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Five Weeks Around Budapest

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Five Weeks Around Budapest

*** THIS IS A CROSS POST FROM THE PRAGUE FORUM, BUT I WAS HOPING FOR SOME DIFFERENT ADVICE OVER HERE, SO I CAN COMPARE ***

I am coming to Budapest as part of a five week itinerary and wanted a little advice.

I have five weeks to backpack around Europe. Two weeks (the second and third week of the five) I will spend traveling from either Prague to Vienna to Budapest) or the other way around. These two weeks are set, as I am meeting friends for this portion. I am trying to figure out where to go week number one, four, and five that would allow for me to get a really good feel for the general area but not get boring since I'll be in the same "general" area for five weeks.

Here are some thoughts that I am thinking on geographic borders, but feel free to disagree!

* Russia is too far West.

* France and UK are too far East, plus would make a two nice separate trips some day.

* Norway, Sweden, and Finland are too far North, and would make a nice separate trip some day. Perhaps Denmark should be included in this list, unless others strongly disagree.

* Turkey might be too far South, unless people strongly disagree.

* Italy could be a nice trip unto itself some day, or could incorporate it now.

If the area isn't safe, I shouldn't be going there...

So based on that what other cities would you add to the itinerary, and in what order?

Thanks,

Josh

Budapest, Hungary
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1. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

Budapest and Vienna are entirely different, despite only being 150 miles apart.

Beograd (Belgrade) is also different again, but takes a while by train. Train services in Central Europe (well, the old Iron Curtain bits) are slow, unfortunately.

Edited: 20 March 2014, 18:24
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2. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

Well, I just did some additional research, and wanted to make this post a bit more specific. Let's focus on a five week trip around Central Europe, to include at a maximum these countries (though you might suggest only a subset), Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Austria, Slovenia, and Germany. There is a slight chance that I will go to Berlin on a trip next year, so keep that in mind, if it makes a difference in your suggestion!

Budapest, Hungary
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3. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

You are holding the map upside down - Russia is to the east, while France is to the west.

Have you though about visiting smaller cities in the countries you visit? Say, if you start in Hungary, a 1-2 days in Pécs, 2 days in Eger, a day visiting cities around Budapest, a day or two of caving and hiking in Borsod county?

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4. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

I'm certainly cool with that! At this point, I'm just trying to scope it geographically, so I can drill down a little. I really know nothing about the area.

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5. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

Much depends on which airline you are using and whether you can get an "open jaw" ticket (i.e, fly into your first city and depart from your last city) so you will not waste time backtracking to get home.

Using a Delta ticket to get to Budapest (via the Air France partnership change of planes at Charles de Gaulle airport) got us to Budapest and back with a free stopover in Paris on the way home (no extra charge) at the end of our late July to early September trip; however, we flew into and out of Budapest and only had excursions by train and car in Auustria).

We've previously been to Munich, Salzburg, Prague, Krakow, Vienna and Budapest are all great to visit (and perhaps aside from Krakow) are not too far a stretch from each other for surface transportation to suffice but there would be a lot of travel time so you should really hesitate to such an ambitious trip . You'll need a good travel agent or book your airfare by telephone using a live agent (and with Delta you might have to travel through Cincinnati on a lengthy flight).

Your main problem is that the most sensible portion of your trip (from the standpoint of proximity) is the two week Budapest/Vienna/Prague portion - but it is your second and third week period. Perhaps (I think air connections are problematic) you could get to lovely Krakow for the first week (and spend a day also visiting Auschwitz, a day seeing the salt mines, a day in the Tatra mountains, etc.) for the first week and take an overnight train to Budapest. Join your friends for the itinerary of Budapest,Vienna and Prague and then you go on to Salzburg (and the nearby Lake District) and Munich, etc.

If you're backpacking, i suspect you need to preserve your funds but if you can get an open jaw ticket that allows you to leave from (for example) Italy to return home, you could take an overnight train (or it you are traveling light) fly on a discount European carrier to a city (perhaps in Italy) from which you could return home.

Edited: 20 March 2014, 20:42
6. Re: Five Weeks Around Budapest

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