Help with Rhine/Castles...

Old Apr 5th, 2008, 01:29 AM
  #1  
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Help with Rhine/Castles...

I guess I am looking more for a bit of confirmation and suggestions. First off I am living here in Germany and have friends from the States coming for a visit next week. This is a short see the most of everything kind of visit. SO I thought the Rhine would be a good start. I have read the threads about taking a boat and/or a train. Due to the weather at this time I am thinking the train maybe the best bet...so here is my question. If we stick to the regional train say from Bingen to Koblenz, will we get a good view of castles? I also would like to continue on to Koln to show them the Dom, good idea? Now I do have a car and could just drive up the Rhine, is that a better idea? There are three young boys in this traveling group.

I appreciate the help and enjoy all the post here as we have ventured off to many of the locations suggested since living here.

1TXGRL
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 04:48 AM
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1) Yes, you have views from the regional train. But: Regional trains are not very comfortable, and if it is raining the view is not good at all.

2) I would suggest you take your car and drive. You can drive up to castles and vistas without losing time.

3) Here some attractions along the Rhein, starting in the south, near Mainz:

- Kloster Eberbach. Old monastery (the "Name of the Rose" was filmed here) with good winery.

- Rüdesheim. Touristy, but picturesque. The cable car ride over the vineyards is a special experience.

- Loreley. Spectacular rock and vista. Small sculpture of the Loreley girl ("Ich weiß nicht, was soll es bedeuten..").

- Marksburg (Braubach). Spectacular castle (in fact, the only castle in the Rhein valley which had never been destroyed). A tour of the castle is very recommendable. Castle tours are always very entertaining for young boys (explain what a chastity belt is).

- A side trip into the Mosel valley to Burg Eltz (Moselkern). Also a fully intact castle.

- On the way, you will see dozens of castles and charming villages.

4) Köln is certainly worth a visit. The Dom is spectacular (including the golden shrine of the three Magi and the treasury). See also the Roman-Germanic Museum with breathtaking artifacts. Should be very interesting for the boys. Köln has also world-class art museums and a chocalate museum. Another option for the boys might be a visit to the Praetorium, the Roman governor's palace in the basement of the city hall. There is a walkable Roman sewer.
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 05:09 AM
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I took a boat from Koblenz to Mainz or vice versa. This was a long and wondeful adventure, passing by many castles and vineyards along the way. If you have the option to travel by car, that definately sounds like fun. With the boat, you can't stop off or spend more time at a particular castle that you're intersted in looking at for a longer period of time. There is a certain advantage to being on the water, looking out at the castles, however, I'm not sure if this advantage compares to the bonuses of having your own free will towards making regular stops to take pictures, explore, hang out, ect...
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 06:14 AM
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Great advice. Thanks for the Koln tips, I have been several times and didn't know about the Roman sewers...yes the boys will be thrilled!

Sounds like Rhine via car is the way to go.

Thanks again,
1TXGRL
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 08:11 AM
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Look here for a photo of the sewer:

http://www.pbase.com/jbviajero/cologne

To get more info on Köln:

http://www.koeln.de/en/tourism/tourism.html

Info on Marksburg:

http://www.marksburg.de

Info on Eberbach Monastery:

http://www.klostereberbach.de/html_english/index.html
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 08:12 AM
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Info on Rüdesheim:

http://www.ruedesheim.de/
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 10:49 AM
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We love Burg Rheinfels, which sits on a hill above St. Goar. Its a huge ruin, and there are lots of dark nooks and crannies to explore. We live in Germany, too, and castles don't really impress our kids anymore...but even they enjoy exploring all the dark passages and underground tunnels. If you go, take a flashlight!

Have fun!
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Old Apr 5th, 2008, 12:51 PM
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thanks mindy, that is a perfect castle suggestion for the boys in the group. We have only been here about 6 months, so my two boys are still in the castles are fun stage (even the teenager).

1txgrl
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Old Apr 7th, 2008, 06:46 AM
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We stayed in Boppard for a week and took a Rhine cruise from there to Bacharach. It was a gray, rainy day, which in no way detracted from the scenery. In fact, it was really almost mystical to see those castles emerge from the mist as we made our way up the river.
I also highly recommend the tour of Marksburg Castle. We luckily happened to be there when they were just starting an English tour. Very interesting, and the views back down the Rhine are magnificent.
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