Replies: 3 - Last Post: Oct 5, 2012 11:29 PM Last Post By: everbrite
Oct 3, 2012 2:03 PM
Itinerary HelpHello everyone,
In late May, I am going to be taking a class trip to Prague & Krakow. Everything for those two cities is taken care of by my university. After Krakow, though, I am planning to stay in Europe and do some traveling on my own, most likely flying from Krakow to Vienna, and starting my solo portion of the trip in Vienna. I lived in Prague and have visited Krakow & Vienna, so I don't need too much help with that part. Once I leave Vienna for the Balkans is when I really need your help. I'd like to see as many countries as possible, but this is a confusing area to travel in, and no amount of research I do seems to apply directly to what I want to do. I visited Croatia last September and had a difficult time figuring out the train system, so I'm trying to figure out as much as possible as early as possible to prevent that from happening again. So, here is what I know so far:
I have any where from 30-45 days for this portion of the trip (this does NOT include my time in Prague, Krakow, & Vienna. I'll account for that on my own)
I'm thinking about $85-100 USD (65-78 EUR) a day. I know some places a bit cheaper, but I like to budget my trips a little over rather than finding myself short. I also know Croatia can be quite expensive, and this is one of the countries I really want to explore in depth.
I definitely want to make it to: Slovenia, Croatia (Rijeka, Plitvice, Dubrovnik, some islands), BiH, Montenego, Serbia, Kosovo. If time/budget, allows, I'd love to add Albania and maybe even Greece. I would love some help deciding exactly where to go in these countries. I love the cities just as much as I do outdoors. I am thinking making big cities my "base" and then doing day trips to the more scenic outdoor areas.
If possible, I'd also like to make it to Hungary (Budapest) and Turkey (Istanbul). How exactly can I make it to these countries? Would it make any sense to go from Vienna to Budapest, then from Budapest to Croatia, from Croatia to Slovenia, then from Slovenia back in to Croatia? Sounds complicated! If I took a train from Belgrade to Istanbul, is there somewhere in Bulgaria worth stopping along the way for a night or two? I've heard mixed things about Sofia, so maybe some other suggestions? Or is a plane the only reasonable way to include these 2 cities?
I think the logistics are what I really need help with, especially how to get from one place to the other. I know there's still a lot of time to plan, but I figure it's better to get an early start rather than a late one.
Sorry for asking so many questions - I know it's a lot and it's very early. Any help is appreciated more than I can express. I've been waiting for a trip like this for a long, long time, and can't wait to start making it a reality. Thanks again.
Oct 3, 2012 10:43 PM
Your budget is not the issue but if your intention is to visit these places in some depth, then you need to be a little selective given your timetable of 30-45 days. I think you are going to have to decide which is more important - Budapest or other parts of the Balkans otherwise you will have to backtrack. You list at least 8+ countries or cities on your must see list which really doesn't give you time to see places in depth.
Consider these two possible routes:
1. Vienna to Budapest to Pecs to Osijek to Sarajevo to Mostar to Split (side trip to Krka NP) to islands to Dubrovnik to Kotor Bay to Bar to Shkodra to Prizren to Tetevo to Ohrid to Bitola to Florina to Thessaloniki to Plovdiv to Istanbul
1. Vienna to Ljubljana to Rijeka, Plitvice NP, Zadar, Krka NP, Split, Dubrovnik, some islands, Mostar, Sarajevo to Kotor (you will pass back through Dubrovnik) to Bar to Belgrade to Nis to Skopje to Ohrid to Bitola to Florina to Thessaloniki to Plovdiv to Istanbul (this entails more backtracking if you look at a map)
Oct 5, 2012 1:04 PM
2Thank you for those 2 possibilities. I think the second option seems great. I might change it up a little bit, leaving a few stops out and adding one or two, but for the most part, it seems exactly what I'm looking for. In the areas that aren't big cities, like Rijeka, Krka, Ohrid, etc. would I be taking public transportation to get there? Or are there privately owned buses that go there? Just wondering if I should be prepared to book transportation ahead of time. Also, are these places to stay overnight, or just do day trips to? Thanks again.
Oct 5, 2012 11:29 PM
3This is all possible by public transport. I am not only computer but try searching this website as I have posted a link for buses in the Balkans. You don't need to book buses in advance for these short hops.
PS if you try adding back places like Budapest then you won't have time for all the other places because of all the backtracking you need to do to see the places you otherwise indicated we're musts. As is, with either of the itineraries that I gave you, you will be on the move quite a bit. Do let us know what you were thinking to change and why.
Edited by: everbrite
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