I’m looking to visit Krakow, Vienna and Prague in the same trip in mid-December. I know very little about the rail networks in those countries and was hoping you can shine some light on them for me? Bex, via email
Well Bex, the good news is that the European rail network is among the best in the world and I can tell you from personal experience that the trains are reliable, reasonably priced and comfortable.
Your route is basically a triangle, so I would recommend you start in Vienna, then take sleeper trains to Krakow and on to Prague – this way you’ll save a lot on accommodation costs.
If you have enough time, why not add the Slovakian capital Bratislava to your trip?
There’s amazing nightlife and plenty of culture to be found here, plus it’s an easy addition to your journey – just take a scenic boat trip along the Danube from Vienna. Then when you’re ready, it’s easy to hop on the train from Bratislava onwards to Krakow.
In terms of ticketing, the Eurail European East Pass offers great value at £122, which buys you five days of unlimited rail travel for a one-month period across Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria and Hungary. You can book rail passes through Rail Europe (raileurope.co.uk).
As well as the low cost, the flexibility of these tickets allows you to add extra destinations to your route as and when you fancy it.
I would like to visit the US next spring and am keen to try Miami. What would you recommend I do when I’m there? When is the best time to visit? Dan, via email
Glamorous Miami is famed for its stunning beaches, art-deco architecture and some of the best nightlife in the country.
Start out at South Beach, where you will find chic restaurants and cafes along Ocean Drive and great shopping along pedestrianised Lincoln Road.
Next, head inland to the areas of Little Haiti (it is advisable to visit this part of town during the day) or Little Havana to see the Latin side of the city. Visit Wynwood for a vast array of art galleries.
If you have a few days in Miami, hire a car and drive to the Everglades, which are less than an hour from the city. This vast expanse of swamp is fantastic for wildlife spotting, with alligators, panthers, snakes and birds among its inhabitants.
From here, head south along the Overseas Highway, which takes you along the chain of islands that make up the Florida Keys.
I would plan when to visit carefully as there are a number of large events in the city in March, including Fashion Week and the Winter Music Conference, which will reduce accommodation options and increase the cost of your trip.
It’s also worth remembering that spring break takes place throughout most of March, when an influx of students from around the country gives Miami’s nightlife an even more more raucous vibe than usual.
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