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Budapest May 10, 17 8:17 pm

Poland Itinerary
 
Visiting Poland the first time in June.
Proposed itinerary:
4 nights Warsaw
3 nights Gdansk
3 nights Wroclaw
4 nights Sakopane
4 nights Krakow

Train or rental car?
Any must see areas (nature, culture) that we missed?
Length of time we propose?
SIM card for data suggestions
Other thoughts and tips are appreciated.

Fanjet May 11, 17 12:58 am

Actually, look into PolskiBus (www.polskibus.com). I find them much easier (and cheaper) to use than PKP's train services. And I personally wouldn't bother with the costs and hassles of renting a car in Poland. As for your itinerary. Do you like the mountain outdoors a lot? Otherwise, a couple of days in Zakopane should do fine.

farci May 11, 17 3:53 am

'Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it'
George Santayana


In my view a visit to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial & Museum should be compulsory. Easy to reach from Krakow

AlicorporateUK May 11, 17 4:39 am

As already suggested, you could plot a visit to Auschwitz during your stay in Kraków, touching but definitely worth it. You could also perhaps spend an extra day in Trójmiasto (i.e. Gdańsk, Sopot & Gdynia), a few days on the seaside instead of Warszawa/Kraków (where the absurd level of air pollution is probably only second to Beijing) could kick things off nicely for you (unless it starts snowing like yesterday). As for transport, you could also look at flights, with Ryanair often offering ridiculously low fares (~€5) between Gdańsk & Warszawa, for instance, otherwise trains (relatively cheap for western standards and with the big plus being the high speed rail service, introduced back in 2014), but I wouldn't bother with coaches (cheap, true, but road works, traffic etc. would personally put me off). There are countless things you could see in the above mentioned places, though if you could be a tad more specific we would surely come up with a decent list.

G

Budapest May 12, 17 1:49 pm

Thanks for the replies and suggestions. Auschwitz is certainly on our list. We also enjoy the "off the beaten track" places in cities, where we meet locals and get to see places through their lenses. Mountains/outdoors a must.

AlicorporateUK May 13, 17 1:55 am


Originally Posted by Budapest (Post 28303901)
Thanks for the replies and suggestions. Auschwitz is certainly on our list. We also enjoy the "off the beaten track" places in cities, where we meet locals and get to see places through their lenses. Mountains/outdoors a must.

Plenty of mountains in Zakopane for sure! ;) That aside, I'm on the move and hate typing on iPhone however, when in Gdańsk and in need of a drink but at the same time wanting to avoid packed to the brim's bars & pubs around the city centre/Sopot's Monte Cassino, make sure you pop in to Garnizon, a former army garrison which was smartly converted to a fancy mini-district with a few nice bars, including Marmolada Chleb i Kawa, Stary Maneż, Otwarta and finally Lula (admittedly, I'm a regular there during my work-from-home Fridays - very handy for me and good choice of drinks and cocktails ;)), all in roughly 5 minutes' walk from Galeria Bałtycka (see Google Maps for ease of reference) - you'll definitely meet plenty of locals there. If you're into fish, make sure you stop at Pomarańczowa Plaża while enjoying a stroll on the promenade between Gdańsk and Sopot (just past Mera Spa Hotel walking towards Sopot), they have an outdoor terrace with plenty of tables and the atmosphere is just brilliant.

G

Budapest May 13, 17 4:37 pm

Perfect, thanks for this.

helosc May 14, 17 12:48 am


Originally Posted by Budapest (Post 28303901)
Thanks for the replies and suggestions. Auschwitz is certainly on our list. We also enjoy the "off the beaten track" places in cities, where we meet locals and get to see places through their lenses. Mountains/outdoors a must.

Two good threads about 'off the beaten track'/alternative things to do/see in Warsaw and Krakow:


http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/europ...ps-warsaw.html

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/europ...ps-krakow.html

yurtripper May 14, 17 9:10 am

Good tips from AliCorporateUK - he knows whereof he speaks.

I can also give you some advice for WAW (and KRK also) but it's probably better to PM by this stage.

BTW, when you go to Sopot be aware that locals call the main drag (Monte Cassino) the 'monciak'. So if you hear this word that's what they're referring to. No surprises that there are considerably better options for seafood in and around the Tri-city than for all the other places on your list, so for dining I'd concentrate on seafood/fish during your time there.

Even in the capital, WAW, the seafood options will be mostly terrible if you don't know the city well.

1955845624 May 27, 17 9:20 am

I also suggest you to check Ryanair - now it's a promo, you can find RT flight for 6EUR (with cabin luggage only) OR pay extra 15EUR per 15kg of luggage (OW).

You can easy use train (WKD) S2 or S3 from/to WAW (going to/from Warszawa Centralna - Main Station) OR 175 bus (going to Krakowskie Przedmieście - Old Town BY Central Station). You can also buy 24 horus ticket for 15PLN (1EUR = 4,50PLN) - it's valid within 1st zone (all Warsaw - bus, tram, train, etc.)

SimCard - Play. You can buy in (for example) Złote Tarasy - near the Main Station in Warsaw. Cost? 1...2...3EUR (depends from included money on).

general45 May 28, 17 10:08 pm

I arrive in Krakow in July for a 4 day stay. I really want to avoid the all day tour buses to Auschwitz and have researched hiring a private car with driver for 100 Euros. Has anyone else done this? Comments provided pro or con or a particular company they would recommend would be appreciated. Thanks.

Giggleswick May 29, 17 12:54 am


Originally Posted by general45 (Post 28372421)
I arrive in Krakow in July for a 4 day stay. I really want to avoid the all day tour buses to Auschwitz and have researched hiring a private car with driver for 100 Euros. Has anyone else done this? Comments provided pro or con or a particular company they would recommend would be appreciated. Thanks.

Sorry, I know this doesn't answer your question directly, but in case you don't already know this, it's entirely possible to travel between Krakow and Auschwitz by minibus without doing the tour-bus thing. There are several minibus companies, and departures from the Krakow bus station are quite frequent. You pay on board and can buy a one-way ticket so that you're not tied to any particular company for the return journey and can just get a minibus back when you're ready. I don't remember the exact details, except that it will cost far, far less than 100 Euros and the drivers spoke English. There are also regular buses, but they're slower and less frequent.

general45 Jun 3, 17 8:47 pm

Thank you Giggleswick for this info. No I didn't know about the minibuses so this mode of transportation fits our needs perfectly. Thanks again.

TravelDream Jun 10, 17 8:58 am


Originally Posted by general45 (Post 28372421)
I arrive in Krakow in July for a 4 day stay. I really want to avoid the all day tour buses to Auschwitz and have researched hiring a private car with driver for 100 Euros. Has anyone else done this? Comments provided pro or con or a particular company they would recommend would be appreciated. Thanks.

I've been to Auschwitz twice. Once by private car and once by local train service. Both times were out-of-season, but both times the sites were pretty busy. Wouldn't fancy going in July TBH.
Going by car is, of course, far more convenient as the driver collected us from our apartments and drove us between Auschwitz and Birkenau. We went by car as an elderly grandmother was with us. From memory we paid about 80-90 zloty each (this was a few years ago), so 100 Euros would be quite similar.
The train was slower and slightly more complicated - but a fraction of the price. It really depends on you.

Another place I found really interesting in Krakow is Nowa Huta. Built as a new city by the communists as an 'ideal' city. Very gritty and local with stunning architecture.
I'd be tempted to knock a night of Zakopane and add one to Krakow - unless you want to focus more on hiking/ mountain relaxation.

I'd also add a recommendation for Polskibus as PKP trains can be very slow. Also, don't take a hire car to Krakow as it is impossible to park in the centre without a resident's permit.

Giggleswick Jun 10, 17 12:15 pm

Going by train from Krakow to Auschwitz is more complicated than going by minibus, and not to be recommended. As for getting between Auschwitz and Birkenau, there is a free shuttle bus that operated every ten minutes in the summer (I just checked the frequency online). The shuttle bus might be crowded in summer, though--I don't know, as I went in late September and it wasn't.


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