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Need help with 2 week trip to Germany

Old Jan 17th, 2006, 12:14 AM
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Need help with 2 week trip to Germany

For our 25th anniversary, we are planning a 2 week trip to Germany. I'm not much of a traveler, so I'm finding it a bit overwhelming!

This may be the only time we go, so we really want to see our "top picks". I've put together an itinerary, and would greatly appreciate your advice...

Day 1 Depart Orlando
Day 2 Arrive Cologne at noon, rest
Day 3 Sightsee Cologne
Day 4 Rent automatic car, visit Burg Eltz on way to Cochem
Day 5 Drive “best of Rhine” to Worms, overnight in Heidelberg
Day 6 Visit Schloss Bruschal and Burg Hohenzollern, overnight in Stuttgart
Day 7 Drive to Wurtzberg, see Residenz
Day 8 Drive Romantic road to Fussen
Day 9 Visit Neuschwanstein & Hohenschwangau
Day 10 Visit Ettal abbey, Oberammergau, Wieskirche
Day 11 Visit Swarowski museum in Innsbruck
Day 12 Visit Munich, see baroque churches
Day 13 Fly home to Orlando

We're planning to add a day or two where most needed so as not to be constantly on the run. Any ideas on where?

What part of the trip should we rent a car? Do we need it once we get to Fussen?

I'm also concerned this itinerary may be too strenuous, as my wife has back and foot problems.

Thank you in advance for your help!!
HarrisD is offline  
Old Jan 17th, 2006, 03:15 AM
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It sounds like a nice trip. You need more time in Munich and at least another day in Cochem for a daytrip to Trier, stopping in another Mosel town or two.

I wouldn't want a car at all for this trip except for some of the castle/abbey visits, but it sounds like you need a car the whole time if your wife has trouble getting around easily and you plan to take a little luggage with you.
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Old Jan 17th, 2006, 05:50 AM
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One nice thing about having a car is flexibility. You can search for rooms as you go rather than make all the reservations in advance. You need not worry about getting stuck somewhere without a place to stay.

Whenever we would start out with a tight full schedule, we would get tired of packing up every day or two to move on. Then someplace would strike us as just the perfect European experience. So, we would eliminate some future stop and settle for a couple days.

Sometimes the best memories are not the photo of a castle but an especially friendly waitress at a coffee house.

So, I would make elaborate plans and then destroy them along the way.

Regards, Gary
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 06:12 PM
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I too am from Orlando and going to some of the same sights you are headed to in March. I've never been there and please forgive me for sounding like a first timer, but I've been doing quite a bit of research, but anytime you have "drive time" planned, I wouldn't count on using a full day. the total land mass of Geremany is just a little bit smaller than the state of Montana. so, your romantic road trip to Fussen should only take a couple / three hours. so plan some more activities around your short trips.

Just my 2 cents.

Billy
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 06:32 PM
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If you're going to rent a car (and I would), I would just keep it the whole time. The only recommendation I would make is to try to take a short Rhine cruise, from Rudesheim to St. Goar and back (or vice -versa), you can do this in a half day. You will see the castles much better from the boat than from a car. If it were me, I would skip the full day in Cologne and spend the day elsewhere, other than that it looks good. Oh, if you are driving, make sure your wife spends some serious study time on the maps ahead of time - it's much easier to drive with a good navigator.
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 06:45 PM
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I too am from Orlando and lived in Germany for 3 years. I think you have planned a great itinerary and have been to all the areas you have cited other than Stuttgart. True that you won't need a whole day for travel on the Romantic Road, so if possible a stop in Dinkelsbuhl would be great. With the option of having a car you can make adjustments, as suggested by the previous poster as you progress through your itinerary. There is a lot of walking in Hohenschwangau and Newschwanstein, but my husband managed with a bad hip. There are opportunities to rest along the tours.
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 06:49 PM
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I'm green with envy! You have planned a very nice trip. The Rhine-Mosel area is absolutely beautiful. The wines from there are fantastic! Wurtzberg is a charming town. Be sure to enjoy their Franken wine. If you want to add another stop that isn't too far out of your way, go to Bamberg. IMO it's the best small city in Germany. You'll find fantastic beer there. I must sound like an alcoholic...believe me, I'm not. I never drink more than a glass of wine or one beer in a day, but I sure do know "good spirits" when I taste them. Enjoy your trip!
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Old Jan 18th, 2006, 07:12 PM
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I think you do a bit too much "zig-zagging". Here is an alternative itinerary, check it out on a map. I have driven all routes, repeatedly:

Drop Stuttgart, instead after Heidelberg, drive along the Neckar River, on the "Burgenstrasse" (castle route), which is the Bundesstrasse (Federal highway) B-37. Take it as far as Neckarsulm.Just before N. turn left toward Neuenstadt. There pick up the Autobahn A-81 to Wuerzburg. Stay overnight in W., see the Residenz - as planned - but also the Festung Marienberg, the castle overlooking the city. Great view of the Main valley.

When leaving Wuerzburg, take the B-13 past Ochsenfurt (a nice old city, in the wine country) to the intersection with the A-7 Autobahn. Take it to Rothenburg.

You can visit Rothenburg that day and in the morning of the next and still easily make Fuessen on the A-7 south, if you leave R. after lunch.

After your stay in Fuessen, head north on the B-17 to Steingaden, look for the signs to the Wieskirche (the road turns right towards Eschelsbach). After visiting "Die Wies", continue toward Eschelsbach and then south on the B-23 to Oberammergau and Ettal.

From there head south on the B-23 to where the B-2 branches offto the left in Partenkirchen. Take the B-2 to Mittenwald and the Austrian border. Continue on that road (it is now the Austrian B-177) to Zirl and the Innsbruck Autobahn (A-12). Get off in Innsbruck. BEFORE YOU GET ONTO THE AUSTRIAN AUTOBAHN, GET A USER'S DECAL. You can get it at any gas station on the B-2 in Ggermany but also in Austria as the road heads down the Zirler Berg, at the big service station on your right. There is a great view of the Inn valley from that spot.

After Innsbruck, head on the A-12 west as far as the Jenbach exit. From there go north on the Austrian B-181. It goes along the Achensee (in fact, you may want to take a short detour to the village of Pertisau, a nice place to have lunch).

Then continue on the B-181. In Germany it becomes the B-307. You want to go to Rottach Egern at the Tegernsee. (DON't follow the B-307 to Bad Toelz).Rottach-Egern at the lake is a great place to have your afternoon coffee with pastry in one of the Cafes.

Afterward, continue north on the B307 to Holzkirchen, where you pick up the Salzburg - Munich Autobahn (A-8) to Munich. This itinerary will give you lots of scenery and nice places to visit.
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Old Jan 19th, 2006, 06:49 PM
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I would like to thank everyone who responded for their helpful suggestions. I will probably rent a car for a good part of the trip, and am fine tuning our plans with your recommendations in mind.

Thank you!!

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Old Jan 22nd, 2006, 07:16 PM
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Don't leave out castle Linderhof when you are in Fussen. It' spectacular and even has a grotto.
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