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Itinerary: 3 wks: Budapest, Praguem, Normandy, Holland, Paris

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Jan 19th, 2013, 08:05 PM
  #1
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Itinerary: 3 wks: Budapest, Praguem, Normandy, Holland, Paris

I posted a few weeks ago about traveling alone in Budapest/Prague. Now the plane tickets have been purchased and I'm filling in the other major details of hotels, trains and cars. Only one hotel has been booked and I'd welcome any feedback folks may have on my hotel selections.

Trip dates: June 27 - July 15

Arrive first in Budapest around 10am.
hotel: Marco Polo Hostel www.marcopolohostel.com (likely staying in the dorm)
duration: 2 nights, 3 nearly full days: leaving on the night train at 8pm on the third day.
night train to Prague

Arrive in Prague at 4am (Hlavni nadrazi station)
hotel: Little Quarter Hostel www.littlequarter.com (single bed in 4-person dorm)
duration: 4 nights, which is really 3 full days, leaving on a 7am flight on the 4th day

Arrive Paris 9am and meet up with family to drive to Normandy. The next 4 days are filled with wedding activities (my cousin is getting married). Other than possibly finding some free time for a trip to the WWII cemetery, all details are already planned.

After the wedding, my parents and I will be driving back to Paris and catching the train to Amsterdam. From there we rent a car and drive to Friesland, where I lived as an exchange student 14 years ago. The next few days are also planned out. My parents head back to Paris to return home while I turn in the car and spend a few more days in Holland visiting friends. I may need a bed in Amsterdam for one night. I planned on finding a bed at Durty Nellie's (www.durtynellys.nl) which was my favorite place back when I was 18.

I take the train back to Paris. I intended just to spend one night and fly out, but realized I'd be leaving on Bastille Day. That seemed silly so I'm now spending 3 nights (2 full days) in Paris before I head home.
hotel: Royal Phare (found via www.bookings.com or www.venere.com) - I'm admittedly not excited about this place, but was enticed by the location for a low price. Basically $100 a night for a 10 minute walk to Eiffel Tower (positioning for Bastille Day festivities?)

All feedback welcome!

~Erin
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Jan 24th, 2013, 12:35 PM
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I must be on the right track, Fodorites have nothing to add.
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Jan 24th, 2013, 01:43 PM
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Most people on this board don't stay in hostels (or Irish pubs) so you won't get comments. The link for the Royal Phare only goes to the booking sites, not to the hotel.

Budapest to Prague - I hope you booked the train that has 0 connections since it will be easier for you (departing at 20:05 from Keleti pu). The bad news about the night train is that it arrives at 4:09. Are you walking to the hostel in the dark by yourself? I would not do that. Book a car service.

The trains that leave an hour later take 14 hours rather than 8 hours so arrive later in the day.
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Jan 24th, 2013, 01:51 PM
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Well done for taking your parents up to Friesland! Whereabouts are you going?
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Jan 25th, 2013, 09:40 AM
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adrienee - That makes sense (not having comments on hostels). I ended up booking a different hotel (actual hotel) in Budapest, since I wasn't super keen on sharing a bathroom with 10 people.

I haven't actually booked space on the night train yet. Seems like there was a night bus service in Prague to get me closer to the hostel, but maybe not. Thanks for the tip on the later train, I'll look into that.

hetismij2 - We'll drive up to Friesland via the Ijselmeer Bridge and probably stop to see a few things along the way. I lived in Franeker for a year with a host family, so we'll be staying there to visit and show my parents around the town. Unfortunately, we don't have a lot of time to spend, but we'll probably stop and have lunch in Harlingen on our way back to Amsterdam.

Thanks!!

Erin
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Jan 25th, 2013, 10:25 AM
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There is the Orangeways bus that leaves at 23:30 and arrives at 6:45. I would think the train would be more comfortable since you can book a sleeping compartment or couchette. Sitting up on a bus all night is like sitting up on a plane all night but with no room to move around.

http://www.orangeways.com/en

I checked the full train schedule. You CANNOT take the long night train as it stops for a transfer for 5 hours in the middle of the night. You cannot sit in a cold, lonely train station all night.

Another potential problem - can you check into your hostel/hotel at 4:30am? If not, where would you go.

Just thought of another option - take the 7:25 train that arrives at 14:21 - only 3 hours after the long night train arrives. This is my choice. You don't have to worry about arriving in the dark in a potentially lonely train station.

Before making plans you must thoroughly check things. Go to bahn.de for train schedules. All the information you need (except pricing) is on this site.
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