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Germany/Austria/Switzerland at Christmas

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Hello all-

We've decided to spend Christmas with friends in Germany this year. We will arrive in Munich on 12/18 at 7:30 am and would like to see some of the countries listed above. My thoughts are after spending a day or 2 in Munich, I'd love to see the Christmas market and Hofburg Castle in Vienna, do a Sound of Music Tour in Salzburg then head towards Lucerne, Bern or Basel, Switzerland. Eventually we would head towards Stuttgart (where my friend lives) and back to Munich for our departing flight on 12/28.

This is just a rough guide of things we'd like to do and see. I realize it is busy and we might need to eliminate something. There are 2 things I am most curious about. We need to find a place to spend Christmas. Many hotels are booked already. I'd like to be at some sort of resort and people have mentioned Jungfrau and Lower Bavaria as nice options. Where we choose to spend Christmas will affect our itinerary. Any thoughts on possible locations for a festive Christmas away from home that will be able to accomodate 9 people? Next, with the winter weather possibilities, would you consider renting a car to do the trip or rely on eurorail and public transportation?

Thanks for your guidance!
Heather

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