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21. Posted by ujkle (Budding Member 42 posts) 10y

Cool. Thanks! Do you think we could wedge in the Ukraine there as well? I was initially going to try and go there (or Romania, which I think would be harder, or possibly Bosnia.) but I was worried we wouldn't have enough time. Or funds. :D
Also, I've been chatting to a girl at work whose has friends from Slovakia, and she's warned me that English isn't as widespread as I'd otherwise thought, which is fair enough. I've just started learning Czech, so I'm wondering how similar (if at all) it is to Slovak (Slovakian?)? Another friend thinks that also knowing a bit of German would be handy.

22. Posted by angelbih (Budding Member 24 posts) 10y

everybody keeps avoiding Balkans, and i don't know why....very cheap (flights, food, accommodation), great fun, amazing outdoors, great and good looking people.....what else do you need? (:

23. Posted by norian (Full Member 71 posts) 10y

hi ujkle,
One of my friend has recently been to Ukraine - Kiev. He told me that it's a very very beautiful city and he keeps good remembers about.
If i remember, i believe that there is a train from Krakow to Kiev but check that before.
You should try...just few days.

Don't worry about languagues..
and as angelbih said it's very cheap.

24. Posted by turtle (Budding Member 2 posts) 10y

I am going with my family this July to Sweden and I noticed there were some cheap tickets from Stockholm to Prague. I am thinking of doing some light travelling for about 8 days starting in Prague and going to Hungary and back. The only places in Eastern Europe I have been are Krakow, Zakopane, and Warsaw. Can anyone recommend a couple of interesting and perhaps lesser known towns in this area? thank you

25. Posted by strayalien (Budding Member 120 posts) 10y

I'm planning a trip right through Eastern Europe myself......i'm going all the baltic countries through Poland,Ukraine and russia and maybe Bulgaria and Romania depending on how much coin i can get and was wondering how anyone fared language wise.
I can speak passable German but was told a lot of people are hesitant to speak German which is what i experienced in Czech Republic.
I want to go for a while and was thinking of doing a general Russian course...is this a good idea or not really needed?

26. Posted by JRC410 (Budding Member 3 posts) 10y

I think you would be best served by having at least a familiarity with Russian, based on where the bulk of your travels may be. Most of these countries were not very happy with Russian occupation and are now trying to kind of disenfranchise Russian in favor of there local language. However, if you can speak Russian, you will be understood. They will also identify you as a tourist and understand why you speak Russian instead of their native language.

I did the same thing before I started going to Ukraine and Russia regularly. Just take a general course and bring a good solid phrase book with you. You should be fine. I didn't have too much trouble and had the time of my life each time I went. I think I have been 12 or 13 times now. Am now married to a wonderful Ukrainian woman, and thank my lucky stars every day that I had the courage to go! Good luck!

Please visit my site if you would like more information about Russia, Ukraine or Russian and Ukrainian women.

Joseph R Carducci
http://www.howtomarryarussianwoman.com

27. Posted by Demian (Full Member 117 posts) 10y

It helped me a lot knowing a little Russian when in Russia and Bulgaria... in the cities and at tourist sites most people understand enough English to get around, but the moment you get into rural and remote area's, Russian (or Bulgarian, but I didn't speak that) is the only way to communicate. Though elderly people in Bulgaria didn't really like to speak it, once I told I was a tourist from Western Europe they didn't mind too much.

Even if you don't have the time to learn to speak Russian, learn to read cyrillic...

28. Posted by dansnd (Budding Member 2 posts) 9y

Quoting ujkle

Also, I've been chatting to a girl at work whose has friends from Slovakia, and she's warned me that English isn't as widespread as I'd otherwise thought, which is fair enough. I've just started learning Czech, so I'm wondering how similar (if at all) it is to Slovak (Slovakian?)? Another friend thinks that also knowing a bit of German would be handy.

Most young people speak English so you shouldn't have too many problems. Czech is very similar to Slovak. Most Slovaks understand Czech (the older they are, the better they understand it) although fewer Czechs understand Slovak. English and German are about as common as each other although restaurants have more menus in German.

I found Hungary to be the place where English was understood the least but most of my travels were outside Budapest where I imagine foreign languages are more widespread.

I would recommend the rail system, have a great time.

Dan

29. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Hello Ujkle

Not sure what to say, as u did not ask specific questions.
I have been in Eastern Europe several times. I was in Romania, Hungary(but just Budapest), Czechia and Slovenia(if that is considered Eastern europe). I highly recommend E Europe.

I am going to Lithuania, for the first time, in April. I have heard good things, about it.

Mel

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