Hello. My husband and I will be in Prague for 3 nights in September. We arrive by train at 3:30 on Tuesday 25th and plan to depart for Vienna on Friday the 28th. Our current plan is to hire a private car to take us to Vienna via Cesky Krumlov but now I am questioning that plan as I think we are short on time in Vienna. With three nights in Prague, would we be better off doing a day trip to Cesky and taking the train to Vienna? Overall I don’t feel like we really have enough time in any city that we are visiting so planning the itinerary has been a challenge. Thank you in advance for any recommendations!
With only three nights in Prague (how many in Vienna?), I might skip Cesky Krumlov. It's a nice town, but personally I was a bit underwhelmed by it - perhaps my expectations were too high. It's become very touristy now especially in the daytime. Better at night for sure.
I'd probably pencil it in as a day trip from Prague - as an option, to take if you have found you have had enough time there. No need to do a lot of advanced planning for Cesky Krumlov if you choose to go. Just have a Plan A and a Plan B to do it or not. You can almost surely buy bus or train tickets at the last minute if need be.
Something more worthwhile - if only you had more time! - would be to rent a car as you leave Prague and spend a few days driving through Southern Bohemia, including Cesky Krumlov, then maybe return the car in Brno and train on to Vienna. There are some lovely little towns in Southern Bohemia besides CK - Telc (actually in Moravia I think) closer to Brno is really nice too.
I agree that Prague and very nearby have enough for three days or more, and Vienna for more. CK could be omitted if you have seen a few other medieval or half-timbered towns, although each has its own special factors. The issue here (i.e. your OP) is that CK is way out of the way as a daytrip or by public transportation. Cesky has a few unique factors, like that Hitler spoke there and that there is a rare "untouched" royal Baroque Court Theater in the town (tour only, not on your own.)
OTOH, if you are going to PAY for a car service to Vienna, I would certainly stop in Cesky Krumlov, even if only for two hours. If that is harmful to your Vienna time, then you should consider cutting some things out of your itinerary. The "castle" (mansion, really) is in my opinion missable, so you can just walk around. Some people look forward to nearby hiking and kyacking. Not us.
How much time do you have in Vienna? Your 3 nights in Prague mean 2 full days. I wouldn’t use one for a day trip. CK is too far, anyway, for a day trip.
Given how much there is to see and do in Vienna, I agree with those who have advised skipping CK.
Very helpful thank you. We only have 2 nights in Vienna which is why I am now reconsidering CK. I think Vienna is where we are definitely short on time from all I have read but there is just no room in the itinerary to add another night. Sounds like it makes sense to skip CK and get an early start to Vienna to maximize our time there. Not to mention that would eliminate the private car thereby reducing the expense. Great feedback and much appreciated!