Ask Joan: your travel queries answered

Exploring Poland and a seaside break in Sardinia

 Put Krakow on your itinerary in Poland

Put Krakow on your itinerary in Poland

Sat, Apr 19, 2014, 01:00

We will be travelling to Poland in early September to a wedding, in Szczawno Zdrój, Walbrzych, and will be flying into Wroclaw Airport. We have nothing booked yet, apart from three days at the wedding venue, Hotel Camelot. We would like to use this opportunity of visiting a new country to see important sights, and could spend anything from 10/14 days there. We are senior citizens and would prefer to use public transport, and/or taxis.
– MH, Dublin

September is a nice time to visit Poland, the weather will still be warm and the crowds thinned. You can fly into one city and out from another. Poland is a big country, and as you will be based in Walbrzych it might make sense to explore the western and southwestern cities and regions. Cities such as Wroclow, Krakow, the former capital, and the Carpathian mountain region of Zakopane. The small city of Jelenia Góra just over an hour from Walbrzych is famous for its hot springs and therapeutic treatments.

Getting around Poland is possible by train and the fares are very low. Trains to rarer destinations may not be as frequent. Some of the train service is available in English on polrail.com. I would think a few days in Wroclow, followed by four or five days in Krakow and two days in the mountains would give you a real feel for Poland.

Krakow is a city with lots to see and you could visit the famous salt mines at Wieliczka where miners have carved beautiful galleries and the Chapel of St Kinga out of salt. It would also be possible to visit Auschwitz.

Like many countries, all roads lead to the capital and Warsaw is a very nice and historic city. There are many cultural sites to visit – museums, war memorials and the opera. The Polish National Tourist Office in London can be contacted on poland.travel for brochures, maps and information.


Our new arrival is due in July and we would like to take a “babymoon” before then. We were hoping to travel in May and are thinking about Sardinia. We’re looking for good weather, to be by the sea and, if possible, not to have to hire a car.
– BS, Dublin
Before you make any plans to travel, if you are more than 28 weeks pregnant at the time of travel or return, you will need a Fit to Fly form signed by your doctor or midwife for the airline. You can download it from the airline’s website and, assuming all is going well, you can travel up to the 36th week.

There are direct flights to Alghero on the west coast of Sardinia with Ryanair in May. I have three suggestions of hotels for you. The three-star hotel Soleado is on the outskirts of Alghero, across the road from the beach and a 15-minute walk to the old town for nice restaurants and costs from €50 per person per night (hotelsoleado.com/end/).

The four-star Hotel dei Pini is on the lovely Bombarde beach and has great views across the bay to the town of Alghero. It is a taxi ride from the town, and there is a shuttle bus at some times of the day. Prices are from €64 per person per night with breakfast (hoteldeipini.it).

Hotel Carlos V is a five-star property, and has a great location above the promenade with views over the Gulf of Alghero and to Capo Caccia. It has all the facilities you would expect with a wellness centre, tennis courts and good restaurants. Prices are from €90pps in May (hotelcarlosv.it/). Book these hotels will justsardinia.co.uk or direct.


Send your questions to jscales@irishtimes.com

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