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Planning trip - compare Italian Alps to German Alps?

Planning trip - compare Italian Alps to German Alps?

Jul 28th, 2000, 08:21 AM
  #1  
Marla
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Planning trip - compare Italian Alps to German Alps?

We're researching and planning for the next trip to Europe. Been to Paris, London and last year the Berner Oberland and Zermatt areas of Switzerland. We're considering the Italian alps or German alps for May 2001. I've seen lots of pictures of southern Germany, but can't find many pictures of northern Italy.

How do the two areas compare? Due to the fact we're parents of two preschoolers (and grandparents will only take care of them for so long!) we can only be gone for 9-10 days. Anyone have any websites to recommend? What areas in Italy should I be looking at? We like medium-size towns, and beautiful scenery. A typical day in Switzerland included visiting the bakery for our lunch, meandering around the trails and sites and enjoying a nice dinner.

Which area do you recommend? Thanks!
 
Jul 28th, 2000, 08:39 AM
  #2  
Art
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Hi Marla I havn't spent a lot of time in the Italian Alps but have in the German side. There are enough day trips in that area to keep you occupied for a long time. There are many charming towns (with bakeries) in the area. At the foot of the Zugspitz (Germanys highest alp) is the town of Garmish-Partenkirchen which is absolutly charming. It is also not far from Newschwanstein Castle(used in some of Disney's fairy tales), Oberammergau (the city of the centuries aold Passion Play, great wood carvings and Grimms fairy tales painted on the houses.) You can ride up to the top of the Zugspitche on a gondola for a great view. (Take a jacket).
 
Jul 28th, 2000, 09:04 AM
  #3  
rob
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Hi Marla -

How about a taste of both?

The town of Lienz in the Osttirol region of Austria is wonderful. It lies at the juction of 2 rapidly flowing rivers, wedged in a valley between the "classic" Austrian Alps and Italy's toothy, craggy Dolomites. The setting is extremely beautiful and interesting, as you can imagine. The town is a bit off the beaten path, so it's quiet and not terribly touristy. Nice beer gardens and atmospheric bars. A castle on a mountainside, kind of overlooking the town. A cablecar that goes up one of the mountains - there may be more. A nice day trip would be a drive north over the Grossglockner Road and back, to see Austria's highest mountain. In the other direction it's about 1 1/4 hours to Cortina d'Ampezzo.

With 9 or 10 days, though, you could easily see plenty of both german and Italian Alps - stay in Garmisch or Berchtesgaden for a few days, then Cortina or Merano for a few days. I just really liked Lienz.

Have a great trip.
 
Jul 29th, 2000, 01:05 AM
  #4  
Tony
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You should definitely include Austria in this itinerary, and as the Austrian Tyrol and Dolomites lie between Italy and Germany it should'nt be hard to do.
Innsbruck would make a pretty good base for the German Alps, just over the border, and the Brenner Pass, and Dolomites. If you use your map and draw a circle around Innsbruck, (radius size to suit yourself) there will be some great scenery and small towns all worth exploring, in that circle.
 
Jul 29th, 2000, 04:33 AM
  #5  
John
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hI mARLA:

All the above posters offered great ideas! I love the Alps! I am assuming that you are going in the Summer! Just remember that if you go in the winter you will have a hard time getting around. My vote for the BEST town that is large enough to keep you happy for 9 days would be Garmish!! I have used Garmish for my base for many years. As Art said you have some of the best atractions around that base. Enjoy!!
JOHN
 
Jul 29th, 2000, 09:02 PM
  #6  
Laura
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Marla, The big difference you notice going over the Brenner Pass from Gremany to Italy is the temperature. It's much warmer. The scenery was so spectacular it took our breath away, as well as the many old castles, vineyards, and rock formations. We stayed in an idyllic town called Vols or Fie in Italian. Everything is in Italian and German. We hiked, explored old castles, enjoyed nature, and outdoor festivals in the evening. We stayed at Hotel Thurmm which was an historic watch tower and perfect in every way. We enjoyed Obersdorf, Garmisch, and Mittenwald in Germany, but it rained fairly often compared to Italy. Laura
 

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