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-   -   Three Weeks Europe Travel (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/three-weeks-europe-travel-1077893/)

Kundlatsch Nov 10th, 2015 05:29 PM

Three Weeks Europe Travel
 
Hello,

In the christmas vacation I and some friends from the university will do a trip around some countries, always by bus. I have never been in those places, so I would like some advices like places to go, things to eat, where you MUST and you MUSTN'T go. I also think that it is a interesting itinerary, so if you get interested I can show what tickets we bought and what hostels we will stay.

Manchester - Brussels -> 18/12 Morning
Brussels - Amsterdam -> 19/12 Morning
Amsterdam - Berlin -> 21/12 Night
Berlin - Warsaw -> 25/12 Night
Warsaw - Krakow -> 27/12 Morning
Krakow - Budapest -> 28/12 Night
Budapest - Vienna -> 01/01 Morning
Vienna - Prague -> 02/01 Night
Prague - Munich -> 05/01 Night
Munich - Manchester -> 08/01 Night

Sassafrass Nov 10th, 2015 06:23 PM

No comment on places to eat, etc. but wonder why it is all by bus? Trains are usually more comfortable and faster. Are they a lot more expensive?
Hope you have a lot of fun..

sparkchaser Nov 10th, 2015 11:21 PM

I think Brussels is worth more than an afternoon. Heck, I could spend an entire afternoon and evening in the Delirium Cafe.

That's a lot of traveling and a lot of cities. Just be prepared to not see everything you'd like to see.

fourfortravel Nov 11th, 2015 02:28 AM

Also, keep in mind that you are traveling in and across countries that observe the Christmas Holiday (Germany, Poland). Expect many stores and restaurants to close early on 24 December and possibly remain closed through 26 December (St. Stephans Day). Upon your arrival in Vienna on New Year's Day you will find some museums open, but no stores and few restaurants open, as well.

FuryFluffy Nov 11th, 2015 02:32 AM

Sorry, but with that itinerary and so many cities, you would hardly need our advices at all. 9 cities in more than 2 weeks, one day for Warsaw, less than 2 days for Vienna etc. If you just walk around in the historical center of those cities, eat sandwiches, say hello to one local, and don't enter any museum, that'll already make up all the time you have.

nytraveler Nov 11th, 2015 04:06 AM

Sorry - way too many places for so little time - esp if you are taking buses - which can be interminable versus trains, which are often high speed. It looks to me like you are spending a lot of nights trying to sleep on the bus.

What do you do if bad weather rolls in, roads are blocked or slowed, and doubles the length of the bus rides?

nytraveler Nov 11th, 2015 04:08 AM

Sorry - agree that you will have several days when most thing will be closed - depending on exactly where you are then - but in some of these countries christmas eve and day are family days with very little open.

sofarsogood Nov 11th, 2015 05:05 AM

is this a student bet? if so go for it. If not, don't.

thursdaysd Nov 11th, 2015 05:10 AM

That's not a vacation (and if you're starting in Manchester why aren't you calling it a holiday?) it's an endurance test. Hope you can sleep sitting up.

PalenQ Nov 11th, 2015 07:10 AM

reconsider the bus for sure - trains are much nicer and overnight trains can be used on some of your routes - investigate the Eurail Youthpasses for those under 26 if so - may be cheaper all told than the bus and infinitely more comfy and in most of those countries hop any train anytime. If a UK resident check Inter-Rail Passes for your age. Info from Rail any large U K train station info counter.

For lots of great stuff on trains and passes check www.budgeteuropetravel.com; www.ricksteves.com and www.seat61.com.

Yes how much is the total bus cost - do you know about buses or just think they are the cheapest, which they are, but run very limited schedules for inter-country travels.

Long-distance bus rides can be a pain - crowded buses with little room to stretch your limbs, etc. In the U.K. buses are great but do not extrapolate that to the Continent - check Eurolines for schedules and prices on buses.

Kundlatsch Nov 11th, 2015 10:32 AM

Thank you for the quick answers!

Well, maybe I should have told the history better. We are Brazilian students in UK, and we only have those weeks. We can't take train, is to expensive. This itinerary was the result of 2 months looking for the cheapest way to visit those countries. The idea basically is: ok, it will take us years to come back to Europe, maybe we will never come back to Poland, or Hungary, it is better to stay one week in a big city or use this time to go to three? I know that there isn't enough time to Vienna, but we can't really take it off and we also need to come back to classes. Anyway, I have already traveled almost all South America by bus and I survived. I really thought that a bus in Hungary can't be worst than in countries like Bolivia or Peru, but I will take another look at it. This is a trip from people used to travel to places without any infra-structure with just a backpack and some courage. I can sleep sitting up thursdaysd. We know that this won't be easy, and we will really get tired, especially in the end, but we are prepared to it. We will have problems with the bus, the hostels and things like that, because this always happens. And when we decided to know the world without money and without free time, we choose to face those problems, but this is the magic about those young crazy trips.

Anyway, the idea of this trip isn't necessarily doing the mainstream tourist attractions of each place and we haven't a lot of time, so I would like to receive some tips about what you would do if you have, for example, only 2 days in Vienna. I understand that you think that you should have more, but this isn't possible, so what would you do?

PalenQ Nov 11th, 2015 10:54 AM

So do you have bus schedules and fares and all - have you added them up - some of those Youth Inter-Rail Passes can be really cheap - did you compare vs them?

Would be curious to know how much you are spending on the bus - some kind of pass?

Thanks for answering for our general knowledge - not many folks here know much about Continental buses really and you may want to visit Lonely Planet's Throntree forum where there are many many more young people posting.

Vienna the main sights could be done in a full day and a half or so - much like any place except Paris, London, Rome, etc where there are so so many sights - but like you I kind of just like also just to see a certain city and not care too much about visiting every little church or castle, etc.

PalenQ Nov 12th, 2015 11:21 AM

still curious - am not contradicting OP just curious about the bus costs for my information and others.

nytraveler Nov 12th, 2015 05:19 PM

Yes - but you don't have 2 days in Vienna. You have part of 2 different days - and how many hours will depend on weather and traffic if you are taking buses.

And are you prepared for the cold temps (average of zero) in Vienna, the short, gray days and the potential for ice and snow?

I understand you are on a shoestring and really want to get to all of thesze places - but you need to research a couple of things - and be prepared to reorganize your trip based on weather.

Your trip includes Christmas eve and day and New Year's day - when many things are closed.

Any road trip - esp through the mountains - can have extensive delays in winter.

And have you checked the transit time for buses versus the transit times for trains as well as the cost of discount tickets (if bought in advance they can be super cheap).

Island45 Nov 13th, 2015 01:43 PM

Sometimes you have to just work within your time constraints and budget and while it may not be for everyone I admire those willing to do what they can. I too would like to know what the highlights would be for Vienna as we are also only able to be there for a day and a half.
Thanks in advance.

nytraveler Nov 13th, 2015 03:29 PM

Highlights would differ based on your interests.

For me the most important things I would want to do are see a performance by the Lippanzer stallions and visit the history museum to see the Venus of Willendorf. but I'm sure for many people these would not make the list at all.

If you provide info on your interests - and time of year - people can make specific recos.

anyegr Nov 14th, 2015 12:41 AM

Have you already bought all the tickets? If that's the case it's too late to do anything about it.

I don't think it matters that many places will be closed. You aren't going to have time to go into museums or other tourists sites in many of your destinations. And if you're on a low budget you may not be able to afford entry fees to many sites.

Daylight hours will be really short. I hope the bus will get to your destinations while there is still enough light to see anything.

You say that you've done lots of bus travel in South America, but was that in summer or winter? A big snowstorm could easily wreck your entire plan.

thursdaysd Nov 14th, 2015 05:52 AM

Depending on where in SA you were riding buses, you are liable to find European ones less comfortable. SA is known for having excellent long distance buses, Europe not so much, as those who can afford it take the train.

menachem Nov 15th, 2015 12:53 AM

that is changing rapidly

menachem Nov 15th, 2015 12:55 AM

check out www.spottedbylocals.com


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