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Need Advice regarding Prague & Germany please

Need Advice regarding Prague & Germany please

Old Mar 6th, 2003, 01:02 PM
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Need Advice regarding Prague & Germany please

Hello to all! I've enjoyed reading many posts on this board and it has assisted me with our trip plans to Czech Republic & Germany. This is my first post and I would appreciate your advice as I finalize the itinerary for our trip scheduled for mid May.

Days 1-5 depart USA & arrive Prague via Frankfurt. Rent car in Prague & travel to Litomerice/Usti nad Labem in Northern Czech Republic for family roots research (possibly overnight in Litomerice for 2 nights & then to Prague for 2 nights). Any Fodorites have an email address for Sabine (travel guide recommended here for a Prague walking tour)?

Days 6-15 to Germany either via train Prague to Munich & pick up a different rental car in Munich OR retain car from Prague & drive to Germany.

There are 4 adults, 3 of whom enjoy driving. We enjoy exploration and great scenery and are looking forward to the Deutsche Alpenstrasse and Romantic Road after family history research in Czech Republic. We don't really enjoy big cities or big tourist crowds, but know we'll probably experience both. We definately want to see Linderhof, Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau with possible ride to top of ZugSpitz, Ettal Abbey, Wieskirche, Nightwatchman's tour in Rothenburg while in Germany.

At this point we are looking to spend 2 nights in Berchtesgaden, 2-3 nights in Fussen/Oberammergau/Garmisch area (still debating which town to stay in), 2 nights in Rothenburg and 1 night in Frankfurt before flights out.

The first question I need advice on is the debate between taking the train vs car from Prague into Germany. We could take the train into Munich and spend 1-2 nights in Munich before driving to Berchtesgaden, or keep 1st rental car & drive from Prague, spending a night or two in other parts of Czech Republic or Germany. I'm thinking cost will be alittle higher keeping the rental car becuase of fuel prices, but it appears the drop fee and train ticket prices are close to the same within $100-150 bucks or so. Also, if we spend a couple of nights in Munich, we could do a day trip to Dachau via train and not pick up the 2nd rental car for a day or two.

My 2nd question relates to Herrenchiemsee near Prien. Is it recommended to overnight in Prien to do this area justice or is it a possible stop on the drive from Berchtesgaden towards Fussen area? Would you plan an overnight stop 1/2 way towards Fussen like in Tegernseer/Bad Wiessee area?

Thank you in advance for any advice you can give. Wishing you Safe and Happy Traveling!

TravelLight is offline  
Old Mar 6th, 2003, 03:27 PM
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My advice would be to take a train from Prague into Germany. About 10 years ago we got stuck in the hugest traffic jam of our lives trying to cross the border from Czechoslovakia into Germany. The delay was due to at least 8 Kilometers of trucks lined up waiting to go through inspection. The drivers had left their trucks running and were lying on the grass smoking. We had to try and pass each truck, squeezing back in when there was oncoming traffic. Maybe someone else can confirm if this has happened to them lately. We were coming from Prague through Pilsen to Regensburg, Germany. You could spend the night in Regensburg and perhaps rent a car there to continue on your way to the Romantische Strasse.
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Old Mar 7th, 2003, 10:45 AM
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Maggi, Thanks for the reply. Anybody else have experiences with car from CZ to Germany?

Any advice on Chiemsee stop near Prien? Is Prien the spot to overnight or can you do this as a couple hour stop on the way towards Fussen from Berchtesgaden?

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Old Mar 7th, 2003, 11:15 AM
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I would recommend not taking a car from Germany to the Czech Republic. When I stayed in Germany and went to Prague my host family was very vocal about the car theft that occured in the Czech Republic of foreign cars. If you do decide to take a car, into Prague especially I recommend parking the car in a guarded lot. They will charge you a fee to park there and it is not garaunteed that the car will not be stolen but it is safer than if on the street. Otherwise Prague is a wonderful and beautiful city! Sorry I can't help you with the other question!
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Old Mar 8th, 2003, 06:26 AM
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"We don't really
enjoy big cities or big tourist crowds, but know we'll probably experience both. We definately want to see
Linderhof, Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau with possible ride to top of ZugSpitz, Ettal Abbey, Wieskirche,
Nightwatchman's tour in Rothenburg while in Germany. "

You are looking at "Tourist City" with your itinerary. With the exception of the Wieskirche and Ettal, expect long lines and many delays.

Good luck.

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Old Mar 8th, 2003, 07:21 AM
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It seems no one has addressed your question on Prien so far, so I will try to do so. Seeing Herrenchiemsee, from my own experience, can easily be done in half a day. So you need to plan that leg of your journey to allow that much time to go to Prien. My trips there have been day trips from a hotel in Tegernsee and from a hotel in Munich. Good luck.
Wayne is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2003, 07:35 AM
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In 1999 we flew into Frankfurt, picked up a rental car and spent our first night in Rothenburg. This was a good choice for us, short drive, sun light, stayed up for Night Watchmans, hit the sack and was ready to leave for Prague the next day. Stopped in Pilsen at Brewery for Lunch on the way.
Next 3 nights in Prague. We needed 2 full days to see everything at a leisurely pace. We stayed at the Cloister Inn, leaving our car in their enclosed car park. Being in the old town, we had small town feel and walked everywhere. Full day 1 we went over to Hradny did walking tour, lunch in lower town and then back across the Charles bridge to Old Towne to the clock and that stuff at TI for finding night stuff. That night went to Wenselas square for dinner after a trio concert in the museum. Next day spent entire morning at Jewish Quarter, then lunch in Old town with shopping. That night dinner across the bridge. We used the trolley 2 times other than that we walked. Other than arriving and leaving, we never felt like we were in a huge city.
We had no problems with borders. We went from there to Budapest. At borders they had separate lanes for trucks. The line into Germany was several miles long for the trucks. Our car was stickered for Czech and we had no problems.
Sometimes short rentals are more expensive in pieces than long rentals. It was cheaper to pick up the car in Germany than it was in Prague. Plus if you are arriving and departing Frankfurt you may save the drop off charge. With 4 of you splitting the cost of the car, it would seem that it would be cheaper than a train.
Tourist wise, we saw Neuschwanstein in 1984, and then that was just as crowded as Prague, and we really enjoyed seeing it.

Consider seeing Dachau on your way into Munich, if driving. We are going this Sept and plan to do the Frankfurt, Rothenburg, Dachau, Munich route. We are spending then 2 nights in Munich which we figure will be enough, we generally prefer small cities too, that is why we are staying near the center.
2 nights should be plenty for Berchtesgarden. We saw it also in 1984 and unless things have changed, we spent 2 nights and it was enough for seeing the town and the Eagle's nest, unless you plan a day trip from there.
Make sure you have good trip tics in addition to maps. There are several on the Internet, including Euro shell where you put in the cities and they give you very detailed driving directions.
I too have roots in Czech, my cousin did the family research. She found a cousin that drove them to the towns which she said were not the easiest to find. She did this in 2000.
Food is wonderful in Prague, you will really enjoy it.
Make sure wherever you reserve in Prague that they have a secure parking area. We emailed our hotel for the car reservation as well.
Take care, have a great trip, we really loved Prague and Rothenburg.
MGB is offline  
Old Mar 9th, 2003, 04:37 PM
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Thank you for your advice everybody that responded, I appreciate it.

Wayne, do you have a hotel you would recommend in Tegernsee?

Thanks again, we are really looking forward to the trip!
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 06:29 PM
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I've seen 3 of Ludwig's Castles - every one must to see Neushwanstein at least once - I think most importantly because of its site - absolutley beautiful. I did not visit Howenschwangau (known as the father's castle - located right below Neushwanstein) Linderhof, I think, is the most beautiful caslte and the most interesting. I have seen it in the summer and in the winter with the snow falling. Breathtaking - and the rooms are beautiful. You do not see as much at Neuschwanstein.
I was lucky (it does not happen now) to be riding on a train and reading my travel book (this is back in the 1970's) to find that summer concerts were held at Herrenchiemsee. We traveled there (stayed in Prein), took a boat to the island where Herrenchiemsee is located -- what a magnificent trip - there was a concert in the Hall of Mirros (fashioned after Versailles) and all the chandiliers were lit with REAL candles!! I understand this does not happen Enjoy - you will love everything
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Old Apr 9th, 2003, 08:30 PM
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Regarding Herrenchiemsee, you should easily be able to drive from Berchtesgaden to Prien, take the boat to the palace, return to Prien, and then drive on to Fussen on the same day. If you want to take more time in Prien, you might want to consider staying at Hotel Lindenhof. It is centrally located and a five minute drive from the boat docks. The cost is about 75 Euro per night. Prien is a lovely town with plenty of Luftmalerei (paintings on the buildings).
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 12:36 AM
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As others ahve said you can do Prien as a day trip from Munich or Berchtesgaden but it is a nice place to stay overnight as well - you could stay there 1 night and Berchtesgaden one night if you wanted to. There are a couple of nice hotels right on the lake itself. Town centre of Prien is nothing special.
I would stay in Füssen ahead of Garmisch - although those preferring bigger towns go for Garmisch. For accommodation for your number have a look at Hotel Alpenblick on Hopfensee, about 5 minute drive from Füssen. Hotel has large rooms - sofa bed and separate bedroom good for your situation perhaps. Fantastic views from the balcony and good restaurants attached to hotel. Alternatively BAd Faulenbach (next door "suburb" of Füssen) - 5 minutes walk into centre. Lots of people like to stay right near Neuschwanstein but I think you pay for the privilege.
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Old Apr 10th, 2003, 03:15 AM
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If you want to overnight in the vicinity of Neuschwanstein, Pension Albrecht in Hohenschwangau is 32 euro per person with private baths, free parking, breakfast, view of Neuschwanstein overhead, and within walking distance of the ticket center. For a pleasant dinner, the restaurant at Alpenhotel Meier is just a 5 minute drive away on the Schwangau road--good food, friendly service. Hohenschwangau is a very small village, so not much nightlife, but for 1 or 2 nights it was quite pleasant and relaxing after clambering about the castles and mountainsides.
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