Alsace - 2 or 3 days

Old Feb 7th, 2018, 04:11 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 53
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Alsace - 2 or 3 days

Hi there -

We (late 20s couple) are planning to visit the Alsace region and would like to base out of Colmar. We will arrive the evening of 06/17 and are wondering if 2 full days would be ample time to see the region? We would like to see Colmar, Strasbourg, & Riquewihr, and do a bit of wine tasting at a semi-leisurely pace. Currently, we have 3 full days, but if we could reduce to 2 full days, that would allow us to cross paths easier in Switzerland with friends in who will also be traveling, as well as allow us to add an additional day in the Cinque Terre region. Reducing our time would be ideal for our plans, but we do not want to do it if it will seriously short-change our experience.

Alsace will be our first stop of a 2 week vacation. We will be coming from Southern California, so I am also trying to factor in our level of jetlag. My hope is we will go right to sleep since we arrive late on the first day, and that will work to help our body clocks adjust quickly.

Additionally, how is the transport between regions in Alsace? We do not intend to drive. Are all these areas reachable by train?

Thank you for your help!
ualauren is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 04:35 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 548
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I'd vote for 3 days. I was there a few years ago for a week to attend a family wedding and wished I could have stayed longer. Strasbourg could be a full day, and wine tasting could also fill up a day. That doesn't leave time for Colmar (though I don't know how much time it would take to see the highlights there) or Riquewihr. The extra day could also help with the jet lag.

We took trains to the airport and to Strasbourg. Easy and not too expensive.
lizh is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 05:15 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,588
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You'll need a car to visit the small/cute wine villages. There is a train station called Riquewihr - but it is way out of town. I grew up in Southern California, & it's hard to imaging someone from there not wanting to rent a car. On one of our first trips to Alsace, we rented bikes and took the small wine roads from village to village (not the busy Route de Vin). This trail network is very well marked.

Oh - your question - minimum of 2 to 3 full days - especially since one of those days is a Monday when many shops in Colmar & Strasbourg will be closed in the morning, and a few all day.

Here is something I wrote about Alsace 12-15 years ago after one of our trips there. Disregard the stuff about trains - the fast TGV will get you to Strasbourg & Colmar from Paris and CDG airport.

Alsace


Alsace is one of the most beautiful places in France. In fact, the “Wine Spectator” ran a large expose on Alsace many years ago and called it the most beautiful wine growing region in the world. I would probably include the Mosel in this category, but Alsace has gobbled up more of my film per square mile than almost anywhere else in France (we spend 2 months every year in France). It’s kinda like Vermont with vineyards – dozens of picture postcard villages with church steeples sticking up above the houses, surrounded by vineyards, and backdropped by the Vosges mountains. There is also the very pretty town of Colmar, which I would have to rank in the top 5% of all the medium sized towns I’ve visited in France (perhaps #1 even), Strasbourg is one of my favorite large towns in France. We spent a week in a lovely Gite near Riquewihr last year and we’ve visited Alsace on 3 other occasions for a duration of 3-5 days on each visit. If I have any complaint about Alsace, it’s that there is not as much variety to the sites, villages, and countryside as I’ve seen in other areas of France. The villages in Alsace are almost too pretty to be real, but there are a lot of similarities to them. The Vosges are nice, but nothing like the Alps, Pyrenees, or the Cevannes. I would go there in early September, so that the geraniums that are everywhere will be in full bloom. One time we were there the last week of August, and we had no problems with crowds (I hate crowds).

We’re lucky enough to dine in France at least 30 times per year. We found the restaurants in Alsace to be excellent, in most cases. It’s very easy to avoid the pork & kraut, if that’s not your style. If you look at the red Michelin guide, there are more starred restaurants in Alsace than anywhere else in France (except Paris).

If you are starting your trip in Paris, I would recommend that you take the train from Paris Est to Nancy and visit this lovely city. It’s the center of “Art Nouveau”, and the city architecture & the Place Stanislas are spectacular – especially the golden gates around the square. Take the walking tour outlined in the Green Michelin guide for Alsace. Also visit the Musee de l'Ecole de Nancy, if you’re interested in this style. We actually visited Nancy as a day trip by train from Colmar. We had lunch at the Excelsior Flo, which is truly a sight to behold (see the picture in the Green Michelin guide). There are about 6 direct trains from Paris to Nancy daily, and the trip is about 3 hrs or less. There are about 9 direct trains from Nancy to Strasbourg daily and I suspect that most go on to Colmar too (trip is less than 1 ½ hrs). You could stay overnight in Nancy, or even just make it a ½ day stopover, if you can find a way to stow your luggage.

If you stop or stay in Nancy and then go on to Strasbourg and stay there, you perhaps might be getting “a little too much big city”. It would be more efficient that you start your “Alsace central” visit in Strasbourg, but it might be best to stay somewhere in a small village in the countryside and visit Strasbourg as day trips. There are several trains departing from both Colmar & Ribeauville to Strasbourg. If you decide not to start in Strasbourg, I would take the train to Colmar and pick up a rental car there. Colmar is an easy town to get in & out of (Strasbourg is a little more difficult).

Remaining text in next post
StuDudley is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 05:15 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,588
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you overnight in Strasbourg, we’ve stayed at the Gutenberg twice, and loved it. It’s small, centrally located, and not that expensive. It’s difficult to park nearby, however, since it’s on the fringe of the “pedestrian only” section. Take the walking tours described in the Michelin guide. I previously said I’m not a pork fan, but we dined at Chez Yvonne twice and enjoyed it. It’s a very popular brasserie serving traditional Alsace food in a rustic décor – reserve ahead. We’ve also dined at Maison Kammerzell, which is more upscale and located in one of the most beautiful buildings in Strasbourg. It was a Michelin 1 star, and the food was OK (we’ve had much better meals at other restaurants), but the main draw at this place is the décor.



The charm of Alsace is the countryside & cute villages. We’ve stayed in Oberni, Kayserberg twice, and in a Gite near Riquewihr. I would recommend that you stay in the Kayserberg/Riquewihr/Ribeauville area & take day trips from there. These villages are very close together & the area around the villages is stunning. The Route du Vin is a good road to use to visit all the villages, but it gets a lot of heavy truck traffic & there’s a little too much not-so-scenic commerce on it. There is a prettier and less traveled road that goes from village to village just west of the Route du Vin. It’s actually a very well marked bike route that is much more scenic than the Route du Vin. It probably doesn’t traverse the entire length of the Route du Vin, though. There are a lot of signposts along this route that indicate the direction to the next town, distances, etc. The best way to find this route is to go to Riquewihr & walk or drive around the perimeter of town until you find one of these signposts – it’s actually quite easy to find this route.

Villages not to miss are Oberni, Ribeauville, Riquewihr, Kayserberg, and Eguisheim. There are ramparts around Bergheim and its fun to walk on the top of them & circle the village, looking down into everyone’s back yard. There is a very nice lookout in the town of Zellenberg. Go up into the village & try to find it. There is a viewing table there that’s a little hard to locate, but worth the effort. There is also a very scenic lookout in a cemetery just outside of Sigolsheim – it’s marked on the Michelin map. Hike up to the old Chateau above Kayserberg in the early AM or late PM to get some wonderful views. Visit Haut Koenigsbourg. We really enjoyed the Ecomusee d’Alsace, although I’m usually not a fan of this “Williamsburg” type of stuff. It’s a collection of old houses that gives an insight into housing in the different periods & rural areas of Alsace. There are a lot of storks nesting on the roofs of the buildings in this Ecomusee. The Beauville linens factory & 2nds store is just west of Ribeauville on the road to Ste Marie aux Mines, but expect no bargains.

As I said earlier, Colmar is a gem. Follow the walking route indicated in the Michelin green guide. My wife purchased some wonderful lace in this town. We enjoyed the Musee d’Unterlinden. Spend a ½ day at least in Colmar. It’s easy to drive in & out & parking is no hassle. Stores may be closed on Sunday and Monday.

Here’s a pretty drive through some villages, and then into the Vosges. Head south of Colmar going through the villages of Eguisheim (spend several hours in this village – one of our favorites), Husseren, Hattstat, Gueberschwihr, Rouffach, Westhalten, Bergholtz, and then Guebwiller (visit). Then drive to Murbach to see a nice church in a pretty setting. Take the D430 west through Lautenbach and further until it hits the D27. Take the D27 north over the Col du Platzerwasel toward Munster. Continue on to Munster (D27 changes to D10). Stop & wander around in Munster (of cheese fame). Continue on the D10 to Turckheim (visit).

A farther away trip:
Visit Wissembourg and take the walking tour described in the Michelin Green guide. Then follow drive #3 described in the VOSGES DU NORD section of the Michelin guide. This will take you to Chateau de Fleckenstein, Lembach, Hunspach, & Seebach. In these latter two villages, the houses are half-timbered & painted white – it’s quite a contrast from other villages in Alsace. If you want to see how France attempted to defend itself from the Germans and Russsians after WWI, visit a section of the Maginot line at Four-a-Chaux just outside of Lembach. We enjoyed the tour of underground fortifications, hospitals, barracks, etc.



An excellent way to get back to the CDG airport in Paris for your return home is to stay in Dijon the night before. You can take the early TGV to CDG, which leaves Dijon at 7:47 & gets you into the airport at 9:35 (Sunday schedules might be a little different). We drove from Alsace to Dijon (an easy all-freeway drive), and dropped our car off at the train station and walked across the street and checked into the Hotel Jura. Dijon is a beautiful city. We were there on a Saturday AM and we immediately went to the outdoor market next to the “Les Halles” permanent indoor market. Lots of foodstuff, brocante, etc. The “Les Halles” market is one of the largest I’ve seen. Dijon is a very lively town – especially on a Saturday. Take the walking tour described in the Green Michelin Guide (you’ll have to buy or borrow the green guide for Burgundy Jura). We dined at Pre aux Clercs which was a 1 star and also got raves from Patricia Wells. It was good, but about twice the price as places in Alsace. This year it lost its star.

Restaurants.
Maximilien at the base of Zellenberg was our favorite. The ambience was very relaxed (we had to talk in a whisper) and the setting was lovely. This is a Michelin 1 star restaurant and the food was supurb. Auberge du Schoenbourg in Riquewihr was also excellent. It is a Michlein 1 star. We did not like Table du Gourmet, also in Riquewihr (also a 1 star). I had a very sloppy presentation of overcooked Sandre on a bed of scalloped potatoes (very unimaginative). My wife’s dish also did not please her. We dined at Auberge de Norbert in Bergheim, which was excellent. In Colmar, we dined at the Maison des Tetes, which is one of the most photographed buildings in the City. Our dinner was only so-so and the service was painfully slow (we usually spend at least 2 ½ hrs at dinner).



Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 05:17 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,588
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I should have said minimum of 3 full days if you want to visit Strasbourg.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 09:16 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 22,839
Likes: 0
Received 6 Likes on 1 Post
A minimum of 3 days is essential if you want take full advantage of the villages and other notable sights (Haut-Koenigsbourg, Mont Sainte Odile...). Alsace also has some of the most noteworthy museums of France such as the Unterlinden in Colmar or the train and automobile museums of Mulhouse.
kerouac is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2018, 11:58 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 2,771
Received 19 Likes on 4 Posts
Just adding to the above, you do not need to be a car enthusiast to enjoy the car museum in Mulhouse, we visited as a half day trip from Strasbourg by train for my car mad son, it is amazing. And the tram leaves from directly in front of the train station.
Adelaidean is online now  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 12:29 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 20,915
Received 4 Likes on 4 Posts
To visit Strasbourg and Colmar then the train system is fine. The moment you want to get into the villages you can 1) take a tour, 2) hire bicycles and put some work in, 3) use taxis but the buses are not great and mainly aimed at school kid transport so early am and mid afternoon timing.

Colmar will let you taste wines for a price but very few peoplw make wine in Colmar (there are a few). If I had so little time as 2 days and jet lagged I would
do Strasbourg for half a day, drop down to Colmar and just wander around in the evening and then take a taxis to Eguisheim and wander into some places for tastings (always buy something if the tasting is free even if just tea-towels, but there are tastings that you need to pay for) and maybe a walk in the vines. If you trace back my name to Oct 2016 you can read up about visiting Alsace seriously

With three days, I'd add a paid for tour, look at Colmar's town website and there should be a few people doing tours.
bilboburgler is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 03:37 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 49,553
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
With no car, arriving from California with jetlag (which is almost certain) and a maximum of 3 days, I'd leave Alsace to some other time when you can actually relax and enjoy it.
StCirq is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 04:11 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 10,317
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I would definitely stay 3 full days (4 nights). We stayed a week in Riquewihr a few summers ago and really enjoyed the small villages and vineyards. You can see my pics here

https://www.flickr.com/photos/pug_gi...57644953485474
jamikins is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 06:26 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 26,480
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
You could easily spend two full days just in Strasbourg. Colmar itself is fine for half a day. I chose to base in Strasbourg and visit Colmar as a day trip, and liked it so much I went back.

See: Nice to Paris: on not taking it easy in Eastern France
https://mytimetotravel.wordpress.com...in-strasbourg/
https://mytimetotravel.wordpress.com...ng-strasbourg/

Don't miss La Cloche a Fromage in Strasbourg, which serves fondue for solo diners and has the best cheese display I have seen outside a specialist shop. I am also a fan of Nancy, which you could do on the way to/from Paris.
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 10:23 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 53
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you all for the wonderful replies. I am still playing around with the days, and ideally we would like to have the extra time in Alsace but risk cutting Cinque Terre too short (2 full days). On the note of Cinque Terre, we went to Positano last year and fell head over heels. We also went to Capri and weren't as enthused. For anyone who has been to both Positano and Cinque Terre, will be be disappointed if we are expecting a similar feel to Positano?

One update has been made to our itinerary - we land in Paris at 9:20 am, so we anticipate getting to the Alsace region in the early afternoon rather than late evening. Not sure if that changes anyone's feelings on whether we will have "enough" time, relatively speaking! If not, I feel we will stick with the 3 full (3.5) day plan.

This is what we have thus far...

06/16 - DEPART LAX
06/17 - LAND CDG @ 9:20am
06/18 - ALSACE
06/19 - ALSACE
06/20 - ALSACE
06/21 - ALSACE > GRINDELWALD (early a.m. train)
06/22 - GRINDELWALD
06/23 - GRINDELWALD > LUCERNE (early a.m. train)
06/24 - LUCERNE
06/25 - LUCERNE (day trip w/in Switzerland)
06/26 - LUCERNE > CINQUE TERRE (long travel day, arrive mid-afternoon)
06/27 - CINQUE TERRE
06/28 - CINQUE TERRE
06/29 - CINQUE TERRE > GENOA > PARIS (early flight, spend rest of day in Paris...we went last year so this would mostly just be an afternoon to soak up the atmosphere)
06/30 - DEPART PARIS @ 11:35 am

Here are some possible adjustments...reducing Alsace, adding to Cinque Terre, & half day in Paris for final day before flight home
06/16 - DEPART LAX
06/17 - LAND CDG @ 9:20am
06/18 - ALSACE
06/19 - ALSACE
06/20 - ALSACE > GRINDELWALD (early a.m. or mid-day train)
06/21 - GRINDELWALD
06/22 - GRINDELWALD > LUCERNE (early a.m. train)
06/23 - LUCERNE
06/24 - LUCERNE
06/25 - LUCERNE > CINQUE TERRE (long travel day, arrive mid-afternoon)
06/26 - CINQUE TERRE
06/27 - CINQUE TERRE
06/28 - CINQUE TERRE
06/29 - CINQUE TERRE > GENOA > PARIS (early flight, spend rest of day in Paris...we went last year so this would mostly just be an afternoon to soak up the atmosphere)
06/30 - DEPART PARIS @ 11:35 am

OR

Here are some possible adjustments...reduce Alsace, keep Cinque Terre to 2 full days, but leave a day early for 1.5 days in Paris.
06/16 - DEPART LAX
06/17 - LAND CDG @ 9:20am
06/18 - ALSACE
06/19 - ALSACE
06/20 - ALSACE > GRINDELWALD (early a.m. or mid-day train)
06/21 - GRINDELWALD
06/22 - GRINDELWALD > LUCERNE (early a.m. train)
06/23 - LUCERNE
06/24 - LUCERNE
06/25 - LUCERNE > CINQUE TERRE (long travel day, arrive mid-afternoon)
06/26 - CINQUE TERRE
06/27 - CINQUE TERRE
06/28 - CINQUE TERRE > GENOA > PARIS (early flight, spend rest of day in Paris...we went last year so this would mostly just be an afternoon to soak up the atmosphere)
06/29 - PARIS (full day...more leisurely wandering, not tourist spots)
06/30 - DEPART PARIS @ 11:35 am
ualauren is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 11:05 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 10,317
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Having been to both cinque terre and Amalfi coast I don’t think they are alike at all. The Amalfi coastseemed much more upscale and resort like. Cinque Terre is more rustic but maybe more overrun with tourists.
jamikins is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 11:52 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 53
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Jamikins - thank you for that input!! We may cross off Cinque Terre altogether then and go somewhere else for the final couple of days. Looking for somwhere clean with beautiful scenery - whether that be natural, manmade, and good restaurant options! We are looking into Venice, Lake Como, or somewhere completely different - doesn't need to be Italy - but would like a little different vibe from Swizerland.
ualauren is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 12:37 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Book Strasbourg (visit last) to Grindelwald trains at www.bahn.de/en - German train site for discounted fares. In Switzerland look at a Swiss Travel Pass or maybe better Berner Oberland Pass and book Lucerne-Italy tickets at either www.sbb.ch or Acquista il biglietto con le nostre offerte - Trenitalia - latter often cheaper. thus you only need a pass for Berner Oberland - covering both Lucerne and Grindelwald areas.

Book Italian trains at Acquista il biglietto con le nostre offerte - Trenitalia or www.italotreno.com - competing rail systems using same tracks and stations and similar trains. Book early for serious discounts. www.seat61.com is the guru site for booking your own online discounted tickets; general train stuff- www.ricksteves.com and BETS-European Rail Experts.

Colmar also offers guided tours along Alsace Wine Road towns or there is adequate if sporadic local bus service.

Novel site in Colmar - scale copy of Statue of Liberty - original was made in Colmar and shipped to New Jersey. It's in a traffic circle on way out of Colmar however.

Consider using those extra days at end in France and driving from CDG to Colmar -may staying in Reims first night and even next.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 01:20 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 26,480
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
That seems very little time for Grindelwald. What if the weather is bad the one full day you are there?
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 02:14 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,588
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We've been to the Amalfi coast 4 times & Cinque Terre once. Average was about 4 days in each region per trip. One of our AC trips included 2 extra nights in Capri. We were in the CT before it became overrun with Rick Steves groupies - but it was still a little crowded then. We prefer the AC. I can't imagine what the CT would be like now. But we're much older than you & don't like crowds.

Your itinerary looks a little like ours did in the late 1970s. Covering a lot of ground and "too much" time in the car or train, and not nearly enough time "being there".

Between 1978 and 1999 we went to Europe once every year and spend 3-4 weeks there. Starting in 1999 when we retired very early so we could travel more, we've gone to Europe twice a year (mainly France), and spent 1 month there on each trip. Although my wife is 1/4 German - we've never "fell in love" with Germany like we have with France & Italy. Grindelwald was nice - but we've been to Lucerne twice & did not find it very appealing. Once we went there with my FIL (1/2 German).

If this was my trip, and since you are going in & out of CDG, I would just stick with France. Maybe Alsace, Annecy & the Alpes, and Provence. Train from CDG to Alsace, drive Alsace, Annecy & Alps, and Provence. Take the 2 3/4 TGV from Avignon (Provence) back to Paris.

I'm curious. I was raised in San Gabriel, got married after college & lived in Laguna Beach till I was 28. LA/Orange county is "about" cars. Why don't you want to rent a car so you can get a tad off the main tourist circuits & see some stuff on your own schedule. Most of our trips to Europe have some trains in them, and we don't get cars when we spend a week in Venice, Florence, Lyon, Toulouse, etc. But we always use cars to explore the hills & villages of Tuscany, Provence, Dordogne, Pays Basque, Alps, Pyrenees and such. We had a car in Lucerne & Grindelwald too - even the CT & AC (although it was "parked" most of the time for the latter two destinations).

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 02:33 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 53
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks for the opinions all. Last year we had a fairly rapid paced trip and found it to be a perfect mix for our interests - so please bare that in mind. We did Seville, Paris, Positano, & Rome in the same time frame as we plan this trip - 2 weeks. We definitely intend to hit Switzerland so we can meet up with friends. We may end up returning to Paris after we go to Switzerland, but also are debating 2 nights in Venice from Lucerne, and ending with a couple of days in Paris. and not sightseeing there - more just soaking up the atmosphere since we have been already. We aren't terribly interested in touring museums and castles in Alsace. Moreso looking to wander, get lost, enjoy a meal, etc.

To answer your question, Stu, we are anxious about driving a car in a foreign country. We don't know all the ins and outs of parking, renting in another language, etc. Plus, we only know how to drive automatics, and it is my understanding that most European cars are manual. So to answer your question shortly - fear is what is holding us back. We aren't completely ruling out the option, but are hesitant on the idea if we can get by with other options (i.e. trains/bikes). I also read somewhere that rental car companies are closed on Sunday, which would be when we arrive. Is that accurate?

Ideally, if we had 3-4 weeks to do the same activities we would love that, but with work it just isn't an option at this point in our lives sadly.
ualauren is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 02:42 PM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 53
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Also, I should mention that since we are young, we are looking to do lots of things before kids, find what interests and draws us in the most, and then return to those places for longer periods of time as we get older. Right now we have only a set budget, and don't love the idea of committing the time, pto, and money on a vacation that we don't just adore. I'd rather leave a place wanting a bit more, than be eager to move onto the next!
ualauren is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2018, 02:59 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 15,588
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You are young. Like we were when we first set out for annual trips in Europe. Really - driving in Europe is no big deal. If you can survive the LA freeways - you can survive France, Italy, and Switzerland If you plan to return to Europe - "jump in" and get use to the water. Both France and Switzerland are quite easy - much easier than Spain and a little easier than Italy.

We've rented automatics for the past 6 years - but they are a little more expensive. Most rental places are indeed closed on Sundays. But offices in lareg cities are often open for a partial day on Sunday. The Europcar office in Strasbourg is open on Sunday 4-8PM.

Also, I got Grindelwald confused with a town of a similar name in Germany. Just 20 mins ago someone asked me (via e-mail) about Switzerland - and this is what I replied. Similar to the response you received from Thursdaysd. BTW, we stayed in the region & visited all the "popular" places to stay - and we were glad we did not stay in Grindelwald. Too may large tour groups & tour buses there.

My e-mail response
Yes - we've been to Switzerland several times. Interlaken about 4 different times, and the Bern Oberland many times. The problem with visiting Switzerland & many Alps destinations - is the weather. Once we we stayed in Murren for 4 nights in early Sept & never saw the Jungfrau. It snowed for one day & foggy & overcast the others. In the Bern area, we stayed close by in France & did a couple of excursions into the region including an overnight in Bern. We wanted to visit some of the famous mountain peaks & "take in" the views. We made around 4 "excursions" in the AM and we were able to take lifts up to the "top" of the major peaks about 3 times. Once it was so fogged/clouded over that we would have not been able to see anything. In the afternoon - all the peaks were clouded over. Once we got to a peak (Sex - really) and it was clear when we got there & completely clouded over when we departed.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  

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 02:23 PM.