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Sightseeing and Transportation in Bavaria

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Dec 27th, 2011, 12:27 PM
  #1
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Sightseeing and Transportation in Bavaria

I'm planning a trip for summer 2012 to Bavaria and have chosen some sightseeing destinations and researched public transportation options using the Bahn.de website. We'll be flying into Munich, staying a couple of nights in Oberammergau, then staying a few nights in Salzburg before returning to Munich and flying back to the US. I looked up transportation options from Oberammergau to nearby places we'd like to visit and done the same for places near Salzburg. However, from my experience living in the Washington, DC area of the US and from other trips I've taken, I realize that while public transportation is a wonderful thing, sometimes that option isn't necessarily the most convenient or traveler-friendly choice. So I thought I'd list my main sightseeing choices here and see what people think would be the best way to get to and from them in my allotted time frame and the fact that we'll be a group of two adults and one 8 year old child.

I also realize that sometimes the logistics of a particular destination affect transportation options - for example, I can get to Berchtesgaden from a bus or train, but to actually explore the area is it better to have a car or take a scheduled group bus tour? And if I'd like to check out Partnachklamm and Zugspitze, is it better to get there by car? Having never been to Europe before, I realize that there probably are quite a few variables that I'm simply not aware of that might make doing some of these things more enjoyable as a tour company type bus trip. Sometimes being dropped off right at the front door (so to speak) of where I want to go can be pretty valuable! Or not.

So here's our general itinerary:

Arrive in Munich then travel by train to Oberammergau to spend two nights and see/do some of the following things - Linderhof Palace, Zugspitze, Partnachklamm, Mittenwald, maybe a summer toboggan ride thing.

Travel by train from Oberammergau to Salzburg to spend 5 nights and see/do some of the following things - Salzburg and the local sights (fortress, breweries, museums, Mirabell, etc.), Schloss Hellbrunn, zoo, toboggan ride thing (Sommerrodelbahn?), Hallein Salt Mine, Berchtesgaden, Hohenwerfen Castle and falcon show. I'd like to work Hallstatt into the mix but the time it takes to get there could be an issue since public transportation takes a while.

Drinking beer and eating sausage and pretzels goes without saying, right? ;-)

Thank you for any tips!
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Dec 27th, 2011, 01:10 PM
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I think you need one more day near Oberammergau and one less in Salzburg. Your first day is going to be mostly shot already.

Oberammergau to Linderhof: only 25-30 min. by bus each way from Oberammergau. But I think I'd base in Garmisch instead. O'gau is pretty but you'll exhaust the possibilities there with a short visit. It's not well located for your outings. Garmisch is 40-45 min from O'gau. You can do a single daytrip from Garmisch to O'gau and Linderhof. Your other sights are nearer to Garmisch, which is the transport hub for the area. Spend 3 nights there. With 3 nights you'll have 1.5 days for Garmisch etc., not much, but better than half a day. I'd suggest a "Bavarian Evening" meal at the Fraundorfer inn in Garmisch as well.

http://www.gasthof-fraundorfer.de/english/index.php

From Garmisch's station to the Partnachklamm it's a 10-min bus ride to the Olympic ski-stadion; walk 20 min. from there.

To reach the Zugzpitzbahn, it's a 30-min. train ride from Garmisch's station to the Eibsee/Zugspitzbahn stop in Grainau.
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Dec 27th, 2011, 01:50 PM
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Drinking and driving will get you a "free" night in state custody with a physician getting your blood for examination to secure evidence for the court. That is a bad thing which you would want to avoid, right? As a native , I do drive everywhere unless I need to go downtown Munich where parking will cost you more than the subway ticket. Driving outside of rush hours is easy, fuel prices are o.k. Public transport is bad outside of downtown. Getting to suburbia on crowded trains that are notoriously unreliable is a real pain, compared to my nice and warm car that is going to take me anywhere 24/7.
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Dec 27th, 2011, 04:48 PM
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Russ, if we stay in the Garmisch area it looks like a hotel would cost about $50 more per night than in Ober. Would the transportation costs offset the additional cost of staying in Garmisch? I chose Oberammergau as the hotel base because we found a place to stay for $98/night. Bear with me if this doesn't make sense - I'm trying to figure out the best deal for convenience and money.
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Dec 27th, 2011, 07:58 PM
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It should be easy to find a place for less than $100/night in Garmisch. If you are using the usual booking engines, you are looking at mostly hotels. How about an apartment? More room and a kitchen to do your own thing if you want, lower prices. Garmisch has hundreds of apartments. Here's a place in town; you can walk to the Ski-stadion and to the train station from this place:

http://www.ferienhaus-strodl.de/html/unser_haus.html (50€/night for 2, extra person 5€, but discounts for kids.)

A local rental agency:

http://www.schobert-ferienwohnungen.de/english.php

Tripadvisor listings in English:

http://www.tripadvisor.com/VacationR...n_Rentals.html

You can browse pages and pages of apartments at the G-P tourist office pages:

http://www.fremdenverkehrsverein-gar...wohnungen.html

Apartments sometimes have a 3-, 4-, 5-, or 7-night minimum.

It might be good to contact the Garmisch TI. TI ofices typically know their town best and can perhaps help you find a place that's right for your needs. They might send you a glossy brochure of apartments if you ask for one. And someone there will speak English if you want to call. Of course, they can answer other questions about sights and tours too.

http://www.fremdenverkehrsverein-gar...wohnungen.html

http://www.gapa.de/Garmisch_Partenkirchen_Home_en
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Dec 27th, 2011, 10:55 PM
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Hi Traveler_A,

I agree with Russ that Garmisch makes more sense as a base. I would encourage you to spend some time to see Oberammergau, but it won't be as central to all you want to do in this area.

Yes, you can easily find a hotel for less than $198!! Your best bet is to use the gapa site that Russ gave you above and search for hotels -- or better yet, also search for pensions and guesthouses. These are smaller places that are run like a B&B.

How many will be in your party?

And, yes, public transport is the way to go here in Bavaria!! You'll have more chances to meet locals who are travelling with you (instead of being isolated inside your private bubble!), and of course it will be much better for the air & the mountains you are coming to see. The public transportation in Bavaria is nothing like that in the US -- here it is frequent & convenient. Yes, travelling by public transport will cause you to slow down a bit (you can't go dashing off to see five villages in an afternoon . . . ), but to my mind, that's a more relaxing way to travel.

I've lived in Garmisch for more than three years -- I don't have a car here. If you'd like any information, just let me know.

s
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Dec 27th, 2011, 11:01 PM
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Hi again,

Sorry, I mis-read your posts and see that you are looking for a hotel for less than $100/night.

Done, I think:

Hotel Bavaria, a 3-star, sits between the train station and the pedestrian zone in Garmisch. Though I've never stayed there myself, I've recommended it to others who have liked it.

Doubles go for 94 E or 100 E at the height of the season, or 84 or 92 E for the shoulder seasons.

http://www.hotel-bavaria-garmisch.co...partenkirchen/

But that's just one example.

s
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Dec 28th, 2011, 04:52 PM
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If you combine the advise from Russ and from Swandav, you will be on good shape. I jsut want to add: For all travel on public transport (trains, bus, except the Zugspitzbahn) you can use the daily discounted ticket for unlimited travel within Bavaria, called the Bayernkarte (Bavarian ticket), which you can get at any station. It costs you EUR23 for one person, EUR28 for up to five people travelling on the same ticket. On weekdays it is good for travel after 9AM until 3AM the next day; weekends there is no time limit. The only other limitation: You can only travel on Regio (local) trains. But, execpt from Munich to Salzburg, that's all there is in the G-P region. Salzburg is also included in the Bayernkarte, and using a Regio vs. ICE or EC makes a differenhce of about half an hour, on a 2 1/2 hour trip.

You can look up all this info. on www.bahn.de Choose their English language version.
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Dec 28th, 2011, 06:18 PM
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I agree Garmische-Partenkirchen makes a more convenient base. We did Linderhof & Wieskirche in one day trip from there, and dined at Hotel Wolf in Oberammagau on way back to Garmische. Fussen & Neuscwanstein are handy too, and in the other direction, Tegernsee. There's a nice drive from there to Salsburg via Reit im Winkl, Bechtesgaden & Konigsee.
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Dec 28th, 2011, 06:22 PM
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Thanks for the tips, everyone. I'm taking another look at lodging options in Garmisch with the help of the links you provided. Hotel Bavaria looks good and I have contacted Gasthaus Zufriedenheit for more information. www.gaestehaus-zufriedenheit.de/

I think I've gotten the hang of the Bahn website and definitely will be getting the Bayern pass!
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Dec 28th, 2011, 10:01 PM
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Hi again,

I have to admit that I'm not all that crazy about the location of the Gästehaus Zufriedenheit. I lived on Schornstrasse, the next street over (you can see it on their map), for more than one year. It's a good location to see the pedestrian street in Partenkirchen -- but it's pretty far from the pedestrian street in Garmisch as well as from the train station.

There are town busses that will take you from Partenkirchen to Garmisch; they run about every 15 or 20 minutes and take about 10 minutes (your hosts will give you a card to ride the busses for free). But the nearest bus stop is on Badgasse, which is about a 5-minute walk away.

I guess, though, there will be some compromises in order to get a more economical place to stay. But if you're inclined to keep looking to see if you can find something more central, I'd encourage you to do so.

Anyway, have fun -- I love the planning part!!

s
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Dec 29th, 2011, 08:27 AM
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Thanks, Swandav2000 - that's exactly the kind of information I need! I'll probably look for something closer to the train station since we plan to use that a lot.

For the record, I the response I received from Zufriedenheit was that they have an apartment for Euro 90.-- for three persons per night, buffet breakfast included.
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Dec 29th, 2011, 09:47 AM
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Hi again,

Here are three possibilities I found:

http://www.hauterer.de/english/useiten/anfahrt.htm

http://www.haus-sissi.de/willkommen.html?L=6

http://www.hoffmann-gaestehaus.de/en/

I found them by doing a search for 4 nights in June for 3 adults in one room in a guest house. When all the options came up, I looked for the icon showing the location near the train station.

These are all around 100 euro for the three persons; I think the Hoffman was at 90 Euro.

Good luck!

s
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Dec 29th, 2011, 10:41 AM
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You're great, thanks! I see there are some guesthouses near Zoeppritzstrasse and Feldstrasse for good prices. Is that inconvenient because it is farther from the train station? I suppose we don't need to be right by the station but a quick bus ride there would be fine.
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Dec 29th, 2011, 01:31 PM
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Hey! I just found a good online map for Garmisch that will allow me to see bus stops, restaurants, and much more. Very handy in addition to Google Maps.

http://stadtplan.meinestadt.de/index...840154&zoom=14
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Dec 29th, 2011, 11:41 PM
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Hi again,

That area (Zoeppritstr & Feldstrasse) is interesting because that's the oldest part of town -- the first settlements in Garmisch were in that area in the 800s.

I didn't look at the map you linked but can tell you that the bus stop nearest those streets will be at Zugspitzstrasse & Riesserkopfstrasse. It'll still be a bit of a walk (maybe 10 minutes) to get to those streets (and you'll be crossing a bridge). Sidewalks are excellent all the way, though, so it won't be awkward at any stage.

I suppose, if the rates are low enough at the guest house, that you could take a taxi when you arrive & leave, and then just use the busses during your stay.

Let us know as your plans progress!

s
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Jan 13th, 2012, 03:27 AM
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Hope I'm not too late to respond. We always stay in an apartment in Garmisch (technically Partenkirchen). We love Gabi Niefnecker's on Gehfeldstrasse in Partenkirchen, a 5 min. walk to the train station (www.haus-annalina.de). Since we stay longer, we get a great rate at 50 Euro per night (plus 2 Euro Kurtax per person). Plenty of room for 4 adults, with balconies on 2 sides. Funny, Niefnecker's cat "Jacob" always follows me into the apartment early each morning after my trip to the bakery. He must smell the freshly baked rolls!
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Jan 13th, 2012, 06:01 PM
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I love bike riding there because of all the trails, some apartments even have bikes. Partenkirchen is my favorite town. There are great grocery stores and butcher shops are my go to place for the best lunch. Oberammergau has one on a side street that we frequent when there. There is so much to see and do. Train takes you to Innsbruck in 45 min. Mittenwald is beautiful. Look for the violins hanging to dry on balconys. We always stay on base but am going to save some of these apartments. I like being able to shop and cook more than we can do in our little cabin. Excellent suggestions.
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Jan 16th, 2012, 11:54 AM
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We will be taking the train from Salzburg to Munich and are thinking of stopping at Chiemsee to visit the palace there on the way. We will have our luggage with us and I see on the Bahn website that there are lockers. Are the lockers large enough to hold carryon sized luggage? From there we will continue on to Munich to sightsee and spend the night at a B&B in Erding before flying home.
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Jan 16th, 2012, 02:57 PM
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After a bit of Googling I think I found the answer. I read that there are lockers of varying sizes/prices. Correct?
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