4 weeks backpacking in Eastern Europe
Replies: 12 - Last Post: Aug 13, 2012 9:58 PM Last Post By: daveelmstrom
Aug 8, 2012 8:19 AM
4 weeks backpacking in Eastern EuropeHey guys,
I am going off for 4 weeks backpacking in Eastern Europe in 2 weeks time. This is my first time backpacking alone. I have already booked my ticket to Zadar but I still need to book my ticket to back home. I would appreciate any suggestion or feedback.
My itinerary is as follows:
Zadar - day 1, 2 (leaving on day 2 or 3?)
Split - day 2, 3, 4
Hvar - day 5, 6
Dubrovnik - day 6, 7
Kotor - day 8
Mostar - day 9
Sarajevo - day 9, 10
Zagreb - day 11, 12
Ljubljana - day 12, 13, 14
Vienna - day 15, 16, 17
Bratislava - day 18,19, 20
Budapest - day 21, 22, 23
Krakow - day 24, 25, 26
Warsaw - day 27,28, 29, 30
Maybe be add Olomouc or Belgrade? I am pretty flexible and open to suggestion.
This is kind of a rough plan. Is it too tight in terms of time? Ideally I would want to end up in either Warsaw, Krakow, Budapest or Bratislava since the flight back home is cheaper from those cities. Thanks!
Aug 8, 2012 9:41 AM
1I don't think you need four days in Warsaw, or three days in Bratislava. You could cut at least one day each from those cities. I think you probably need a bit more time in Croatia. For example, you could find yourself with only one day in Dubrovnik. You'll spend at least half a day getting to Dubrovnik from Hvar, not to mention the time to get to your hotel, checked in, and oriented in a new town. You'll run into similar problems in Kotor and Mostar -- because of traveling time, you won't end up having a full day. Belgrade is a great city. But I think your itinerary needs more small towns, rural -- you have enough large cities once you leave Croatia, maybe find a smaller village or town to explore.
I might suggest that you make the effort to get to Plitvice National Park, while you are in Zagreb. Take a bus there from Zagreb, stay one night, and then return to Zagreb.
Aug 8, 2012 12:29 PM
2If you don't make the effort to go to Plitvice Lakes, then at least try to get to Krka National Park which is north of Sibenik which is on your way to Split.
I would definitely spend more time in Kotor and take some day trips to Cetinje, Perast, Stari Grad Bar, etc.
I would spend another night in Sarajevo.
Unless you are wedded to the order I might rearrange things and eliminate Poland. Not because it isn't interesting but because I think you need more time for Poland and to allow you to see some smaller places that aren't on your list. One issue is that many folks only make stops at the places they have heard about but there are lots of smaller towns in between that are worth visiting. Of course, it would help to know your interests.
Sarajevo (3 nights)
Belgrade (3 nights)
Novi Sad bus to
Osijek (1 night)
Pecs (2 nights)
Budapest (3-4 nights)
Bratislava (for only a night or two)
Vienna (3 nights)
Maribor (2 nights)
Ljubljana (2 nights)
from here it depends some on where you are heading to next.
Aug 8, 2012 1:45 PM
Aug 8, 2012 2:19 PM
4Sarajevo is worth more time than Bratislava or Ljubjana. I liked Ljubljana, but 2 days is sufficient. Bratislava can be seen in a day. Sarajevo is worth 4 days. Budapest is worth more time than Krakow or Warsaw as well.
I would cut Krakow, Warsaw, and Ljubljana down to about 2 days each and then add more time to Sarajevo and Budapest and probably an overnight in Mostar. Just my recommendation. Good luck.
Aug 8, 2012 4:23 PM
5Hi guys, thanks for all the feedback. Here is my revised itinerary after considering all the suggestion:
Zadar - 3d (1d - Plitvice)
Krka - 1d ???
Split - 4/5d (1/2d - Hvar)
Mostar 1d (inc train to Sarajevo)
Novi Sad 1d ???
Ptuj 2/3d (day trip to surrounding area)
Ljubljana 3/4d (day trip to surrounding area)
I read Slovenia's countryside is quite wonderful (worth checking it out?)
Maybe Brno & Olomouc???
Still haven't book my returns yet. Either BA back home from Vienna or Wizz air from Brno. Wizz air is around 20GBP cheaper. Is there any reason to take BA rather than Wizz air? Thanks.
Aug 8, 2012 5:14 PM
Aug 9, 2012 3:19 AM
7Nice plan - you will definitely enjoy it.
I would spend a day less in both Zadar and Split, and explore the islands or national parks more. You definitely don't need 4/5 days in Split - its lovely place, but two nights should do it. Instead, spend an extra day in Hvar or explore the island of Brac for a day.
You might have to spend a night in Mostar, depending on what time of the day you arrive and what time your train leaves for Sarajevo - I would recommend an overnight stay there anyway. It looks beautiful when the night falls.
For Ljubljana, 3-4 days is a quiet a lot. It is a beautiful, but rather small town. I'd rather visit the Slovenian countryside which is lovely - Lake Bled in particular is magnificent.
Bratislava - one day should be enough.
Zagreb - I would give it two days, it is much bigger and there is some beautiful architecture there and nice museums.
Sarajevo - three days minimum.
Vienna and Budapest - well, give them as much time as possible :)
I have never flown before with WizzAir, co can't comment on how they compare to BA, but I guess they should be cheaper being a budget airline.
Good luck and enjoy the trip.
Aug 9, 2012 3:59 AM
8Hi - and welcome to Thorn Tree. Sounds like a good trip.
I would change it around a bit, but it's only my opinion and different tastes of your chosen destinations.
Wizzair is fine, but there are booking and card fees - plus a charge for hold luggage.
Generally quite a bit cheaper overall than BA - though.
2 days in Warsaw, same in Vienna. Add on an extra couple of days in Dubrovnik.
While in Dubrovnik, try and build in a small trip into Montenegro.... Maybe Europe's prettiest country.
Ljubljana.... Just a couple of days. Same for Zagreb (as you've already suggested).
An extra day or two in Sarajevo - with built in day trips.
Just a bit of juggling - and purely my own ideas.
Hope you have a great time.
Aug 9, 2012 1:50 PM
9Got a question here. Since I will be going to Austria, I am wondering whether to buy the LP Europe on a Shoestring or LP Eastern Europe? Are they both very similar? If so, why would I not just buy LP Europe on a Shoestring since it's got more countries? Another question is I am travelling on a budget, does both give me similar advice budget wise? Thanks!
Aug 9, 2012 3:43 PM
10More countries in one book simply mean less information about each of the countries that are in the book. Since you are only planning to visit one city, I recommend several things instead. One, read the destination guide here on the LP website, look for an inyourpocket.com guide for Vienna, consider just buying the chapter on Vienna which you can download and print out what you might need, buying a used guidebook and cutting out the section that you want,...
My last trip to Eruope was mostly in Montenegro so I only bought the guidebook for that country but when I was in Split, Dubrovnik, Belgrade, Ljubljana, Zurich, Geneva and Paris, I went to the tourist office.
Aug 13, 2012 9:14 PM
11Since it's my first time backpacking, I am wondering how the logistics works for both transport & accommodation. I originally think of buying tickets & searching accommodation when I get there. But a friend has suggested booking hostels in advance. It makes me wonder how far ahead should I be planning? or I should just go with the flow? What's your opinion? Thanks.
Aug 13, 2012 9:58 PM
12I normally get online a day or two before I leave for a new city, and book a hostel/hotel at that time. It saves the hassle of walking around town looking for a place to stay. But it also allows you to be spontaneous. I have done this in the heart of summer. But you'll be traveling in September when things start slowing down, so you shouldn't have any problems finding accommodations.
Edited by: daveelmstrom
(0 star Hotel)
From US$0.00 per night
(5 star Hotel)
From US$212.87 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$74.19 per night