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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southpaw View Post
    That's why I travel alone - nobody slowing me down when I'm running from city to city.
    Same here. The two things I don't like about traveling alone, however, are having to eat dinner alone and having to ask people to take your picture.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenya View Post
    A quick plug for my favorite place to stay in Vienna - K & T Boardinghouse: http://www.ktboardinghouse.at/ Great, helpful owners who will go out of their way to help you, give you great advice, and make you feel at home. It doesn't include breakfast, but the location is fabulous (right by a metro station and a 10 minute walk from the Westbanhof train station, lots of restaurants and shops around) and the price is right. I've stayed there twice and had great experiences both times - the second time, they remembered me and had a bottle of champagne waiting in my room.
    I was going to mention them- even though I didn't personally exactly have the best stay there. They have a great location, nice rooms, good prices, and get great reviews.

    (My problem was because my train from Salzburg was delayed by a lot. I had told them I'd arrive when my train was due in- but because of the delay I barely made it to the show I already had $$$ tickets for after throwing my luggage into a locker at the train station and immediately heading to the theatre. For a variety of very good reasons, I wasn't able to let them know that my arrival was delayed. When I finally arrived after the show, they weren't exactly thrilled with me and they were talking about how they stayed home waiting for me etc. They weren't exactly mean about it, but they were talking strongly enough to make me feel terribly guilty. I understand their POV and in fact was already feeling stressed about not being able to let them know what had happened; it was just bad luck.)

    Also for Berlin, I recommend the Jewish museum and the Neue Synagogue. And I'm not usually all that into seeing Jewish sights, although I admit to an interest in WWII era history.

    I'll look at some of my notes when I get home to see if there's anything else I can add.

  3. #23
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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. Rome needs a week, so does London and Paris, but these are smaller cities.
    What does the size of the city have to do with the activities and sights? Berlin might not have the size of London but it's still loaded with historical stuff and museums. As someone mentioned, there's the Museumsinsel which would take 2-3 days alone to explore, I would think. Then there's the Berlin Dom, right next to the Museumsinsel. You can climb to the top. There's the Nikolaiviertel which is one of the oldest quarters in Berlin. You can do a boat ride on the Havel, you could see a so called Bridge tour which is supposed to be really interesting. Then there's the Ku-Damm, also as previously mentioned. The "Gedächtniskirche" is currently under restauration though. You can still go inside but you can't see it from the outside. The zoo, of course, the botanical garden is amazing, walking along "Unter den Linden" I'd recommend as well, as someone else said. There's still a piece of wall left at "Nordbahnhof" which you can reach with the S-Bahn (which isn't a suburban train but a city train. It's sort of like a subway above the ground). Public transportation is generally safe, though I'm more comfortable in the S-Bahn than the U-Bahn and would stay away from the U7, U6 and U8 after 10 p.m.
    Then there's the Fernsehturm, as was previously pointed out, and actually there's the Funkturm as well. Postdamer Platz/Sony Center is nice if you're into architecture. Oh, there's also the "Siegessäule" which was recently renovated. And there's the WWII memorial close to the Brandenburger Gate. There are several more museums scattered throughout the city.
    Schloss Charlottenburg, I second the recommendation. It's worth taking a self-guided tour through and the park is just beautiful.
    You can also take the bus #100, it's a regular bus which basically stops at all the important sights or there are the sightseeing busses which you can get on and off whenever you feel like it.
    As for public transportation tickets, there are some tourist passes I would look in to. If you're looking for great food, there's the Oranienburger Straße which has a lot of restaurants or the Bergmannstraße in Kreuzberg is a pretty well-known place for great restaurants. Restaurants are usually open late.
    You can also visit the Pfaueninsel, very nice, and there's the Reichstag, of course. I think the dome has been re-opened for visitors. Oh, and there's the Gendarmenmarkt, which has the French and German dome and the Schauspielhaus/Konzerthaus, it's a pretty popular and well-liked place.
    (if your friends managed all that in 2-4 days I'm impressed )

    I don't think you'll have time for it but Schloss Sancousi in Potsdam is nice and so is Potsdam itself.

    And don't expect great weather in Germany!!
    Last edited by ballettmaus; 07-21-2011 at 09:15 PM.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stefanie View Post
    Same here. The two things I don't like about traveling alone, however, are having to eat dinner alone and having to ask people to take your picture.
    I don't mind these things. It's kind of a good way to meet people and I get to eat what I want. The main benefit of traveling alone is that I get to see and do what I want. What I don't like is having to cover the full cost of a hotel room on my own.

    BR, I get your point about going to one city. The thing is that, for a lot of Americans, when they travel to a region of Europe, that might be the only time in their lives when they can go and they don't have the time and money for a long trip, so they choose to see the highlights in two or three cities in the time that others might see more of one city. I'm currently trying to figure out how many places I would visit on my trip. I like the idea of visiting Croatia and Slovenia, but I think I would rather spend more time in places like Krakow and Tallinn and don't want to spend a huge chunk of my time on a train or bus, going from place to place. But, right now, it's mostly just fantasy anyway, so I'm looking at all kinds of options.

  5. #25
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    I do understand that, but I still can't imagine why someone wouldn't want to pick one of those three cities and spend the entire time PRlady has in the one. But then she and I have slightly (just slightly ) different temperaments.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    I do understand that, but I still can't imagine why someone wouldn't want to pick one of those three cities and spend the entire time PRlady has in the one. But then she and I have slightly (just slightly ) different temperaments.
    What if the three things you most wanted to see and do in Europe were the Berlin wall, the Vienna opera, and the Prague Castle? I think the difference is seeing sights versus getting to know a city/country. The priorities are different for different people and different people will strike the balance that makes sense to them -- or at least makes sense at the time they book their flight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Allskate View Post
    What if the three things you most wanted to see and do in Europe were the Berlin wall, the Vienna opera, and the Prague Castle? I think the difference is seeing sights versus getting to know a city/country. The priorities are different for different people and different people will strike the balance that makes sense to them -- or at least makes sense at the time they book their flight.
    Yes that's basically my point.

    So for me, I can't see not choosing one of the three cities and spending the entire time in it.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  8. #28
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    If only BR would go into bars we'd make perfect traveling companions.
    3539 and counting.

    Slightly Wounding Banana list cont: MacMadame.

  9. #29

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    I was just in Prague, doing the tourist thing. I found food to be quite inexpensive, but it was hard to find anything authentic. Lots of Chinese and Pizza. We had a great traditional meal at U kostela restaurant next to St Nicholas Church. www.ukostela.com

    From there we walked 2 blocks down the hill to the Charles Bridge, across the bridge to the Astronomical Clock, and then through town to our hotel. It took 2 hours but we saw lots. It was also very crowded, despite being a Monday afternoon. The Charles Bridge is an experience not to be missed.

    We went to the Lobkowicz Palace in the Prague Castle grounds. We rented headsets and took an audio tour narrated by the current owner. There are some amazing items on display, and the history of the area came alive when seen through the eyes of a real person. Afterwards we attended a live concert in the Palace, for an extra fee.

    We were warned about taxis, and told to always chose AAA taxis. We were also warned about pickpockets. With the jostling crowds, it would be easy to lose your wallet or purse.

    Avoid the Hilton hotels, if you were tempted. They cater to tour groups and expense account travelers. They are ridiculously overpriced and the cost of meals is scandalous. Our group was booked in there, but we soon found alternate places to eat.

    We spent a day in Vienna, too. Much more time was needed to see anything in detail . I was disappointed in Schonbrunn Palace. Apart from being crowded, it was very difficult to see anything because most of the displays were behind plastic or closed off. The shopping area around St Stephen's Cathedral equals NY Fifth Avenue. All the high end names are represented.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    If only BR would go into bars
    I do.

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  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southpaw View Post
    I do.

    But do you want to do 3 countries in 10 days?
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  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    But do you want to do 3 countries in 10 days?
    I'm doing 3 countries in 6.
    The fastest thing out of New Jersey since Tricky Nicky in a Muscovian handbasket

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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    But do you want to do 3 countries in 10 days?
    The OP is really just doing 3 cities in 10 days. Each city just happen to be in a different country . 3 days per city is what the normal tourist usually spend at a location when travelling abroad. I would do 3 different cities in the same country though and not 3 different cites in 3 different countries.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southpaw View Post
    I'm doing 3 countries in 6.
    Enjoy. Although I do think there's a difference when you're with someone who lives in the area and you dart across a border to do something specific.
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  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southpaw View Post
    I'm doing 3 countries in 6.
    And flying real low over two others?
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by ballettmaus View Post
    And don't expect great weather in Germany!!
    My dear balettmaus, your post I am printing out and researching. Thank you sincerely.

    And I don't expect great weather in northern Europe, ever. Not in London or Amsterdam and I figured Germany wouldn't be any better. Raincoat and waterproof boots are coming with.

    Actually I figured on almost four days in Berlin and three in each of the other two cities. That may not be enough but it's what I can afford time-wise and money-wise. And by American standards, the three cities are pretty close together! Like doing DC, NY and Boston, a little more spread-out.

    Actually I would skip Vienna but daughter insists.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post

    Actually I would skip Vienna but daughter insists.
    Your daughter is right to insist.
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

  18. #38
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    I'm not dissing your way of traveling - it's just not my preference. I travel pretty haphazardly - very little research and planning. Just kind of plop myself somewhere and explore. I'm sure I've missed out on many fabulous tourist sights due to that but have also stumbled across gems that travelers seldom see. Suits me but probably not very many other people.

    Have a great time.
    3539 and counting.

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  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    I'm not dissing your way of traveling - it's just not my preference. I travel pretty haphazardly - very little research and planning. Just kind of plop myself somewhere and explore. I'm sure I've missed out on many fabulous tourist sights due to that but have also stumbled across gems that travelers seldom see. Suits me but probably not very many other people.

    Have a great time.
    Thanks. I understand your way of doing it, and would even like to try it sometime. But my inner organized researcher takes over for something like this, since who knows if I'll ever get back to these places.

    Wait til daughter finds out she is going to read about the Habsburg empire and 19th century Prussia before we leave.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  20. #40
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    Vienna is an amazing city. You will not regret going there
    The mind of the performer is a very strange thing.
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