We are going to be In Warsaw next June and wanted to see Majdanek. We only have a day and a half to do this before going on to Vilnius. I though we would take the 7:56 am train from Warsaw arriving at 10:56 am then go to Majdanek (it is not a Monday), then spend the evening and night (Vanilla Hotel looks good in our price range) in Lublin then take the 7:28 am train to Warsaw, arriving at 10:35 am then on to Vilnius on a 1:15 pm LOT flight. I know this seems rushed but it is the only time we have and we have kept paces like this before in travel (we will have 3 days before this in Warsaw, 4 days after in Vilnius). Is this doable (heard there was some construction going on)
I didn't get to Lublin during this year's trip to Poland, and I haven't yet even researched Vilnius, which will be included in a later trip. So my perspective is very limited. However, I think 3 days is very short for Warsaw if you have an interest in the 20th century historical sights. I found I spent a lot of time in them and ended up extending my stay in Warsaw twice. But I don't know whether it would be reasonable to switch one day from Vilnius to Warsaw--especially if you have a family connection to Lithuania.
Getting to the airport for the 1:15 PM flight looks rather rushed, but I'm risk-averse when it comes to catching flights. Do they recommend being at the airport 2 hours before that flight? It's close to 10 miles from the main train station to the airport. I flew into Warsaw and took the airport bus, which was convenient, cheap, and efficient but wouldn't be fast enough for you. I have no idea what sort of traffic a taxi would hit, heading out of town between 10:30 and 11 in the morning.
Sorry not to be able to provide any real help!
We have a tour set up in Vilnius to see my grandmother's birthplace and that along with a similar stop in Lviv for my wife are the main reasons we set up this trip. Warsaw was thrown in and then my wife really wanted to see Majdanek. We have already cut out Budapest as another stop and feel very comfortable based on prior European trips seeing a city in 3-4 days. We only do this every 4-5 years so we balance time per city with desire to see more of Europe. If I could I would spend 1-2 weeks in each!
I’m not really qualified to answer this question either. I haven’t been to Vilnius or Lublin, and I’ve flown in and out of Warsaw once. Your connection from Lublin to Vilnius sounds a little tight to me. If your train is on time, it will probably work. It really depends on what your options are if you miss your flight and how you deal with risk.
I think this might work better if you were to begin with your trip via Lublin and then spend the remaining time in Warsaw. Then you wouldn’t have the connection problem to Vilnius (but you might have a new connection problem getting from Lviv (?) to Majdanek).
As far as time in Warsaw goes, we only had one day to sight see and we spent much of that day in the “Hiistory of Polish Jews” museum. We figured that Warsaw was a city we could come back to another time, since you could get a nonstop flight there from the US.
Hope you have a lovely trip! Please post about Vilnius and Ukraine when you get back. Both are on my list!
Our flight connections work out best to fly into Lviv then go to Warsaw then Vilnius then back home. As far as Lublin, maybe the safest choice (yes it is a long day) is to just use our last of 4 Warsaw days and take the 7:42 am train arriving 10:56 in Lublin then leaving that night back to Warsaw by bus at 9:50 pm arriving at 12:50 am. That allows for running late and we can sleep in or sightsee a little the next day before heading to the airport for the 1:15 flight to Vilnius.
The highlight of the trip will be to see the birthplace of my grandmother (near Vilnius) and of my wife's grandparents (near Lviv).
I couldn't tell whether you are aware of this or not: Majdanek is a bit east of Lublin, ie, not close to Warsaw. It was the first death camp to be liberated by the Soviets as they advanced into eastern Poland. I would suggest taking the train from Warsaw to Lublin, stay the night, then see the camp.
Only one day to do it, see my note just before yours
I think the one day excursion sounds safer too, and uses your time efficiently. Hope you have a wonderful trip!
I spent three summers in Lublin. It's a lovely, fairly compact city, especially the Old Town area you'll be in. What if you switched things around a bit. Instead of heading down early in the morning, go down the night before; it looks like there's a 1550 train that arrives at 1910. It will still be light out in June, and you can check into your hotel, have dinner and go to bed. Restauracja Sielsko Anielsko was a favorite among us in the language program; I had some delicious fruit pierogies there. Get up early the next morning and see Majdanek (directions here: http://www.majdanek.eu/en/information ). The first time I went (back in 2007), I simply walked in. There were no guides or other tourists. The second time, the language school organized a tour, and I went on a guided tour. Either way, it's a powerful experience, but one that shouldn't take more than a two or three hours. You could have most of the rest of the day to see the city. Wander the streets. Tour the castle. Visit the flea market, if it's up. Then, take an evening train back to Warsaw. You could even sleep near the airport to make your next morning easier. Or, if you can, stay in the same hotel as the rest of your stay. If you do that, the hotel might be able to store the majority of your luggage, and you can do your overnight to Lublin with a smaller bag.
We made a change in plans, I think we are just going to do the best we can on a day trip from Warsaw to Lublin. Any update on this topic, anyone recently attempt the round trip Warsaw to Lublin to Warsaw as a day trip?