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Nature and History Lovin', on a Budget, Been to the "Biggies": Poland/Lithuania or Finland/Estonia?

Nature and History Lovin', on a Budget, Been to the "Biggies": Poland/Lithuania or Finland/Estonia?

Old Jan 1st, 2006, 06:29 PM
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Amy
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Nature and History Lovin', on a Budget, Been to the "Biggies": Poland/Lithuania or Finland/Estonia?

Or maybe something else entirely...

Anyway, I'm beginning to plan my 16 day or so trip for July of 2006; I'll be travelling solo and don't mind guesthouse type accommodations; I'm not a shopper or party person, but I like a mix of cities and countryside with some history tossed in.

Icelandair ususally has decent airfare to Helsinki; I'd probably want to go to Turku and to Lapland as well. I assume that I'd be able to get a decent fare to Warsaw from the east coast, also; it's a bit early to be looking at airfare now, I realize.

This year I'd like to keep the whole tab under $2,000 (cheep cheep!!) which I know won't be particularly easy anywhere in Europe. Self catering/picnicking for most meals isn't a problem for me.

I'll be happy to hear any thoughts or advice on these places or any other recommendations. I've been to most of Western Europe, to Russia twice, to countries in South America and Asia, and haven't yet met a place I didn't like. (Part of the reason I stay broke, eh? Too much travel...)

Thanks in advance!
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 09:49 AM
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Hi Amy,

Poland is a great place for history and wonderful natural beauty. We spent some time in the southeastern corner in the Bieszczady national park region - great hiking, interesting towns of Jaroslaw, Przemysl, Sanok, Sandomierz, Zamosc. Still a very inexpensive area to visit. Most hotels are under $35 US/night, great food for under $20/day.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 06:26 PM
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Thanks, SusanEva! The Poland/Lithuania combination is sounding better and better--I just wish that I had more than 16 days to play with. Where did you stay in or near Bieszczady? (My Poland travel book is coming, but it's not here yet...)
Anyone else with input/advice? I'm assuming that the best way to fly would be to get as cheap a flight as I can to a major hub and then one of the "locals" out from there...Flying into Warsaw or Krakow and out of Vilnius would be excellent, but I guess I'll have to wait a bit closer to the time for better prices on air.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 02:32 AM
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Amy: Poland is a great country to satisfy your interest in nature and history. We have also done a goodly part of Europe and Poland has become one of our favorites. More castles, medieval villages, beautiful countryside, skansons, national parks, etc., than any other country in Europe I do believe. And, great cities (Warsaw, Krakow, Gadansk) to boot. We were very pleasantly suprised and even amazed by the diversity of things to see and do.
SusanEva: Did you do a trip report on your visit? We are considering the Southeast of Poland for another trip and would be interested in your observations. For example, do the towns of Lublin, Zamosc, Sandomierz, Jaroslaw, Przemysl, Sanok, etc, justify a full day at each, a half day, more than a full day? We will have as much time as we want, but we don't want to plan more time at each than makes sense. Thanks for any information you might have.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 04:59 AM
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In Lithuania besides visiting Kaunas and Vilnius, try to include a visit to the restored castle of Trakai outside of Vilnius, the outdoor ethnographic museum Rumsiskes on the way to Kaunas and the remarkable Hill of Crosses not far from Sauliai.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 05:02 AM
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Amy, I don't know this from personal experience, but having the same interests as you do, I have done some research, and I'd definitely put Poland and Lithuania above Finland and Esthonia; but the other option you should look at is Hungary.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 07:01 AM
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Dear Amy and Joegri,

At work now, but this evening will dig up my info on this area and post more details. Have family near Jaroslaw, so have visited three times.

Best, SusanEva
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 07:05 AM
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Check Ryanair flights in and out of Polish cities...
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 01:09 PM
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Thanks so much, everyone; I'm getting really into the Poland/Lithuania idea and wishing that I had a month or so instead of just 16 days!

The guesthouse Doma Maria in Vilnius looked interesting (from inyourpocket guide) Anyone have first hand info on it or other lodging recommendations?

Oh, and now I have to add Hungary to my ever growing list! Too many places, not enough time...But I'm thankful for what I can do.
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