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Requesting advice re how to spend arrival afternoon in the Rhine/Mosel region

Requesting advice re how to spend arrival afternoon in the Rhine/Mosel region

Mar 18th, 2008, 09:11 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 6,025
Requesting advice re how to spend arrival afternoon in the Rhine/Mosel region

My husband and I, along with my younger brother, are set to arrive at FRA on April 19th around 1:30 pm. Our first three nights are in Cochem, which only gives us 2 full days. Normally I don't ask too many itinerary questions because we prefer to keep this portion of our trip fairly open, but I am looking for advice on how to make the most of our time upon arriving in Germany. I don't want this to be a wasted afternoon, but I also don't want to arrive at our apartment in Cochem too late in the evening. Is there anything we can plan on doing that first day, perhaps on the way?

I was thinking of either a) stopping in some of the towns along the Rhine (St. Goar, etc.), b) tour Burg Eltz or c) tour Cochem Castle (is this worth it?). We are planning on visiting some of the Rhine castles during one of our two days in the area, but if we can visit them on the way instead it seems to make more logical sense. However, I don't want to be too rushed and I'm worried that this will be the case.

Any thoughts?
tcreath is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 09:55 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Hi Tracy, Personally, I would just get to Cochem and relax. By the time you pick up your car, get on the road and arrive in Cochem, it will be late afternoon. Definitely wait to go to Burg Eltz until the following day (short-cut described below from my trip report). It was my favorite Europe castle experience. Explore Cochem your first evening, find a good spot for dinner and wine, and set out refreshed on Day 2.

"I had read in Rick Steves' book not to follow the signs to Burg Eltz, because those were longer hikes. Instead we ignored the Eltz signs in Moselkern and followed the signs to Munstermaifeld as he had suggested. We kept the faith because it seemed like we were headed in the wrong direction.

"However, in about seven kilometers we came to a T in the road. Signs to Burg Eltz were seen again. We made a left and went though Wierscheim and from that town's exit sign it was only 2km to the Burg Eltz Upper parking facility. It was an easy 10 -15 minute walk down to the castle from there."

maitaitom is online now  
Mar 18th, 2008, 10:29 AM
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Thank you Tom. We will probably do just that. I guess I hate to "waste" a perfectly good afternoon so we'll probably just explore Cochem a bit and have dinner. I guess I'm just worried that my brother (23) will be bored, or that I want to make the most of our time for his sake, although this is only his second trip abroad so jet lag will need to be taken into consideration.

Thank you for the advice on Burg Eltz. I am printing it off to take with us. I'm sure it will be helpful because I've heard that it can be confusing to reach. I'm so looking forward to visiting it!

tcreath is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 10:53 AM
Join Date: May 2006
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Hi Tracy, I agree that you should plan to explore Cochem that first afternoon. It's a lovely town and you can take a stroll up to the castle. The view over Cochem and the Mosel from the castle walls is simply stunning, especially on a clear day:


We didn't have time to take the castle tour but it looked quite interesting from the outside. You could also stop at one of the many wine cellars in town for an Eiswein tasting - we had a lot of fun doing that.

Do be sure to visit Burg Eltz while you are in Cochem, and follow the signs as maitaitom instructed. It is a little convoluted, but the signs show you the way!

hausfrau is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 10:57 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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You probably will have a bit of jet lag, and it could take you until 2:30 or later to get on the road. So, you might do as Tom suggests and relax in Cochem. You could, though, take a leisurely route up the Rhein from about Bacharach to Boppard or even Koblenz, giving your bro some fantastic castle views. We did that last fall and it was one of the more memorable days on a great trip.
JN is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 11:19 AM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 448
We toured both castles and Burg Eltz is far better than Cochem Castle. Cochem Castle did not offer English language tours, but gave you a written translation that was lacking in details.

We ate at this restruant with a great view of the Mosel from the terrace. The chanterelle cream soup is to die for.

dgassa is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 12:15 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 53
When we flew into FRA and were headed to Cochem we traveled by train. We stopped in Koblenz (we had to change trains there anyway) and wandered about for a few hours. We wanted to see Koblenz and we got to see the main sites there. Then we went on to Cochem and didn't do much besides eat, walk around to see what all was in Cochem before heading to our room and getting some sleep.

If you go straight to Cochem there's plenty to do. You could take the chairlift up over the town for some great views or visit the Cochem castle.

Chairlift - www.cochemer-sesselbahn.de/en/index.htm

Cochem Castle - www.reichsburg-cochem.de/e_frame.html
njlorelei is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 02:12 PM
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Reichsburg in Cochem is worthwhile - English tours are offered when the need exists but I doubt April is ripe with English speaking visitors. The walk up and the view alone are terrific if you decide not to tour, but there's also a nice patio cafe (great view) and an excellent falconry show (free-flight) is offered on the grounds as well (though perhaps not in April??) But the castle itself is not Burg Eltz, which you shouldn't miss.

I'd head straight to Cochem and see how you feel, then maybe do a river cruise to Beilstein or see the Reichsburg or take the chairlift ride or maybe just walk along the river and enjoy the streets of old town Cochem - it's never a waste of time to do that.
Russ is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 03:46 PM
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I too would head for Cochem right away. Considering the possibilities of jet lag early afternoon a trip along the Rhine might not be the best idea. It's a nice little drive to Cochem and you should arrive early enough to get a feel for the town and as the Hausfrau suggested take a jaunt up to the Reichsburg. She also mentioned 'one of my all-time favorite pictures of Germany!'. I agree - this view alone is worth the walk.


Your group might also enjoy a nice morning hike to the Burg Eltz (in lieu of the walk down from the parking lot near the chapel). It's a nice hike along an easy trail comfortably done in less than hour - especially in nice weather.

bavariaben is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 04:04 PM
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Thank you all so much for your replies. You have been so helpful, as always. I have been having a hard time getting a feel for Cochem, despite all of the suggestions to stay there, and it sounds like a lovely village so we will do just as recommended and head over there. I am always up for scenic views and the view over the town and valley look beautiful.

I'm not too worried about my own jetlag, as we travel to Europe a couple of times a year and always pop an Ambien on the way over which helps tremendously....but my brother has only been on a short trip to Rome with us so he will probably experience some jetlag. I'm so used to our way of handling it that I have to remind myself that my brother doesn't travel as often and will probably need a little more time to adjust.

You all have managed to get me very excited! I've been planning this trip for several months now so a little of the excitement had died down some...now I feel it creeping back in and I just hope this month passes quickly!

Thanks for the restaurant recs as well! I'm always up for those!

tcreath is offline  
Mar 18th, 2008, 05:03 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 4,155
Hi Tracey,
We were in Cochem last year and loved it! Very nice town to walk around. At night, take a walk over the bridge to get a really nice view of Cochem lit up with the lights reflecting on the water and the castle (also lit up, but dimly) sitting overhead. Beautiful. Burg Eltz is simply amazing! Have a great time.

pja1 is offline  

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