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Planning Trip to Germany and Surrounds

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Hey there guys,

Still in the very early stages of planning a roughly 1-month spring trip to Europe and looking for some advice and suggestions. I've done a decent chunk of research on Fodor's and elsewhere and I've come up with what I think is the basic roadmap for what we (my girlfriend and I) would like to do and see.

A little about us first: we're both in our early 20's (although we probably have more in common with a pair of 70 year olds), we're not much into the partying or club scene, would much rather have a quiet evening in a nice pub or cafe than spend the night out at a club. We're very much into exploring the culture, architecture, and natural beauty of a city and tend to shy away from the more typical "touristy" type attractions. Although we enjoy learning the history of our destinations, that's usually not the main focus of our trips, museums and the like usually stay off our short-list as we've found we can usually find the information we need on the internet when we get home.

A huge factor in the choice of destination for this trip is that I'm an absolute gear head. I absolutely love cars, more specifically German cars, and even more specifically, I'm a bit of an Audi nut. My girlfriend although not quite as enthralled, is still interested in the automotive world... or at least she's willing to put up with it :) . Her speciality seems to lie more in the art world however. She's a bit of a sucker for classical art so we're trying to find a nice balance between the two on this trip. Both of us are also very much into sports for whatever that's worth.

A couple things that we think we have pretty well set in stone are that we'd like to keep the trip to roughly a month long, we'd like to land in and take off from Frankfurt, we'd ideally be shooting to stay in roughly mid-range hotels along the way, and we'd like to be renting a car (some sort of hot German hatch) and driving for the entirety of the trip.

Here's the schedule we've mocked up thus far:

Frankfurt – 1 night
Nurburg – day stop
Cologne – 1 night
Amsterdam – 5 nights
Bruges – 3 nights
Reims – 1 night
Paris – 5 nights
Beaune - day stop
Geneva – 2 nights
Bern – day stop
Lucerne – 3 nights
Fussen – 1 night
Salzburg – 3 nights
Munich – 3 nights
Ingolstadt – 1 night
Frankfurt – 1 night
(We're also thinking the reverse may work even better)

One of the big decisions we're facing right now is whether to do this trip in March, April, or May (all of 2013). March would be nice for the lack of tourists and the possibility of making it to the Geneva Motor Show, May obviously for the warmer weather and greener landscapes, and April to sort of split the difference between the two.

We've both been to Europe a few times before but this will be our first time trying to cover a serious amount of ground so any tips, suggestions, comments would be very much appreciated. We're still very much open to switching our itinerary around, adding and dropping nights and cities off the list. I have a feeling many will tell us to cut down on the list of cities, we're open to this we're just having trouble deciding where to trim the fat. Money and timing are not too big of concerns for us so feel free to suggest at will.

I apologize for the novel I've written here and really appreciate anyone who took the time to read this and reply.

Thank you in advance,
Cam

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