Just returned from trip to Germany

Jun 7th, 2001, 05:33 PM
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Dear Just O

We stayed one night in Duesseldorf, Dresden, Wurzburg, freiburg and Erfurt. We spent 2 nights in Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berlin, Munich. I would like to have spent more time time in Munich, Berlin and Rothenburg. I didn't dislike really anything we saw or did on tour. I would have devoted more time to the museums on museum Island in Berlin. These museums are a must see. I will go back to Germany again for sure. Rothenburg was one of the highlights on our tour. If I am not mistaken it is the only medieval town in Germany with its town wall intact. We walked a portion of the town wall.
Jun 7th, 2001, 05:45 PM
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Dear Diane

Yes, we did take the Globus Grand Tour of Germany. It will usually be posted somewhere at the door or just inside alot of the museums whether you can take photos or use your video camera. You could take pictures in the Pergamon, you can also take them in some of the Art museums but you can not use the flash on your camera. This is so the pictures are not damaged by the light. You cannot take pictures of any type in the Old Masters Gallery in Dresden. Hope this helps.
Jun 7th, 2001, 06:04 PM
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This is some more info on Germany. If you are going to purchase things to take home ie Steins, Nutcrackers, Pilsner glasses, Hummel, dolls, table linens etc try to shop at a store which has the tax free sign in it. There were some nice stores in Rothenburg with great prices on the above items and they filled out the needed paper work and gave you this and the receipts in an envelope. When you go through customs in the Airport ask them to point you in the direction of the Tax Free Shopping Service Office in the Airport. You will have to show some or all the items you purchase plus the tax free shopping paper from the store and your passport. They will stamp it for you and you go to the window next door and get your tax money back. There is a 16 percent tax on everything you buy. This will be returned to you at the Airport if you do the above steps. If you spend a good sum of money on gifts. Its worth it. You can bring chocolates back to the U.S. without problems. It never ceases to amaze me the things people do. Coming through Customs in Detroit some guy tried to sneak some of the White Asparagus that is so prevalent in Germany in and was caught. Under no circumstances are you to bring any plant, dairy products (cheeses etc.) or fruits, veggies or meat products back with you. You will also be asked leaving Germany and arriving in the States in you have been to any farms while visiting Germany. In every town we visited we went to the Altstadt (Old Town, historic section. There were plenty of banks to do your transactions in. When you arrive in Germany if needed only exchange a small amount of currency at the Airport. Do the rest of your banking at the banks. You will get a great exchange rate and will pay only a small fee about $2.50. The banks are happy to handle your dollars. When we were there we got about 2.21 DM for every dollar the exhange rate fluctuates everyday.
Jun 8th, 2001, 05:59 AM
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Thank you for all the info Robbie.

I don't know why, but I like my somewhat dark, no flash museum pictures with other people in the background better than any perfect postcards I buy. I guess it's because it's more real and shows the way I saw it.

I'm so glad to hear Globus does a good Germany tour. The only thing I don't like is we spend only 1 night in Munich, but then we spend 2 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which I hear is nice.

Was there anything at all planned on the first day before the 6pm meeting? I arrive in Frankfurt at 9am. Assuming you also stayed at the Queens in Frankfurt, is there convenient public transport to the center?

Thanks again.
Jun 8th, 2001, 05:49 PM
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Dear Dianne

Yes, we stayed at the Queens hotel in Frankfurt. The hotel is in a wooded area and is in no way located near or within walking distance of downtown Frankfurt. There was nothing planned for us when we arrived at the hotel. The tour Director of course suggested that everyone try to stay up and not go to bed and nap or it abviously messes up your sleep for the next couple of days. He suggested that those who wanted to should walk out to the road and turn right and keep walking. He said there was a nice little town about a 30 minute walk from the hotel. We like to walk and we were game. There was four of us myself, my husband and his sister and her husband. Well the walk turned into almost hour and we finally reached Neu-Isenberg. It was a cute town and we had lunch in the market place. There are nice paths once the side walks run out in the wooded area on the left hand side of the road. My brother-in-law teased the tour director (Bruno) at dinner that night about that "HALF HOUR WALK TO TOWN" he laughed and told my brother-in-law he was a SLOW WALKER. Well from then on for the next two weeks that was his nickname and we all had fun with it and so did he. There are cabs usually sitting outside the hotel. You can ask in the lobby if any local buses pass by. I did not see any.
Jun 8th, 2001, 06:05 PM
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I thought I should FYI you on the food situation. When we took our tour with Globus to Great Britain and Ireland 3 years ago we had a choice of entrees in the dinner meals that were provided. We did not in Germany. If you have special dietary needs you need to let the Tour Director know up front first thing at dinner. If you are lactose intolerant bring your Lactaid honey. There are cream soups, cream on the berries for dessert, cream on the fish etc.. etc... They also served alot of pork. I do not eat pork or very much other red meat, but I didn't care about the dinner meals they provided because they have great buffet breakfasts and we always had a great lunch on our own. We did not get a choice of entrees at the provided dinner meals. Two of the optional meals which you pay extra for we did get choice of entrees and they were at nice resturants and they were good. We loved the breads and rolls there. We all said we would be going through bread, rolls, and pastry withdrawl when we got home.
Jun 8th, 2001, 10:33 PM
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This person was on a 2 week BUS tour to Germany. What makes anyone here think they know anything at all about that country after a bus tour lasting 2 weeks that covered such distances and places? They could tell you lots more about people from Iowa and Michigan that were on the bus for long hours with them or at their long set meals in genaric places no German would go than anthing real about the country of Germany. Bus tours are like going to the Epcot center and saying you've been to Europe.
Jun 9th, 2001, 06:25 AM
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Hello Robbie:
Do you have a favorite boat company for the Rhine Boat Cruise around Frankfurt?
Jun 9th, 2001, 09:03 AM
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Roger -

You'll never believe this, but many people living in, for example, NYC have never visited the Statue of Liberty or the Metropolitan Museum of Art, etc. Does a New Yorker know more about NYC than a tourist? Obviously. But do they necessarily know about tourist attractions, etc.?

I've never stayed in a hotel in my home city, have you? I'd have to ask a visitor to explain how they found the experience.

Methinks you are a tad of a travelling snob, Roger.

Thank you Robbie, I've enjoyed reading your posts.
Jun 9th, 2001, 07:10 PM
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Dear Roger

It is really sad that people like you have invaded this travel forum. Three years ago when I was planning my first trip to Europe I found out about this forum and received very helpfull information. Never once did I encounter negative responses from anyone. For your information. Yes I was on a bus tour, but I was not on that bus 24 hours a day. I learned the German language before I went, my husbands great-grandparents were from Germany. How sweet it was to round out ones wholeness in life by knowing were it all began. I met nice German people and seen more interesting sites, Musuems, Castles and scenery. I drank and ate with the locals in the pubs and cafes and met wonderfull people in interesting locations that I would have never found on my own in 2 weeks. There is obviously a misguided notion that all bus tours are very limiting in the exposure one has to the culture of the country you are visiting. That is not so. Auf Wiedersehen.

Frieden, Robbie

Jun 9th, 2001, 07:29 PM
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Dear Barb

We boarded our excursion steamer near Rudesheim. Our Rhine cruise lasted about 2 hours past lovely old castles and small towns and vineyards. I don't know anything about the cruising boats in Frankfurt. Hopefully someone else might be able to help you with that one.
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