Germany and Austria Itinerary

Old Jul 16th, 2010, 05:39 PM
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Germany and Austria Itinerary

Hi all,

I will be traveling to Germany and Austria with my husband and another couple in mid-October. I'm excited about the potential destinations during the trip, but haven't gotten my head around the itinerary yet. My husband has proposed the itinerary below, but we're (OK, I'm) worried that we are stretching ourselves too thin.

Does the itinerary below look too busy? Are any areas redundant (i.e. Berchtesgaden and Hallstatt, Hallstatt and Lake Constance)? The obvious elimination to us is Lake Constance, but my Mom has great memories of the area and our friends have requested that it be a part of our itinerary.

Days 1 and 2: Munich (both nights in Munich)
Day 3: Morning in Munich; travel from Munich to Rothenburg ob der Tauber / Nuremberg via Dachau (night in Rothenburg or Nuremberg)
Day 4: Day and night in Rothenburg or Nuremberg
Day 5: Travel to Lake Constance area, arriving mid-afternoon - possibly basing in Meersburg (night in Meersburg)
Day 6: Day and night in Meersburg
Day 7: Travel to Mittenwald, stopping at Neuschwanstein along the way; arriving in Mittenwald late afternoon (night in Mittenwald)
Day 8: Morning in Mittenwald; travel to the Berchtesgaden (night in Berchtesgaden)
Day 9: Day and night in Berchtesgaden vicinity
Day 10: Travel to Hallstatt, arriving early afternoon (night in Hallstatt)
Day 11: Day and night in Hallstatt
Day 12: Early travel to Munich, flying out around noon

Any opinions or feedback would be much appreciated. Thanks!
cebtobe is offline  
Old Jul 16th, 2010, 06:14 PM
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I'd personally remove Hallstatt and add more time somewhere else. Unless Lake Constance can be removed then I'd probably do that instead.

Dachau is also a very easy daytrip from Munich. Nuremberg really deserves a full day, between the Nazi Party Rally Grounds and the city we packed an entire day with activities. I really would have liked to spend the night there.

Sounds like a great trip though.
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Old Jul 16th, 2010, 07:08 PM
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We just got back from Austria and Germany. We're not wild about cities so I would suggest 1 day in Munich . We were in Rothenburg after the crowds had gone and it was OK, I was so excited to visit it but ended up feeling underwhelmed. Dachau was OK. We loved Meersburg and Lindau. Just north of Meersburg was a neat recreated village of Swiss Lake dwellers from thousands of years ago. Enjoyed Neuschwanstein and Linderhof and Wieskirche was amazing.I would skip Berchtesgaden (have not been to Mittenwald) Add St Wolfgang and don't miss Hallstatt.
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Old Jul 16th, 2010, 07:17 PM
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If you are looking for the closest thing to "repeats" in you itinerary so you can consider dropping something, I would think it would be Hallstatt and Berchtesgaden. However, I imagine you are going to BG for historical reasons as much as for the location.

However, there is NO similarity whatsoever between Meersburg / Lake Constance and anything else in your trip. It is not alpine and it really is unlike a much of Germany. Meersburg is an absolute gem and I would recommend keeping it. Think of your friends and dear old Mom. Don't crush their dreams!

If you do decide to drop Hallstatt, had you considered Salzburg? It is close to BG and a great mid-size city experience.

Do you realize it is about a 3 hour drive from Hallstatt to the Munich airport? It is about 2 hours from Salzburg.
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Old Jul 17th, 2010, 06:20 AM
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To me, it seems like a lot of driving/changing hotels... meaning a bit "busy".

Instead of Munich being yor first stop, you may consider making it your last stop and do your trip in "reverse"... meaning making Berchtesgaden your first stop, then Mittenwald, Lake Constance, Rothenburg, Munich. Berchtesgaden is an easy 2 or so hour drive from the airport and you could drop the car upon your arrival in Munich.

I'd suggest using the Berchtesgaden area as a base for Hallstatt, Salzburg and of course Berchtesgaden. We did this ourselves. Hallstatt is a 1:30 min. drive from Berchtesgaden and Salzburg is less than a 30 min. drive. With 4 nights based in Berchtesgaden area (instead of 2 nights Berchtesgaden/2nights Hallstatt), you could easily see the sights around Berchtesgaden 1 day, Salzburg another, Hallstatt and the Salzkammergut another.

Here's what I would propose:

Day 1: Arrive Munich, drive 2 hours to Berchtesgaden (night in Berchtesgaden area)
Day 2: Berchtesgaden (night in Berchtesgaden area)
Day 3: Hallstatt/Salzkammergut (night in Berchtesgaden area)
Day 4: Salzburg (night in Berchtesgaden area)
Day 5: Drive to Mittenwald (night in Mittenwald)
Day 6: Drive to Meersburg (night in Meersburg)
Day 7: Lake Constance/ Meersburg (night in Meersburg)
Day 8: Drive to Rothenburg (night in Rothenburg)
Day 9: Rothenburg/Nuremburg (night in Rothenburg)
Day 10: Drive to Munich (night in Munich)
Day 11: Munich (night in Munich)
Day 12: Fly home from Munich

If you wanted to stay with your original order, Munich airport is about a 2 hour drive from the Berchtesgaden area. With a noon dpearture, I'd rather be closer, meaning in Munich, since you can't predict the traffic in the am. (accidents, construction, you never know) on your way to the airport. So what I'd suggest is the "reverse" itinerary.

If seeing Neuschwanstein was high on your list, the thing I would change would be putting Fuessen in place of Mittenwald. Since Neuschwanstein is only a 10 min. drive from Fuessen, you could get to Neuschwanstein for the first tour in the am. and be on your way to Lake Constance/Meersburg before noon.

To eliminate the 1 night stay, I'd take a night from either Berchtesgaden area or Munich and add it to Fuessen/Mittenwald.

We have photo's of most places at:

Just an opinion. Hope it helps.

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Old Jul 17th, 2010, 01:14 PM
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Are you baked in as far as fligts go? PJA 1's suggested itinerary is really good. But if you can get an open jaw, i.e. fly to Munich return from Frankfurt, this would give you an added day or so.

Personally, I prefer Wuerzburg to Nuernberg. Check it out. You could drop off your car in Wzbg. and take the train directly to the FRA airport. Check for schedules.

Day 6 and 7: There is a nice road from Fuessen to Lindau/ Bodensee, about 2 - 2 1/2 hrs. trip. I would stay there and visit Meersburg as a day trip. This gives you even enough time to cross from M. over to the Konstanz side of the lake (Staad)by car ferry, a trip of about 25 minutes and a visit to theInsel Mainau.Again, check it out.

Of course, if you really want to splurge and the airship is in, you could take a tour around part of the lake on the Zeppelin NT out of Friedrichshafen. Check it out on

From Lindau you can also take a boat ride to Bregenz (Austria), take the cable car to the top of the Pfaender. Great views of the Austrian and Swiss alps.

Eventually, you would be leaving from Lindau on the autobahn A-96 as far as where it merges with the A-7,going north (about 60km from Lindau, at Memmingen). This A-7 takes you to Rothenburg (about 110km). If you have the time, get off the A-7 at exit 112, and drive the 11km over to Dinkelsbuehl. In many ways it is as nice as Rothenburg, and not so overrun with tourists. You then continue on the B-25 (Bundesstrasse 25), also known as the Romantische Strasse, to Rothenburg (40km)
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Old Jul 18th, 2010, 05:24 AM
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Thanks for the feedback. I'm going to propose reversing our order and also recommend trimming one of the overnight destinations. Our original thought was driving every other day won't be so bad if we don't have to use the car the non-changeover days. But repacking every other day will take away from our visiting time, which we (of course) don't want.

Thanks again!
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Old Jul 18th, 2010, 06:44 AM
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We recently moved to Stuttgart, Germany and have visited most of your itineray locations as overnighters or weekenders. Based on our experiences, I agree with most of the previous posters. I think reversing your original plan would make things easier overall. Traffic around Munchen can be a real bear, so it's better to plan with that in mind. As for destinations....

Salzburg is wonderful and I'd recommend it for overnights rather than BG. There's ALOT more to see/do there and the food, music, and ambiance make for a much more memorable trip. BTW....friends of ours had relatives visiting 2 weeks ago who went to BG as a day trip. They were SO disappointed! They were not able to do any "inside" touring and could only walk the grounds. That's one place we have not been, so I'm not sure if that's a temporary issue or not, but I'd recommend asking more questions about that so your limited time is not wasted! (Personally, I'd spend more time in Salzburg, instead.) Hallstatt is truly beautiful, and would be an easy/relaxing day trip from Salzburg.

Like others, I recommend adding Fuessen (vice BG) and Ludwig's famous castles. And then move westward toward Bodensee. We love Bodensee (and all it's towns), which is only 2 hours from home. As others suggested, perhaps you should stay in Lindau and visit Meersburg from there. We loved the castle and all the great seafood restaurants along the lake. And if you like gardens, a trip across the lake to Insel Mainau is wonderful. But by staying in Lindau you'll have a direct north route to Rothenburg OT.

Tourists do overwhelm Rothenburg during the day, but the evenings are wonderful. I'd recommend visiting Nuernburg during the day and spending the evenings before and after in Rothenburg. It's a small town, so that'll probably be sufficient. You could have a nice dinner and do the Nightwatchman tour one evening (the tour guide is really as good as they say!) and save the second evening for visiting the shops.

Then you can head back to enjoy Munchen. It's been a blessing to experience so much of southern Germany this past year and I hope your trip brings you as much joy!
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Old Jul 18th, 2010, 02:10 PM
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All the stops that you originally selected and those additionally recommended are prime tourist spots; they all are someone's favorites and least favorites. (I liked Würzburg and didn't care for Lake Constance.) The question really comes down to what will fire your imagination. You can best read a couple guide books and see what appeals to you. Michelin Green Guide works best for me.

How fast to travel is likewise personal. We travel by train, pack light and shoot for two nights a stop. We do not fully unpack so repacking is not a big deal. We prefer time lost to changing rooms to time lost returning to a base. Either way works for different folks.

Answering itinerary questions are much tougher than addressing specific questions about transportation links, rooms, restaurants, etc. We all have such different tastes and experiences.
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