Berlin -> dresden?-> krakow-> bydgoszcz.
Replies: 14 - Last Post: Mar 30, 2012 5:42 PM Last Post By: pizwat
Mar 26, 2012 10:40 AM
I just signed up for this site, so I apologize if I am posting in the wrong forum..
I am traveling to Europe in July 2012, for a wedding in Bydgoszcz July 14th. Since the airfare was the majority of the expense, I decided to expand the weekend and make it a 18day adventure. (i love to travel. and have never been to Europe).
I am surprising my fiance (who has no idea about this trip) and we are doing an 11 day escorted tour with gate 1 (budapest, prague, vienna, berlin).
I then have from monday july 9th till friday july 13th, to make my way to bydgoszcz. I was advised to take a train from berlin to dresden, spend a day or two in dresden, and then go to krakow for a day or two. then to the wedding.
My concern is, A. Id rather than be on trains all day, and missing the sites of these cities. B. I have a tendency to overbook a destination. C. We are doing a "city tour" in Dresden, as part of the escorted tour. D. Im really not that good with computers and am having problems using Raileurope.com to see the train schedules.
I guess my questions are...
1. Is dresden worth going back to...and if so, should it just be one night there...or more
2. Is there sufficient trains going from berlin to dresden and dresden to krakow? and do i need to book it now, like one would do for an airline ticket.
3. Is krakow worth visiting? and if so, how many nights.
again, i am sorry if i am posting this in a wrong forum or if these questions have already been answered, I am still looking for answers on this site, as well as others. Thank you in advance for any help.
Mar 26, 2012 11:06 AM
1I can only tell you about Krakow: it is surely worth visiting! I think that 2-4 days should be enough for the first time(that's my rule in visiting main cities in any country) ;)
Mar 26, 2012 12:25 PM
2Kraków is worth visitng, but not exactly on your route from Berlin to Bydgoszcz.
Dresden and Kraków is certainly too much for the effective 3 days that you have - keep in mind that Berlin to Kraków is 9 hours on the train, Kraków to Bydgoszcz at least 7 hours. BTW http://bahn.de is the website for European train timetables. Raileurope is just a (slighlty rip-off) ticket reseller.
Either do only Kraków, or skip Kraków altogether and do places that are closer to Bydgoszcz, like for example Gdańsk (with Malbork) and Toruń.
Mar 27, 2012 8:18 AM
Mar 27, 2012 2:18 PM
4If you're doing a city tour of Dresden as part of your inclusive tour, then there's probably little point in going back for the city. However, one of Dresden's advantages is the opportunity it gives to visit places roundabout - including Meissen, the Elbe gorge and the Saxon Switzerland national park. But I don't think you have time to see these and visit Krakow (or indeed elsewhere in Poland as #2 suggests) on your way to Bydgoszcz, so I think you'll need to make a choice based on your preferences.
As #2 says bahn.de the german railways site is the best for trains throughout Europe and the general advice on this site is to avoid Rail Europe which is really only a retailer, usually with a healthy mark up. Polish railways info is available on pkp.pl but you'll find most of what you want on the german site
Mar 27, 2012 2:22 PM
Mar 27, 2012 3:17 PM
6I agree with ig0r. Instead of going to Dresden you can take direct train from Berlin to Gdansk (those connections start in June, there will be two a day) or by plane with AirBerlin. This city has also many to offer, as well as other two (Gdynia and Sopot) that together make the so-called TriCity. From Gdansk you can go to Malbork by train (it can be a side trip) and then to Torun - another great city, with beautiful old town. From Torun there is only one hour by train to Bydgoszcz.
There is no direct train Dresden - Krakow, you need to change trains in Wroclaw. Dresden - Wroclaw = 3.5 hrs, Wroclaw - Krakow = 5.5 hrs. Note that Wroclaw is also worth a visit itself - great city, great history. One of the most beautiful main squares in Poland.
Krakow is beautiful indeed, the most touristy place in Poland and there is a reason for that. But going there and then to Bydgoszcz would be a waste of time on trains.
Edited by: rocking_pony
Mar 27, 2012 9:48 PM
Mar 28, 2012 12:10 PM
Thanks for all the responses. I appreciate all the help. I have decided to fly from krakow to bydgoszcz on friday that 13th of july... but now i am wondering whether or not going back to dresden for a day or two is worth it.
I guess i am just nervous to dedicate 3 full days or more to Krakow, and when we get there, be bored.
I also see the logistics of getting from dresden to krakow are not easy nor cheap.
I looked at flights from dresden to krakow and flights from berlin to krakow and both are beyond my budget. I also kinda like the idea of the train. I really would like to try and get an overnight train from dresden to krakow...or even berlin to krakow...but I am not having much luck with raileurope.com or bahn.de. I guess i am not as computer savvy as i thought. ;)
thanks for all the help again. I really appreciate it.
Mar 28, 2012 2:06 PM
Nothing wrong with you - simply there's no such direct train. Fastest way from Berlin to Kraków is EuroCity train to Warsaw and InterCity train from Warsaw to Kraków. There's also a slightly lower direct train (10 hrs). The only overnight option is afternoon regional train from Berlin to Szczecin and Polish overnight train from Szczecin to Kraków.
Skyscanner.net shows 80 euro flight on the date you need. If you use trains you'll spend at least 60 euros pp. Not big difference IMHO.
I see no point in returning to Dresden if you'll already have been there earlier. If you think 3 day is too much in Kraków (many would say it is not given that you can do day trips to Zakopane/Tatra Mts, Wieliczka salt mine, Auschwitz), than stop for a day in Wrocław or Poznań.
Mar 29, 2012 4:27 AM
You can fly in to the Bydgoszcz - there is airport. If you decided to fly to Berlin it is better to go to Szczecin for more effective travel. Szczecin is also worth a visit. Near Bydgoszcz you should visit old gothic city of Torun, and spend there night and day, and town of Chelmno - small pearl!!!
You can visit also Gdansk - nicest city on Baltic Sea - medieval Hanseatic gem and city of Solidarity movement(destroy of Socialist block), Malbork huge castle, Sopot sea resort, Hel peninsula....
Krakow you can visit next time - 3-4 nights.
Mar 29, 2012 6:27 PM
12Hi Jim -
There's lots of good advice so far in this thread. But how do you know who's advice to take about where to go? Here's what I would do if I were in your shoes.
Take some time and enjoy the trip planning. If you can do that and avoid tipping off the fiance, that is. Take 20 minutes and look at a map of eastern Germany and Poland to see where some of the suggested cities are in relation to each other. Google the city names, then click on "images" on Google and spend some time looking at the pictures. You love to travel, so you have some idea of what kinds of things you like: historic architecture or good night life or museums, or…; do you like to see as many things as you can or do you like to leave space for an hour of people watching in a well-situated cafe?
If it's nightlife you like, perhaps you missed a possibility: extending your stay in Berlin. RIght now you only have one full day there (I looked at the Gate 1 site) and Berlin has a million things to do, and it's a magnet for young people from everywhere. Historic architecture, not so much, especially considering the alternatives.
Anyway, spend sometime researching what each city has to offer. That way you won't feel, for example, obligated to go back to Dresden simply because someone suggested it. Instead you'll know why you are going where. Then come back here and let the other writers fill in the gaps in the information you collected - there's no better place to do that. You've still got plenty of time to finalize your plans. Take the time and enjoy having a look around before you let other people's opinions pull you in all directions. That's what I would do.
P.S. - Unless you need constant adrenaline stimulation, 3 days in Kraków is not too long. It's also not too long for Berlin.
Mar 30, 2012 2:18 PM
Mar 30, 2012 5:42 PM
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