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Input for Prague Vienna Salzburg Itinerary

We are leaving London on a Monday in July and have 6-7 days to travel but need to fly out of London home. Is a trip to Prague Vienna Salzburg, fly back to London from Vienna, possible? If so, suggestions on itinerary?
Kansas City

Posted by
16763 posts

I disagree. I think two days is seriously inadequate for Prague; I think it needs more like 4, and 7 days was too short a visit for me. I would certainly not spend a day in Bratislava if I only had 2 days in Prague.

And I really, really do not like night trains in general, because even as a youngster I didn't sleep well on them, which messed up my sightseeing the next day. In this case, you'd be substituting an 8-hour night train for a very reasonable 4 hours on the train in the daytime. The night train makes six stops (braking, station noise, acceleration) between 11 PM and 5:13 AM. And it arrives in Bratislava at 5:50 AM. I'm not sure what there would be to do in Bratislava for the next 3 or 4 hours.

I also would not ever recommend using the RailEurope website to buy tickets. It is the high-priced supplier and doesn't always offer all the available trains. Better to go to the website of the company actually operating the trains. If that isn't workable for some reason, use trainline.com.

Posted by
356 posts

With seven days, I recommend visiting just two cities, either Prague - Vienna (4 hours train) or Prague - Salzburg (6 hours bus). Realistically, this is probably the first and last time you are going to see these places, so you want to give them each some time.

I would agree with the poster above regarding night trains. It really is a poor night's sleep. Rather than taking a night I would limit the transfer to just one day.

Regarding airports in London, please note that there are six international airports (all offering flights to Prague) - Heathrow, London City, Gatwick, Stansted, Luton and Southend. The latter three are large distances from the city itself, so make sure that you double-check the airport before you book the flight.

Posted by
1163 posts

I did Prague, Vienna and Salzburg in December. I did 3 nights in Prague ( 2.5 days) and 4 nights in Vienna. I did a one day trip to Salzburg via train to Salzburg

I took the train between Prague and Vienna in the the daytime. Train left at 8:50 and we were in Vienna before 1 pm Great scenery and a very relaxing ride. I was mainly there for Christmas Markets but definitely did see a lot more. I do wish I had more time in Salzburg but it was a great one day trip.

Posted by
613 posts

With more than 600 days traveling in EU, our top cites are: London Barcelona Prague, Vienna Rome (and Budapest is growing on me). Salzburg is overrated. If you had 3 weeks in Austria, include Salzburg, but for 1 week, stick with Prague & Vienna.

Posted by
4073 posts

The advice from MaryPat is way off, in my opinion. First, never use RailEurope as they are an expensive travel agency that doesn't even run any trains. Next - a sleeper train? Gross. Bratislava? It is an ok town, but nothing compared to Vienna (which the OP said they wanted to visit).

Trains from Prague to Vienna take 4 hours and 5 minutes. A night train is not necessary. Here are instructions on how to purchase your train ticket - https://www.seat61.com/trains-and-routes/prague-to-vienna-by-train.htm

I think that you should split your time equally between Prague and Vienna. If you want to see some countryside, spend one of your Vienna days at the Wachau - the Danube wine growing area with lots of history and cute villages.

Posted by
227 posts

Why spend a precious day traveling when you can spend a full day in Prague, get a good night’s sleep in a sleeper car on a train and wake up in Bratislava? Store your bags and walk to the old town and follow RSEs self- guided walk in this adorable old town, which is more quaint than Vienna. Have you done this?
The view from the SNP Bridge and UFO offers a view of the many uniform communist skyscrapers across the river that gives a glimpse of what a communist city looked like back in the day.

Posted by
16763 posts

I've taken a good number of night trains (most of them in my younger days). "A good night's sleep" is a rare commodity under those conditions. The generic night train is not the Orient Express. It seems to be a pretty rare person who sleeps more than fitfully.

Day trains from Prague to Bratislava take only 4 hours. You can leave Prague at 7:44 PM (after a full day of sightseeing and an early, casual dinner), reach Bratislava at 11:44 PM, and collapse in a real bed for a solid night's sleep. Or you can board the train at 9:56 PM, stop at nine stops along the way, and arrive in Bratislava at 5:50 AM after nearly 7 hours on the train and who knows how little sleep. And just what are you going to do in Bratislava at 6 AM? I know which one I'd choose.

This is aside from the question of whether spending any time at all in Bratislava is advisable when a traveler must start and end in London, has only 6 or 7 days available, and wants to see Prague, Vienna and Salzburg.

Posted by
631 posts

I cleared some posts. Opposing viewpoints are fine, but let's avoid negatively questioning anyone's experience or opinion. This forum is here to provide multiple opinions so that the OP and other readers can make the right choice for themselves.

Thanks, everyone!

Posted by
4637 posts

Having just 6 to 7 days to travel you got only time to see Prague and Vienna. Forget Salzburg. Some posters suggested Bratislava. Unfortunately with your time constraint forget it too. Train ride Prague to Vienna is just short of 4 hours. I don't know if there is a night train for such a short ride but even if it is (which I strongly doubt) why would you go by night train? You would get almost no sleep, cost of your train ride would be significantly higher. On this train ride buy your tickets from Czech Rails. The tickets from them are usually the cheapest. Avoid Eurail like devil cross. Very expensive. I noticed that the number of not very good advices on this forum is increasing. Like: travel to Bratislava (nothing wrong with Bratislava but if you got 6 to 7 days to travel, stay with Prague and Vienna). Travel by sleeper train when the ride is 4 or slightly less hours. Buy tickets from Eurail, and so on.