Alps and Vertigo Problem

Old Jan 1st, 2005, 06:18 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 41
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Alps and Vertigo Problem

We are planning a driving tour through southern Germany and Austria next May, but I am concerned about driving up mountain roads or along high precipices. My husband suffers severe vertigo, so I wonder whether such a tour is possible? We love to hike, but would want to know where the "valley" walks would be. Can anyone help with this? Thanks very much.
BarbaraJA is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 08:22 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We have done lots of car travel through Germany, Austria and Switzerland - and unfortunately as soon as you reach the mountains it is difficult to avoid roads with precipices. If you stick to the major highways only you can usually drive fairly far from the precipice/bridge/overpass edge (some even have two lanes in each direction) but I don;t know how to do it withough them being clearly visible. And on smaller roads - unless you have driven them before - its hard to know when you will run into a drop-off right next to the car.

With hiking it's much easier to know what's coming - since there are very good maps and you can get exact info at your hotel) - and you can do a lot of walking (wouldn;t call it hiking) in the valley bottoms.

How bad is the vertigo? Is it just that he can;t walk right up to a precipice - or that even seeing one in the distance bothers him? Can he come within 5 feet of the edge? 20 feet? Can he take a tram up a mountainside? Or a cable car?

If you provide more details maybe people can help with specific suggestions.
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 09:51 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 41
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks for your help. If he sees that the drive or walk is on a cliff or precipice, he won't go near it. His is a pretty intense case. Would we be better off in the north of Germany?
BarbaraJA is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 09:52 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 41
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Oh, yes. Mountain trams or cable cars are out of the question.
BarbaraJA is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 10:40 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,431
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
There are many sights you can visit in Bavaria and Austria that do not involve maneuvering roads which might bring on your husband's vertigo. If you post your contemplated itinerary on this board, I am sure there will be readers who will be happy to give you specific routings to avoid these tricky roads. For example, if you want to drive from Munich to Berchtesgaden, or Salzburg or Fuessen or Lindau (Lake Constance), you won't have any problems. Problems crop up if you traverse from one region directly to another, such as from Lindau to Fuessen or Berchtesgaden. The direct route would require traversing at least one pass, unless you go detour a bit north.

treplow is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 12:31 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
There are significant parts of austria that are fairly flat - or have only small hills - and there are similar areas of Germany. IMHO it's just hard to actually get into or through the Alps without going near any sort of precipice.

Even when you go through the mountains via the tunnels rather than the passes there is usually some area of the road up to the tunnels where it's apparent that you are significantly above the floor of the valley. It sounds like all he would be comfortable with is a road in a valley with higher mountains on both sides of the road.

Agree that if you list specific sights locals who travel the roads every day may be able to give you a route that has no precipices at all.
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2005, 12:40 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,019
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I agree. River valleys usually are flat and you can look up. But in Switzerland, those mountain passes even cause me to white knuckle it at times, although I have done some high altitude hiking. (no pitons, ropes or carabiners).

Another thing in Switzerland and Austria you might want to consider is those tremendously long tunnels. I don't have a fear of heights, but I tend to get a little uncomfortable in those long tunnels. I have to keep shifting my eyes and really take care that I do not follow too closely.

Going through those things gives me a very strange feeling after a mile or so. I am not sure what it is, but the tunnel environment must disrupt my normal visual cues.

bob_brown is offline  
Old Jan 2nd, 2005, 06:21 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 41
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks so much for all your help. I will take treplow's and nytraveler's suggestion and post a planned itinerary for our driving tour:
Amsterdam (rent the car) to Brussels
for two days
Then to Strasbourg, France for two days
see the Rhine Valley north and
south of Strasbourg
Then to Munich for 4-5 days
day visit to Salzburg, Austria
sights around Munich-scenic walks
and Beer-gardens
Then to Bamberg for 3 days
perhaps drive to Wittenburg
to see Luther sights.
Then to Cologne or Cothem for 1-2
nights, then return to Amsterdam
to fly home.

Thanks again!
BarbaraJA is offline  
Old Jan 2nd, 2005, 08:53 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Another thought - how does your husband do on bridges? Is this OK or does he have a problem with them too if they're substantially above the level of the water? (I've been over the Rhine numerous times - but can;t for the life of me remember what the bridges were like - nothing like the Verazzano - but it does seem to me that some of them were quite high in the air.)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Jan 2nd, 2005, 09:53 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,000
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts


Crossing the Rhine may be a problem for him. The hills are not especially high but some are very steep.

You seem to be doing most of your visiting in major cities. An auto in the cities is a liability. Have you considered using the trains? That would make your travels much easier.
hopscotch is offline  
Old Jan 2nd, 2005, 02:28 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,431
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Looking at your itinerary, I don't think you will have any problems driving. Some of the bridges, like the Rhein bridge just south of Koeln (Cologne) is a bit high, but it is a 4 or 6 lane highway, with high railings on the side (they don't encourage sightseeing by drivers crossing the bridge!). The same is true of the Autobahn bridge just south of Trier.
I have driven nearly all the routes you will be on, except to Wittenberg and the Rhein valley around Strassburg.
treplow is offline  
Old Jan 4th, 2005, 03:40 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 41
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks everyone for the advice. Looks like we will be able to drive through the Rhine, Alps areas with little problem. I love the mountains and didn't want to be disappointed if we couldn't drive in them. As usual, Fodorites are incredibly helpful planning trips like this. Thanks again.
BarbaraJA is offline  
Old Jan 4th, 2005, 09:31 AM
  #13  
MaureenB
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Why not consider taking trains instead of driving? Trains are so affordable, comfortable, convenient and reliable-- plus having a car in the cities can be a real pain. We used the Bayern Pass for day-trips from Munich to Salzburg and to Fussen, and it was just about 29E for our entire family of four for each day. We were so glad to relax on the trains and not to be dealing with a vehicle.
 
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
JKChristofferson
Europe
7
Jan 3rd, 2014 07:51 AM
take_time_2_travel
Europe
7
Jul 16th, 2012 12:06 AM
asbury10
Europe
11
Mar 27th, 2006 04:55 AM
RChandler1118
Europe
17
Jun 10th, 2005 10:41 AM
K
Europe
9
Sep 1st, 2002 08:00 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:51 AM.