Central Europe Itinerary

10 Day Central Europe Itinerary: Budapest, Vienna, & Prague

Julie Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Itinerary 137 Comments

For those who want to tour three of Europe’s great cities, this central Europe itinerary is perfect. Start with Budapest, a gorgeous city known for its thermal baths, unique architecture, and stunning setting along the Danube River. Next, travel to Vienna, a sophisticated city rich in history and culture. End with Prague, the most beautiful of the three cities (in our opinion), laced with Gothic architecture that somehow remained unharmed during World War II. We even added in a side trip to the quaint but incredibly scenic Cesky Krumlov, one of Europe’s great small towns.

Be prepared to walk through some of Europe’s most beautiful cities, dine in outdoor cafes, learn some important European history, go to the opera (for only a few euros!!), and sample some of Europe’s best beer.

10 Day Itinerary Prague Vienna Budapest

This Central Europe Itinerary is Good For:

  • Those who love exploring cities
  • European History, especially WWII
  • Cafe Culture
  • Museums
  • Photographers

Day 1

Arrive in Budapest

Depending on your flight, most likely you will arrive in Budapest in the morning or early afternoon. Check into your hotel, get settled, and do some exploring around your hotel. Have dinner and go to bed early, doing your best to get adjusted to the time change as quickly as possible.

We recommend: Hilton Budapest in the Castle District. From your hotel window, gaze across the Danube River to the beautiful Parliament building, one of the icons of Budapest. The Fisherman’s Bastion is just a few minutes away, offering more of the best views over Budapest.

Fisherman’s Bastion

Fishermans Bastion

Day 2

Budapest: Fisherman’s Bastion, Szechenyi Chain Bridge, St. Istvan’s Basilica, and Parliament

Budapest is really “two cities,” Buda and Pest, that are split by the Danube River. There is much more to visit on the Pest side of Budapest.

Start your day by touring Buda: Fisherman’s Bastion, Matthias Church, and Buda Castle. These are some of Budapest’s most popular sights and from here you will get some of the best views over the city.

Budapest Itinerary

Have lunch at Pest-Buda Bistro or Cafe Pierrot.

Take the funicular down to the Szechenyi Chain Bridge, another Budapest icon. Walk across the Szechenyi Bridge to the Pest side of Budapest. Take a peek inside the Four Seasons Hotel, also known as the Gresham Palace…this place is beautiful!! It’s worth a quick look.

Budapest Bridge

From Gresham Palace, it is just a short walk along a pedestrian-only street to St. Istvan’s Basilica, a Roman Catholic Basilica. Tour the Basilica and if you have the energy, climb the dome for more views over Budapest.

Walk back to the Danube by way of the pedestrian street, turn right once you get to the Danube River, and walk along the promenade. In a few blocks you will arrive at “Shoes on the Danube,” a memorial to Jewish people who were shot and killed during WWII.  This is a very important piece of history in Budapest and should not be missed.

Continue your walk along the Danube to Parliament. Take a tour of Parliament, learn more about Hungarian history, and view another gorgeous Budapest building.

Day 3

Budapest: Opera, House of Terror Museum, New York Cafe, Szechenyi Baths

Start your day by walking along Andrassy Ut, one of the main streets that runs through Budapest. This avenue is modeled after the Champs-Elysees in Paris. Walk past the Opera house, cafes, and shopping stores to the House of Terror Museum.

The House of Terror Museum is hardcore. This museum is one of the best museums we have ever been to. Journey back in time to WWII. Learn about the atrocities committed by the Nazi’s, not only to Jewish people but to the entire city of Budapest. Continue the history lesson as you learn about Communist rule in Budapest enforced by the Soviet Union. This museum holds nothing back. Be prepared to be shocked, saddened, and outraged by what you will see here. The House of Terror Museum really sends a message about what it was like to live in this city during the 20th century. This is not the place to bring young children…the exhibits are visually explicit and can be quite shocking.

House of Terror Prague

Take a detour to the New York Cafe for lunch. This is an opulent cafe in Budapest, the perfect place for fancy drinks and fancy food. This is the perfect antidote after your shocking history lesson at the House of Terror.

Walk or take a taxi to Heroes’ Square and then stroll around the park. Spend an hour relaxing in the thermal baths at the world famous Szechenyi Baths. End the day by having drinks and maybe even dinner at nearby Gundel restaurant.

See Also:  2 Days in Budapest: The Perfect Itinerary

Thermal Bath Budapest

Day 4

Travel from Budapest to Vienna, tour Vienna

Take a train from Budapest to Vienna. The journey takes between two to three hours and is very scenic. Once in Vienna, take the metro or a taxi to your hotel.

We recommend: Hotel am Stephensplatz. This hotel is located at Stephensplatz, one of the main squares of Vienna. Enjoy views out of your hotel window of Stephensdom, the church that is one of the icons of Vienna. From here, most of the main sites are within walking distance. If you need to take the metro, the station is literally just around the corner from the hotel. It does not get any more convenient or scenic than this!

Spend the afternoon touring the area around Stephensplatz. Go inside Stephensdom and climb the tower for some of the best views over Vienna. Walk down Graben, a famous shopping street, and make sure you visit Demel, famous for its gourmet chocolate and desserts.


Have an early dinner and then it is time to go to the opera!! The Vienna Opera is one of the premiere spots in the world to watch the opera and did you know that you can watch a performance here almost for free? Standing room tickets are sold for just a few euros…the perfect opportunity to tour this beautiful building and watch a world class opera performance in Europe.

End your day by having a slice of the world famous Sacher Torte at Cafe Sacher.

See Also:  Top Ten Vienna

Vienna Opera House

Day 5

Vienna: Schönbrunn Palace, Hofburg Palace, Vienna at Night

Vienna has one of the best cafe scenes in all of Europe. Start your day by having a breakfast you will not soon forget at one of these cafes. We recommend Cafe Central.

Visit Schönbrunn Palace, the summer residence of the Hapsburgs. For those who have been to Versailles, you may experience deja vu, as these two residences are very similar.

Schonbrunn Palace

Return to the heart of Vienna and continue your journey through the history of the Hapsburgs by visiting the Hofburg Palace (the home of the Hapsburgs) and the Kaisergruft (the crypt that holds the remains of the Hapsburgs).

Have dinner in town. After dinner, for an almost free tour of Vienna illuminated at night, take the tram along Ringstrasse, watching as the Opera, Hofburg Palace, Rathaus, and other famous buildings glide by.

Day 6

Vienna: Kunsthistorisches Museum, Belvedere Palace, Heuriger

The Kunsthistorisches Museum is home to works of art by Vermeer, Caravaggio, Titian, and Raphael. The interior of the museum is just as impressive as the artwork.


After a leisurely lunch, tour the Belvedere Palace, which is the place to see artwork by Gustav Klimt.

From the Belvedere Palace it is a long tram ride out of the heart of Vienna to the Vienna Woods. Now you will be on the outskirts of Vienna and your tour of Vienna will end with a truly authentic Viennese experience.

Tonight, dine at a heuriger. A heuriger is a wine garden serving homemade wine and small meals of traditional Viennese foods. This is one of the best ways to get off of the tourist track and get a different glimpse of Vienna and its culture.


Day 7

Drive from Vienna to Prague, Visiting Cesky Krumlov Along the Way

Yes, you can take a train from Vienna to Prague, but you would be missing one of Europe’s lesser known  treasures…Cesky Krumlov. This requires renting a car for one day (or hiring a shuttle service) and driving from Vienna to Prague, but trust us, it is worth it!

From Vienna it is a two to three hour drive on the autobahn to the small, medieval town of Cesky Krumlov. On this itinerary, you have just a few hours to wander the streets of this quaint, little town, but it is just enough time…Prague is waiting.

Central Europe Itinerary Cesky Krumlov

For full details on visiting Cesky Krumlov, including how to arrange transportation between Vienna, Cesky Krumlov, and Prague, read our post: Cesky Krumlov, a Photoessay.

From Cesky Krumlov, it is a two hour drive to Prague. Once in town, return your rental car. By now, it is most likely late afternoon. You have just enough time to visit the Old Town (Stare Mesto) and climb the Town Hall tower for amazing Prague views. Don’t miss the astronomical clock, which puts on a brief show at the top of every hour.

Prague Clock

End the day with a sunset walk across Charles Bridge.

We recommend: Hotel Paris Prague. Located just a few blocks from the Old Square, this beautiful hotel is in a prime location. It is clean, comfortable, and quiet. From here, you can walk to most of Prague’s main sites.

See Also:  13 Must-Have Experiences in Prague

Day 8

Prague: Jewish Quarter, Charles Bridge, Prague Castle, Pub Crawl

Start your day by touring the Jewish Quarter of Prague. Visit the old Jewish cemetery and the Old New Synagogue (the oldest synagogue is central and eastern Europe).

Prague Jewish Cemetery

Prague is called the “Golden City of a Hundred Spires.” The best way to see this is by climbing the towers that dot Prague’s skyline. For one of the best views over Prague, climb the Old Town Tower Bridge, located at Charles Bridge. From here, get a bird’s eye view of Charles Bridge with Prague Castle forming the backdrop. It’s a great view!

Prague Itinerary

Walk across the Charles Bridge and enjoy the view. Take a quick detour to Lennonova Zed, also known as the Lennon Wall. Covered with ever-changing graffiti, this is one of the most colorful spots in Prague.

Have lunch at Coda Restaurant or Baracnicka Rychta before touring Prague Castle and  St. Vitus’ Cathedral.

End the day with a pub crawl in Prague. The Czech Republic brews fantastic beer and there’s no better place to sample it than in Prague. Popular spots are U Fleku, U Medvidku, and U Pinkasu.

Day 9

Prague: Powder Tower, Wenceslas Square, Petrin Tower

Ideas for things to do today include a climb up the Powder Tower for a different view of Prague, a walk up to Wenceslas Square (the sight of several uprisings in Prague during the past one hundred years), or a visit to the Mucha Museum for art lovers.

View from the Powder Tower

Powder Tower View

Spend the afternoon on a food tour of Prague and end the day at Petrin Tower for one, final amazing view over Prague.

Day 10

Depart Prague

Catch your flight home or continue on to your next destination.

When to Go to Central Europe

The best time to visit Budapest, Vienna, and Prague are during the spring and fall months. Weather is pleasant and tourist numbers are low. The weather is still very pleasant during the summer months but these cities can get very crowded. The winter months have bitterly cold temperatures and snow but very few tourists.

Post updated April 2018.

Do you have plans to travel to Central Europe? If you have any questions, leave a comment below!


Going to Europe? Buy the Guide:

Note: This post contains affiliate links. When you make a purchase using one of these affiliate links, we get paid a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Comments 137

  1. Is it possible to do (no necessarily in this order) Prague, Bratislava, Salzburg, Hallstatt, Budapest and Ljubljana (Slovenia) in about 14 days? If so, what would you do as an itinerary? I was hoping to get in Hallstatt as a day trip from Salzburg and Bratislava as a stop between Prague and Budapest for a day to cut up the time between the cities. I realize this may be rushed, but I am young and able to walk a lot.

    1. Post

      It’s funny that you ask this! We are going to Bratislava, Hallstatt, and Ljubljana/Slovenia this summer (all new spots for us). I think 14 days is enough time. You really just need one full day for Salzburg and Hallstatt, and even Bratislava. Put the most time into Prague and Budapest. Ljubljana needs a day or two. If you have 2 days in Ljubljana, you really just need one day to tour the city. With your second day, take a day trip to Lake Bled. With a 3rd day you can see more of Slovenia (which looks amazing!). Before I lay out an itinerary, you should look into flights. You may find that it’s cheap and easy to fly to Prague or Budapest but Ljubljana and Salzburg are more expensive. If you narrow down your start and end points I’d be happy to lay out a sample itinerary for you. Cheers, Julie

  2. Hi there,
    Your blog is so helpful! I am travel deprived, with an extensive list of places I’d like to visit. Scotland, Norway, and this itinerary at the top. I was originally thinking Prague, Vienna, Budapest, but recently am wondering if it would make sense to exclude Prague and instead try to see some of Bavaria. For example Budapest, Vienna, Munich? Flights from FL to this region of the world are pricey and unfortunately I believe I would have to fly in and out of the same airport with lots of train travel in between. I have about 10 days at the end of Aug. I’d like to see WWII history, Klimt art, timber framed architecture, and possibly get some hiking in. I am also contemplating Vienna zoo. I appreciate any advice on the idea. Thank you for your time and expertise!

    1. Post

      Hello Allison. Yes, you could do Budapest, Vienna, and Munich. You can get Klimt at the Belvedere in Vienna and WWII history in lots of places, but Budapest is great for this and so is Berchtesgaden, Germany with the Eagle’s Nest and Documentation Center, and Dachau in Munich. Plus, you can go hiking around Berchtesgaden and in Bavaria. Vienna and Budapest each need 2 days. With a day of travel on either end you have 4 days left for Germany. You could stay in Munich and take day trips to Dachau, Romantic Road, and Berchtesgaden. You could also do this from Salzburg, but the Romantic Road would be far away and so you’d have to skip this (but you could add in a day trip to Hallstatt instead). To take the day trips, you could rent a car or join a tour. Dachau is easy to visit from Munich using public transportation. Feel free to ask us more questions after you read this. Cheers, Julie

  3. Hello Julie!
    My wife and I (and our 6 month old baby) will be in Europe this August visiting family in Greece. We are looking to do the exact same trip for 11 days. I am wondering if you have any suggestions, considering our 9 month old at the time.
    More specifically:
    – would you suggest train or renting a car? I was thinking going into a big city with a car looking for parking might be more of a hassle.
    – Would you suggest different cities? or do less or more?
    – As we are reading your blog we are crossing off all the things we cannot visit with the baby (example the Opera! We would have loved to go). Any other activities you would recommend?

    Overall she is a very easy going baby (so far) and that makes us wanting to take this trip since we are going to be in Europe from Canada.

    what are your thoughts? Keep up the great work!

    1. Post

      Hello Christopher. With 11 days and a baby, I would keep the itinerary the same and just add the extra time somewhere (Vienna or Prague). Getting around by train is fast, easy, and cheap. I would recommend taking the train Budapest to Vienna. The question is…how to visit Cesky Krumlov, if that is something you want to do. When we did this trip it was 2011. The costs to drop rental cars in different countries has gone up since our visit. You may want to take the train from Vienna to Prague, and then from Prague (on a different day) take a day trip to Cesky Krumlov (if you find that the drop fee is too expensive). You can do this by bus, train, tour, shuttle service, or by renting your own car for one day. We have some info about these options on our Cesky Krumlov post. Tim and I really enjoyed Cesky Krumlov and I think it’s worth the hassle of getting there. That’s a bummer about the opera. One of the things that we did in Vienna that we liked was taking the tram through the city at night and seeing all of the buildings lit up. It’s a cheap, easy way to get a night tour of the city. Just a thought. I hope you enjoy your trip! Cheers, Julie

  4. Hi Julie, it’s such a blessing to have found your blog when we’re planning to be visit Budapest, Vienna and Prague this August. We’re taking our 15-year old son with us. Would you suggest us to book 1 double & 1 single room or the double room can sleep the 3 of us ? Thanks for all the useful tips !

    1. Post

      It just depends if you all want to sleep together (and this option is usually a little cheaper). Tyler is also 15 and I we would choose to all sleep in the same room. However, 2 rooms gives you 2 bathrooms…much easier to shower and get ready in the morning. Cheers, Julie

  5. Hi! Julie

    Thanks for the valueable information that you had jotted down in your itinerary and also in you replies to the queries.
    However, I am planning to take drive trip in Hungary for 6-7nights and visiting country side . Can you help me with this?
    We are 3 friends and we will be picking & dropping the car in Vienna.


    1. Post

      Hello Varun. I wish I could give you more information but we do not have any experience in Hungary other than Budapest. We flew into the city and then took a train to Vienna. You could see if Rick Steves or Lonely Planet offers any info. Good luck! Cheers, Julie

  6. We have travel to Vienna and Prague several times. We just traveled to Munich and Prague this past year over Christmas, and I will say that the Christmas markets are truly an amazing experience! Prague was pure magic in the snow. I would highly recommend braving the elements for this adventure. There were some crowds, nothing like summer, but everyone was in a Holiday spirit.

    1. Post
  7. Hi Julie, indeed a very informative post. We are planning to travel to these cities around April end 2018. I just had a few questions;
    1) We are travelling with or 4 yr old child – is that OK? Do children enjoy Eastern Europe in general?
    2) Can i cram in Berlin along with the above 3 cities in 10-11 days?
    Thank for the help!

    1. Post

      Traveling with a 4 year old to these cities is fine, but as adults, you will get much more out of this than your child. I feel like Prague would be the most interesting, with the architecture and the towers to climb. Vienna may be the most boring for your child because it is a lot of museums. Adding Berlin with just 10 to 11 days is too much of a cram, in my opinion. This 10 day itinerary already moves fast. You would have to eliminate something in order to get to Berlin, and then Berlin needs a minimum of two full days. With a 4 year old, I think you are better off taking your time with these 3 cities plus adorable Cesky Krumlov. Cheers, Julie

  8. Hi Julie,
    I am so pleased I discovered your blog.
    We are planning a 16 day trip to Central Europe in June / July with our 2 teenagers, aged 16 and 18. We are South African and the exchange rate is not particularly friendly …
    Our potential itinerary is Prague, Krakow, Vienna – we are more than happy to take trains between the various cities and to plan our own trip. We are adventurous, but also love art and history. We hadn’t included Budapest, because we thought it is very similar to Prague.
    We are trying to decide where to base ourselves for another 3 nights. Do you have any suggestions? We would prefer not to visit another big city and would rather stay somewhere more “relaxed”, if this makes sense. I see you mention Cesky Krumlov.
    I would appreciate your input.
    Many thanks,

    1. Post

      You picked 3 awesome cities. We will also be in Krakow this summer for our first time. From Vienna, you could go west to Salzburg and Halstatt. Near Krakow is Zakopane, located on the border with Slovakia. This is a great place to go hiking in the Tatras Mountains and I think you are going to hear a lot more about this area in the next few years, so getting here now before it becomes too popular is a great thing. We will be here too, this summer. Cesky Krumlov is wonderful and it’s one of our favorite small towns in Europe, but I think with 3 days you would get bored. But it is worth a day trip from Prague. You could extend your time in Prague and use Prague as a home base to go day tripping to Cesky Krumlov, see the Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora, go to Bohemia Switzerland near the border with Germany, or explore the many small towns in Prague the most travelers (including us so far) have missed. Have a great trip and let us know if you have more questions. Cheers, Julie

      1. Hi Julie, thanks for the really useful tips and ideas. I think the best plan may be to extend our time in Prague to visit Cesky Krumlov and the surrounding areas and then possibly find to somewhere to base ourselves relatively close to Krakow to visit Zakopane.
        Enjoy your holiday this summer!

  9. hi
    We ( 3 families of 9 persons) would be travelling from 2nd june to 13th June to Prague-vienna -Budapest from India. Is 10 days good enough for covering all three places including salzburg since we plan to travel from prague- vienna- budapest by train. Can we book all train tickets and hotels online or try the travel agents?

    bijay Mishra

    1. Post

      You can add in Salzburg to this itinerary if you remove Cesky Krumlov. You could go Prague – Vienna – Budapest with a day trip to Salzburg from Vienna, or you could go Prague – Salzburg – Vienna – Budapest. It just depends on how the train schedules work out. You can book all trains and hotels online yourself or hire a travel agent, just do it however you feel comfortable. If you want to learn more about how to book train travel, check out the website seat61. The writer does a great job explaining what trains to take and how to book them, not only in Europe, but all over the world. Cheers, Julie

  10. Hi, I am from India.
    Me and my husband are planning a trip to these cities in mid july.
    I really liked the itenary but we are also interested in night life of these cities and also some exciting points. Also can you please suggest some good party places nearby. If required we can extend the trip to 12 to 13days. Also please guide us about how the travelling part will be easy from one place to other as we will not be coming through any tour package.

    1. Post

      We didn’t “do” much of the nightlife in these cities. However, in Prague, we did visit some of the bars and beer halls. Other travelbloggers have posts on nightlife in these cities so you might want to search Google for more info. You can book your trains on Rail Europe between Budapest and Vienna and even Vienna to Prague, if you want to skip Cesky Krumlov. The easiest way to get to Cesky Krumlov is by renting a car or hiring a shuttle service. See our post on Cesky Krumlov for all the details. Have fun! Cheers, Julie

      1. Hi Julie, I along with wife and sone planning for a trip in June 2018. Should we book thru any opeartor or we can do it of our own? what about local sight seeing mode of transport? which currency to take and how much approx should be ok? thanks

        1. Post

          You can book everything on your own, but if you don’t feel comfortable doing so you can hire a travel agent. You would need to book flights into and out of Europe, hotels, and trains. Budapest, Vienna, and Prague all have great public transport so you can get around the cities by walking, buses, and the metro. The Rick Steves books have great walking tours and this is a cheap way to get a “tour” of the city without spending money on a personal tour guide.

          The currency is a little complicated…it’s the HUF in Hungary, the euro in Austria, and Czeck Crown in Prague. You can exchange your currency for the Hungarian currency in the airport or in town, but that comes with a fee. We simply go to the ATM as soon as we arrive and withdraw the local currency. It’s hard to give you an amount to withdraw because it depends on how much you will spend at restaurants, shopping, etc. Go low on your estimate and you can always take out more money later. If we have left over local currency, we use it to pay off our hotel bill before traveling to the next place.

          Cheers, Julie

    1. Post

      Hello Rosy. We do not run tours. This is an itinerary to help you plan your trip to these places. If you need someone to book your trip for you, you can hire a travel agent. Cheers, Julie

    2. Hi,

      Please could help me with the Itinerary.

      Prague – Innsbruck – Budapest.

      We will arrive in Prague and leave from Budapest. Tickets already booked.


      1. Post

        Innsbruck is a bit far out of the way on a trip to Prague and Budapest. If you want to do this itinerary, you should look into flights to connect these cities. Trains take about 10 hours between Prague and Innsbruck and 6 hours between Innsbruck and Budapest. Cheers, Julie

  11. hello, thanks for this really helpful post 🙂 we are planning a trip for about 15 days, and was hoping to also squeeze in hallstatt and salzburg in the austria leg. would you be able to advise how we could fit that in? we’ll be travelling by public transport! thanks in advance!

    1. Post

      You have two options. You can travel by train from Vienna to Salzburg, spend several nights in Salzburg, using this as a home base to day trip to Hallstatt. Or, you could travel by train from Vienna to Hallstatt, stay in Hallstatt one or two nights, then travel by public transportation to Salzburg. I don’t personally know the details of working out the public transportation, but I found this post that might help you. From Salzburg, you can take the CK Shuttle to Cesky Krumlov (3 hours according to their website). Consider spending the night in Cesky Krumlov or taking a late shuttle in the evening from Cesky Krumlov to Prague on the same day. Just depends on how you want to organize your time. Cheers, Julie

  12. Hi,
    This itinerary is great! Could you please provide the train info. Also, we will not be driving to Prague. Is it possible to take a train from there to? What tickets would you buy in advance for sightseeing.

    Many thanks,

    1. Post

      You can use Rail Europe to book your tickets. Enter the cities you will be traveling between and the date of travel and take your pick from the options. Yes, you can take a train from Vienna to Prague. When we did this trip, we did not purchase any tickets in advance. However, if you want to plan ahead, you could look into pre-purchasing tickets to the busier attractions such as Parliament in Budapest, Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna, and Prague Castle. If you want to learn how to get cheap tickets to the Vienna Opera, check out this article. Cheers, Julie

  13. Hi, i loved this it was very informative.. i wanted to check.. i have 15 days in hand which other place should i add?? Can i also add Croatia in this??

    1. Post

      With 5 extra days you can visit another European city. If Croatia interests you, I would recommend flying into Dubrovnik, seeing Dubrovnik, and doing day trips from this city. But really, with 5 days, you could add London, Paris, or Venice, etc to this itinerary. Cheers, Julie

  14. I have a question when you rented the car for the one day trip from Vienna to Prague, did you have to go back to Vienna to return the car, then go back again to Prague? Or was this nice town you visited is still in Vienna?

    Thank you in advance for your help

    1. Post

      We picked up the rental car in Vienna in the morning. Then we drove to Cesky Krumlov and on to Prague, arriving in Prague in the late afternoon. We dropped off the rental car in Prague. You can rent a car and drive it from one city to another. There is usually an extra drop fee that is charged to be able to do this. It makes renting a car a little more expensive but then you don’t have to backtrack on your itinerary. Cheers, Julie

  15. Hey Julie,

    Thanks for the amazing itineary. We ( I & my partner), almost soaked into the Central Europe and now cant wait to take up this trip.
    Just wanted 1 suggestion on the timing of the year to travel.. Is March – end to Mid April good time to visit these 3 cities. ? What would be your recommendation on the same

    1. Post

      Yes, I think that is a good time, but it might be a little chilly. If you are planning this trip in 2018, Easter is on April 1, so that could make the cities a little more crowded. If you wait another week or two, that would give more time for Europe to warm up, just a little bit. We started our trip at the end of April (right after Easter) and had fabulous weather and low crowds. Cheers, Julie

  16. Nice itinerary for the Prague part. I would only suggest that an equally good view, less expensive and less crowded is from the top of the New Town Hall tower at Charles Square. And make sure that you understand what the 10, 11 and 12 mean in relation to Czech Beer so you don’t get drunk too quickly.

    1. Post

      Thanks! For those who don’t know (I didn’t either…I had to look this up), a 10 degree beer has about 4% alcohol and a 12 degree beer has about 5% alcohol. Cheers, Julie

  17. Hello Julie,

    Read your itinerary twice or thrice, very informative and certainly very helpful for travellers like us who visiting central Europe for the first time.

    We are a family of 4, Myself, My wife and two kids (7 Years & 2 Years), we were planning to visit only Vienna and Prague in the first place, after reading your itinerary we are seriously considering to include Budapest also. unfortunately, our entry point should be in Vienna and Exit from Prague as the flights are already booked and visa is issued from Austria. We planned Austria to be the first destination because we want to cover the Christmas markets which is available only till 23rd of December in Austria, however, in Prague and Budapest they are available till the end of the year.

    I’m open to rent a car and drive as well, but I’m not sure how would be the roads during late December. I have done a bit of research and I understood that Vienna is kind of central place in between Budapest and Prague, so in reality, we may need to come back to Vienna if we want to go to Budapest or Prague. I’m not sure its a worth try to include or it will be too hectic with our little one or no. We have a total of 10 days with us.

    Would you mind suggesting a revised itinerary with the above information?


    1. Post

      Hello Mathew. You could visit Vienna, take the train to Budapest, and potentially take a cheap flight to Prague (it would take a little research and from what I know it takes around 6 to 7 hours to travel between Budapest and Prague by train so probably not worth it). I don’t think it would be worth it to do a Vienna – Budapest – Vienna – Prague trip (too much time traveling). If Budapest doesn’t work out, you could consider adding in Salzburg instead, as a day trip or longer from Vienna. Cheers, Julie

  18. Thank you for this itinerary! My girlfriend and I are planning on traveling to these cities (Budapest, Vienna, and Prague). We also want to add Salzburg to the list of cities we are visiting. How would you suggest modifying this schedule to fit that? We wouldn’t mind missing out on Cesky Krumlov so that we can add Salzburg. We will not be driving for the trip and are gonna rely on bus/train. We’re planning for around 10-11 days for the trip. Thanks!

    1. Post

      If you want to see Salzburg, you can visit it on a long day trip from Vienna. Trains take approximately 2.5 hours one way. This would give you enough time midday to see the main sights in Salzburg (which is enough time if you are fast). Or, you could take the train to Salzburg, see the sights, sleep overnight in town, and the next day, take the train from Salzburg to Prague (although this takes 6 – 7 hours with a transfer in Linz). To do this, skip Cesky Krumlov and use that day for your time in Salzburg. Cheers, Julie

  19. Hello,
    Its 2 of us we are planning to come to central europe for about 9 days.
    Arriving in budapest, spending few days there & new years than planning on getting to vienna, staying about 2-3 nights there than heading to prague, leaving prague on january 6th morning.

    My main concern whats the best way to rent a car?
    Remt it in budapest than after drive to vienna & leave it there.
    Or getting around budapest in train & taxi( our hotel in the center) than renting the car in vienna cross with it to prague and leave it by prague airport on the 6th..?

    Whats the best way with the transportation?
    Also we would have about 2 nights around prague. Should i book one hotel in cesky krumlov for a night and one night in center of prague?
    Or should we just drive by cesky kremlov, explore around, and get 2 nights hotel in prague?

    Please help with suggestions.
    Thank you,

    1. Post

      In Budapest, Vienna, and Prague you can use the public transportation to get around the cities. All 3 cities have an excellent network of subways, buses, and trams, so there is no need to have a car while in the cities. To get from Budapest to Vienna, take the train. On the day you drive from Vienna to Prague, book a rental car that you will drive from point to point. You can arrange to pick it up in Vienna and then drop it in Prague at the city center or at the airport. I would also recommend just seeing Cesky Krumlov on the drive from Vienna to Prague and spend two nights in Prague. You can visit Cesky Krumlov quickly so you do not need to spend the night here. Cheers, Julie

  20. hello,
    we are 2 couple willing to visit the 3 cities . arriving 25 afternoon or 26 December in the morning.. and we want to spend new year in Prague.
    so how we can manage it?
    where to start. and regarding the flights we have to book to 1 city round trip. ex if i arrive to Prague i have to leave from Prague.
    Thank you for helping.

    1. Post

      Do this itinerary, starting in Budapest. If you arrive in Budapest on the 25th, then on this itinerary, you will arrive in Prague the day of the 31st, just in time for New Year’s Eve. If you want to arrive one day earlier, consider eliminating a day from Budapest. After spending a few days in Prague, take the train or a quick flight to Budapest to fly home. You could add the Budapest day you eliminated to the end of the trip. Cheers, Julie

      1. 1 more thing.. if i start in vienna then Prague and then Budapest.. its not easier to go back to vienna in the end..
        vienna ticket its much cheaper the Budapest 1.

        1. Post

          You can start in Vienna, it’s just getting your timing to work out so you are in Prague in the 31st for New Year’s Eve. You could arrive in Vienna on the 26th, travel to Prague on the 29th, then travel to Budapest on the 1st or 2nd. Your itinerary may end up being 1 or 2 days longer just to be in Prague on the 31st. That’s not a bad thing if you have the extra days for this trip. Cheers, Julie

  21. Hi julie,
    We (4 peeps) will be traveling to Prague after our 9 day baltic cruise. We plan to stay in
    Prague for two nights, then rent a car to vienna., stay in vienna for the night and the following day drive on to budapest and stay for 2 days. What do you think of us driving. Will we be wasting time? Should we just fly from Prague to budapest?

    1. Post

      I think driving is fine. When you are on the road, you get to see part of the country you would miss if you flew. We took a train from Budapest to Vienna, and seeing the small towns and countryside was beautiful. You would miss this if you flew right to Budapest. Plus, you will get to see Vienna, at least for a little bit. So if you don’t mind missing out on a little time in Budapest or Prague, I think doing a European road trip is a good idea. Cheers, Julie

  22. Thanks ma’am I’m making an itenary on the basis of the itenary you’ve mentioned but we also want to travel to cesky krumlove one day and the Bohemian park one day in Prague.
    Also I’m planning to reach Prague on 26 and depart on 5th April from Budapest or Poland may be.

    1. Post

      If you only have 11 days, in my opinion, I do not think you have enough time to add Poland into your itinerary. I think you will be traveling too much with too little time to spend in the cities. If you have 14 days, then you can add in a city in Poland without feeling too rushed. With 11 days, you can follow our exact itinerary, which does include a day for Cesky Krumlov, and use your 11th day to visit the Bohemian park. You can do this itinerary in either direction, we just published it as Budapest to Prague because that is how we did it. Cheers, Julie

  23. Hello ,
    We are 3 couples of 30-35 age group with two kids of 3yrs from India wanting to travel to Prague, Vienna ,
    Budapest or Poland.Can you suggest an itenary for a 10-12 day relaxed stay ,we can even self drive if that is the best option.

    1. Post
  24. Hi ,me and my husband are planning to visit Budapest,Vienna & Prague in December.We are planning to spend Christmas in Budapest & New year in Prague.Any suggestions for that?

    1. Post

      We haven’t been to these places during December, but you should see if there are any Christmas markets in Budapest. I know that a lot of German and Austrian cities have Christmas markets but they usually shut down by December 24. New Year’s Eve in Prague sounds nice!! Here’s a link to a website with information about where to see the fireworks. Sounds like a good time! Cheers, Julie

    1. Post

      Hello Cristie. We typically do not use tour companies, instead we prefer to travel independently. On this itinerary, we did everything on our own (no tour company). Cheers, Julie

  25. Hi Julie, Thank you so much for putting together a wonderful blog, and taking the time to respond to the comments of everyone which I’m sure takes time. Your family’s blog helped me to make the decision as to whether I should book a planned tour or take the plunge and just plan it myself. So I am doing the latter with fearlessness as I will be a single traveler 😉

    My question for you is around your photography. Being an avid photographer, now mostly iphoneographer, lol. Do you know if there are photography tours in each of the three cities, or do you recommend I make my way around? I will be spending three days in Budapest, 2 Vienna, and over a week in Prague, although part of that week I’ll be working. Really want to make the most of the scenic shots while there with some even off the beaten path.

    Your photos are absolutely stunning. Any recommendations for other places to photograph that you haven’t already listed in this itinerary?

    1. Post

      Wow, a week in Prague. That sounds awesome!! I do not know of any photography tours to recommend, but take a look on Trip Advisor. I assume there are companies offering photography tours and the reviews on Trip Advisor are usually a good way to judge how good of a service they provide. You can walk around on your own taking photos, if you feel comfortable doing so. But photography tours usually take you to the best spots and show you the best angles to get the really great photos. You just have to decide if the price of the photography tour is worth it for you.

      Prague is so photogenic. Climb all of the towers…they each offer a slightly different perspective of the city. Getting photos of the Charles Bridge at sunrise and sunset would also be very nice. For a great view of the Tyn Church and the Old Town Square, climb the tower of the Town Hall (right next to the Astronomical Clock).

      Have a great time!

      Cheers, Julie

      1. Thank you so much! Your information and blog has been phenominally helpful, and I will recommend it to my friends and family. I leave in 3 days and am looking forward to every minute!

        1. Post
  26. Hi, This seems like an awesome list of things to do. Thanks for sharing your experience. I have a question. What’s it like to do all this in December? Is it super cold, my friend and I live in Boston, so we’re used to whimsically cold weather, but we’d like to vacation somewhere less cold if not warm 🙂

    1. Post

      Hello Nikita. I have not been to these countries in December, so I cannot answer this from my own personal experiences. However, doing a little research online, I found that the average temperatures for these three cities are 32F/1C in December. So it will be cold. The Holiday Weather website is good to use if you want to get a basic idea of what to expect with regards to the weather. Enter in the city, click on the button that says Annual Averages, and you can get an overview for each month of the year. Cheers, Julie

  27. Hi Julie. Love your blog! Our family is planning to travel to Prague and Budapest next summer. We have three children ages 10-15 and we’ve visited Europe each summer for the past few years, but this will be our first visit to Prague and Budapest. We’ll unfortunately only have nine nights. We usually travel for 16+ days so I’m really struggling to not fit too much in. I was considering 4 nights in Prague and 5 nights in Budapest. The thought was to do a daytrip to Cesky Krumlov but I’m now thinking the trip may be too long. We’ve never visited Austria but do plan to one day so I was thinking perhaps we should instead save CK for when we travel there. If we drop CK, I was thinking of changing it to 3 nights in Prague and 6 nights in Budapest which would give us time to do a daytrip to the Danube Bend and perhaps a half day around Lake Balaton. Since you’ve visited Prague and Budapest I’d love your insight. Would you skip CK? Would you do 3 or 4 nights in Prague? Another question, you mention the House of Terror being not appropriate for young children? What are your thoughts on children ages 10-15 visiting? Thank you!

    1. Post

      Hi Joanne. Honestly, we LOVED Cesky Krumlov. I liked it more than Vienna for sure. In my opinion, it’s worth it to see it now. You could rent a car for the day and drive down from Prague, spend the day there, and return to Prague in the late afternoon or early evening (you can also do this by bus on a tour).

      We also enjoyed Prague more than Budapest, but that’s just our experience. However, we never did day trips in Budapest, although that sounds like a nice idea. I think 10 years old is OK for the House of Terror. It can be a little intense but it’s not like visiting a concentration camp in Europe.

      Cheers, Julie

  28. This looks like a great itinerary.

    In a year, my husband and I will be doing a 2-week Rick Steves trip in Croatia, but beforehand we were hoping to see Prague, Vienna, and Cesky Krumlov on our own (the week before we start the Croatia tour.)

    I hadn’t even considered Budapest but those photos make it look amazing.

    We’ll have about a week on our own and then we’ll start our tour in Dubrovnik. Not sure where we should fly into from the USA but many of these spots look great. I’m sharing this link with my hubby.

    1. Post

      With just one week, it’s going to be a little too rushed (in my opinion) to try to fit in Prague, Cesky Krumlov, Vienna, and Budapest. I think you should eliminate one of these cities. Fly into the northernmost city and work your way south to Ljubljana. But wow, what an amazing trip you have to look forward to! Cheers, Julie

  29. Hi Julie,

    Many thanks for putting up this blog. Truly answers lot of questions.
    I am planning to travel from Hong Kong with my husband, parents(60+) and 2 little kids in mid-November this year for 10 days. We would be arriving and departing from Vienna (due to direct flights from HK). I am thinking of adding Innsbruck and Salzburg to our itinerary, with 2 and half hour train ride I think Salzburg is possible for day trip, however I am confused on how include Innsbruck. Ideally out of total time I would like to spend a day and half in Vienna, a day in Innsbruck, day in Salzburg, 2 days in Budapest and 2 days in Prague, back to Vienna and take flight home.

    Your suggestions would be valuable. Thanks 🙂

    1. Post

      Your itinerary is possible but you may be spending more time in transit between cities than actually sightseeing. Just to travel by train from Budapest to Prague takes 6 hours, plus you will need to factor in time getting to and from the train stations, packing, and unpacking.

      You can visit Innsbruck as a day trip from Salzburg. It is a two hour train ride one way. In my opinion, if you want to add in Salzburg and Innsbruck, you might want to consider eliminating Prague or Budapest from this itinerary. I think it will be a much more enjoyable experience (especially since you are traveling with children) if you have less travel time and more time to spend in the cities.

      How about Vienna (1 day) to Budapest (3 days) to Salzburg (1 day) with a day trip to Innsbruck (1 day) and then travel back to Vienna (2 days). I included extra time in Vienna and Budapest to make up for time lost while in transit. You could tack on Prague to the end of this itinerary but it think it will be very rushed. But you do have enough time to add in a day trip to Berchtesgaden, Germany from Salzburg. Your kids may love the salt mine tour! Just a thought!

      Cheers, Julie

  30. Hi Julie,
    y husband and I will be in Vienna at the end of August on business. We will have a week after his conference to explore Central Europe (Friday-Friday). in that short week, what would you suggest? I have heard wonderful things about Budapest…but can we get to 2 countries in that time frame?

    1. Post

      Yes, in one week you can go to two countries. For this itinerary, Vienna is located between Budapest and Prague. Getting from Vienna to either Prague or Budapest is easy, but then getting to the third city will involve quite a bit of travel. Trains from Budapest to Prague (and vice versa) take approximately 6 hours and go through Vienna. If you want to see all three cities, looking into a cheap flight between Budapest and Prague might save you some time.

      Another option is to take a train to Salzburg and spend a day or two here. Then you could travel back through Vienna and end in Budapest. Salzburg is small and compact and you can see the best of it in a day or less. With an extra day, you could rent a car (or maybe take a bus?) and take a day trip to Berchtesgaden, Germany. This is a beautiful spot with WWII history and salt mines and German pastries, if you like that kind of thing. Just a thought.

      Cheers, Julie

  31. Hi Julie,

    Thanks for the wonderful itenary. I am planning to visit central Europe in March for 11 days and to cover
    Prague -Vienna-Budapest and Rome (2 days each) . I am planning to take flight from Budapest to Rome. Can you advise if it is possible or if 11 days is too less for these 4 cities. Also how will be the weather in March.

    1. Post

      Hello Manas. Two days in each city is a bit rushed. You will end up spending a lot of time packing, unpacking, and traveling between cities. It will take about a half day to transfer from city to city. Sure, it’s possible, but with 11 days, I think you would be better just touring 3 cities, but that’s just my opinion. In March, Prague, Vienna, and Budapest will be chilly, but it’s low season so hotels will be cheaper and the city will be quiet. There is still a chance of snow in Prague in March. Rome will be warmer, with pleasant daytime temperatures but cool at night. Cheers, Julie

    2. Hi, we are also planning a trip to this area in March, we are thinking Prague, Salzburg, Vienna, And Budapest. We are on the fence with Vienna and are trying to figure out if we should skip it completely and spend more time in Budapest or Prague, or stop in for a quick visit because we are going to be right there?

      1. Post

        I think it depends upon how much time you have. Try to spend at least two full days in Budapest and two full days in Prague. A third day in Prague would be worthwhile. Vienna is all about history, museums, upscale experiences (shopping and the opera), and cafe culture. If this doesn’t interest you, then it would be fine skipping it. In our experience (and this is just our opinion), Vienna was our least favorite city on this itinerary (but don’t get me wrong, it is still a wonderful city to visit). You can see the best of Salzburg with one day. And really, you could see a handful of sites in Vienna in one day, this would just be a lot of traveling and checking in and out of hotels. So, evaluate how much time you have, make sure you have enough time for Budapest and Prague, and maybe a quick visit to Vienna will work in your schedule. If not, it still sounds like a wonderful trip. Cheers, Julie

  32. Hi July we will start our journey from munich as husband have business trip there and we extend our stay to explore neighborhood country around munich. Plan to visit vienna, prague & budapest. Which is the best route to start from munich? We will be taking train.
    Thank you.

    1. Post

      From Munich, I would go to either Prague or Budapest first. Check the train times for each of these cities and pick what is most convenient. Prague is a little closer to Munich than Budapest so Prague may be better as the first city you visit on this itinerary. Then go to Vienna and end in Budapest. Have fun! Julie

  33. Hello ,

    We are planing a 10 day Tour of central Europe as we are inspired by your blog. thank you.

    We are planning for 3 days Budapest, 2 Days Salzburg, 2 days Vienna and 3 days Prague. Could you suggest us places to visit in salzburg if you have been there.

    1. Post

      Yes, we have been to Salzburg. Most of the main sites are in the downtown area within walking distance of each other. Some of the best sites include the Salzburg Fortress, Mozart’s Birthplace, Mirabell Palace and gardens, walk the old town (it’s beautiful), and see the Hellbrunn Castle. You can also take a cable car up to the top of one of the nearby mountains (Untersberg Bahn). There are also a lot of tour companies offering “Sound of Music” tours if you are interested. Cheers, Julie

  34. Hi Julie. I am from Mumbai and planning to travel alone in September. I’ll be travelling for around 14 days. So where should I start my journey from Prague, Budapest or Vienna. And are 14 days way too much, if yes so which nearby places can I go from there. And what would be more cheaper and convenient, bus or train.

    1. Post

      Hello. Start in either Prague or Budapest, since these make the most convenient starting (or ending) cities. 14 days will give you plenty of time to thoroughly see each city. Traveling by train will be a little faster and more comfortable but the bus will be a little cheaper. You will have to look at the prices for both options to help you make your decision. If you are looking for nearby places to add, consider taking a day trip to Cesky Krumlov from Prague or adding a 4th European city onto this itinerary, such as Salzburg, Berlin, Munich, or Wroclaw. If you do this, start in Budapest, then go to Vienna, Prague, and then take a train to the 4th city. Cheers, Julie

  35. Hi I am planning on a trip to Europe sometime end November 2017 with my hubby, my 5 year old kid and another couple. We have plans to visit Vienna, Budapest and Prague. Will it be too cold is it worth the trip? Will you suggest self drive or train rides? We plan between 10-12days. Any advice is good :>

    1. Post

      If you don’t mind cold temperatures, I think it will be worth it. One advantage of visiting in the off season is that crowds will be low and travel costs should be a little cheaper. We took the train between Budapest and Vienna and it was very easy, convenient, and the views from the train were nice. To get to Prague renting a car is a good choice because it allows you to visit Cesky Krumlov hassle free. Since you are 5 people, sharing a car could be more budget friendly than the train (you just have to rent one big enough for all 5 of you and your luggage). You will have to compare prices to see what fits best in your budget.

      At the end of November, in Prague you may get to see the first of the Christmas markets, if that interests you. Just bring warm clothing and plan on warming up in the cafes in the cities (Vienna has some awesome cafes with coffee and pastries!) and you should have a great trip.

      Cheers, Julie

  36. Hi Julie,

    Thanks for the beautiful and detailed information. We have booked our tickets to travel to Prague for three days in the coming month. We have already being to Vienna and Budapest. So we want to spend two days in Prague and one day we want to go to Dresden or Cesky Krumlov . But please we would need your suggestion regarding the same. For those two days in Prague we are looking to go to Charles bridge, astronomical clock, Vitus cathedral, Wenceslas Square, Prague castle,old town square, dancing house and lennon wall.
    Please we would like your suggestion, if we have to add or remove any place from the list. Also do u suggest us to take hop and hop off bus or is it easy to go from place to another by walk, how did you manage to go to each of this places in prague.
    Also for the entrance fees, do u recommend to take before or after going there. Please kindly advise.
    One last question for one day we are planning to go to one of the places either Dresden or Cesky Krumlov, but would like your suggestion regarding which place to go.
    Please kindly let us know your valuable suggestions.

    1. Post

      In Prague, we got around mostly by walking. To connect places farther apart we used the metro, which is straightforward and budget friendly. Hop on buses tend to be expensive. If you don’t mind walking, this is a great way to get around Prague since most of the sites are located close together in and around the Old Town. It sounds like you have a great list of things to see and I wouldn’t remove anything from your list. We loved climbing the towers because they give such a wonderful view of the city. There are two, one at each end of the Charles Bridge, and there is the Powder Tower located just east of the Old Town, and one or all of these are worth a visit. I do not think you need to book your tickets in advance, but it could save you a little time, especially for the Prague Castle. And we have not been to Dresden yet, so I do not know if it is a better experience than Cesky Krumlov. However, we LOVED Cesky Krumlov, it is such a neat town to visit. Cheers, Julie

  37. hi Julie, I’m impressed with your kind share and time on answering traveller’s inquiries 🙂

    we are planning for honeymoon in feb’2018 to europe countries where prague, vienna are our choices of countries.

    we are planning to include switzerland and budapest as well (maybe either of it) for our two weeks honeymoon.

    could you kindy advise will it be too rush for us to visit all these?

    and which way is best to travel among these countries? we are from malaysia 🙂

    Thanks in advance 🙂


    1. Post

      With two weeks you have more than enough time to visit Prague, Vienna, and Budapest. If you wanted to add in Switzerland, you could spend about 6 days Prague and Vienna (about 3 days in each) and then finish in Switzerland. Prague, Vienna, and Budapest are easily connected by train. In Switzerland, you can also get around by train. You could look into getting a Eurail pass for your stay in Europe. Cheers, Julie

  38. Hi Julie

    We are 2 families with 3 kids between 8 and 11 and we will start our itinerary in Prague for a week (the kids have hockey camp there) and was then planning to rent a minivan to drive to Budapest for 3 days and then Vienna for 2 and Salzburg for 2 before dropping off the rental car at Munich airport and flying home from there. Because of hockey camp, we will have 3 bags of hockey equipment including hockey sticks so that’s one reason to drive instead of train / bus. What do you think about driving? The rental car for 2 weeks costs just under Euro 1k. We don’t mind paying more for renting a car (plus fuel and parking fees) but do you think it is way more expensive than going by train for the 7 of us and is it ok to drive and find parking (we plan to stay at hotels) where we are going? Thanks Howard

    1. Post

      I think getting a rental car is a good idea, especially since you are a relatively large group. On a quick search, the train tickets from Prague to Budapest alone are just over $100 USD per person, $700 for your group. A 5 day Eurail pass for the 3 countries you are visiting would cost around $400 for one adult (just looked it up on the Eurail website). Driving between these countries is straightforward. You will need to get special toll stickers (vignettes) for each country. They are relatively cheap and can be purchased at gas stations and convenience stores. Here’s a website with more information.

      While you are in Salzburg, consider visiting Berchtesgaden as a day trip. You can tour the salt mines (fun for kids) and visit the Eagle’s Nest, Hitler’s command post during WWII.

      Cheers, Julie

  39. How do you recommend getting from Budapest to Prague? We researched it and the train takes 8 hours which is most of our day.

    1. Post

      If the train takes too long for your schedule, you could look into flying between Prague and Budapest. This would save a lot of time but might be expensive. If you rented a car, it would take five to six hours to get between the two cities. – Julie

  40. Hi Julie,

    I am traveling with a group of 7 others, all couples and family, we are all in our late 20s to early 30s. In early October we are going to Croatia for 6 days and want to spend 3 days/nights elsewhere. Our current options are Vienna or Budapest, would you recommend one over the other?

    Thanks for the advice!

    P.S. We did Prague last year and had a blast!

    1. Post

      I’d pick Budapest over Vienna. It’s closer to Croatia, but aside from its location, Tim and I loved Budapest. It’s such a neat city. The views, the history, the food…Budapest is such a great European city. Vienna is nice too, if you like museums and cafes, but there’s just something about Budapest… Cheers, Julie

  41. Hello! I love your blog. My friend and I are traveling for 12 days before arriving in Budapest for a month long internship. We will have already toured Munich, Salzburg, and Prague (2 full days at this point in Prague, 3 nights). We do not have plans for the last six days before we report in Budapest. (We’ll have weekends free to explore this city during the month so we don’t want to just head straight there.) Where would you go from Prague? We aren’t seeing too much of interest in Vienna – at least not 5 days worth. Should we back track somewhere? What would you do?

    1. Post

      What about Poland? Warsaw looks great, but it’s a bit far away from where you are and where you are going. But Krakow and Wroclaw are much closer. They both look interesting and they are not too far out of your way. For a more “gruesome” destination, you could visit the Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora, just a day trip away from Prague. Bratislava is on your way to Budapest. I don’t think there’s 5 days worth of sightseeing there, maybe just one or two days. If it were me, I would either visit Wroclaw and/or Krakow (depending on how transportation works out) or go from Prague to Kutna Hora to Bratislava to Budapest. Just one more thought…if you can find cheap flights on budget airlines, what about a quick trip to Berlin, Paris, or Amsterdam? Cheers, Julie

  42. Hi Julie,
    I’ve love your website! We are traveling from the US to Geneva and will stay with our daughter in Geneva for 4 days. We then have an additional 10 days to travel. We are considering Prague, Vienna and Budapest which is how I found your site. We would also love to visit the Plitvice National Park in Croatia. What are your thoughts? Should we drop one of the cities? How difficult is it to get to Plitvice? If going to Croatia, should we concentrate our visit there?
    Many thanks for any help.

    1. Post

      Yes, it would be too rushed to see all three cities and Plitvice. Plitvice isn’t anywhere near those three cities. You can only get to Plitvice via car (5 hour drive from Budapest) or by bus (3 hour journey from Zagreb). I would either do the 10 day central Europe itinerary or do a separate trip to Croatia. In my opinion, it would be too much driving to just visit Croatia to see Plitvice. 10 days is enough time to tour Croatia from Zagreb down to Dubrovnik, and that would be another great trip. Cheers, Julie

  43. Thank you Julie for all the informative details about your Eastern Europe trip. This will really help me a lot in planning my next trip early next year. Just a few questions I hope you don’t mind.
    – we are a group of 6 persons and we are planning to rent an apartment or private place which i think will be more appropriate for us than a hotel. do you have any suggestions for any affordable accommodation?
    -are there any restrictions regarding driver’s license should we rent a car as you have suggested from Vienna to Prague? We are residents of Dubai, UAE and we have UAE driver’s license.
    – is the route going to Prague driver-friendly to new visitors like us?

    Thanks so much. Now I have another reference to check and visit in my next trips.

    1. Post

      Hello Jessica. I cannot recommend any specific apartment in Prague, as we just stayed in the Paris Hotel. However, if I were to rent an apartment, I would check either Air BnB or Trip Advisor for places to stay. There are not any restrictions regarding driver’s license when renting a car, that I know of. The rental car company you choose should be able to let you know if there are any restrictions. It’s a good idea to get a International Driver Permit, which is a multi-language translation of your driver’s license. You will also need to bring your driver’s license with you. The route from Vienna to Prague is very easy to drive…wide highways, good signage, safe. You will need to purchase a road toll sticker for the Czech Republic. We did this at a convenience store gas station in Austria right before the Czech Republic border. It’s cheap but it’s necessary for driving in the Czech Republic. Here is a link with more information. Cheers, Julie

  44. Hi Julie,
    Thank you so much for your 10 day itinerary which will make it so much easier for my travels with my 2 young adult kids and husband in August of this year. We are planning to follow your itinerary arriving in Budapest to Vienna then last Prague. Kids will return home from Prague on the 11th day then my husband and I will remain behind for an extra 5 days. Any suggestions as to where we can travel to but returning to Prague for our flight home? We really would like to rent a car from Vienna to Prague as you did but was told the country drop off fee is very expensive, can you elaborate on that please. Also, like to visit Salzburg, can we fit this into our 10 schedule with kids?

    1. Post

      Hello. Salzburg is a little out of the way. You could visit it in between Vienna and Prague, but you will have to give up some time in one of these cities to do so. Or, you and your husband could visit Salzburg (along with Berchtesgaden and Munich) after Prague. Other ideas of places to visit after Prague would be Berlin, Germany or Wroclaw, Poland (a smaller version of Warsaw).

      When it comes to paying for the rental car drop off fee, you have to decide if the extra price is worth the convenience of having a car. For us, it was, since it allowed us to see conveniently see Cesky Krumlov on the way to Prague, and this was one of our favorite days of this trip. You can get to Cesky Krumlov by bus from Prague, but it will take up a lot of your time and you will have to pay for four people. I do not know exactly what we paid, and since it was now several years ago, I am sure prices have changed. You will have to contact some rental car companies to get up-to-date pricing.


  45. Hello Julie. Your blog is great! Am planning to fly in from Dublin for 8 days (23-30Dec 2017 )for this 3 places with my family of 5. Will it be too rush? What is your advice?

    1. Post

      Yes, I think it will be too rushed. I know that it is tempting to try to see everything, but you might have a better time eliminating one city and spending your time really exploring two of the cities. At least if you are arriving from Dublin you won’t have to deal with jet lag. Have fun! Julie

  46. My daughter ( graduate student) and I (recently retired income status) are taking the same 11 in these three cities. Please advise the best way to secure travel both between cities and to and from airports as well as around. We are necessarily traveling on a budget (Our choices go cheap or don’t go) I am a bit overwhelmed trying to plan from US. Our trip will be the beginning of August. Thank you for any guidance

    1. Post

      Depending on the city, you can get from the airport to the city center either by metro or by taxi. The best budget way to get between these cities is by train. However, if you want to get to Cesky Krumlov, you can take a public bus to get there (read the comment thread for more information on how to get to Cesky Krumlov by bus). Each city has a great metro system for getting around (but exploring by foot works well also if you don’t mind walking a lot). Cheers, Julie

  47. This is our exact itineary – Budapest, Vienna, Prague but for 14 days. It’s our Honeymoon! Thinking of 5 nights Budapest, 3 Vienna and 5 in Prague. Does anyone have any other feedback? We would also like to experience Airbnb vs just hotels.

  48. Comment Re: Day 4– Make sure you check the length of the opera before committing to standing-only tickets. Standing-room tickets may be inexpensive, but many operas are 3+ hours long. Paying more to have a seat may make the difference between enjoying yourself and wanting to leave at intermission.
    Also, remember that both the singing and the surtitles (the translations projected above the stage) will be in different languages than English. Even if you’re fluent in one of those languages, it may be a 100+ year old poetic version of that language. To ensure you understand what’s happening, printing off a copy of the libretto or a detailed plot summary and bringing it with you to the performance will help you be able to fully enjoy the production.

    1. Post
  49. Hi Julie , I’m single women traveler. Is these city safe n friendly. Also I have more then 10 days (16days) which other country I could add. I would be traveling from Mumbai.


    1. Post

      These cities are safe and friendly. Ten days is the perfect amount of time to see these 3 cities. If you have an additional two or three days (or longer), you could add Berlin, Munich, Bratislava, or Salzburg, since they would not require much more travel time. Cheers, Julie

  50. This is a great itinerary! I have only 1 week and am thinking of going Vienna to Prague. Is it better to do 3 full days Vienna (or 3 full days in Prague)? 2 days Vienna and 3 Prague likely suits my schedule better but I’m wondering if there’s more to see in 1 place vs the other. (Of course you could spend any amount in either, they look beautiful.)

    1. Post

      Hello Monique. I would spend three days in Prague and two days in Vienna. There’s plenty to do in both cities but Prague is my personal favorite of the 3 cities on this itinerary. Cheers, Julie

  51. Thank you so much for sharing your itineraries. I think this is one of the best I have researched that covers these three cities.

    Husband and I planning to visit In September for honeymoon. Do you think this itinerary may be too rush for 10 day honeymoon?

    1. Post

      It may be a little bit too rushed for a honeymoon, but it’s a great trip. Can you add a few more days, staying longer in one of the cities? In my opinion, Prague is the most romantic, although they are all wonderful. If you are concerned you will be running around too much, you could eliminate one of the cities, which will slow down the pace of the trip. But then which one do you pick?! Tough one. It’s your honeymoon and if you want to see all three cities, why not? It will still be a very memorable experience! Cheers, Julie

  52. Hi wish to travel this itinerary of yours of Budapest Prague and Vienna from mumbai india in the month of july when weather won’t be too cold. which is the best month according to you which might be less cold. and if i am flying from mumbai which city should i do first second and last.

    1. Post

      Hello Samir. The warmest months will be June, July, and August. This will also be peak season so expect higher crowds of visitors in each city during this time. You can travel Budapest to Vienna to Prague, or reverse it and go Prague to Vienna to Budapest. Both ways are fine, just see which one works better with booking flights. Cheers, Julie

  53. Hi we are group of 6 people ( 3 couples) from India, planning for Prague-Vienna-Budapest-Zagreb(till dubrovnik) in 13 days is it possible to cover all the important places. Is it viable by Train or road journey. please advice

    1. Post

      13 days is plenty of time to visit Prague, Vienna, and Budapest and these are easy to connect with a train. To add Zagreb is possible and you can take a train from Budapest to Zagreb. But to make it down to Dubrovnik you do not have enough time. You might want to consider saving Croatia for another trip. Cheers, Julie

  54. Thank you for this fantastic itinerary. My husband and I are hoping to visit these three cities this summer with our 7 month old. Do you think this itinerary is “baby friendly”? If not, do you have any other suggestions? We have already been to Portugal, Spain and Italy.

    1. Post

      Yes, I think you can do this with a baby. Some things may be more difficult, like going out to dinner or for drinks, that sort of thing…but you would have this issue anywhere you travel. I think that Prague will by the hardest of the three cities, with the tower climbs, beer halls, etc. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Just be flexible with your plans. Your other option is to plan a trip where you stay in one place and take lots of day trips. Tuscany, Bavaria, and London could be a good longer term home bases. Hope this helps! – Julie

  55. We want to visit Prague, Vienna, and Budapest leaving from Atlanta (USA) August 3 rd for 10 day itinerary. Please let us know if this tour would be available during these dates and the cost per person – we would do our own flights separately. We are 2 adults and one 16 year old.

    Thank you!

    Sakina Bashey

    1. Post

      Hello Sakina. I’m sorry but we do not operate tours. We put out this itinerary as a guide to help you plan your trip. You can do this itinerary on your own, if you book your flights, hotels, and other transportation. If you do not want to do this planning you can hire a travel agent. Cheers, Julie

  56. For me walking through the streets of historical Prague, is like walking a gallery of all major European architectural styles, spanning a thousand years of architectural history in enchanting colors and shapes and, it is interesting to discover how these splendid buildings shaped the history of the Czech Republic and in contrast, how history shaped the designs of many of these buildings and what they came to symbolize in an historical context.

    In the historical center of Prague you can walk past the Municipal House, the Art Nouveau jewel of Prague, that is covered in floral motives, guilded wroth iron curved around beautifully shaded stain glass.

    And continue through the Gothic and neo-Gothic styled powder tower going to the Celetna street , covered with Baroque palaces with Gothic interiors and Renaissance courts yards. On the way you encounter the unique Cubist house at the Black Madonna with its straight angular lines, then continues on to the medieval Ungelt compound with its Renaissance palace , past the heavily Baroque St, James Church and into the Old town Square with its legendary Astronomical clock. Which is followed by the Art Nouveau Jewish Quarters with its ancient synagogues.

    1. Post

      I just love the Art Nouveau architecture in Prague. And those Gothic towers…they are just awesome. Prague is such a photogenic city, and now that it’s been a few years since we have been there, I am itching to return! Cheers, Julie

  57. Thanks for the great itinerary! We are heading there in the middle of April. Flights and hotels are booked. Next are train tickets between the 3 cities, do you recommend to purchase them in advance from home or only buy once there? There are so many websites selling train tickets, which one do you recommend?

    1. Post

      Hello Sigrun. We tend to purchase our tickets in advance. We just like knowing that’s taken care of. RailEurope tends to be our website of choice. Have a great time!! Enjoy that walk across Charles Bridge in Prague…I just love that city. Cheers, Julie

  58. Will be traveling to all place but will start out trip in Prague in January. We also want to visit Cesky Krumlov. Only have 6days, busy yes. 🙂 . What it the best mode of transportation?

    1. Post

      Hello Amanda. It is very easy to connect Prague, Vienna, and Budapest with trains. Eurail has service from Prague to Vienna and Vienna to Budapest. Adding in Cesky Krumlov makes transportation more difficult. From Prague, you could take a day trip to Cesky Krumlov, using a tour service, or public bus or train. Or you could travel there in the morning, spend the day there, stay overnight, and the next morning travel to Vienna. There is a shuttle connecting Cesky Krumlov to Prague. Here are two links about transportation to Cesky Krumlov to look at:

      Cesky Krumlov Information website
      Bean Shuttle (shuttle service connecting Cesky Krumlov with Vienna and Prague)

      You are trying to squeeze a lot of places into a short amount of time. Have you thought about removing one of these cities from your itinerary? Right now, you will be spending a lot of your time transferring between cities and checking into and out of hotels. I know how tempting it is to see as much as you can, but I think you will have a better experience if you slow things down a little. Just a thought! Cheers, Julie

  59. Pingback: September 8, 2016 – Thursday | carpe40diem

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *