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German Train Travel- need some help with final plans

German Train Travel- need some help with final plans

Jun 11th, 2007, 12:33 AM
  #41  
 
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>Are the trains air conditioned?

Some are, some aren´t. The more modern trainsets are airconditioned, the older ones (esp. local trains) aren´t.

>I have printed out the train schedules for my trips between towns. Should I check back right before we leave (July 4th) to see if the times have changed?

The next schedule change is in December, so no need to check back. But if it gives you peace of mind, why not.

>Going from Munich to Salzburg it shows we will get a bus in Traunstein and then get another train in Freilassing to finish up in Salzburg. Am I reading that correctly?

Without looking up - obviously the tracks between Traunstein and Freilassing are undergoing maintenance. It happens and is necessary, although annoying.
Look for the bus marked with "SEV" (Schienenersatzverkehr = rail substitution transport) or just folow the crowd.


altamiro is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 04:50 AM
  #42  
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Thanks for explaining!
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 07:03 AM
  #43  
 
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I wouldn't worry too much about AC trains as the temps are unlikely to require much though there could be exceptions. Unfortunately AC'd train cars usually don't have windows that can open.

And i can tell you as a survivor of the Great Heat Wave of 2003 that searching for train cars with windows that open were better the AC cars which could not nearly begin to cope with the rare super hot temps.
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 11th, 2007, 09:05 AM
  #44  
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I think we will be able to handle the heat since we live in Houston, TX! I was just curious. Before I commit to the Twin Pass I have a few more questions:
* When it says you can get a 10% discount on the Bayerische Zugspitzbahn, does this mean we will need to use a day of travel of the pass to do this ?
* Some of the train sections say reservations recommended..such as the one from Salzburg-Berlin and from Bacharach to Baden-Baden (really the section from Mainz down). Should I make reservations? How do I do that from the US?
* Am I right that Laender Passes cannot use ICE,IC, and EC trains?

I am just wanting to verify all that I am processing!!!! Thanks for everyone's help.
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 09:17 AM
  #45  
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Just thought of another question...If we were to go from Salzburg to Berchtesgaden could we buy the Laender Pass in Salzburg?
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 09:18 AM
  #46  
 
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1 - if it's a discount like this or the Romantik road buses then you do not use a day of travel but the pass must be valid for its overall one-month period. If it's 100% coverage like KD boats then you must use a day of travel.

If the bahn.de site says Reserve Please that does not seem to mean reservations are recommended as they say this on every train where reservations are possible - therefore i read it reservations are possible. Certainly on the two trains you mention i would not bother with reservations or you can make these for a few euros once there. To reserve in US would be very expensive due to much higher fees and handling fees. You won't need them IME - or pay a bit more for first class - i've been on literally hundreds of first class German trains and never have yet not to find empty seats.

No German trains require reservation except the very few ICESprinter trains that leave mainly very early in the day and late in afternoon and meant for business types. You will never have to take these.

Yes regional passes cannot, i believe, be used at all on these trains. that's agood thing about passes - they can be used on any train any time.
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 11th, 2007, 09:28 AM
  #47  
 
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That track maintenance work is from July 18 to August 3.

To see schedule changes all over Germany due to track work, as well as the date span, go to http://bauarbeiten.bahn.de. For Bavaria, add /bayern to that URL.

For the southeast corner of Bavaria, it's http://bauarbeiten.bahn.de/bayern,8. Find München-Rosenheim-Salzburg and click on "2 weitere Informationen". That will lead you to a brochure (.pdf file) that will show you the temporary schedules with the bus leg. It also shows that the express train schedule is unchanged.

If you are using regional trains with a Bayern-Ticket, you can avoid the bus link at a cost of about 15 more minutes by going through Mühldorf to Freilassing. That schedule is also shown on the brochure.
Larryincolorado is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 09:39 AM
  #48  
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That will be the day we need it- July 18th. I will check the other way of going. That might be a better idea. Thanks!
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 10:18 AM
  #49  
 
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I threw in the suggestion about the Mühldorf connection because I know some people have an immediate feeling of panic when you mention buses. Americans are confused enough by train connections; buses really scare them.

But, you should not be intimidated. There are only a few minutes to make each connection, but the buses are just there for the train leg substitution. There will be a flow of train passengers to the buses. As long as you are ready to get off the train when it arrives and stay with the flow, you won't get left behind.

The connection through Mühldorf has two train changes, one at Mühldorf (26 min) and one at Freilassing (27 min).

The earliest regional connection for which you can use the Bayern-Ticket leaves Munich Hbf at 9:42, arriving Salzburg at 12:15. If you go through Mühldorf, you leave Munich at 10:09 and arrive Salzburg at 13:15. If that hour is important, you might want to experience the bus.

However, it looks like you are going to be in Salzburg for a few days, so that hour might not matter. If you go through Mühldorf, you will get off the mainline and get a little better view of rural Bavaria.
Larryincolorado is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 12:03 PM
  #50  
 
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I think you really need to think through your planned day of travel to Moselkern.

A few years ago, I took the K-D boat from St. Goar to Bacharach. That is supposed to be the most impressive part of the Rhein. I decided that it is over-rated. From the boat I could see towns, castles, and vineyards on both sides of the river, but overall, the view wasn’t much different from what I could see from the train or from the towns I stopped in. Primarily, the boat is slow, excruciatingly slow. Against the current, it took 70 minutes from St. Goar to Bacharach. With the current it would have taken 40 minutes. The train take 11-12 minutes. The one benefit of the trip between St. Goar and Bacharach is a close up view of Pfalzgrafenstein, the orange and white toll castle in the middle of the river. Other than that, there wasn’t much of note. You get a little closer to the Loreley, but, quite frankly, the Loreley is just a big cliff (with flags on top); you can see it just as well from the train.

So, when I look at your intended schedule, taking the boat from Bacharach to Koblenz, then the train from Koblenz to Moselkern, I can’t help but wonder if there isn’t a better use of your time.

According to the K-D schedule, the first boat DOWN the river (the Rhein flows to the north) leaves Bacharach at 10:15 and gets into Koblenz at 13:10. I am not sure where the K-D dock is in Koblenz, but the pictures show the Ehrenbreitstein castle across the river, so it must be near the Deutsches Eck. I walked from Deutsches Eck to the Hbf a few years ago. It was early on a Sunday afternoon, following a rainy morning, and the sun was out and people were having lunch in the little squares throughout Koblenz. It might have only taken half and hour, but it seemed longer. It was a pleasant walk, but not for someone trying to catch a train.

DB says that getting from Koblenz KD (at 13:10) to Koblenz Hbf includes a 15 minute walk to the Rhein ferry and a 12 minute bus (#1) ride from there to the station. They say the first bus you can catch is the 14:12 bus from Rheinfähre to the Hbf at 14:24. After looking at the VRM schedule, I think you could catch a 13:42 bus and get to the station at 13:54, but that's irrelavent, because the next train to Moselkern, either way, leaves Koblenz at 14:31 and gets to Moselkern at 15:03. From there you still have a walk (45 min?) to the castle.

As an alternative, I would suggest just doing the most interesting stretch of the Rhein, Bacharach to St. Goar. Get off in St. Goar at 10:55, spend an hour seeing Rheinfels castle ruins, then take the 12:26 train to Koblenz and get to Moselkern an hour earlier at 14:03. Or, you could take the boat to St. Goar and go directly by train (10:37) to Koblenz and get to Moselkern at 12:03. Then, come back by train and stop at St. Goar if you have time.
Larryincolorado is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 12:16 PM
  #51  
 
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Oh when the boat passes by the famous Lorelei cliff - an ordinary cliff but makes Germans on the boat misty eyed and prone to singing a patriotic song everytime i've been on the boat. The one thing i enjoyed most about the KD boats.

I also love the river traffic the nonstop parade of barges, ocean going ships, pleasure craft, etc.

The scenery, as Larry says, gets old for some quickly - especially teenage kids who seem bored from start to finish. But adults mainly seemed to enjoy it - especially sipping Rhine wine as the castles and vineyards and colorfully hued towns slip by.
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 11th, 2007, 01:16 PM
  #52  
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I have decided to just do the Rhine section from Bacharach to St. Goar. We would then take the train on to Moselkern. Years ago, in the 1970's, I took the train north to Cologne and I remember seeing all the sights and I have pictures of the castles still. I noted that it is faster going that direction and I didn't want to push my luck with three bored teenagers either. My kids are more "on-the'go" types. I think they will enjoy the hike to Burg Eltz. I see the earliest time for the boat from Bacharach is 10:15...how could a person get the connection to Koblenz at 10:37 then if they went by boat?

Is there space for luggage on the buses? We will have ours with us.
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 01:25 PM
  #53  
 
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<how could a person get the connection to Koblenz at 10:37 then if they went by boat?>

on the west side of the river trains run about twice an hour i think at least hourly - hourly or every two hours on east side so get off on west side mainline and you have lots of trains to chose from besides 10:37 ditto Koblenz-Moselkern prob hourly.
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 11th, 2007, 01:28 PM
  #54  
 
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Or maybe scratch the Rhine boat and take the daily about about 9am Koblenz to Moselkern - a KD boat railpasses valid - a much prettier ride than the Rhine IMO - much smaller boat though.

Kids will be bored on either so make sure they have the ipods/video games if typical teens
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 11th, 2007, 01:54 PM
  #55  
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We will take the section from Bacharach to St. Goar...I think they would enjoy saying they did it even if it is slower than the train. It will be an experience they won't forget!

What I was asking Larryincolorado was how can you get the boat in Bacharach at 10:15 arriving in St. Goar at 10:55, but be able to catch the train at 10:37?! Maybe I don't know about an earlier boat ride from Bacharach to St. Goar? I don' see any listed earlier than 10:15.
kkukura is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 02:26 PM
  #56  
 
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By the way - the rail pass is only valid on Gen-yew-ine K-D brand boats. The "partner" lines listed in their timetables don't accept them.
Robespierre is offline  
Jun 11th, 2007, 02:43 PM
  #57  
 
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You're right. I looked at the wrong column on my speadsheet. The next train leaves St. Goar at 11:32, changes in Koblenz at 12:03-12:31, and arrives in Moselkern at 13:03. That's still 2 hours earlier than if you do it all by boat.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 02:56 PM
  #58  
 
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PalenQ,

where exactly is the K-D dock in Koblenz? It must be upriver from the Rhein ferry (Rheinfähre). The DB website says to walk 15 minutes from the dock to the Rheinfähre, then take bus 1 from there to the Hbf. Bus 1 stops one minute earlier at Deutsches Eck, so it doesn't seem that the dock could be between Deutsches Eck and the ferry.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:32 PM
  #59  
 
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Larry i'll have to get out a map but i recollect it's upstream from the ferry that goes over to the Enhbreitsen (sp?)Fortress on the other side of the river.

Maybe very close to each other i think. But i think the boat dock, when i got off recently during the Koblenz wine festival is about a half-mile walk along inviting Rhineside paths, from Deutsches Eck monument, at the confluence of the 'Mother' Mosel and 'Father' Rhine rivers.

I'll check and report back as though i spent a few days in Koblenz when i was organizing bike trips of the area for about a dozen years, my now senior mind needs to look at a map to be sure memories jive with reality.

In any case Koblenz along the riverfront i great - from boat dock walk to and around Deutsches Eck Monument and then to the niftily restored Ald Stadt, or Own Town, and then about quarter-mile thru pedestrian town centre to Koblenz Hauptnahnof.

Though i would not recommend Koblenz as a base due to dreamyier towns like Cochem and Rhine towns like Rudesheim, Boppard, St Goar, etc. Kobleniz to me is a very nice town often overlooked by tourists.
PalenQ is online now  
Jun 12th, 2007, 06:32 AM
  #60  
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How much space is there on the buses for luggage? We will each have a smaller suitcase.
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