Spending two to three days per capital will give you a great overview of the region. Start your trip in the dynamic, delightfully idiosyncratic Berlin. The history-filled capital of reunited Germany is also something of a party place. Then ride the rails to sprawling Warsaw, with a reconstructed Old Town that became the capital of the Commonwealth of Poland and Lithuania back in the mid-16th century. After a few days, continue south to mystical Prague. The Czech seat of power is famous for its fantasyland of Gothic architecture – and for great beer. Next? Slovakia's Bratislava is a fascinating mix of Old Town charm and new development. The imperial opulence of the long-reigning Habsburg empire is still evident in Austria's capital, Vienna. Just don't satiate yourself on coffee-house culture there; you have more cafes to visit in one-time cocapital Budapest. Today Hungary's main city is abuzz, a mix of the modern and the historic. If you have time, detour to Ljubljana in Slovenia and tiny Vaduz in Liechtenstein; otherwise World Heritage–listed Bern, the Swiss capital fought over by Holy Roman and Habsburg Empires alike, is your final stop. It's so beautiful, it's no wonder everyone wanted a piece of it.


Two Weeks