Prague, Salzburg and Vienna

Feb 5th, 2011, 08:26 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 12
Prague, Salzburg and Vienna


We have asked questions on this forum concerning the last half of our European summer vacation, where we will be spending 10 days in Sicily and we are so thankful for the responses we have received so far. We are a family of four (my husband and I and our two boys, ages 13 and 11, who have travelled with us since they have been very young).

As we do on most of our vacation planning, we work backwards, and we are now planning the first 10 days of our vacation.

We are travelling to Prague in mid-July, arriving just before noon. We had initially wanted to spend 5 nights (4 full days) in Prague, then take a train to Vienna, where we would spend 5 nights (4 full days) before taking our flight to Catania, Sicily.

However, we are now considering spending 4 nights in Prague, renting a car, driving to Salzburg (about a 3 hour drive) where we would spend 2 nights, and then drive to Vienna (about a 3 hour drive) where we would spend 4 nights. The cost of renting a car for the 4 days is just slightly more than taking a train from Prague to Vienna alone ($600 for the car versus $400 for the train).

We would really welcome any thoughts on our plans, as well as any recommendations you can offer. We hope this is alright, but we have tagged this post to both the Czech Republic and Austria.


Andreaandfamily is offline  
Feb 5th, 2011, 12:38 PM
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You can take the train (6.5 hours) or shuttle from Prague to Salzburg and then train Salzburg to Vienna. A car isn't much help in Prague of Vienna. If you don't plan on taking day trips from Salzburg it won't be much use there either.

Picking the car up in one country and dropping it in another often adds a very large cost that sometimes isn't listed on the website when you book it. Don't forget gasoline costs when the car rental.

Salzburg to Vienna by train for the 4 of you looks to be 130 euro, this is from the Austrian rail site. Not sure the cost of Prague to Salzburg but I found a private transfer website that lists it at 250 euro for 4 people.
lindy27 is offline  
Feb 5th, 2011, 02:27 PM
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Thanks Lindy,

I believe the $600 includes the drop-off charge and that is why we think it is a better idea than taking the train, as the difference in price, excluding the gas, would be small and give us the opportunity to stop along the way.

We have decided to stay 3.5 days in Prague, 2 days in Salzburg and 3 full days in Vienna.

What do you think of this allocation?

Andreaandfamily is offline  
Feb 6th, 2011, 02:17 PM
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I've been to Prague twice, each time for about 5 days, and I didn't run out of things to do. You may feel pressed for time, but your allocation seems reasonable if you want to see all three places. I'd build in some contingency time for getting lost or stuck in city traffic.
elaine is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 07:14 AM
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I would add a day to Salzburg as the surrounding area would be beautiful to visit, especially with kids. IMO, Vienna would be less interesting for them if they prefer outdoor activities to museums and cultural pursuits.

With ten nights, I would personally choose 3 in Prague, 4 in Salzburg and 3 in Vienna.

I agree with the suggestion for train travel as a car in Prague, Salzburg and Vienna would be more trouble than its worth unless you plan to stay outside the center and commute in by public transport.
kfusto is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 09:43 AM
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I would not waste time on posting here.
Note on the Czech forum by original poster -
2/7 12:21 " One night/two day stop on way to Vienna"- it seems they rent an auto for direct Prague- Vienna
molker is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 07:23 PM
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Do you not have anything better to do than to get involved in things that are none of your concern, especially if you have nothing to add?

After reading the interesting responses to our post, we are now considering not going to Salzburg as it will take too much travel time but to drive from Prague to Vienna and stop somewhere along the Prague-Vienna journey in order to have enough time in both Prague and Vienna.

I did not know changing ones mind or considering other options is frowned upon here on Fodor's Forum. If I really wanted to hide this fact, I would have simply registered with another username (I even posted the topic in "Czech Republic" as well.

I guess I should ask my question here then, if Molker will allow:

Where is a more interesting place to stop for an overnight stay along the way from Prague to Vienna, Cesky Krumlov or Bratislava?

Thanks again for all of your help. It is much appreciated.

Andreaandfamily is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 07:30 PM
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I loved Cesky Krumlov!
joannyc is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 07:46 PM
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<< Do you not have anything better to do than to get involved in things that are none of your concern >>

This is quite snotty. You posted on a public forum and anyone can voice his/her opinion.

You're the one who posted the same question twice and and indicated you were thinking of taking the train. molker is referencing your other post (of the same title) and is simply pointing out to others that you want to drive and not take the train. Not everyone has seen that you posted the same question twice and has not seen the responses on your other thread.
adrienne is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 08:45 PM
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Peace, folks.

molker is a wonderful resource here on Fodors.

As for your several questions, here's my input:

a) Cesky Krumlov, definitely. Bratislava is interesting too, but if it's a choice between the two, then definitely CK.

b) Why are you giving Salzburg? The distances aren't that great, you really don't have to give up Salzburg.

c) You should pick up and drop off your car in one country for the best rates. can you arrange for one person to pick up the car in Vienna and drive it to meet the family somewhere?

d) Train travel is the best way to get around. Have you looked into all the specials like the Sparscheine or the Vorteilcard?

e) If you must have a car, then I'd suggest driving east from Prague one day to Kutna Hora.

Then, after touring Prague (you will not need a car in Prague), head south and stop off in any number of wonderful castles in the Czech Republic, on your way to Cesky Krumlov.

One of the best uses of a car in this area is to "Czech" out the Czech castles:

There are a ton of beautiful castles along the way. You could easily visit 3 or 4 between Prague and CK. Just google "Czech castles" and there will be any number of websites that will come up - many of them with pictures.

Have a good trip!
easytraveler is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 10:15 PM
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As a day trip outside of Vienna, you may consider the Melk Valley which is beautifully situated on the Danube if your kids aren't up for the museum and coffee houses in Vienna. For more outdoor activities to cater to your kids, you may consider renting a bike and ride from vineyards to vineyards in Wachau, followed by a meal in a traditional heuriger (I'm sure they have other beverages for the children aside from wine!)

See the below article from NY times on wine, heuriger and bike riding in Wachau

PS: I would not recommend driving into Salzburg. When I was there in 2007, you have park your car in a lot that is not within walking distance to Salzburg historic town center. You have to catch a bus but there were not alot of signs around. Luckily I was meeting with my austrian friend there who knew about this parking/bus situation. I strongly recommend using the efficient Austrian train systems for your travels.
Piccolina is offline  
Feb 8th, 2011, 12:40 AM
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Thank you Adienne and easy traveler

Andrea- Facts are facts- you post elsewhere that you rent an auto and drive directly from Prague to Vienna with an overnight stop-

certainly it is not wrong to warn people here that take their valuable time to offer you information of this fact.
Certainly not in the spirit of the forums to say one thing on one thread and something different on another.
My opinion and I can make this as I wish.

Piccolina- just for information

Salzburg has a very large underground parking garage directly by the Old Town - no need to take the bus from a remote lot.

this the Altstadt Garage - 1000 + parking places - easy to reach via good signage-
molker is offline  
Feb 8th, 2011, 03:26 AM
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You're welcome, molker!

I appreciate the information about the Salzburg parking garage. My brother and his family will be traveling to Austria in the spring and I believe he will be renting a car and driving from Vienna to Salzburg. I have advised him to take the train for this route since it will be easier but if he is driving I can pass along the Salzburg parking information. Much appreciated!!
adrienne is offline  

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