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Itinerary Help: Cologne, Black Forest, Munich

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Mar 31st, 2012, 11:35 AM
  #1
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Itinerary Help: Cologne, Black Forest, Munich

We have a Eurail Global Pass and want to use it. It's also good for the boats along the Rhine and Mossell Rivers. I initially had myself routed to go from Cologne to Koblenz, down the Rhine, and then the Mosell River to Trier, onward to Constance. One thing, Trier is not the Black Forest, and I really wanted to stay in a small Black Forest town -- which is what I inadvertently thought Trier was.

Ultimately, we want to spend 3-4 nights in Munich, which is our destination on this part of our 34-day Western Europe trip.

So.... recommended route from Cologne? (We get to Cologne from Brussels, and have lodging booked there already). Is Cologne to Koblenz via Rhine River still good? Where from there? Can we take train or boat into the Black Forest or is this where we need to rent a car? Should I scratch Constance and take a more direct route into Munich (previously, we were looking at staying in Constance from Trier).

I'm very appreciative in advance for any help or suggestions. First-timers in Europe trying not to make a mess of things

Cheers,

James

p.s. Travel is just with my wife and I.
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Mar 31st, 2012, 11:37 AM
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I should add that we will be there the second week of May.
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Mar 31st, 2012, 11:41 AM
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Honestly, I would go with a car, cut over to Baden-Baden, down through the Black Forest and pick up the Romantic road to Munich.. there 's lots to see along the way, take a couple of days...maybe even go to Lucerne.
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Mar 31st, 2012, 12:15 PM
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Car from Koblenz? You recommend Baden-Baden out of all the towns along the way? Most charming? Thanks for the suggestion, Seafox!
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Mar 31st, 2012, 12:32 PM
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So I checked and there are both IC and EC trains that connect from Koblenz to Baden-Baden. Does this take me through the forest, including small towns that we can stop through? Anyone know?

The train is more economical for us than a rental, though the "romantic road" sounds lovely.

From Cologne -- where to? Stop at Koblenz and go from there to Baden-Baden? Or take the Rhine further south?

I'd prefer to spend one evening in Cologne, 1-2 nights in a Black Forest town along the way to Munich, and 3-4 nights in Munich.
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Mar 31st, 2012, 05:15 PM
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"So I checked and there are both IC and EC trains that connect from Koblenz to Baden-Baden. Does this take me through the forest, including small towns that we can stop through? Anyone know?"

Baden-Baden is for gambling and spa treatments, a big city in many ways, and on the outskirts of the Black Forest.

You are probably looking for an attractive village like Schiltach, Gengenbach, Gutach or Haslach. These towns are located on or near the Black Forest railway, a scenic route that winds its way around and cuts through the mountains; it connects Offenburg (near Baden-Baden) with Donaueschingen to the southeast. So from the Middle Rhine area you'd be taking a high-speed train to Offenburg and connecting there for these towns.

http://www.black-forest-travel.com/p...t-railway.html

Schiltach photos: http://www.schiltach.de/ceasy/module...hp5?cPageId=83 (website has English pages.)

You can get a glimpse of these towns at Ben's excellent website - the first page is a list of accommodations in the BF - check out the first 4 villages I mentioned.

http://www.bensbauernhof.com/fffeb01vorderhof.html

Ben has assembled some trip reports from fellow travelers that include some of the BF towns:

http://www.bensbauernhof.com/tripreports.html

The Vogtsbauernhof museum between Gutach and Haslach is an area highlight:

http://en.vogtsbauernhof.org/

Gengenbach is very close to Offenburg and a good place to stay; it's a very attractive town that still has its old town walls and towers:

www.gengenbach.de

There is more to the Black Forest of course; the Hell's Valley rail line to the south runs east from Freiburg to Hinterzarten (hiking mecca) Titisee, Neustadt, and Löffingen:

http://www.black-forest-travel.com/l...oellental.html
http://www.black-forest-travel.com/l...e/titisee.html

With the well-developed transport in the area, I see no reason you'd need a car to visit this area; I've done it by car myself and also by train on several different trips.
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Apr 10th, 2012, 11:45 PM
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Russ -- thanks so much for your detailed reply! Looking up your links now! Hoping it helps me with my itinerary plans. Cheers!
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Apr 11th, 2012, 05:49 PM
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Thanks Russ, good suggestions for J_W!
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Apr 11th, 2012, 07:20 PM
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Russ is right! We stayed in Gengenbach last fall and enjoyed it immensely. It's also an easy train ride from there to some of the other Black Forest towns, such as Triberg and Titisee. If you stay in the Black Forest, ask whether your hotel gives out the free KONUS card, which allows you free public transportation within the Black Forest.
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May 10th, 2012, 06:07 AM
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Hi all,

I am planning to go to Black Forest in Germany. I am residing in Netherlands. I would like to know how to go to that place? Is there any other places which you would recommend nearby apart from Munich(I have already been there some four months back). I have also Cologne in my mind. My point of travel is to spend four to five days in a scenic beauty and have some fun outdoor activities. I am going alone (would like to know if anyone wants to join). My preferred travel would be next month or even July if any of you want to..
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May 10th, 2012, 06:17 AM
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I loved that region and Baden Baden. We were there as a family for a couple of nights and would do a spa day there sometime.
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May 20th, 2012, 07:06 PM
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Russ,
I just got a summer teaching job in Stuttgart. I will have weekends off and thought I would spend some time exploring the local area around there. I just got the job, and haven't been to Germany since 2007, so I will have to do some quick planning for my weekend trips. I am so glad I saw your list of websites because I had lost the one to Ben's! I will be there, lucky me, for two months! Any recommendations you can send my way I would appreciate. I would like to do all my traveling by train. Thanks! Kathy
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