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Finland on the fly??

Which Helsinki hotels are on sale?
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San Francisco...
posts: 33
reviews: 15
Finland on the fly??

Visiting Helsinki,Finland (3 days), Tallinn (1 day), Riga (2 days), Lithuania (3 days), the rest Poland (Krakow, Zakopane) (6 days). How does this itinerary sound? It's our first time! Any suggestions?

Can you show up in these places and get a room or will you have problems w/ availability? Do you really need to book in advance? What is the most scenic part of this trip? Not so pretty?

Do you need to book in advance for Ryan Air, Easy Jet airlines or can you fly low budget carriers last minute? Eurolines bus reservations or not?

Any other options or ideas for cool things to do, places to see, or anything else that will make this an easy, fun trip?!

Thanks for any suggestions you may have.


Vancouver, Canada
Destination Expert
for London
posts: 47,084
reviews: 14
1. Re: Finland on the fly??

Hiya. Dropped an answer over at the Riga forum, so I won't repeat myself, except to say hope your holiday goes well.

Helsinki, Finland
posts: 354
reviews: 39
2. Re: Finland on the fly??

I would book rooms in advance, you have a limited time in every city and don't want spend your valuable time looking for hotel rooms.

Give your budget and dates you will be in Helsinki, I maybe could give you some advice consernign hotels.

Browse this forum, there are advices on what to see and do. To get more precise advices, tell about your interests and your age.

Sydney, Australia
posts: 33
reviews: 20
3. Re: Finland on the fly??

As everyone else has said, you should book flights in advance if you want to get the cheapest rates, you don't say how soon you are travelling but to get the best deals you usually need to book as soon as the tickets go on sale (5/6 months in advance if not more). I would also book accomodation in advance, you have a tight itinerary and you don't want to be wandering around trying to find somewhere to sleep each time you arrive somewhere new.

With regard to pre-booking buses, when I travelled in Finland and Poland we just turned up and caught the bus/train, but in Poland there were occasions when we had to wait for a couple of hours as the first bus departing was full, so if you have a set itinerary I would buy your onward ticket when you arrive in the destination. Helsinki is nice and there are nice places to visit in the surrounding area, such as Porvoo. Tallinn is quaint, bare in mind the ferry/catamaran takes a minimum of 1.5 hours (plus check-in time) to cross from Helsinki, even the quick catamarans were taking that long earlier this month, I would cross the evening before the day you've allocated to Tallinn to allow a full day of sightseeing in Tallinn. I can't comment on Riga or Vilnius as I've not been, but unless you are a great hiker than I would not spend too long in Zakopane, when I went it was heaving with school children and horribly busy, unless you plan to go walking in the mountains. You can take the cable car up the mountain which is half in Slovakia and half in Poland and go up the funnicular in 1 day, and then have a wander round for a few hours the next day. Krakow is lovely and has a lot more cultural sights than Tallinn, and you can visit Auschwitz and the salt mine using there as a base, so allow a good few days for Krakow. I would think the most scenic part will probably be Zakopane as you seem to be focusing on cities elsewhere.

San Francisco...
posts: 33
reviews: 15
4. Re: Finland on the fly??

Thanks all...since posting and reading replies we have also come to the conclusion that the original trip was too much. We arrrive in Finland on Aug 30th and leave out of Heathrow September16th. So it's somewhat after the Summer rush.

Our new plan is Finland (3 days), Tallinn (1 day), Riga (3 days), Lithuania (3 days). We are not huge city people so we find city trips not particularly relaxing. We also like flexiblity so if a place is not that great you can just leave instead of suffering. That's the logistical problem with this trip.

We are still thinking about winging it on the transportation between cities and hoping that there will be less demand at that time of the year so we can just show up. One of the other posts said that he wished he had not booked ahead as he had to buy another ticket on the spot..this was going from Vilnius to Riga. Wonder if the same may be true going the other way?

We still have 6 days left over from the city portion of this trip. Are there any biking trips, something non-city like a beach town or even short flights to another country to change it up. Man this trip is hard!!

Destination Expert
for Helsinki, Finland
posts: 3,607
reviews: 46
5. Re: Finland on the fly??

I suggest a catamaran boat for Helsinki-Tallinn (100 mins), there are plenty of those and if you are not goin on Sat morning or Sun evening there will be plenty of room. Look eg www.njl.fi

Buses don't need to be prebooked in Finland, unless it's Xmas or something like that.

Tallinn to Riga I'd take a bus or train and the same goes for Riga to Vilnius. Have no idea whether or to prebook. The distances are however just few hundreds of kms and there is no point in flying.

6. Re: Finland on the fly??

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