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Need help paring down my 3 week intinerary Benelux/Germany!

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Feb 5th, 2016, 07:15 AM
  #1
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Need help paring down my 3 week intinerary Benelux/Germany!

My wife and I are going to Benelux/Germany in Aug/Sept. We are starting in Amsterdam and leaving from Munich which are locked in. Here's my tentative itinerary in the meantime. I think these are all great places to see but I worry we'll spend too much time travelling via train and not taking it slower but I'm having a REALLY hard time cutting out any of these places as they all seem so great! We could rent a car up in the alps region (pick up after Rothenburg in Munich, return it in Munich after the alps or after Salzburg) but otherwise plan to train most of it due to convenience/cost.

What areas should I consider skipping to put more days in other cities on my list? Other recommendations? I'd hate to have days where I have nothing to do because "there's really only one day's worth of sites in Rhine Valley" for instance and feel like we could've made it to see more areas, but it's no fun being rushed all the time and moving from city to city.

The only things locked in are Amsterdam and Munich but I've done a lot of research and really like these towns I've picked in between, I just worry they are too many. We enjoy wine/beer, castles, churches, local food, local culture etc. More into medieval history and towns than WW2. Coming from the US.

Day 1 Friday Fly to Amsterdam

Day 2 Saturday Arrive in Amsterdam

Day 3 Sunday Amsterdam

Day 4 Monday Amsterdam

Day 5 Tuesday Day trip to Waterland/Ghent, etc (Still staying in Amsterdam)

Day 6 wednesday Travel to Bruges

Day 7 thursday Bruges

Day 8 friday Travel to Luxembourg City

Day 9 Saturday Luxembourg City

Day 10 sunday Luxembourg City (side trip to Trier)

Day 11 Monday Travel to Bacharach

Day 12 Tuesday Mosel/Rhine Area

Day 13 Wednesday Travel to Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Day 14 Thursday Rothenburg ob der Tauber area

Day 15 Friday Travel to Fussen/MIttenwald

Day 16 Saturday Fussen/MIttenwald area

Day 17 Sunday Fussen/MIttenwald area

Day 18 Monday Travel to Salzburg

Day 19 Tuesday Salzburg

Day 20 Wednesday Train to Munich in the morning

Day 21 Thursday Munich

Day 22 Friday Munich

Day 23 Saturday Fly Home from Munich
Lannistergold is offline  
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Feb 5th, 2016, 08:09 AM
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I think your pace is about right overall.

Rothenburg is medieval but was heavily rebuilt after WW II and swarming with tourists. You may want to give Bamberg a look instead.

There are trains from Munich to Füssen and Mittenwald.

Luxembourg is good for a few hours but not 3 days IMO.

The Mosel: Cochem is a beautiful town in a beautiful setting, great place for 3 nights. It's close to Burg Eltz as well. You could see Trier (also on the Mosel) from there on a day trip too.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 08:18 AM
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I assume you do not mean a day trip to Ghent on day4.

I would take the time from Luxembourg and add it to the Mosel area.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 08:35 AM
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regarding train travel - you are traveling on so many trains that you should investigate the Germany-Benelux railpass that lets you hop virtually any train in Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg and Germany - except Thalys trains and a hand full of others you will never encounter. anyway for lots about trains in those countries check www.budgeteuropetravel.com; www.ricksteves.com and www.seat61.com. Use www.bahn.de/en for rail schedules.

Waterland/Gent in the same day trip from Amsterdam - that is one day that is too much to do justice to Gent. do Gent as a day trip fro0m nearby Amsterdam.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 09:18 AM
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That Rothenburg was heavily rebuilt is only partly correct.

It is one the few truly medieval cities because it was spared from destructions in the War of 30 Years and, because it fell into insignificance, remained fairly unchanged.

It was bombed by the U.S. Air Force on 31 March 1945 just for fun (originally the pilots had the mission to destroy oil tanks, but since they could not hit them they decided to set this little town in flames), but fortunately mostly the newer part of town was hit, so the vast majority of structures is still original.

And on the Romantic Road you find more medieval towns, which are quieter and even more authentic than Rothenburg, including Dinkelsbühl and Nördlingen with a perfect city wall.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 09:53 AM
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"...the vast majority of structures is still original."

Rothenburg, 1945. Looks like roughly half of the old section within the town wall was demolished (and of course since rebuilt.)

http://blog.rothenburg-unterm-hakenk....-April-45.jpg

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/F...krieg_1945.jpg
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Feb 5th, 2016, 11:02 AM
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Luxembourg is good for a few hours but not 3 days IMO.>

Yes throw bags in station locker and see the smallish town - physically gorgeous as the town in divided by a lovely deep gorge - tour the Casements perhaps the only real sight (tunnels in the gorge side that have been hewn out for military reasons long ago) - then hop on a train and head for Trier for the night - Germany's oldest city I think and one that reeks with well-preserved Roman ruins - then move onto Cochem or wherever the next day.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 12:22 PM
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I'd cut Lux out entirely.

Fuessen: I assume for the nearby Ludwig builds and some of them are, IMO, better than others...you might consider winnowing that down. For example the interior of the Residenze in Munich is far, far more impressive inside than Neuschwanstein but that Neuischwanstein exterior is so, so iconic.

Salzburg. decide what is important there. It is an easy 1.5 hour rail trip to and from Munich.
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Feb 5th, 2016, 12:48 PM
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"was bombed by the U.S. Air Force on 31 March 1945 just for fun..."

Another possible explanation: Rothenburg's history as the ideal Nazi community may have encouraged Allied air strikes for the purpose of demoralizing the opposition.

http://www.tracesofevil.com/search/label/Rothenburg

(Not the sort of information you find in glossy brochures on Rothenburg.)
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Feb 5th, 2016, 12:56 PM
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To expand on Dukey's point about alternatives to the trip to Füssen...

1.) You could stop mid-way between Munich and Salzburg to visit Ludwig II's Herrenchiemsee Palace, on an island in Lake Chiemsee:

http://www.ferienhaus-am-chiemsee.co...background.jpg

http://0.www.alpen-guide.de/m/image/...nchiemsee.jpeg

http://www.herrenchiemsee.de/englisch/n_palace/

2.) Nymphenburg Palace in Munich is another choice - it's where Ludwig was born and there's a ton to see there:

http://www.schloss-nymphenburg.de/englisch/palace/

Carriage museum: https://toflirtwithlife.files.wordpr.../dsc_01051.jpg

3.) For alps, check out Berchtesgaden from Salzburg:
http://images.fotocommunity.de/bilde...366c66aa75.jpg
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Feb 5th, 2016, 02:43 PM
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Gent should not be a day trip. Stop there and from there go to Bruges.
Been several times to Luxembourg city. Didn't find it worthwhile. Double check.
Not that knowledgeable about Germany but seems ok.
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Feb 6th, 2016, 05:30 PM
  #12
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Thank you all for your help. These are a lot of great suggestions!
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Feb 6th, 2016, 06:29 PM
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I would not do Gent as a day trip from Amsterdam. Stay in Gent and move onto Bruges the following day.
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Feb 6th, 2016, 06:56 PM
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Herrenchiemsee is the largest of the builds and it is the most elaborately decorated of all of them, including Linderhof. The "Hall of Mirrors" is even bigger than its namesake at Versailles. And it is right on the rail line between Munich and Salzburg so easy to reach. The setting, on an island in the middle of the lake is memorable, too.

As to R0-berg. Yes, it is wonderful what with the moat, the drawbridges, the almost fairy tale streets which have at least four Christmas shops and the place is going to be mobbed with visitors. I think it is worth ONE visit and not for any longer than a day although the "Night Watchman's Tour" might be worth a stay over but that is all IMO.
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Feb 7th, 2016, 09:41 AM
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Yes I though Herrenchiemsee was the most interesting of all of Mad Ludwig's fantasy castle/palace creations - the boat ride there is all the nicer visit.
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