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  1. #61

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    Between the 3 castles (Potsdam and Charlottenburg in Berlin and the one in Vienna) I would pick just one and go there (probably the one in Vienna). With so little time you have if you go for more than one they'll get mixed in your head anyway.

    When in Prague try to meet Karel

    I double Andrey's advice to go to the black theatre. It's great fun. On the other hand do not go to any concerts in the churches in Vienna- the price is high and the musicians are mediocre at the best.

    The museums in Berlin - see what interests you and go only to the things that do. Pergamon is rather big, but perhaps you don't care about all that is there. The arts museum is rather small and very nice, there are some lovely paintings. I would skip the audio guide there (though it's free if am not mistaken) - it takes you to too many not particularly interesting paintings.

    In Vienna don't go to EVERY place realted to Sisi - at some point you might be in a Sisi overdose and feel that if you see another plate or dress you'll jump off something.

    Check which concerts go on there (both classical and not - many interesting artists perform well, at least in Berlin)

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrey aka Pushkin View Post
    But I actually planned to go to Vienna, maybe, this October
    It's far from being decided, but if you go there and I do as well, I might adjust the dates
    Oct 20-23, it's a long weekend for you. See you there. You never did meet my daughter, you'd like her. As snarky as I am but much more practical.

    Boy, thanks to you, balletmaus and others I have a lot of work to do reading up...sort of must-sees, hope-to-see's, and why-nots.

    I think after three years I'm finally over my allergy to classical music. Just in time.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrey aka Pushkin View Post

    Also, the public transportation got much worse, but it's still amazing compared to either Israel or US;
    That was only temporary as there was a huge problem with the S-Bahn trains and they were going with only about 25% of their trains at times. They're still not back to normal but functioning a lot better again, have shorter intervalls between the trains and all.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post
    Nope. Based on recommendations from well-travelled friends, 2-4 days in each is enough.
    Only if one's philosophy of traveling is to save something for the next visit.

    Here are a few suggestions:

    The southwestern Berlin district of Dahlem is worth going to for its museums, including the Brücke-Museum (German Expressionists), the eponymous Dahlem Museums -- the Asian Art Museum, the Ethnological Museum, and the Museum of European Cultures -- and the Allied Museum, to which I haven't been.

    (I haven't been to the last two of these, but they are on my list of places to go next time, along with [URL=http://www.potsdam-tourism.com/], which would be a good day trip if you weren't on such a whirlwind trip. )

    Vienna is not my favorite European city by a long shot, but any first trip there should include Schönbrunn Palace or, at least, its lovely grounds, the Kunsthistorisches Museum, and Belvedere, especially for the Klimt Collection. If you have time, you might get out to the Wienerwald, especially if it's leaf season.

    Also, you would be remiss if you didn't enjoy some delicious Viennese pastries while you were there.

    As for Prague, there was a thread here a few months ago about Prague and Budapest, and it had links to previous threads. I won't repeat what was said there, but you should be aware that classical music performances tend to be cheaper and more easily accessible there than in Vienna or Berlin. The Czech Opera, in particular, is well worth going to see.

    If you have time, the town center of Kutná Hora is a UNESCO World Heritage Site makes a good day trip.

    By the way, there is a Rough Guide for each of these cities, and Time Out publishes guidebooks for Berlin and Prague. These are excellent sources of information. I particularly like Time Out's self-guided walks.

  5. #65
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    I personally found Schonbrunn overrated, and that time in Vienna is best spent sitting in a cafe eating Apfelstrudel and people-watching

  6. #66

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    I haven't read the whole thread so apologies if I repeat myself.
    I know all three cities but Berlin the best as I live only an hour away.

    What I really recommend is to go and see the tacheles:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacheles

    It is an old and beautiful multi-storey house that has been "taken over" by artists a while back.
    You can just go in there and look at all the different rooms. It has gotten a tiny bit commercial already compared to like ten years ago but the house alone is worth a visit.

    Other than that - Berlin just pulsates with history. The wall is always a thrilling sight, the holocaust memorial near the Brandenburger Tor is captivating and if you like museums - I love the Pergamon Museum.

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssminnow View Post
    I personally found Schonbrunn overrated
    If it were merely a fine house richly furnished, I should not care about it myself; but the grounds are delightful. They have some of the finest woods in the country.

    Last edited by Vagabond; 07-25-2011 at 06:34 AM.

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    If it were merely a fine house richly furnished, I should not care about it myself; but the grounds are delightful. They have some of the finest woods in the country.

    If I hadn't been to Potsdam first, I would've been very impressed by Schonbrunn. Sanssouci Park was truly remarkable.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    If it were merely a fine house richly furnished, I should not care about it myself; but the grounds are delightful. They have some of the finest woods in the country.

    ...and the beautiful artificial "Roman" ruins...Romanticism rules!!!

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    If it were merely a fine house richly furnished, I should not care about it myself; but the grounds are delightful. They have some of the finest woods in the country.

    Quote Originally Posted by ssminnow View Post
    If I hadn't been to Potsdam first, I would've been very impressed by Schonbrunn. Sanssouci Park was truly remarkable.


    The carriage ride to Schönbrunn Palace

  11. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    If it were merely a fine house richly furnished, I should not care about it myself; but the grounds are delightful. They have some of the finest woods in the country.


    Well, I didn't need the source on that one.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  12. #72
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    Old thread that includes Vienna and Prague:

    http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/show...udapest+Prague

    Vienna was not on my bucket list, but it was on my husband's so we went and I just loved it. Just loved it and want to go back.

    My friends went to Prague and stayed at a hotel that was somehow affiliated with a Budweiser Budvar beerhouse. They liked it. It was called U Medvidku
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

  13. #73
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    Bumping this up because we're leaving in two weeks....

    A belated thank you to all of you. I got good hotels at quite reasonable rates and got tickets ahead of time for the Czech Philharmonic (about a third the price of Berlin or Vienna where the prices were astonishing) and the dancing horses in Vienna. OK, touristy, but I've always wanted to see them.

    One question left for those who have been there....I'd like to wait on train reservations between cities til I'm there, just because I'd like some flexibility in leaving/arriving. Is that OK or is there a chance that a lot of of the long-distance trains will be sold out?
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  14. #74
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    Some Vienna restaurant recommendations from the NY Times and some readers:

    http://travel.nytimes.com/travel/gui...staurants.html
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post
    ...One question left for those who have been there....I'd like to wait on train reservations between cities til I'm there, just because I'd like some flexibility in leaving/arriving. Is that OK or is there a chance that a lot of of the long-distance trains will be sold out?
    As someone that lived in Germany for 2 years [albeit in the late 80s / early 90s], I never had a problem hopping on international trains at the last minute, including during Fasching [holiday]. The journey from Berlin - Prague is about 4 hours, I think, and stops in Dresden.

    Here is a great online train schedule for all of Europe [in German, but the link should bring you to the English translated website]

    http://www.bahn.de/i/view/USA/en/index.shtml

    BTW, Dresden was once known as the 'Florence of the North'. It was horribly bombed in WWII, however it has some of the best art collections in Europe and the Zwinger palace. Would you have time to do a day or two there en route??

  16. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    BTW, Dresden was once known as the 'Florence of the North'. It was horribly bombed in WWII, however it has some of the best art collections in Europe and the Zwinger palace. Would you have time to do a day or two there en route??
    No, I'm afraid not. I could have had a free trip to Dresden some years ago, an exhibition my ex-husband curated opened there, and I didn't go. Idiot that I was.

    But I do think I'll take my chances on the trains and ask the hotels to help make reservations the day before rather than doing it now. Thanks!
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  17. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post
    One question left for those who have been there....I'd like to wait on train reservations between cities til I'm there, just because I'd like some flexibility in leaving/arriving. Is that OK or is there a chance that a lot of of the long-distance trains will be sold out?
    I've never had a problem booking train tickets the day before or the day of travel. I really don't think you will even need the hotel to help you book, either, unless you don't have the time to stop by the train station. I've booked in person in those three cities several times and never had any problems - even speaking English and bad Czech.

    Have a great trip!

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