Free Trip to Europe!? Wish me luck!

The Dream

NomadicMatt is sending someone to Europe for 12 days.   The winner will go to Budapest, Prague, and Vienna.

The Sad Story

I've been trying to get to these three cities for the past two years.  Owing to a conspiracy between my wife and job, I've yet to make it!  Help me, Matt!

Last year I had a conference in Vienna.  The family toured around Vienna for a week while I spent way too much time in a conference.  My wife still tells me I have never really been to Vienna.  We did spend a week in beautiful Halstatt which I highly recommend for a relaxing trip.

This year was a trip to Eastern Europe.  You would think.  Nope.  My wife wanted to go to a magical place I'd been years ago.    So, we went to the Former Yugoslavia with a few days in Romania.   It was a great time though.  The Croatian coast is beautiful.

OK, so maybe this is not that sad after all.   These cities have been very elusive though!

Once Matt helps me foil the evil forces against me, I have a plan.

The Plan

  • Prague
    • Live the Bohemian life for twelve days by starting in Prague, the capital of Bohemia proper.
    • Vyšehrad Castle where Prague started.
    • Walk the old town and try to figure out the Astronomical Clock
    • Visit one or two of the outdoor markets such as Holesovice Market or Pankrac Market
    • Visit Josefov (historic Jewish ghetto) to tour old synagogues
    • Briefly check out the Museum of Commnunism
    • Visit one or two outdoor markets
    • Possible (long) day trip to the town of Český Krumlov to see the second largest castle in the Czech Republic
    • Explore Brno on the way to Vienna.
  • Vienna
  • Budapest
    • Go to a thermal bath!
    • Explore Castle Hill
      • Explore the Királyi Palota (Royal Palace)  where the city started
      • Wander around Lions' Courtyard
      • Stroll through Hunydi Garden
    • Visit St Stephan's Basilica and maybe rent a bike at the nearby garage
    • Take a night time cruise on the Danube river
    • Possible half-day trip to the village of Szentendre
    • Day trip to Hollókő a UNESCO World Heritage site

They say a plan is only good until the battle starts.  So, you need to think about what to do in case of a contingency.  Got that covered too.

Plan B

If Prague, Budapest, and Vienna slip away for a third time.  I will pick a twelve day period between October 15, 2012 and April 30th, 2013 to watch the following video once per day. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKo4FMzt_hM]

The pitch

Matt, please help me get this trip.  I'd love to share the memories and photos with those who cannot make it.   Third time is a charm and this is my third attempt to get to this part of Europe.

Also, I am not sure I can stomach twelve days of William Shatner doing Bohemian Rhapsody!  Help!