Riga, Latvia to Vilnius, Lithuania by Train (or Bus): How to do it?
Replies: 13 - Last Post: Jul 30, 2011 11:22 AM Last Post By: jorginhop
Jul 7, 2011 6:11 AM
I am travelling from Riga to Vilnius on 25th/26th of July and would like some advice how best to get there. I'd prefer to go via train if possible. I understand this only goes on odd days (so the 26h is out), is this correct?
Where can I find information and book online? This https://ticket.ldz.lv/SARR/ has no tickets at all around this period. Am I right that I'll have to book once I'm there? If so, how much does a single cost?
How often do trains/buses run? Thanks
p.s - I am also going from Vilnius to Tallinn, Estonia on the 28th/29th of July. Any advice for that route would be appreciated too.
Jul 7, 2011 7:07 AM
1Is there a reason you are starting from Riga?
You will be going south to Vilnius and then North again to Tallinn.
When I was there some years ago, trains were okay for travel within a country (say Vilnius to Kaunus) but buses were better for crossing borders. I am sure other posters will update if this is no longer the case.
Jul 7, 2011 9:48 AM
2Hi. I know it's not ideal but I need to travel from Bristol, UK and only Ryan Air fly to Riga. There are no flights I could find from Bristol to Vilnius or Tallinn period. I'd have to go via London Stansted or London Luton, both a nightmare to get to.
Thanks for the info on trains/buses.
Are there any good bus websites? I can find times and prices.
Jul 8, 2011 12:17 AM
3There are no trains. Buses are very convenient. Some of the Lux Express buses have newspapers, coffee, wifi, etc.
Check out http://www.luxexpress.eu/lang/
Other companies also do the route, full list is here:
Jul 8, 2011 6:33 AM
4For Vilnius to Tallinn you could fly. Usually for a decent price on Airbaltic.com
Jul 9, 2011 4:36 AM
5Thanks mredman for the bus information. It's weird in 2011 for an EU country there are no international trains.
A few more questions please:
1. Looking at the luxexpress.eu website. How much better are the Lux Express buses to the Lux Express group buses? I'm guessing a lot better because the price is three times as much (but still cheap), 19 euros vs. 6 euros
2. Are there trains from Vilnius, Lithuania to Tallinn, Estonia? or should I use luxexpress.eu too?
3. And trains from Tallinn, Estonia to Riga, Latvia? or should I use luxexpress.eu too?
4. Is there any advantage to go from Riga to Vilnius first or Riga to Tallinn first? They both look roughly the same distance.
Thanks fogetmylogin. That's certainly an option.
The price is pretty good (95 euros), that's what I paid roughly for the flight from The UK (a bit more) but it's a 10 hour bus ride from Vilnius to Tallinn. I've done those distances before but not out of choice and Vilnius to Tallinn by bus would take the whole day. You're right, flight it is for this portion. I cannot afford to lose a whole day.
It could also be handy to get me back to Riga in time for my flight home too.
Jul 10, 2011 2:14 AM
6OK, one by one:
There are lots of international trains out Riga - Minsk, Moscow, St Petersburg, Kiev, etc. Just none to Vilnius or Tallinn because the routes have always been well served by buses and there are no direct tracks.
I don't understand what you mean :) Try re-reading what you wrote. There's no such thing as a bus to Vilnius for 6 euros. You can read the features of every bus by clicking on "Coaches" in the luxexpress website.
Pick up a map of the region, and you'll realise that this is a redundant question!
If you want to go from Vilnius to Tallinn, you have to go through Riga. There are 2 direct buses though which don't make stops.
There are no trains.
There is no difference.
That being said, this sounds like a pretty boring way to spend your days in the Baltics. Have you considered a more complicated route that takes in more destinations, sights, things to do? Or are you restrained in that respect?
Jul 10, 2011 12:26 PM
7Hi again. Thanks for the info. I misread it, I see the 6 euro is for groups of people.
Why is it boring? Aren't the capitol cities very exciting/interesting? I was led to believe they are. In terms of fitting more in, I've got 11 days total. I don't think I've got time for more, unless you disagree?
Jul 10, 2011 12:56 PM
8I think that the capital cities are very beautiful. But they can each be seen in two full days.
There are decent day trips away.
Vilnius to Kaunus, Trakai castle
Riga: take time to go around the Art Nouveau district, mostly around Elizabetes street. Jurmala seafront, the train ride is interesting. Also possibly Salaspils, the site of the concentration camp, now a museum with very striking huge statues.
Tallinn: Go out of the old town to the unusual library. You could go by ferry to Helsinki.
Jul 11, 2011 5:47 AM
9One should add as many things like that as possible, especially if have to rely on public transport. Then it's easy to drop any of them depending on situation (transport, weather, mood, money, etc).
Regarding Vilnius i'd agree that it is intereseting and one could spend more than 2 days but regular travelers are only interested in so-called Old Town and ignore everything else, say, 2 Regional parks (within city limits), several places no less interesting as Irbene Gost Town (LV) but easily accessible by public transport, some historic, mystic and scenic places/areas which are comparatively similar to Trakai island castle, Hill of Crosses and such but less touristy and just outside (or within) Vilnius city limits.
Similary about Riga, just the distances are slightly bigger. Can't say about Tallinn surroundings.
But if "capital" is "old town" then idea that "the capitol cities very exciting/interesting" and deserves 3 or more days is misleading.
So if "capital cities" are the "old towns", then ignoring everything and anything "between" the capital cities is waste of time. = boring.
Jul 11, 2011 10:29 AM
Can you elaborate on this list? Maybe name some names, photos, links? I was thinking of doing a cycling tour this august and I am genuinely interested.
Jul 12, 2011 12:20 AM
11Alright, thanks, I'll look into some of these places. I have to drive to Minsk in a couple of days so maybe I'll stop somewhere en route.
Jul 12, 2011 7:17 AM
Jul 30, 2011 11:22 AM
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