We are planning a trip to Poland at the end of August to visit my husband's family. We have set aside 14 days, thinking of starting off by flying into Berlin and driving to Poland or Amsterdam stay there for 2-3 days, off to Poland for a week and then to Paris for a few days to end the trip. I would love to hear some thoughts, i.e., fly vs train vs driving. We are just starting to think about where else to go, but Poland is the definite everything else is optional.
Possibly three major cities as well as family frolic in Poland, all in two weeks? I'd be driven to chugging Polish vodka. Two extra stops beside your reunion would be pushing it, but at least you would spend enough time to get the feel of those cities.
As to transport, www.seat61.com will tell you all about trains. www.skyscanner.com and www.whichbudget.com will search out the budget airlines that are so essential in Europe any more. Their competition has meant the established carriers have low prices on some routes too. Certainly use a different city to depart Europe from the one you arrived in.
Kathy, you could easily spend 14 days exploring Poland. Besides visiting with family, you could explore Warsaw, Gdansk (be sure to stop at Malbork Castle), Torun, Wroslaw, and Krakow. If you really want to combine Poland with another part of Europe, one idea is to figure out your flight options. For example, you might get a connecting flight from Warsaw to Amsterdam or Paris, and end your vacation in one of those two cities. Regarding flying vs trains vs driving, you need to consider how many people are traveling with you and the distances you are traveling. Train travel in Poland is relatively inexpensive. Using a car may be cheaper if you are traveling with a number of people, and it may be useful if you are going to more rural destinations. A car in most major European cities is more of a problem than a help.
I travel to Poland every summer for youth work. I love to add a stop on the beginning or end of my trip. It's great to see the contrast between Poland and the more affluent countries.( Especially how much growth is happening in Poland.) Last summer my mother and I flew Icelandair (they fly from Boston as well) into Copenhagen. We spent two days there and then took a train and ferry combo to Gdynia, Poland through the port at Karlskrona, Sweden. Depending on your main Polish destination, there are plenty of "on the way" places. Incidentally, we ended our trip with a train to Berlin, and a stopover in Iceland on the way home. BTW I would have stopped over in Paris but my father didn't want my mom to go there without him:)
If you plan to finish your Poland tour in Krakow, Easyjet will fly you nonstop from there to Paris very inexpensively. We did a similar trip a couple of years ago and that's what we did.