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Inter-railing

Travel Forums Europe Inter-railing

1. Posted by aoifeeeee7 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 9y

Me and my friends are going inter-raling for three weeks in the summer. The countries we want to go to are poland, czech rep, slovakia, croatia, hungary, bosnia herzegovinia, macedonia, bulgaria, serbia, romania and yugoslavia. We need a little help deciding which cities are worth going to and what route to take, so if anyone has any ideas they'd be much appreciated!

2. Posted by Liosa (Budding Member 9 posts) 9y

hello!!! I am planning to go interrailing this summer also, it seems impossible to decided which way to go and where all to include!!! Good luck!

Sorry I have no helpful advice

3. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3379 posts) 9y

Look in travelbooks in the library, with pics from the countries you mentioned. And decide from there. The internet is also full of pics from the countries you mentioned. Its so easy. It just takes some time, but it could be fun. From a pic you can best decide where you want to go. Decide for yourself.....

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 26, 2007, at 2:08 PM by wouterrr ]

4. Posted by aharrold45 (Travel Guru 1281 posts) 9y

I haven't done the sort of train travel you are talking about in Europe, but why don't you print a map of Europe off and then try to find a most direct route with very little backtracking. I know that the limited train travel I have done in Europe took plenty of time for what appears to be a very short distance on the map.

You've only got a very short amount of time and are wanting to do a lot of places. You'd basically need to limit it to just the capital cities on such a short time frame with so many countries. That only is allowing less than 2 days a place and you are on the train in some cases for quite a long time of a day. I think you need to cut your places down considerably and limit it to a very maximum of 7 and that is probably still too much if you actually want to have any time to see anything at all off a train.

In Czech Republic you could spend a few days in Prague and a day or so in Cesky Krumlov (if you like very old and beautiful townships). That would be a bit on the rushed side from Prague, but at your rate you wouldn't even have enough time to do that.

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 26, 2007, at 3:21 PM by aharrold45 ]

5. Posted by coldposts (Budding Member 9 posts) 9y

hi

im also thinking of making that kind of trip this summer though im planning 2 take a little longer.

i would recommend spending at least 4 days in Prague. Croatia u need 2 visit both Zagreb and Split aswell as Lake Bled, Hungary goto the capital Budapest for at least 3/4 days. Poland Warsaw and Krakow are the best viewing apparently

Yugoslavia no longer exists so at least u will save time there!

hope this helps a bit

john

6. Posted by angela_ (Respected Member 1732 posts) 9y

I would advise you to limit the number of countries you want to travel to. 11 countries in 3 weeks is a big stretch and you really wont be able to get to know the countries your visiting in such a short time period. You would be spending a very large amount of that short time on a train.

7. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 9y

Croatia u need 2 visit both Zagreb and Split aswell as Lake Bled

Zagreb is pleasant enough, and i like it, but with respect to it, it's not that special so on a tight scehedul e could easily be dropped (although you may well end up passing through/changing there by train anyway).

Dubrovnik is probably the #1 place to visit in Croatia, and don't count it out completely just because there is no station and you have to go there by bus/ferry.

Also, Bled is in Slovenia.

Me and my friends are going inter-raling for three weeks in the summer. The countries we want to go to are poland, czech rep, slovakia, croatia, hungary, bosnia herzegovinia, macedonia, bulgaria, serbia, romania and yugoslavia.

What is the aim of your trip? To visit as many countries as possible? Spend most of your time on the train? see some places? Yes, you can physically go to all of these countries, and if you just want to go the capitals and spend a day or so and spend maybe 12-15 of your nights on trains, then you can do that. However, i'd advise a little bit of rationalising. Bear in mind that trains in Eastrn Europe are generally much slower, and in some places, don't follow particularly direct routes, so you need to factor in travel time.

To get around that in 3 weeks, you would need to do something like Warsaw -* Prague -* Bratislava - Budapest -* Bucharesti -* Sofia -* - Skopje [all day, taking the early train to Thessalonki in Greece, and evening train to Skopje. You could spend a night in Thessa if you wanted as well. Alternative by train is via Nis involving a long wait at night, and you would then backtrack Skopje-Nis on the way to Belgrade. Bus is MUCH quicker and more direct between Sofia and Skopje] -* Belgrade -* Zagreb - Sarajevo (all day).

-* means using a night train

That is simply going capital to capital, and if you did that with one night in each of the above, that brings you close to your 3week limit, and means that you would have at leasted visited, if not seen, all the countries there, and without any backtracking [this ignores Montenegro, in which there is just a single useable rail line, from Belgrade via Podgorica to Bar]. Obviously just capitals means you miss out on the likes of Krakow, Ceske Krumlov, Brasov, Veliko Tarnavo, Ohrid and Dubrovnik, to list just a few of the areas REAL highlights.

Suggestion - Get a rail map of Europe (a real rail map, rather than map with rail lines drawn on). Buy or borrow a copy of the Thomas Cook European Time table, and/or play with the English section of the excellent www.bahn.de [German railways, who have the best and most accurate rail TTs on the net], and play with routes/times etc to see what works for you. Get an idea of how easy/fast it is between some of these places.

If you then need some more help/have any questions, come back and post them here. I've personally had well over 100 interrail tickets, and more or less live on European trains, and have been to all of the countries you mention many, many times, so can probably help. But you need to get an idea of what you are undertaking and also what you want to accomplish in your trip. You sure as heck won't see everything in that time, and you also don't want to spend all your time on night rains as you will miss out on nightlife etc.

8. Posted by Goks (Budding Member 5 posts) 9y

Wow quite an undertaking you have planned there. If you want to visit Macedonia by train here are some advices. Only the coridor 10 is rail conected (north-south=Greece-Macedonia-Serbia) which means you can't go to Bulgaria Via Macedonia directly. Rail is not particulary developed in the whole region, and it is slow. However you'll be passing through some very picturesque areas so it is well compensated for the time consuming trips, that is if you travel by day. The trains themselves are far from first class but are not bad. The train route in Macedonia (while going to Greece) will take you through Skopje (capital, lots to see and do), Prilep (a nice town, with an interesting culture, nearby is Krusevo, but you'll need to take a bus to get there but it's woth it! It's the famous town of the Ilinden uprising, a very important day in 20'th century Macedonian history), and Bitola, also known as the city of Consules. While in you're in Bitola, there are lots of interesting sites to visit like the ancient city Heraclea (Heraclea Lyncestis) founded by Philip the second, father of Alexandar of Macedon (the Great), national park Pelister (great place to see beautiful landscape, and breah clean mountine air). Since you are on a very tight schedule I'd recomend go with Heraclea since it's on the city outskirts, so you can see both the ancient and modern city which has some very interesting old arhitecture.
If you travel from Skopje to Belgrade, I'd recomend taking the night train with a sleeping vagon where you can rest while traveling. It's not that expensive and it will save you the trouble of feeling sleepy and tired, and it'll give you the oportunity to see Belgrade properly.

If you need anything else about the region just write. I hope you make it hapen and have a blast while doing it.
Cheers

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 12, 2007, at 3:33 AM by Goks ]