Notices

Vienna vs Prague

Reply

Feb 19th, 2012, 10:44 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1
Vienna vs Prague

My husband and I will be in Europe for 13 nights in September. We are staying in Paris for about 9 nights and either Vienna or Prague for the remainder. I am on the fence regarding which city to see. We will be using Starwood points for our hotel. For Vienna it would be the Hotel Imperial and the Sheraton in Prague. Please help us with our final trip planning.
MariaSD is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 19th, 2012, 10:50 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 19,726
It all depends on your interests. Vienna has many museums, probably more than Prague, and has imperial palaces that cannot be matched by Prague in their grandeur.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mksfca/...7622927111169/

However, if you've had your fill of museums and grand palaces (Versailles, the Louvre) in Paris, Prague might be a nice change.
Michael is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 19th, 2012, 11:29 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 12,937
Both are interesting, but Michael makes a good point.
after 9days of mueums and palaces, you might enjoy more
relaxing time in
a beautiful place like Prague...
danon is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 19th, 2012, 11:30 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,649
Prague is unique in that it wasn;t damaged in WWII - since Chamberlain handed it over ot Hitler. So all of the buildings you see (unlike almost any other city in central europe) are original - rather than reconstructions.

Vienna was the center of the Austro-Hungarisn empire - so it has more palaces and museums - but much is reconstructed. Prague is more manageable - and the old town is much more authentic.

I have been to both several times and prefer Prague, since I find Vienna somewaht triste - but I think you would be happy visiting either one.
nytraveler is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 19th, 2012, 11:39 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
I loved Vienna, but I agree that if you are all museumed out after Paris, Prague might make a nice change, though there are certainly museums there too if you would like some more.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 06:33 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 290
To be fair to Chamberlain (and the others), the Munich Agreement didn't hand over all of Czechoslovakia - most of it, including Prague, was taken over a bit later.

Anyway, I agree it depends on your tastes. Vienna is very much the imposing imperial city, whereas Prague has a much more intimate scale and it feels more like there's something to discover around every corner. If you are still up for museums and palaces, the Kunsthistoriches Museum in Vienna is fabulous, as is the Schönbrunn Palace. Prague might not have as impressive individual buildings, but you will certainly have a great overall experience seeing things like the Jewish Quarter, the castle, St Nicholas Church in Malo Strana, Charles Bridge etc.
gwan is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 07:10 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 16,006
As others have said, entirely different cities. Prague remains much as it was centuries ago, while Vienna was wonderfully reconstructed. So, a little information for you to decide. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vienna and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prague and www.inyourpocket.com/czech_republic/prague www.inyourpocket.com/Austria/Vienna
iris1745 is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 08:10 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 7,275
In all fairness, there is not much "original" in any European town which is not a museum but a living city.
Prague is as much reconstructed as Vienna, just that most happened and happens gradually (a new roof here, new staircase there, new bricks and mortar there) instead of having to do it from more or less many rubbles at once.
If you cross the river on the famous Charles bridge, you will walk on the same concrete that made the Socialist high rise apartment buildings on the outskirts - just that you can't see it under a veneer of historically look-alike cobblestones.
OTOH, Vienna had not been bombed like Dresden or Frankfurt, so while several landmark buildings got damaged to some extent large or small, many historic buildings did not get hit.
So assuming that you have a disneyesque Vienna on one side and truly 15th century Prague on the other is simply not correct.

Anyway, I like both cities "small" Prague, "big" Vienna.
One thing that put me off just a little in Prague was that the old town is even more geared towards tourists as the first district in Vienna.
While in Vienna even the touristy heart of town has its mix of "real" stores, souvenir shops and restaurants and cafes where Viennese and tourists have their share, the Prague old town has just a bit too many "tourists only" beer halls, souvenir stores, and "typical Czech restaurants" where you hardly find anyone talking Czech.
IMO it's worth to also take a look at other parts of town for a different perspective.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 08:59 AM
  #9
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 10,556
Good question. Two entirely different cities. I prefer Vienna, DH liked Prague better. Vienna is more 'stylish', while Prague has more 'old world charm', IMHO. So perhaps Prague is a better contrast for you, after being in Paris.

In Vienna, you can visit the gorgeous Hofburg complex, and maybe see the Lipizzaner stallions. In Prague, the old castle is bare bones, with little to see but the architecture and the view. That's basically the difference between the two, in my mind.

Try LivingPrague.com for a comprehensive site.

One thing I noticed about Prague, when we were there a few years ago, it was becoming the tourist 'hot spot' to visit, and I thought their prices were relatively high for lodging and dining.
PeaceOut is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 10:14 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 5,565
Prague, hands down.

From Prague, you could do a day trip to the very picturesque town of Cesky Krumlov. You could also do a day trip to Terezin.

I am no fan of Vienna; I think it is as boring as dirt. The Kunsthistoriches Museum is one of the best art museums in the world, however. (But Prague has the Sternberg Collection, which contains some great paintings)

The views in Prague are better, in my opinion. There is nothing like standing somewhere along the Vlatva looking out towards the Charles Bridge and St. Vitus looming large up on the hill.

Just my opinion, sweetie darlings so down get your pants in a twist.

Tschuss,
Pepper Von Snoot
Pepper_von_snoot is online now  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 10:58 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 10,556
If you do go to Vienna, a nice day-trip via train and boat is to visit the fabulous Melk Abbey and continue through the Wachau Valley to Krems. We took the boat all the way out, then took the train back to Vienna. At that time, there was a pass that was very inexpensive, and it covered the boat, the train, and entrance to the Abbey.

http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/desti...chauvalley.htm
PeaceOut is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 11:00 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 10,556
Correction: we took the TRAIN to Melk, the boat to Krems, and the train from Krems back to Vienna.
PeaceOut is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 01:26 PM
  #13
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,342
<>

That's not "being fair," it's semantics. Duff Cooper and Churchill certainly understood that handing over the Sudentenland actually handed over Czechoslovakia to the Nazis.

That said, the choice here is Prague. Far less German spoken. Far more interesting. Charles Bridge at night is great to look at. History everywhere. I love how the communism museum was housed in the same building as a casino when we were there.
BigRuss is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 01:59 PM
  #14
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 951
We visited both Vienna and Prague on one trip which included Bratislava + Budapest.
And we loved all four cities.

But if you're equally interested in both, I'd ask which one you're more likely to visit on a future trip and then include the "this September is our best chance" one on this trip.
nyse is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 02:14 PM
  #15
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,590
Note to gwan et al...also the Allied bombers didn't destroy Prague as some lovely European cities. Yes, I'd vote for Prague but I think Vienna a good destination. The latter boring as dirt? No I don't think so. As PeaceOut says, some old world charm with Prague. But touristy it is getting.
Bill in Boston
Ozarksbill is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 02:48 PM
  #16
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
That said, the choice here is Prague. Far less German spoken. Far more interesting. >>

undoubtedly there is less german spoken in Prague than there is in Vienna, but why would that be a criterion? Vienna is IMHO just as interesting as Prague but in a different way. it did not have the experience of communist rule, and has a much more "imperial" feel. both have museums, and castles/palaces.

the Moldau river adds a charm to Prague that the Danube in Vienna did not seem to me to have, but Vienna has it when it comes to the number of things to see.

perhaps what swings it in Prague's favour for me is that it is getting more and more touristy all the time and therefore, like Venice, it's a good idea to get there before it vanishes forever,
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 03:05 PM
  #17
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,342
<<. . . the Moldau river adds a charm to Prague that the Danube in Vienna>>

The Czechs call it the Vltava, and that is what it is generally known as. I'm thinking the last folks who regularly called the longest Czech river the "Moldau" are the same beneficiaries of the aforementioned Munich Agreement. I'm thinking the Czechs won't call it that. Don't recall any Poles welcoming us to Danzig when we visited Gdansk . . .
BigRuss is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 03:37 PM
  #18
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 50,346
The Czechs call it the Vltava, and that is what it is generally known as. I'm thinking the last folks who regularly called the longest Czech river the "Moldau" are the same beneficiaries of the aforementioned Munich Agreement>>

well, I don't remember my home town of Coventry benefitting much from the Munich agreement, and i don't see you objecting to my calling the river Donau in Wien 'the Danube".

bigRuss - i think that your prejudices are showing.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 05:19 PM
  #19
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 7,275
As we speak about it... Czechs don't say Prague but Praha.
If you say Prague you sound as if you used the German version Prag. And isn't that something a well-travelled person should avoid.

You don't cross the Vltava on "Charles Bridge" but on Karluv most to get to the Hradčany.
Which, buy the way, all does not impress any Czech as you usually will have forgotten to apply the proper inflexion so you end up saying nonsense like "I crossed the Eastern River on the Brooklynish Bridge".
After that tongue-twisting ordeal, it gets even harder to find a politically-correct beer as those darn Czechs still call their Budweiser a Budweiser, even though that is the German name of that town in Southern Bohemia that is now called České Budejovice (sorry, but no proper accent on the e available).

Anyhow, I'd be deeply impressed if that many actually had a clue how to pronounce those words properly (without using that feature on Wikipedia).
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 20th, 2012, 06:37 PM
  #20
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,649
While it's true that Vienna was not completely annihilated as was Berlin and other cities in Germany (I have pix my dad took while in the army and the only thing left standing in Ulm was two dadly damaged cathedral spires the rest of the city was just rubble) - there was a significant amount of damage in Vienna - esp to the cathedral.

But there is still a lot to see in Vienna - much of it wonderful. I just prefer the - to me - more authentic atmosphere of Prague - esp the buildings in the ghetto - a tour of which can be shattering.
nytraveler is online now  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:10 PM.