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Need someone to do sanity check for my Europe Itinerary

Travel Forums Europe Need someone to do sanity check for my Europe Itinerary

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1. Posted by sumanhangal (Budding Member 3 posts) 2y

Hello !

I have 18 days vacation time coming up in September. Here is my current travel itinerary that I need your advice.

Munich to Salzburg : I plan to take a train.
Salzburg – Bled (Slovenia): Are trains the old cheapest way to get to Slovenia ?
Slovenia – Croatia : What would you recommend I do in Croatia? Are 2 days sufficient in Croatia ?
Croatia – Budapest : what is the cheapest way to get to Budapest ? How many days should I plan to spend in Budapest?
Budapest – Prague : I plan to take a train from Budapest to Prague, how many days should I plan to spend in Prague?
Prague – Frankfurt : train to Frankfurt

Any destination advice is most welcome !

Look forward to hearing back from you.

Cheers,

Suman

2. Posted by Cyberia (Travel Guru 1769 posts) 2y

Weather is highly variable in September. You might have sun, rain, hot or cold.

Trains or buses are the best way. Planes are faster on longer journeys but on short journeys there is time to and from airports and waiting at airports so not very quick.

Salzburg has enough for 2 days but Bled is mostly nice scenery. Not a lot there. There are a number of half day tours available to the surrounding areas.

Croatia is a country. Where are you going? Perhaps:

http://croatia.hr/en-GB/Destinations/Regions/Cluster/Central-Croatia/Heritage-Central-Croatia?Y2lcMTAxLGRzXDgscFwzNzQ%3d

Two days is enough for Budapest. The main town has a good museum and a parliament you can go on a tour around. Across the river Danube (you can do boat trips on) and you take a short funicular ride up to the old town and a large palace.

Prague has a fair bit to see but you could do it all in two days:

http://www.pragueexperience.com/sightseeing/sights_attractions.asp

When in Wenceslas Square, we were warned about pick pockets, but nowadays that is common anywhere. Thieves flock to where tourists are and love crowds.

Frankfurt has a fair bit of history as well as museums.

Buses and train tickets sometimes need to be validated first. You just put them into a machine which punches tiny holes in them. This makes sure you cannot use the same ticket twice, and if you do not do it, you can be fined. Watch what others do. You can sometimes prebook rail and bus tickets online before going to save queuing,

Note the Accommodation link at the top of the page for cheap hostels and hotels.

You can do it all in 18 days but you might need a holiday afterwards.

3. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5557 posts) 2y

Quoting Cyberia

Two days is enough for Budapest. The main town has a good museum and a parliament you can go on a tour around. Across the river Danube (you can do boat trips on) and you take a short funicular ride up to the old town and a large palace.

Again, which museum, which palace. it's easy to look at a map and tell people something very general. And what is 'the main town'?

4. Posted by Cyberia (Travel Guru 1769 posts) 2y

Utrecht. Obviously you have never been to Budapest before (I have been to Utrecht however).

Let's see. Did I mean the Pharmacy Museum? No. The Bath Museum? No. The Bible Museum? No. The Castle Museum? No, because that is in the castle across the river. The Dreher Beer Museum? No. The Flag Museum? No. Maybe the Hungarian Museum of Trade and Tourism? No.

Fast forward.

How about the Museum of Fine Arts, a very large art gallery over a number of floors? Could be. It's by Heroes Square, where the big war memorial is.

Peter has started complaining about me giving links to such places.

How many large palaces near funiculars in Budapest?

It's like saying Big Ben in London, and you asking which Big Ben?

Buda is the hilly part of the west side with narrow streets and the palace. Cross the chain bridge and you're in Pest, the flat town area with Parliament, shops, bars, restaurants, etc.

Who looked at a map? I'm using my memory of the town.

5. Posted by Peter (Admin 5532 posts) 2y

Budapest is one of my favourite cities in Europe, so I would most definitely find 2 days too short. We spent a week there a few years ago and could happily have spent longer. I rate it over Prague, because Prague felt a bit too much like Disneyland to me, whereas Budapest felt more like actual people (not just tourists) lived there.

There's lots to see. The art gallery is good. The baths are definitely worth a visit. The market on the Pest side is nice. The Jewish Synagogue is worth a visit. There's also an abundance of nice old movie theatres which are worth checking out.

One highlight for me was the Museum of Applied Arts, not so much for the contents but for the amazing architecture of the building. The architect, Ödön Lechner, is to Budapest what Antonio Gaudi is to Budapest. Well worth reading up on him a bit before visiting if you take even a passing interest in architecture.

There was also a weekly flea market in the large park. Not sure if it's still around, but that was also particularly fun and a great place to pick up some odd souvenirs (we got a bunch of old Hungarian stamps).

6. Posted by AlexWang (Budding Member 9 posts) 2y

To be honest, spending that amount of time in any of these cities isn't really enough. There is so much history and sites to see. I have been to a majority of these places and they are filled with beauty. I, myself, enjoy Salzburg the most out of these places, so I would say spend the most time there.

7. Posted by Herr Bert (Moderator 1371 posts) 2y

When i see the schedule, the one city, that sticks out for not being there, is Vienna. It will be hard enough to miss it on your trip anyway, so why not visit it? It is probably my favourite city in Europe. (and I will go back for the fourth time this Fall.)

And maybe it is better to change it around a little bit, and fly from Budapest to Frankfurt for the flight home, which saves some backtracking. (just don't choose Ryanair, as they (if they fly this stretch), will take you to Frankfurt Hahn, which is about 2 hours away from Frankfurt.)

[ Edit: Edited on 04-Aug-2012, at 15:19 by Herr Bert ]

8. Posted by sumanhangal (Budding Member 3 posts) 2y

Hello !

Thank you all for taking time to share all this information with me ! I have altered my travel plans accordingly. I have dropped Austria and Germany ( I have spent time in both these countries). Instead I plan to focus more on Prague, Budapest, Bled, and I am still unsure what to do in Croatia. Everything seems pretty and "must see". Any recommendations on top 3 places / things to do in Croatia ?

Thanks !!!

Suman

9. Posted by anamarija (Budding Member 43 posts) 2y

As far as I can see, your direction of entry into Croatia is from Ljubljana to Zagreb?

You have two days, which is barely enough for anything, really. If you could squeeze in one more day at least for Croatia, that would be great (actually, that depends on your arrival and departure times to- and from Zagreb).

Stuff to do/see without moving too far away from Zagreb (your starting point for Budapest):

One or two whole days for Zagreb which has a lot to offer.

Depends on what you're interested the most, of course, but a tour of the old town and the city center is a must. There's a Tourist Information Center at the main Jelacic Square, and you can get a practical guidebook and a city plan there (I think it's free), so you can pick a tour you like from the book and follow the directions and read explanations by yourself. If you can afford a tour guide, there's a number of offers in that regard here.

Include a couple of hours for lazying away in a cafe in Tkalcica or Bogoviceva street -- hey, do what locals do ;)

If you want to visit museums, I'd recommend Zagreb City Museum, Archaeological Musem or Museum of Arts and Crafts. There are other museums, of course, I don't know what you'd like to see. You should plan 2 or more hours per museum.

If you crave some greenery, there's Maksimir Park with the ZOO, for example. There're a lot of parks in the city, so you don't have to go far from the center to enjoy some flower bed and tree views.

Zagreb is fairly big and with lots of stuff to see and do, that's why I think two days would be okay if you find city touring interesting in general.

One whole day could go for a visit to Plitvice Lakes National Park. If there's one, single thing I'd recommend to anyone to see in my country, it would be Plitvice. You could go solo on a bus from Zagreb, or take a guided tour. Here is a link from the Zagreb Tourist Board website for Plitvice visit.

Check out the Zagreb Tourist Board web and see what else there is to be seen.

As for Zagreb - Budapest, there're several trains per day, it seems, and it takes around 6 hours, but I don't know the price. I know there should be bus lines as well. Perhaps you should contact Central Bus Station in Zagreb directly by e-mail and ask about the connection to Budapest, if you'd prefer bus.

This is all off the top of my head, I'm sure I missed to mention something important. Oh, yeah, like, where will you be staying? There's a number of hostels popping out around the city lately, you should be able to find some decent budget accomodation.
Anyway, I live in Zagreb, so if I can be of more help, feel free to nag ;)

[ Edit: Edited on 08-Aug-2012, at 14:47 by anamarija ]

10. Posted by sumanhangal (Budding Member 3 posts) 2y

Anamarija Thank you very much for the detailed information ! You are right I am going to take a train or bus from Ljubljana to Zagreb. I am not much of a museum person and I am hoping to just soak in the city ! A long lunch, time in the parks and just aimless walking is what I have in mind. :-)

And the next day I want to take a bus to Plitvice NP. I may not get an opportunity to visit your beautiful country again so I will make sure I visit the national park. I may have an extra day if I take off Munich from my travel plans.

How safe is it for a single gal to travel? Is there any hostel in the Plitvice area to spend a night that you can recommend? It would be nice if you can recommend restaurants where I can try local food (I am a vegetarian) and wine. I did hear about Millenium patisserie for ice cream and cakes in Zagreb :-) so I am looking forward to that !

Thanks in advance !

Cheers

Suman