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7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

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San Jose, California
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7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

I have a trip planned in early April - flying in to Berlin and flying out of Vienna. Total of 7 days including arrival at 8 am on the first day. I am debating whether to spend 3 days in Berlin or 4 (with the rest in Vienna). Would appreciate thoughts on where to spend the one extra day. Thanks in advance!

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1. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

Hi stagore77,

I don't know how well you do with jet lag, but if you're anything like me, that first day in Berlin coming from California will be a rough one with the 9 hour time zone difference and 12-16 hours (?) of travel time.

I do everything in my power to stay up the entire day, but find myself running out of energy around dinner time. Based on that alone, I would probably spend 4 days in Berlin and the remainder in Vienna. You can easily see most of the major attractions in Vienna in 3 full days.

The one question I have is how are you getting between the two? Are you flying? Or taking the train. You may lose the better part of a day just getting from Berlin to Vienna, which would give you three days in Berlin, one day in transit, and 3 days in Vienna.

Barcelona, Spain
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2. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

It's a tight schedule, even without the factor of jetlag on top which may pretty well wipe out that first day for sightseeing. I agree with zed1958 about more time in Berlin than Vienna in any case.

And I do hope you are flying between the 2!!

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3. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

If pressed, I'd say that a week isn't long enough to explore two cities, particularly not if one of them is Berlin: it's so spread out, so full of interest, and so diverse that it needs more time than almost any other European capital. (If it were my week, I'd spend the whole of it in Berlin and forget Vienna - but you can ignore that exceedingly biased remark. You're coming a very long way, and you want to see both cities.)

So to respond to your question more dispassionately, I agree with Lynda and Zed that more time is needed in Berlin, jet lag or no jet lag. As has already been said, see most of what there is to be seen in Vienna a good deal more easily than you can in Berlin.

Re the jet lag - I think I'd ignore the received wisdom of staying awake until it's bedtime at your destination. I'd try to sleep as much as possible on the plane (extra leg room if you can get it, keep well hydrated, avoid alcohol, ear plugs, pillow, blanket etc). But it's never the same as real sleep, so I'd try to be sensible and take a nap and a shower when I got to my hotel. And then, refreshed, I'd put off "proper" sightseeing for a few hours: I wouldn't start with anything that demanded my full attentive mind, I'd go for a long, brisk walk in the Tiergarten (which would be near the top of my list anyway).

Have a great trip, whatever you decide about the apportioning of your time.

Edited: 12 February 2013, 07:48
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4. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

I said the Tiergarten, to accelerate the mind-clearing process, but if you aren't staying near it, almost any nearby park will do: Berlin is the greenest city in Europe and has lots of great parks: the Tiergarten is the biggest but not the only one. If you're staying in Charlottenburg, the Schlossgarten is beautiful, especially the natural, park-like northern half of it. If you're in east Berlin, Volkspark Friedrichshain, on the Friedrichshain/Mitte/Prenzlauerberg borders would be a good choice.

Edited: 12 February 2013, 07:55
San Jose, California
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5. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

Thanks for the great replies! I will be flying (Air Berlin most likely) between the two cities. Would have loved to spend more time but am constrained by spring break. I will follow the consensus and spend 4 days in Berlin and 3 in Vienna (if possible flying out in the evening from Berlin to reach Vienna late at night (assuming that Vienna is safe enough for a late night cab to the hotel from the airport).

6. Re: 7 day trip to Berlin and Vienna

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