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Eastern Europe - Help with itinerary critique

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11. Posted by pranavc (Respected Member 316 posts) 6y

Quoting galka_mak

Just have seen your question regarding the trains from Krakow - have a look here http://rozklad-pkp.pl/
And I still recommend to go through Wroclaw.
I never had problems in buying the tickets in Poland on the day of making the trip so I'm not sure in necessity of the reservation.

Hi Gala,
First, a HUGE thank you for your detailed outline. Second, my sincere apologies for the delayed response. This past weekend has been ridiculously busy. It goes without saying that I have some follow-up questions based on your input.

I also like the alternate entry route to Poland that you have suggested. Frankly, if I was traveling with someone for that leg of the trip, I’d do the alternate route in a heartbeat. I am most likely traveling with a friend in Croatia and Bosnia but in Poland, it is very likely that I will be on my own. I figured it might be easier to find other hikers etc. in a bigger travel hub like Krakow and head from there to the Tatras.

Now, for the questions:

a. How much time do you think I should alot to Wroclaw if I end up going there?
b. Is the trip to Kasprowy Wierch an all-day thing?
c. How many days would the entire Poprad angle add to the trip?

Thank you once again for taking the time to help me plan this trip. Of course, I am working with a limited budget so I need to see how this is all going to work out but
I want to keep my options open until it is time to start booking.

Regards,

Pranav

12. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 6y

June 18: Arrive in Krakow early morning
June 19: Explore the Tatras area (not sure where specifically yet - any tips are welcome)
June 20: Tatras area
June 21: Zakopane
June 22: Krakow
June 23: Leave Krakow for Dresden (Germany)

Depending on where you plan to hike it can be a detour to go back to Krakow to travel to Dresden.

Instead of hiking in the Tatras consider the Giant Mountains.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sn%C4%9B%C5%BEka

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish%E2%80%93Czech_Friendship_Trail

You could cross into the Czech Republic, from there it would be easier to go to Dresden.

There is also some decent hiking south of Dresden, if you want I'll dig up some links.

13. Posted by galka_mak (Full Member 169 posts) 6y

Quoting pranavc

I figured it might be easier to find other hikers etc. in a bigger travel hub like Krakow and head from there to the Tatras.

Now, for the questions:
a. How much time do you think I should alot to Wroclaw if I end up going there?
b. Is the trip to Kasprowy Wierch an all-day thing?
c. How many days would the entire Poprad angle add to the trip?

Hi, Pranav! and sorry for the late reply - spring is here so I'm really waiting for the rain to sit at the computer :) :) :)

You seem quite right regarding the possibility of finding the travel companions in Krakow - it's bigger and much more vivid city with tones of tourists and the hikers too. Slovakia is very small, calm and silent in comparison to Krakow. So in this regard you should stick to your plan and leave Slovakia for the next trips (skiing for example - nice and cheap).

a. Wroclaw is worth of minimum half a day spent in a very fast walking (1 full day will be much better). Old city is not so big and it doesn't have such a big attraction as for example Wawel castle in Krakow. But you shouldn't miss the University - you will be really impressed! By myself I would check for the fast morning train from Krakow and then late evening train to Dresden - and it could be quite enough. Anyway your next stop will be Dresden so you'll forget about everything seeing its beauty :) As far as I see by the Polish railway links there are lot of trains from Krakow to Wroclaw and only one from Krakow to Dresden. Wroclaw is very close to Germany so this stop seems reasonable. I made this stop for the night and day on my way to Bawaria and never regret.

b. Kasprowy Wierch is the Zakopane part of trip - it's very close, almost in the city. If you're in a hurry - the lift to the old observatory and sightseeing point will take 2-3 hours depending on the cable-car schedule. But you also can go there for the full-day hiking -in Zakopane I've seen lot of hiking maps with the routes around Zakopane that included Kasprovy and another beautiful mountain Giewont - but by myself I went hiking only at the Morske Oko lake.

c. Poprad itself actually is not worth of making stop in such a trip as yours. It's small and not so interesting. But as for me the Slovak Tatras are even more beautiful then its Polish part. And its main advantage is the good regular fast train connection between the various towns that are also close to one another. So if you choose Slovakia for hiking you can stay for example in Tatranska Lomnica - take the cable car from there to the high and beautiful pick Lomnitsky Stit - and then move by train for example to Strebske Pleso and spend the rests of the day hiking there. Travel by train there won't take more than an hour so actually the time depends on your travel preferences. But in Slovakia be ready to see the montain villages sleeping in the evenings - Poland and particularly Zakopane is absolutely different.
Actually for me it's not so easy to advise to include or not to include Slovakia to your trip because I usually travel there by car from my home country. And for me the trip from Slovakia to Poland is not a problem at all cause it takes less than an hour - so we even sometimes went to Zakopane just to eat at the Sabala tavern :)
I'm very much afraid that the trip by bus can make this leg worthless- I know that the bus goes from Zakopane in the morning but I couldn't find the schedule in internet. I will ask some of my friends in Poland if they know exact terms and try to give you some more information if you're interested.

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