Vienna with Prague or Budapest

Old Jul 22nd, 2007, 08:48 PM
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Vienna with Prague or Budapest

My husband and I plan to go to Vienna from 12/27-30th and then to either Budapest or Prague for 3 nights. Which city is better? We love to eat, walk around looking at architecture, and stopping at shops. We're not much into museums.
Our favorite cities in Europe are London and Barcelona (having traveled only to UK, Spain, France, and Portugal).
keli22o is offline  
Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 12:50 AM
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Either Prague or Budapest is good for what you say you want to do: eating, walking around, and stopping at shops.

Personally I have enjoyed Budapest more than Prague.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 02:39 AM
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With such a short time, I'd opt for Budapest (which I loved) over Prague (which I haven't seen, but it seems there is more to see/do there, at least for my interests). And you should definitely visit at least a couple of museums in both places, IMO. Terror Museum in Budapest is great ... be sure to get an audioguide, though.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 03:48 AM
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Prague! Just to wander around and admire the scenery.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 05:44 AM
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I lived for a few years in Prague and was often in Budapest for work. Both are great cities but I don't agree at all that you should not consider Prague because your time there would be too short. I think that three nights for either city is sufficient to get a good feel for the cities as long as you stay centrally. Personally, I would opt for Prague - it's beautiful. The real shame is that you are missing New Year's Eve in Vienna. It is a wonderful outdoor party: dancing, music, stands with warm mulled wine. Any way of reversing the order of your visits?
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 08:00 PM
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We visited all three cities this April. Although Budapest is wonderful and deserves a visit, if you can only do one, I would suggest Prague. In addition to being a wonderful, romantic, and walkable city, Prague is historically related to Vienna and makes a very good combination. If you do select Prague, I would strongly urge you to stay in the Old Town/Charles Bridge vicinity. This is the most charming part and the area when you'll want to be. You will love Vienna too. If you are interested in classical music, try to attend a concert in either city - they are a great value. Reserve early. The holdiays will be a busy time.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 08:35 PM
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...Prague is historically related to Vienna...

Does the Austro-Hungarian Empire count?

Really, put both cities on your Trip List and flip a coin.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2007, 08:46 PM
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Tough, tough choice! I would go to Budapest and Prgaue instead of Vienna. However, your question relates to Budapest or Prague.

Both are wonderful cities.
1) flip a coin
2) Click on Destinations at the top of this page and check out the sites in each city. Make a list of sites you'd like to see in each. Then, opt for the city with the most sites that appeal to you.

You can't go wrong either with either city.

Have a great trip! I'm jealous!!
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Old Jul 24th, 2007, 04:06 PM
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I have not visited Budapest, but have just returned from Europe, including Prague. We had exactly the same dilemma, and based on the overwhelming vote for Prague we went there. Sorry, but I am in the minority - I was very disappointed in Prague and will probably never return. We had a great private guide, but I felt Prague seemed to lack a soul - it is all about tourists. Hundrends of "junky" tourist shops in streets that must once have had such interesting tales to tell. Very crowded, and sorry to say, but so many beer swilling, young English on stag and hen trips, just spoiling any chance of ambience. We stayed about 15 minutes by train outside Prague, and that was the highlight. If I had three days to spend in the Czech Republic, it would be Cesky Krumlov. Spent one night there and could easily have spent a week. However, I must stress that I am definately in the minority. I guess it depends on what really interests you.

Good luck with your choice and I hope you have a wonderful time whatever you decide.
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Old Jul 24th, 2007, 05:10 PM
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I have been to both Prague and Budapest many times. It has been my experience that there will be more going on that time of year in Prague. If you like architecture, Prague is the place. There are also more interesting shops in Prague. I would go to Prague.
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 03:05 PM
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Just got back in June from a trip to Budapest, Vienna and Prague. Maybe because Prague was so hot and so crowded, I enjoyed Budapest more. I do agree that Prague is more beautiful but along with it's beauty is one crummy tourist crystal/garnet shop next to another. So, my decision would be Prague if it is not crowded at that time and Budapest if it is.
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 04:21 PM
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I just got back from a 4 week home exchange in Vienna. As part of the exchange, I generally do a 3 night trip out somewhere close but where I want to stay for a few days. We picked Budapest and loved it. If you go to Budapest I suggest you stay on the Pest side where there is more activity. We were at the Art Hotel, a very nice hotel by the way, but on the Buda side of the Danube. It really didn't interfere with our enjoyment because we took the subway everywhere (the stop was 3 blocks from the hotel).

Somethings I saw there were

The synagogue
Holocaust Museum (I could not speak when I was done with it because it was so moving)
Museum of Terror
Castle Hill (Art Museum and pharmacy museum in addition to just walking around)
The Market (a must!)
Special exhibit on Peru before the Incas
Special exhibit on Genghis Khan
"Elisabeth" (a musical about Franz Josef's very strange wife aka "Sissi"; in Hungarian with surtitles in English)
Concert with Andreas Schiff at the National Concert Hall
Hungarian folk dance performance

My girlfriend and I, who have very different interests (I like culture and museums; she likes shopping), split up for most of the Budapest time except for the evening performances. She did a walking tour of the city that she liked. I didn't, She got into one of the baths for a look during the tour. I never managed to see either of the baths that everyone talks about, but that is just the way it worked out. My girlfriend also went to Szentendre. You can go from the local train station at Battheny Ter rather than take those organized tourist trips and save a lot of money. She shopped for crafts there and enjoyed it.

Good restaurants:

Appetito on Castle Hill
Jardin de Paris (just behind the Art Hotel on the Buda side)

Cheap and delicious eats can be found at the market.

I cannot offer an opinion on Prague because I have never been there.

By the way, Vienna is one fantastic city. I was there long enough to see quite a bit, but there was still a long list of things I did not see.

Overall we had better food in Budapest than in Vienna. I had things with goose liver a couple of times.

We went to Budapest from Vienna by train.

I loved every minute of my trip.
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