Rhine Valley suggestions

Feb 22nd, 2014, 12:01 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 89
Rhine Valley suggestions

We are ending our two week tour around Germany in the Rhine Valley area- will be taking the day river cruise and would like to see some of the sights in that area. Would you suggest staying in Mainz, Bacharach or Cochem as a good central location and an interesting town to visit? Thank you for your suggestions!

Missy from Illinois
Meme5 is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2014, 12:35 PM
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cochem is IMO by far the dreamiest nicest town for the whole area though not on the Rhine - but just 20 minutes from Koblenz by train - The best part of the K-D boats is between Rudesheim and or Bingen and Koblenz - you can take a train from Koblenz to Rudeshweim where many service (boat) commence and a good to reason to board here is that they are popular with tour groups - Rudesehim is tour-bus city so that many of the nicest seats - outside up front are taken before the board docks just across the river at Bingen.

Make a day of the Rhine Gorge - get off at say Marksburg to visit just about the only intact authetic medieval castle on the Rhine - the rest having been ruined in a plethora of wars wages on this strategic stretch of river. k-d.com for boat schedules - no reservations needed IME or possible except for groups - just buy your ticket at the dock, in Rudesheim very close to the boat dock.

Mainz is a nice enough big city but not spectacular - Bacharach is a dreamy Rhineside town but IMO you just cannot beat Cochem and there are some neat things to do there too - Burg Eltz, one of Germany's most famous castles is just down the Mosel - rent bikes if active to bike along one of Europe's primo bike routes on paths hugging the river in the deep gorge the Mosel runs in -many find the Mosel far prettier than the Rhine, which is also boisterous as two rail lines run up and down it - one on each side and many commercial boats goes by - the Mother Mosel as German call it however is languid and sinuously twists and turns between slopes several hundred feet high - southward slopes being plastered with vineyards - Cochem has a winery right in town to tour.
For lots of great info on trains and the boats in this area check out the following IMO superb sources: www.ricksteves.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.seat61.com. For train schedules hit the www.bahn.de/en English train schedule site of the German Railways - "Die Bahn").

Here are some photos of dreamy Cochem with its yeh Ersatz but still impressive medieval-looking castle sticking up from a vineyard-clad hill in the town itself.

You can also take boats or bike over arguably the best part of the Mosel - between Cochem and Bernstein - buses also ply the river bank. Trier one of Europe's oldest towns and once the cap[ital of the western part of the Holy Roman Empire has some of the best intqact Roman relics outside of Italy and is all in all a pleasant town - it also has the Karl Marx House where the philosopher was born - a museum and study center today.

PalenQ is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2014, 02:51 PM
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If you're looking for places to stay, the following has great advice:

Bamaman is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2014, 08:39 AM
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Wow! Thank you so much for all the great information and the links to photos and places to stay. All of it is so very helpful and we appreciate the information. Now on to the planning…
Meme5 is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 12:29 PM
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Meme5 - thanks for the thanks - what time of year are you going - it makes a difference kind of - in fall you have the grape harvests and wine festivals all along both rivers, especially the Mosel. Spring can IME be wet and cool or it can be very nice - very variable!
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2014, 06:38 AM
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We will be there the last few days of May- flying out of Frankfurt on June 1 after being gone for 3 weeks. We begin May 8 in Budapest with a Danube River Cruise (Viking) and after the cruise will go to Prague for 3 days. Our friends will fly home from there and my husband and I will see some other sights in Germany and Austria on our own. This is where the heavy- duty planning is necessary for us. A private company recommended by many including Rick Steves- Mike's Chauffeur - will drive us from Prague to Salzburg stopping in Cesky Krumlov. After staying there a few days ( seeing Halstatt) we will rent our own car and continue on to Fussein and and then stay in that area a couple of days to see the Mad King castles. We need the name of a hotel in Fussein or in that area. (??!!). We will continue on to Meersburg and Lake Constance area. Then on to Rothenberg where we have a reservation for 2 nights and then on to Cochem where we will stay and talke the K-D boat cruise. All your information was so helpful. As you look at our other stops if you have any other suggestions that would be wonderful! I am still trying to figure out how to fit on a day visit to Dachau - not sure it will be possible but that is something we really wanted to do. Thanks again. My email is

[email protected].
If you have any ideas or specific places you have stayed. Again Thank You!!

Melissa and John
Meme5 is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2014, 10:40 AM
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dachau is out of your way for sure unless you go thru Munich - I suppose you could drive from Salzburg to Munich, skirting the city and hit Dachau and then go to Fuessen the same day - a long day but some folks don't mind driving fast and German autobahns that is very possible!
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 2nd, 2014, 02:26 PM
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Mike drove us from Prague to Cesky Krumlov in October 2010, and it was great! He is very knowledgeable, and we enjoyed our drive - very dependable too! We stayed in CK for a couple of days and then went on to Salzburg with another driver. It wasn't nearly as pleasant. I would highly recommend Mike!
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