Landscape of Netherlands bouquet of tulips and windmills in the Netherlands.
By now we’ve established just how rich Eastern Europe is, and while exploring this sprawling region, it helps to have a local expert by your side. Trafalgar has plenty of itineraries and choices that will enable you to find a vacation that speaks to the traveller in you. Here are some itineraries you can consider while planning your trip.
Introduction to Eastern Europe: For your first time travelling to Eastern Europe, we suggest spending two weeks visiting the Czech Republic, Poland, and Hungary and focusing on the capitals and an additional city. This will give you a chance to explore some of the essential places and attractions without feeling rushed.
A course in Eastern Europe: Pack your trip with history, culture and nightlife. In two weeks you could cover a lot of ground by bouncing from major cities in Poland to Prague, and visiting underrated places such as Győr and Tábor along the way.
Russian deep-dive: If you only have a week, make your trip count by focusing on the wonders of Moscow and St. Petersburg. Get right to the heart of what makes them special as you take your time exploring two of Russia’s most breathtaking cities.
Poland deep-dive: Another great choice if you’ve got limited time is opting for a more thorough exploration of Poland. This country’s roots go back to the 10th century and with thousands of years worth of history, architecture and culture to explore, there’s more than enough to keep you busy.
Best time to visit Eastern Europe
Because Eastern Europe is somewhat off the radar, there’s really no wrong time to visit – and it’s a lot cheaper! Weather-wise, thanks to the geographic span of this region, you’ll find numerous climates. They range from the Mediterranean temperatures to cool mountain conditions.
During the summer, Eastern Europe is gloriously hot. While winters can be pretty chilly, the ambience of the festive season more than makes up for it – so don’t let that hold you back from experiencing the holidays in this beautiful part of the world. In some countries from November onwards, you’ll find that Christmas markets and mulled drinks are already being served. Of course, the charm of spring and fall is universal, whether flowers are blooming or leaves falling, both these seasons are a great time to visit any destination.
Generally speaking, as with most destinations in Europe, peak tourist season falls from May to September, with July and August as the busiest months. If you want to enjoy mild weather and avoid spending top dollar, the best months to visit Eastern Europe are March to May, and from mid-September to November. Be mindful, however, that some countries in this part of the continent are colder across the board. If warm weather is what you’re after, then destinations like the Baltics could be a better choice.
- Low season (November-March): Flight and hotel prices drop significantly, but ski resorts will be busy and a little more expensive. Despite the cold weather and shorter days, it’s still a great time to be out on the slopes or in the charming big cities.
- Shoulder (March-May and September-November): This is probably one of the best times to visit Eastern Europe. The crowds and prices drop off, but the weather is pleasant enough for you to enjoy a host of outdoor activities.
- High season (July-August): As the temperatures soar, hotels hike up their prices, flights can be expensive, and travellers flock to the cities and summer resorts. Don’t be put off, though! Summer breathes life into Europe – the atmosphere is intoxicating.