Tentative Itinerary, need help please.

Nov 16th, 2007, 11:46 AM
  #1  
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Tentative Itinerary, need help please.

Hi, I've posted a couple of questions to try to figure out at least a tentative itinerary for our Europe March/April 2008. I have a bit of a "skeleton" itinerary...have purchased flights & cruise, everything else is up for grabs. I would welcome and so appreciate your input, we are totally new at this and making it up as we go along (after lurking in this forum).
March 24 arrive in Madrid.
March 28 meet bro and sil in Barcelona
**Suggestions for the days in Madrid? Should we stay in the city of Madrid or is there a good place outside the city to stay and take a train in?
March 30 board ship for 12-day cruise ending in Istanbul.
April 12, fly to Budapest.
April 15 to Munich (how to get there?) Is this too long in one place?
April 19 to ?? Rothenburg or somewhere towards Frankfurt.
April 22 Frankfurt--home.

My husband (61) and I (52) would, we think, enjoy exploring some small towns/villages and just like to see as much as possible. We enjoy visiting big cities, but a day or so is all we can take before we'd rather be out seeing what's outside the city (gross generalization I know, I can only judge by our other travels). We've only been to Europe once before and loved using the awesome trains and buses to travel Prague/Austria/Switzerland. To maybe help you "get" us, we adored Prague and Innsbruck.
Thank you for your help, it's amazing how helpful this forum can be!
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 01:41 PM
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Too long IMO for Munich itself

but there are great easy day trips from it

Salzburg (1.5 hrs each way by train) one of Europe's most gorgeous cities - a Baroque fantasy

Herrenchiemsee Castle - one of 'Mad' Ludwig's fantasy castles and often called Bavaria's Versailles because the mad king tried to literally copy Versailles when he had it built

Lovingly located on an island in the placid Chiemsee just off Prien, about an hour or less by train from Munich - take boats there from Prien

Fussen - where 'Mad' Ludwig's most famous castle is - Neuschwanstein, a real fairy-tale dream palace both inside and out - nestled at the foot of the Bavarian Alps there are neat short hikes from it into the woods and up to a waterfall, etc.

Fussen is about 2 hours from Munich by train

All the three above can be reached by the Uber cheap Bavarian Pass - 29 euros a day for up to five folks unlimited regional train travel throughout Bavaria including all these places (even Salzburg though it's a few miles inside Austria)

So Munich can be a neat base and many other neat day trips as well such as regensburg, said to have more historic buildings than any city in Germany.
PalenQ is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 01:57 PM
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From Madrid, it's a easy train day trip to Toledo or Cordoba and/or Seville which are wonderful small cities to visit.

Go to http://www.spanish-airport-guide.com/trains.html to get friendly info on the train system in Spain.
Lily is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 03:28 PM
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PalenQ, sounds almost like maybe we should stay in Salzburg and take a day trip into Munich...hmmm, that might work well. I think we'd prefer to spend our time seeing different villages than spending tons of time in a big city. Any thoughts on how to get from Budapest to Salzburg?
Lily, those sound like perfect trips for us from Madrid. We wondered about getting to Barcelona by going Madrid-Valencia-Barcelona (stay overnight in Valencia?) to get to take the train up the coast which I've heard is spectacular.
I really appreciate your suggestions, am having a great time planning this trip--it's a dream come true for me (and my husband).
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 03:34 PM
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Hi fsufan,

I've used Salzburg as a base for day trips before, and will be using Salzburg and Munich on my next trip. When picking one of these cities as a base, I would consider whether you prefer to see a lot of beautiful castles (Munich); or quaint, beautiful lake and mountain villages. (Salzburg)

From Salzburg some good day trips are: Berchtesgaden (also doable from Munich), St. Gilgen and the Wolfgangsee, and Hallstatt (a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the most calming, beautiful place I've ever been)
abbynicole27 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 06:52 PM
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Abbynicole, it may come down to which city (Munich or Salzburg) has the most budget-friendly accommodations...do you have recommendations for hotels/apartments? Since everything we see will be totally new to us I don't think we can go wrong.
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 07:05 PM
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Haven't decided where we're staying in Munich yet - in Salzburg I stayed at the Haus Am Moos bed and breakfast. It's a ten minute bus ride from town center, but very nice and only 24 Euro per person per night. If you want more details let me know.
abbynicole27 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 07:21 PM
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Wow price certainly sounds right...I don't require the Ritz but I do want a private bath, yes? Thanks for your help.
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 07:51 PM
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yep, private bathroom. www.ammoos.at
abbynicole27 is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 07:38 AM
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Wow, looks absolutely perfect! This is exactly the kind of place we'd love, thanks!
BTW, I just posted a new thread about whether to stay in Wurzburg or Rothenburg as we make our way to Frankfurt to fly home. What are your thoughts on this?
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 07:45 AM
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I would suggest staying in the city of Madrid rather than commuting in from a town outside. Much of the excitement of Madrid is the atmosphere at night, when the plazas are full of people in cafes and tapas bars.

Dinner hour in Spain is VERY late (10 PM or later). Shows begin at 10 PM or even midnight (I loved the midnight flamenco show at Casa Patas on the weekend, when there are two shows. On weeknights, there is just one show, at 10:30).
Nikki is online now  
Nov 17th, 2007, 11:51 AM
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Haven't been to Germany yet, so can't say where would be best to stay, but I do know from looking at train schedules that Wurzburg might be more convenient (less connections).
abbynicole27 is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 02:15 PM
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Thanks Nikki, that makes sense to me. Any hotel/apartment recommendations?
fsufan1 is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 02:56 PM
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I have stayed at two hotels in Madrid, both very nice.

Last year I stayed at the Hesperia Hermosilla, which is in the upscale shopping neighborhood of Salamanca. We got a good rate, and the hotel was quite nice, but the neighborhood was deserted on Saturday night and Sunday, which is when we were there. http://www.hesperia.com/hotels/Hesperia-Hermosilla/

This past summer I stayed at the Hotel Room Mate Alicia. Loved this place. It is right on the Plaza Santa Ana, a lively neighborhood with lots of dining, drinking, and entertainment within a few blocks. We splurged on a junior suite for our two nights in Madrid because we got an excellent rate in August. It appears to be more expensive in March, now that I look.

http://www.room-matehotels.com/eng/m...liciahotel.php

I got both of these hotels and lots and lots more information about Madrid and Barcelona from Maribel's Guides. www.maribelsguides.com
Nikki is online now  
Nov 18th, 2007, 08:09 AM
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We were in Rothenburg for two nights last year during their Historical Festival Play where the whole city participates in an enacatment of events from the 17th century. In 2008, this event will be from May 9th to 12th and I would definitely recommend it as it was one of the highlights of our Germany trip. See www.rothenburg.de and click on the English version for information under special events. We stayed at the Burg Hotel which is very comfortable and charming but a little pricey compared to many other accommodations in Rothenburg which looked quite adequate and were priced about half of what we paid which was 150 euros per night. Although I must say that I appreciated the hotel comfort after drinking too much honey wine around the town campfire the night before!
Lily is offline  
Nov 21st, 2007, 08:02 AM
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