Germany with Teens - Itinerary

Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 03:02 AM
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Germany with Teens - Itinerary

Hi,

We are flying in and out of Frankfurt with 2 teens (13 boy and 16 girl) in May/June and plan to rent a car. We are very active travelers and don't mind being on the move. The kids want to see castles, WWII museums & sights and some medieval towns. Tentatively, we have this itinerary:

Day 1 Wurzburg
Day 2 Rothenburg
Day 3 Nurnberg
Day 4-5 Salzburg
Day 6-7 Munich
Day 8 Castles near Fussen
Day 9 Nordlingen
Day 10 Heidelberg
Day 11 Home
Day 10

Is this a good itinerary? Is it "teen friendly"? We would appreciate any suggestions or ideas.

Thanks!
Dave
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 03:07 AM
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ira
 
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Hi D,

Are you planning ons staying in a different town each night?

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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 03:50 AM
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ira,

Yes, except for the two-day stopovers in Salzburg and Munich. Good idea?
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 04:15 AM
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Hi D,

Not something I would do.

If your family is comfortable changing hotels 8 times, then it's OK.

You can visit the casles at Fuessen as a daytrip from Munich - 2 hr by car or train.

Also Wurzburg is only 0:40 hr from Rothenburg.

When in Munich, I highly recommend taking the kids to Dachau.

How important is Salzburg? You can do it as a daytrip from Munich. You will need a road tax sticker to drive on the Austrian highways.

Enjoy your visit.

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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 04:23 AM
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Thanks, ira. I have read a little about Dachau and will follow-up on your suggestion.

Yes, I know we are changing hotels a lot, but our previous experiences have been better when we have been able to have dinner in a place and stroll in the evenings. But visiting the castles as a day trip from Munich might be a better idea...
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 11:42 AM
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ttt
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 01:35 PM
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With 13 boys and 16 girls you will probably need to rent something bigger than a car.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 04:12 PM
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I agree with Ira, I would not be able to change hotels every night but if that is something your family enjoys then go for it. I would not do Salzburg as a day trip myself as Salzburg has a special magic at night with the lights shining on the river. I would absolutely make sure you fit in Dachau as it is a very moving and educational experience. It is not a quick visit though so plan on spending at least 1/2 day there. We did the castles near Fussen as a day trip from Munich, leaving around 9:00 a.m. and back in Munich in early afternoon. No need to change hotels for just that and the drive is devine. Enjoy, we are going back again in October and can't wait.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2007, 05:28 PM
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If you & kids want more than Neuchwanstein for castles, keep your eye out for a certain brand of map of Germany. I forget the name, but it has green boxes around the names of towns with great tourist interest, yellow boxes around the names of towns with good tourist interest. We had such for a trip to Germany 5 years ago, but couldn't find it at Barnes & Noble for our trip 3 yrs ago. It was invaluable.

Thirty yrs ago I would go to the Nordlingen area on business; there are numerous castles/chateaus in the area, not the least of which is Bad Mergentheim. Some have armor collections, a good one of which is about 30 km east of Nordlingen. There's also a castle about 10 miles due west of Nordlingen, visible from the road to Aalen, which used to have a restaurant in it...might be fun. Don't rule out looking at the workmanship in the cathedrals. So, day 9 could be a full one (you might think of moving this to between day 1 & 2).
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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 02:58 AM
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Thanks for the great suggestions. I'm glad to hear there are so many additional castles in the area; my tour books only seem to point out the major ones like Neuchwanstein and Heidelberg. I was actually thinking about eliminating Nordlingen, but based on tomboy's response I think I'll keep it on the list.

I am interested if anyone has experience with Heidelberg and Nurnburg (I just noticed the spelling mistake in my original posting!). What I have read on these and other forums ranges from "must see" to "don't bother". From a teen's perspective, are these good places to keep in the list?

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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 09:25 AM
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We went to Nurnberg last summer and really enjoyed it. We stayed in the Altstadt, which was neat - it is more lively than some of the smaller towns, which might appeal to your kids. In the evenings after dinner we'd be out wandering around and there were bunches of people out strolling, eating ice cream, just hanging out. Everyone from people out walking with babies in carriages to groups of teens, to elderly people. It was a really nice atmosphere - lots of fun, very relaxing.

In Nurnberg, there is a castle fortification at the north side of the Altstadt, which was very cool. It is from the 11th Century or something like that - don't remember exactly, but it is a true castle that has seen its share of battle and seiges. At the center of the castle is a museum with all sorts of old armor and weaponry. There is also a nice tower to climb and a really deep well - a docent will demonstrate by pouring water into the well and slowly counting to 5 before you hear the water hit, lowering a platform with candles on it so you can see down down down, and stuff like that.

I would think that your kids would enjoy Nurnberg.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 10:19 AM
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To add further to your confusion: northeast of Wurzburg perhaps 60-75 miles is a little town called Pommersfelden, where there's a castle-like residence where the Prince-Bishop of something lived several centuries ago. We just stumbled upon it 5 years ago,(simply because the above mentioned map had the village in green). It's decorated and furnished the way most visitors wish Neuschwanstein were dec'd and furn'd. Also has numerous rooms filled with large paintings which the P-B had collected. And a hotel. Website:
http://www.bayern.by/en/2c585448-99f...8a1af6aec.html
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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 10:42 AM
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Forgot to mention: Our town's population is maybe 35,000, so maybe our Barnes & Noble isn't as fully stocked as one in Richmond would be. If you can't find such a map as I described, Nordlingen may be a droppable stop. IF you find such a map, you'll see that the area you'll be travelling is just peppered with interesting sites. You could Google the town names in Bavaria to see what each is like.
In my 7 years of business activities there, I never heard of any WW2 museums. Partly due, I suppose, to a lack of interest in commemorating the time, and partly due to Patton not making many stops on the way to Munich.
If the kids are interested in medieval towns, Rothenburg qualifies, altho it's quite commercialized. Dinkelsbuhl is nearby, too, less commercialized. Nordlingen, too, is a walled city.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 11:09 AM
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tomboy's maps sound like Michelin maps: green means worth a journey, orange/yellow means worth a detour, underlined means of some touristic interest.

Davelw, your kids would enjoy walking the medieval walls that circle Rothenburg and taking the night watchman's tour. And some kids would like the torture museum there; my husband loved it. It's not quite as bad as it sounds.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2007, 02:14 PM
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No, they weren't Michelin, I know that. Unfortunately, I don't remember what they WERE.
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Old Mar 24th, 2007, 03:18 AM
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Bright/medium green, tomboy? Probably some of those so-called Freizeitkarten. Davelw, I'd suggest entering the first bookstore you come across in Wuerzburg and looking for good maps there. They'll have them for sure.
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Old Mar 24th, 2007, 04:10 AM
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I hope you can stay late enough, or overnight, in Rothenburg so you can do the Night Watchman's Tour.
You will all enjoy it, but I think the teens will get a kick out of it
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Old Mar 24th, 2007, 04:40 AM
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Davelw,
I think your teens would enjoy Heidelberg. While touristy, it is a very cool college town and has an interesting, very atmospheric castle with a good English tour.

Another excellent castle which may be one of the ones tomboy is thinking of is Schloss Harburg on the Romantic Road near Noerdlingen. http://www.fuerst-wallerstein.de/eng...urg/index.html
Insist on an English tour. When we visited our guide had a funny sense of humor and told lots of entertaining stories about what life was really like in the Middle Ages.

Do try to go to Dachau. I remember reading Anne Frank in 8th grade and becoming quite fascinated with WWII history. If your kids have the patience to read the exhibits I think they will get a lot out of the experience. It does require at least several hours to fully appreciate. Perhaps you could do it on your way into or out of Munich.

You have an ambitious itinerary but I've done plenty of trips like it. If you are used to that sort of travel I think you'll do fine.

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Old Mar 24th, 2007, 05:53 AM
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I don't see any problem with a different hotel each night, that is the way we traveled a few years ago on our trip to Germany. If you are interested in WW2 sights, you can try to fit in a trip to Berchtesgarten while in Salzburg. You can visit the Eagle's nest, see the remains of Hitler's home, visit Nazi bunkers, and also there is a nice museum (all of this is in the Obersalzburg area above Berchtesgarten).
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Old Mar 24th, 2007, 08:27 AM
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Quokka: Freizeitkarten might been the name of the map; not sure.

Hausfrau: no, the castle (Wallerstein)you mention is east of Nordlingen, not west. But its picture from the website looks more appealing!!! (with restaraunt and hotel) How could I have missed it in my travels? Guess I'll have to go back. I think the one I have in mind is Baldern.

Davelw: as you can see from above, if you're interested in castles, just take your pick. The area is replete with them. I'd suggest you limit your time on autobahns, since little is to be seen at 80-90 mph.Of course, I'd take it Frankfurt to Wurzburg, and to Munich, and to Salzburg. The non-autobahn highways allow for adequately fast travel otherwise. The Germans don't allow residential or commercial buildup on them; one has to exit the road to go into a village (a villager can't just buy a lot on the highway and put up a house). They are comparatively little travelled, except near big cities.
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