The beauty and the glory of long-forgotten kingdoms

Lost Kingdoms

MAJESTIC CAPITALS OF FORGOTTEN PASTS
GDANSK  |  KRAKOW  |  OLOMOUC  |  PRAGUE  |  BUDAPEST

10-night individual journey
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First-class direct trains with dining-cars
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VIP arrivals with private guides and drivers
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Privately guided city walks with local insiders
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Carefully curated four-star boutique hotels
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Flights from and to London
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Departure any day you wish
Guaranteed price only £2750*
*per person when two travelling together 

Lost-kingdoms-map

Journey to the jewels of a forgotten past as you travel from a city in a medieval crusader state to the capitals of Moravia, Bohemia, and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Today, these kingdoms and empires no longer exist, but their former seats of power all retain their former glory, each city one of the most beautiful in Europe. Your journey is in first-class on international express trains with dining cars, always direct and never for more than a handful of hours. In every city, you are pampered with personal service, private guides, and fine hotels.

Relics of a glorious past

Five of Europe's most beautiful cities

On this journey to the lost kingdoms of Eastern Europe, you begin in a medieval crusader state. Then, you continue to the beautiful capital of the Kingdom of Poland, and then to the rich and powerful capitals of Moravia and Bohemia. Finally, your journey concludes at the co-capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

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Once upon a time
these ancient cities
ruled great kingdoms
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Centuries ago, these cities ruled great kingdoms and empires, and they each enjoyed a golden age when magnificent castles, churches, palaces, and squares were filled with great works of art.  Traders, craftsmen, artists, and philosophers flocked here from all over Europe. Today, wars, invasions, and betrayals have consigned the kingdoms to history. Some of the old cities remain famous capitals, just of other nations, while others have seceded into obscurity. But they all retain their former glory, each one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.

This is a journey to kingdoms lost to time, to an Eastern Europe from long before World Wars, Soviet invasions, or Iron Curtains. In other words, a visit to the Old World at its very finest.

Your cultural and historical adventure starts with a flight from London to Krakow, once part of a medieval crusader state that was founded by knights of the Teutonic Order during the Northern Crusades. Today, chances are that you mostly know it for its shipyard that was the birthplace of the 1980’s Solidarity movement, but you’ll remember Gdansk for the glorious buildings, squares and waterfront.

The next stop is Krakow, the old capital of the short-lived Kingdom of Poland, and generally regarded as one of Europe’s most beautiful cities. You travel here by a direct high-speed train, in first-class with personal service at your seat.  Indeed, each journey from one old capital to the next is in great comfort: Always in first-class, always direct, always for just a few hours at a time, and always with a dining car ready to make the trip a real joy.

As you arrive at Krakow, you will experience the same personal Silver Tray arrival service as everywhere else on this journey. A private guide awaits you right at the train, escorts you to a chauffeured car, and follows with you to your perfectly located four-star boutique hotel. Then, she invites you for a two-hour private city walk, giving you a personal and authentic introduction to her city.

From Krakow, you journey to a never most Western European have never heard of, and fewer still visited: Olomouc, the old capital of the lost Kingdom of Moravia. But you will discover a city that in many ways is comparable to Prague, just made lively by its local university students, not tourists.

Of course, you will then get the chance to see why Prague, the old capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia and just two hours away, may be crowded with visitors, but still belongs on everybody’s must-see list.

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Enjoy afternoon tea
in Viennese-inspired cafés
in the old capital
of the Dual Monarchy
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The final rail journey is the longest at seven hours, but also eminently comfortable in a EuroCity express with a dining car. You arrive at Budapest, the former co-capital of the Dual Monarchy that is also known as the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Enjoy afternoon tea at some of the grand and splendidly decorated Viennese-inspired cafés that the Habsburgs left behind.

You return home to London on your included flight. Of course, a chauffeured car takes you to the airport.

The journey

Your day-by-day itinerary

On this ten-night journey, you travel first-class on direct express trains with dining cars from Gdansk to Krakow, Olomouc, Prague, and Budapest. Flights from and to London are included. In every city, you are pampered with VIP arrival services with private guides and drivers. Experience each city on privately guided city walks with local insiders. Stay at carefully selected four-star boutique hotels. And travel on any date you wish – your set and guaranteed price remains the same.

Expand all
Day 1
Fly to Gdansk from London

Until recently, Gdansk was defined by two of the most significant events in in 20th century Europe. First, World War II started here on September 1, 1939, when Germany attacked the Polish Post Office in Gdansk. Then, workers at the Gdansk shipyard founded the ‘Solidarność’ (Solidarity) movement of the 1980s, planting the seeds that eventually liberated Eastern Europe from the Soviet bloc.

Today, travellers have discovered that Gdansk is much more than just a shipyard. In fact, it is one of the most beautiful cities in Eastern Europe. You will come to the same conclusion when you walk down the enchanting Ulica Dluga street with its rows of perfectly restored colourful buildings or take a stroll along the historic harbourfront. The entire old town is basically a feast for your eyes.

Gdansk is crowded with bars, cafés, and restaurants. So are many other historic cities. But Gdansk is one of the few that can also boast of a beautiful coastline and several gorgeous beaches.

 

 

 

Perfectly preserved old town
Day 2
Gdansk

Until recently, Gdansk was defined by two of the most significant events in in 20th century Europe. First, World War II started here on September 1, 1939, when Germany attacked the Polish Post Office in Gdansk. Then, workers at the Gdansk shipyard founded the ‘Solidarność’ (Solidarity) movement of the 1980s, planting the seeds that eventually liberated Eastern Europe from the Soviet bloc.

Today, travellers have discovered that Gdansk is much more than just a shipyard. In fact, it is one of the most beautiful cities in Eastern Europe. You will come to the same conclusion when you walk down the enchanting Ulica Dluga street with its rows of perfectly restored colourful buildings or take a stroll along the historic harbourfront. The entire old town is basically a feast for your eyes.

Gdansk is crowded with bars, cafés, and restaurants. So are many other historic cities. But Gdansk is one of the few that can also boast of a beautiful coastline and several gorgeous beaches.

 

 

 

Perfectly preserved old town
Day 3
Gdańsk–Kraków

Your Express InterCity Premium train is the pride of the Polish railways. This high-speed Italian tilting train carries a very comfortable first-class section, where a steward will serve you an included drink and light meal. The direct five-hour journey takes you through Warsaw on the way from the Baltic coast to the south of the country.

Upon arrival at Krakow, you will be met by your private guide who will escort you to your waiting chauffeured car and join you for the ride to your four-star hotel. Then, she will invite you on a privately guided two-hour city walk and give you the perfect introduction to the treasures of Krakow.

 

 

High-speed train, the best in Poland
Bistro and at-seat service
VIP arrival service with private guide
Privately guided city walk with local insider
Day 4
Krakow

Together with Vienna and Prague, Krakow is one of Eastern Europe’s greatest architecturally and culturally treasures. Beyond the city walls you’ll find patches of Soviet-era concrete blocks, but the entire old town is a perfect delight of Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque churches, towers, and cobbled squares.

The main square, Rynek Glowny, is the biggest market square in all of Europe, crowded with flower-stalls, bagel-sellers and cafés. Nearby is Wawel Castle, once the residence for the kings of Poland and one of Europe’s largest royal castles.

You may wish to make a sad pilgrimage to nearby Auschwitz, easily reachable by local train, but also do not miss the local museum about Krakow under the Nazi occupation. The museum is interesting in its own right, but what makes it a truly moving experience is that it is housed in Oscar Schindler’s old factory, the place where 1200 Jewish workers were saved by the industrialist.

 

 

 

One of Europe's most beautiful cities
Day 5
Kraków–Olomouc

You board the EuroCity Cracowia international express train for a comfortable five-hour journey. The small and intimate first-class section is in the same car as the train’s bistro, and the good and reasonably priced food is served by a steward at your seat. One especially nice feature, we think, is the draught Urquell beer on tap in the bistro.

Upon arrival at Olomouc, you will be met by your private guide who will escort you to your waiting chauffeured car and join you for the ride to your four-star hotel.

Then, she will invite you on a privately guided two-hour city walk of this small gem of a city. As a local insider, they have an excellent idea of what to show you. But remember: This your private guide, so feel free to mention anything you would like to experience on the walk.

Direct EuroCity train
Dining car
VIP arrival service with private guide
Privately guided city walk with local insider
Day 6
Olomouc

Olomouc is a shining jewel, a majestic collection of historic buildings, evocative streets, and beautiful churches. Few tourists have ever heard of this ancient capital of the long-lost kingdom of Moravia because once Olomouc had lost her importance and capital title, she descended into obscurity.

The result is a sleeper of a city. Her beauty can sometimes rival even Prague’s, and her main square with the UNESCO-listed Holy Trinity Column is one of the nicest in the country. Yet, her streets and squares are blissfully free of the throngs of tourists you find in the capital. Instead, life is dominated by the city’s many university students who crowd the many great cafés and lend a vibrant and intellectual vibe to the city. Olomouc is a city many simply fall in love with.

 

 

 

A hidden jewel from the past
Day 7
Olomouc–Prague

The two-hour journey to Prague is fast and comfortable on board a direct Intercity train with a bistro.

Upon arrival at Prague, you will be met by your private guide who will escort you to your waiting chauffeured car and join you for the ride to your four-star hotel. Then, she will invite you on a privately guided two-hour city walk. As a local insider, they have an excellent idea of what to show you. But remember: This your private guide, so feel free to mention anything you would like to experience on the walk.

 

 

 

Direct InterCity train
VIP arrival service with private guide
Privately guided city walk with local insider
Day 8
Prague

Prague is old. This is where a 1,100-year old skyline is dominated by ancient spires, towers and domes. ‘New’ in these parts usually means a beautiful Art Nouveau building, because the chapels and cellars are Romanesque, the cathedral Gothic, the palaces and gardens Baroque. This is where you find the oldest operating clock of its kind on the planet, and it is where you can cross a river on one of the oldest bridges in Europe.

The city is so beautiful, it takes your breath away. Must-sees include the Charles Bridge with its many Baroque statues – possibly the most beautiful in Europe, the fascinating Jewish Quarter with its old synagogues, and the many historic churches. The Vltava river may not have the same name recognition as the Danube or the Rhine, but it makes up for that in pure charm.

Don’t forget to get lost. Prague’s maze of cobbled alleys and small courtyards beckons the adventurous wanderer. Just around the corner from the beaten track you’ll find ancient chapels, unexpected gardens, cute cafes and old-fashioned bars.

 

So beautiful, it takes your breath away
Day 9
Prague–Budapest
Day 10
Budapest

Occupied by the Romans, ruled by the Ottomans, co-capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and invaded by the Soviet Union. Budapest is steeped in history, and two millennia of drama and culture lurk just under her elegant surface.

This is a capital with two sides, Buda and Pest, each on their side of the Danube. Pest proudly shows the jewels in her crown from the 19th century, the golden age for the capital.  Buda also boasts several stunning buildings, not least the Fisherman’s Bastion, a fairy-tale castle with panoramic views over the Danube.

Do not miss the city’s historically grand cafés. New York Café is probably the most opulent of them all: An ultra-luxurious room with beautiful frescoes and just about everything gold-plated.

Equally unmissable are the thermal baths. An authentic Budapest experience since Roman times, choose between Ottoman, art nouveau or modern establishments. Or just go for the most famous of them all, Széchenyi with stunning neo-Baroque and neo-Renaissance buildings surrounding the open-air pools.

Steeped in history, both ancient and recent
Opulent, historic grand cafés.

Four-star boutique hotels

Stay in charming, comfortable and centrally located four-star boutique hotels carefully curated by Silver Tray. Breakfast is included, as are transfers between the train station and the hotel.

Your trains

Silver Tray has curated Europe's best trains and finest routes for you. See a few of the trains you will experience on this journey.

Your Silver Tray service includes

First-class rail travel on direct trains

+ First-class rail travel on direct trains only
+ Flights from London to Gdansk and Budapest to London

Four-star boutique hotels

+ Four-star boutique hotels
+ Highly rated and carefully selected
+ Perfectly located in city centres
+ Breakfast included

Private city walks

+ Two-hour city walks by local insiders.
+ Fully customizable experiences
+ Insider advice about local restaurants and hidden gems

VIP arrival service

+ Private guide waiting at your train car upon arrival
+ Private transfer to hotel
+ Private transfer from the hotel to train station upon departure

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