Dear Sophia:   We have now been home for two weeks from our 2-1/2 months of traveling in Central Europe.  I  am far from finished dealing with everything on the to-do list  that accumulated during our absence and the few months we were distracted while planning the trip.  But I wanted to let you know that all aspects of the trip were wonderful.

The guides in Budapest, Vienna and Prague were all excellent.   Our guide in Prague was extraordinary.  Although I phoned her office the day we arrived to double check that she would be picking us up at our hotel the next morning,  she failed to show up, having thought we were arriving the following weekend.  As a result we started the tour 2 hours late, but she was so embarrassed that she stayed with us a total of 8  hours without charging anything additional.  I’d originally gotten her name from a friend who lived in Prague for many years, and beyond that we hit it off VERY well so ended up just sitting and talking for quite a long time.  She is a remarkable person.   At the 3 Storks Hotel in Prague was terrific.  The accommodations at the Stefanie in Vienna were disappointing, and I would not go back there. The first room they showed us was terribly tiny and dingy.  It looked rather like a prison cell,  and it took looking at 2 others before we found one that was okay but certainly no place in which I’d want to do more than sleep. However, the hotel’s dining room for dinner was excellent, and so were their breakfasts.  The Westin Bellevue in Dresden was comfortable and pleasant , but the higher price we paid to be on the river side got us a view over the the dining-room and not much of the river.  However, that was okay.  The Golden Anker in BAyreuth was delightful. Even though our luggage was light, traveling by train was not easy for 2 old people, as the only train station that had porters was in Budapest.  However, other passengers were helpful with the luggage.  We ended up going from Prague to Vienna by car and driver.  You put a lot of time and energy into helping us, and did not get a lot of business out of it, but we are very grateful and will certainly pass your name along to anyone we know who is interested in Jewish themed tours. Thank you once again for facilitating much of what turned out to be a perfect trip, except that just about everywhere we could have used twice as much time as I’d allotted, and I’d allotted double what most friends had recommended.

By Dr. & Mrs. N. Levine, CA


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