra day in?

Depends on if you're going to visit Terezin. If not, then maybe Krakow.

You should go to Nowa Huta in Krakow. DO NOT MISS the Arka Pana.

http://www.crazyguides.com/krakow_to..._district.html
BigRuss is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 05:38 PM
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I wouldn't do both Auschwitz and Terezin.

There are buses and trains that go to C. Krumlov from Prague. Check out the Student Agency bus. I took a different bus but have read about this one, too. Check all buses and rain schedules to see who has the best times.

If you do go, don't miss the tour of the baroque theater! One of the few remaining in the world.

I never unpack either and I'm usually gone for up to 25 days. Just the toiletries come out.
joannyc is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 05:39 PM
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rain = train
joannyc is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 06:14 PM
  #11  
kja
 
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I don't think you would go wrong either way, but given your stated interests, Berlin might make more sense.
kja is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 06:31 PM
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I would definitely move a day from Krakow to Prague - partly because you are landing there - so the first day is mostly lost - and partly because there is more to see/do.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 07:25 PM
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Which city for extra time? Hard to say since each is worthwhile. Just take time to enjoy Prague, e.g. incl. Castle area and Mala Strana and on other side Wenceslas Square and day concerts and Maisel Synagogue and a nice little Mucha museum. I would say some day trips out of Prague could include village Vysoka u Primari about 39 mi. away where Dvorak lived. Or out to folksy Nosalov village. Or just stroll across the Charles Bridge and in the old city.

Same for Krakow...so much to see there. Old Town has the Cloth Hall and St. Marys. How about beet soup, veal steak, apple pie, wine. Kazimierz is the old Jewish section and now not far away Schindler factory is now location of a museum. Maybe salt mines, certainly Auschwitz. Oh yes, you'd surely like a day trip to the Tatra Mnts. and Zakopane.

As for Berlin of course the famous Brandenburg Gate and nearby Jewish memorial and the great museums and more...it is a big city. Certainly Dresden worthwhile...I loved it. Looks like you will have ample time in the three cities mentioned.
Ozarksbill is offline  
Apr 9th, 2014, 08:50 PM
  #14  
kja
 
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nytraveler raises a good point -- and one that is well worth considering -- about your first day.

I must admit, however, that I disagree with her (and that's not a very common occurrence!) that there is more to see/do in Prague than Krakow -- I think there's more than enough in both cities (and in Berlin) to fill your time and leave you wondering what to skip, especially given that you plan to visit Auschwitz/Birkenau and the salt mines from Krakow. And Krakow is probably the hardest of these 3 cities to reach, so it makes sense to be sure to see everything you want to see there on this trip. You can return to Prague or Berlin much more easily.

While in Krakow, don't miss the Lady with an Ermine. She is very special, even if you aren't overly fond of art museums.

Hope that helps!
kja is offline  
Apr 10th, 2014, 04:43 AM
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You should go to Nowa Huta in Krakow. DO NOT MISS the Arka Pana>

Nowa Huta is interesting and reflective of former communist town planning the saying goes in Krakow 'that Rome wasn't built in a day but Nowa Hutna was!"
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 10th, 2014, 06:38 AM
  #16  
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Thanks for the wonderful suggestions again!

I find I'm not too jet lagged on day 1... last year in Copenhagen we took advantage of the last night Tivoli Gardens were open... stayed out until midnight watching the fireworks, all under light showers... but then I think the late night catches up with on day 2-3.

Really the only thing that needs to be booked soon is the flight from Berlin to Krakow, the rest is still flexible...
Ruby99 is offline  
Apr 10th, 2014, 05:01 PM
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Booked the flight tonight, it was $175 Canadian (around $160 USD). The last 5 days will be in Krakow, but after I land in Prague it is quite flexible... land Oct 5, fly out of Berlin on Oct 14...
Ruby99 is offline  
Apr 10th, 2014, 05:21 PM
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Great! I'm sure you'll have a wonderful trip
adrienne is offline  
Apr 10th, 2014, 07:59 PM
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Sounds good. I was in Prague and Krakow (first time) last summer for 5+ days each--highly enjoyable. I am considering Berlin for this summer, so I'm looking forward to your impressions.

Have fun!
Leely2 is offline  
Apr 11th, 2014, 05:30 AM
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I found Krakow to be nice but small - personally I could not spend five full days in the city without getting bored - that is just my opinion - Berlin I could stay in and have for weeks and always had things I wanted to see and do. I'd cut a day off Krakow and put it in Berlin or stopping for a night or two in Dresden, a city every bit as fascinating as Krakow, which again I did love but we all have different likes - but that was my take.
PalenQ is offline  

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