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Before and After Best of Eastern Europe Tour

Just dreaming at this point...but I'd be curious to know where people may have gone before and after this tour. Has anyone flown in to Vienna and spent a few days there and then taken the train or a bus to Prague? Is that relatively easy to do? Are 3 full days enough for Vienna? How much time did you spend/did you wish you'd spent in Prague prior to the start of the tour?

Are there other good options for pre-tour?

If you went elsewhere in Europe after the tour, where did you go?


Posted by
1068 posts

I did it the other way around. Went to Prague a day or two before the tour. It is a very "rich" and fun city, one of my favorites now. There are number of things to see that you will not get to on the tour, plus, it is a fun place just to hang out. I also spent a day going to Kutna Hora, which was a pretty cool experience (for me.) After the tour, I took a train to Vienna and spent 3 full days there. Again, loads of fun and a great city. You can certainly spend more time there, but I found myself in a pretty good state after 3 days.

Posted by
1178 posts

I have not been on the Eastern Europe tour but it is on my short list! I have been to Vienna and Prague and loved both cities. I went on the week long Prague tour when RS had this tour and I spent four extra days in Vienna after the GAS tour last year and it was not enough. I would definitely look at the RS guide books for both cities, watch RS videos and others on YouTube for free to get the feel and know what each city has to offer.

I would love to go back to both cities. I loved Vienna and thought it was easy to get around, many wonderful museums and palaces and concerts and operas to attend to. I went to two concerts and an opera and the horse show while I was in Vienna. You can do something every night of the week in Vienna. Along with going to their amazing cafes and shops areas and museums. You can spend a week in Vienna and not see it all. Prague, it is a most wonderful city and there are several museums to see and the Charles Bridge is outstanding. Depending on your funds and your time you can stay for as long as you can in each city and see tons of things.

Is 3 full days enough in Vienna, no but if that is all you have then you will see a lot in that amount of time.

I don't have any knowledge about getting from Vienna to Prague.

But whatever you decide, Prague or Vienna to stay in before the tour will be wonderful. I would stay in Prague because your there already and leave Vienna for another time but that is up to you. There is much to see in Prague for 3 full days before the tour.

Have a great time whenever you go!

Posted by
16890 posts

I did it the same as Ray, last time. I spent the last tour morning in Ljubljana and took the direct afternoon train to Vienna - 6 hours and you can bring something onboard for your dinner. There's also a direct train from Lesce-Bled station to Munich.

Train connections to Venice (another popular destination) from either Lesce-Bled or Bled Jezero require at least one connection. The Go Opti Shuttle service or DRD Autobus are faster and easier.

Looking Up Train Schedules and Routes Online gives you the DB train schedule link and tips for using it.

Posted by
736 posts

I definitely would have spent more time in Prague at the start. So much to see.

Posted by
2316 posts

I have been to both Prague and Vienna and would love to spend more time in either city. Since this tour begins in Prague, I would go there a couple days pre-tour since the tour only spends 2 nights there. One of the other posters mentioned how to best travel to Vienna post-tour. There is so much to do in both cities, I think it depends on how much time you have for your vacation to determine which one or both you will visit.

Happy travels!
Judy B

Posted by
54 posts

We did this tour back in 2013 and did both a pretour and post trip extension. We flew into Munich than took a train to Salzburg, stayed 2 nights. Took train to Vienna stayed 3 nights. Took van to Cesky Krumlov, stayed one night. Took Student bus to Prague stayed 3 nights before tour started. After the tour ended we took the train from Lake Bled to Venice stayed 4 nights, home from Venice. I was retired at this time and dh used the whole month of May for vacation. His new vacation year started in June.
Although we didn't spend a great deal of time in each place, it gave us enough time to get a flavor of the different cites, towns and villages. We stayed at some wonderful B&B's with hosts that were very generous in helping plan our time. Would do it again in a heartbeat............................but too many places that we haven't been. Please contact me if you would like more info.

Posted by
39 posts

We were in Vienna last September and took the train from there to Prague. Are three days enough in Vienna? Probably not, but you will get to see quite a bit of it in three days. You can easily purchase a train ticket to Prague from Vienna. There are several trains each day. I would stop by the train station a couple days before want to leave Vienna and buy your ticket and reserve your seat. If you want to, Bratislava is an easy day trip from Vienna and I though it was worth it. It is very different from Vienna. If you go, check out a tour with Authentic Slovakia, they do a great job with a Bratislava tour. In Vienna, we stayed at Hotel Nossek. It is right in the center of town on the Graben. Enjoy your trip. Both Vienna and Prague are must sees for however much time you have.

Posted by
61 posts

I went on the Prague-Budapest tour in 2015. I flew into Vienna several days before the tour group met in Prague. There is much to see and do in Vienna (I went to the opera house and a day trip to Mauthausen, the concentration camp). It was very easy to take the train to Prague. As noted, I made the reservation online a month in advance and reserved a seat. Talking to a passenger at the platform, I learned she had just purchased her ticket and paid three times what I had. The train ride was around 4 hours. In Prague, I stayed at an Airbnb apartment and went on a tour of Terezin before meeting the RS tour group. I loved Prague!

Posted by
550 posts

Dona, I'm interested in your overall experience of Vienna at the front end and Venice at the back end of the tour. Did it feel like too much?

How challenging was it to get to Venice from Lake Bled? Did you spend any extra time at Lake Bled before going to Venice, and if not, do you wish you had?

As I said, right now I am only in the dreaming stage. One thought would be to arrive a week early, spend 3+ days in Vienna and 3 days in Prague prior to the tour....then travel to Venice and spend a few days there. The downside to this would be that we would most likely be traveling mid-June (as my daughter won't be finished with school until mid-May) and I don't know if would be too hot to enjoy Venice that time of year.

Other options for places to begin and end the tour? An extra 3+ days in Prague prior to the tour is already a given. We took the BOE21 tour a few years ago and got to Amsterdam 2 days ahead and I wished we'd had more time there!

Posted by
29 posts

I took this tour in June of 2014 and spent 3 days in Paris first. I caught an early morning flight to Prague the day the tour started and I remember it being fairly cheap (around $100). I flew home from Ljubljana the day the tour ended but would have liked to spend a few days touring Ljubljana. Looking back, it would have been good to arrive in Prague the day before the tour began as I would have liked to have toured the Mucha Museum. This is a great tour btw.

Posted by
305 posts

Just another thought. We did the Prague and Budapest tour last August. It is an eight day tour, and we felt that the cost of the air fare required a longer stay. So we flew in to Warsaw Poland spending our time at a B&B that is waking distance to Old Town. We loved the atmosphere, the people, the history especially around Old Town. From Warsaw we took a train to Krakow. Krakow and the area around it has so much to offer. We hired a driver/guide who orientated us to the city on our first day there. We then had a day on our own to revisit some of the places he showed us and to explore some new places. On the third day he drove us to the Wielicka Salt Mine. That tour was well worth the time! From there he drove us to Auschwitz Concentration camp. It is something that we knew would be emotional, but we felt that it is something that we needed to do and were glad that we had the opportunity to pay our respects to those that perished in the camp.

From Krakow we did something that causes quite a bit of discussion on this forum. We took the night train from Krakow to Prague. While many say it is an uncomfortable means of traveling from one destination to another, we chose to do it to save time. It basically gave us another day to explore. Neither of us have any problems sleeping on a train. Granted we did utilize a sleeping compartment (still more economical than a hotel room), and our travel time served the purpose of rest as well. We arrived in Prague at 6am rested and ready to go. It gave us the time to acquaint ourselves with the city before meeting our tour group. We thoroughly enjoyed both Warsaw and Krakow and are very glad that we had had the chance to visit each of them! I just felt that I would mention an alternative extension plan.

Posted by
70 posts

So glad to see this post tonight; I have a very similar question in mind; for post tour.

I am flying into Prague 4 nights before the tour begins. I plan two nights in Prague with two nights in Cesky Krumlov before going back to Prague. Dont know what I will do after the tour (I have two nights). I am thinking more time in Lake Bled / Julian Alps, or Ljubljana. I strongly considered Vienna, but I would rather save that for another time.

Hope you make your dreams a reality :-)

Posted by
550 posts

Hi Joseph -- I would love to hear about your experiences after the trip. Did you feel two extra days in Prague were enough? Was the trip to Cesky Krumlov and back again too much time on the road? Where did you stay at the end of your trip and for how long...and would you recommend it? Have a great time and I hope you'll post again once you've returned!

Posted by
32 posts

This question goes to all of you that have traveled on your own or know these cities enough. After the Best of the Eastern Europe Tour I am planning to go to Venice, Munich, Salzburg, and Vienna and spend a couple of nights in each place. Could anyone recommend me a B&B or a hotel conveniently located, I would really appreciated.
Thanks a lot,

Posted by
23996 posts

Marsowarg, you should start your own thread to ask your question, with an appropriate title. You'll then receive an email each time someone responds and Ruth won't be bothered by emails when people have information for you.