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thoughts on this potential Amsterdam & Germany trip?

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Jul 5th, 2012, 04:00 PM
  #1
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thoughts on this potential Amsterdam & Germany trip?

We are a married couple in 50's, been to Europe before but not for about 8 years, trying to be aggressive and see as much as Germany as possible...this may be over-reaching but wanted opinions if I should modify anything - for financial reasons can't add any more days...just plan to return in the future..
Amsterdam – Germany trip
9/16 – Phila to Amsterdam –
9/17 – arrive in Amsterdam – stay at Renaissance Marriott
9/18 – stay at Renaissance Marriott
9/19 – train to Cologne Germany
Sightsee for few hours, pick up car
Drive to Boppard (Rhine Valley) 120 km
Sleep in Boppard - sightsee
9/20 - drive to Cochem – 44 km
Sightsee
Drive to Trier – 98 km
Sleep in Trier
9/21 – drive to Heidelberg - 202 km
Sight see
Sleep in Heidelberg
9/22 – drive to Freiburg – 186 km
sightsee
drive to Konstanz – 124km
Sleep in Konstanz
9/23 – drive to Fussen – 145km
Sight see, King ludwig’s castle etc.
Sleep in Fussen
9/24 - Drive to Munich – 132 km
Sight see in Munich – old city, Oktoberfest
Drive to Augsburg 72 km
Sleep in Augsburg
9/25 – drive to Rothenburg – 183 km
drive to Wurzburg – 72 km
Sleep in Wurzburg
9/26 – drive to Frankfurt airport – 124 km
Fly back to Phila. – 1pm flight
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Jul 5th, 2012, 04:25 PM
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That's really a lot of driving (you might have noticed.) It's more engaging to visit fewer places and see more of them on your feet. I'd reduce the travel circle you're making, cut some destinations, and use trains for at least some of your trip.

Cuts: Heidelberg is just OK, not terribly interesting. There's no reason to go into Munich for such a short time, especially when its so terribly crowded. Probably no grand reason for Augsburg either. The N'stein tour is 30 min's, and it's a faux castle. Is it worth the very lengthy drive to Füssen? You can visit palaces and real castles elsewhere. See Burg Eltz near Cochem, or Marksburg on the Rhine north of Boppard.

I'd suggest after Trier heading straight to Freiburg. The visit some of the Black Forest villages (Gutach, Schiltach, Haslach)

Then: Maybe head to the north shore of Lake Constance (Meersburg, Lindau.) OR, just head northeast toward the Romantic Road (Harburg and/or Nördlingen) with a stop beforehand in Tübingen (handsome university town.) If you do Lake Constance, then afterward head north east via Ulm and pick up the Romantic Road in Harburg or Nördlingen. Then see Rothenburg. Be sure to stop in Würzburg after R'burg to see the Residenz Palace.

I'd probably use trains for the whole trip, but if you want to drive as well, then pick up the car after Trier or Freiburg. The Rhine and Mosel towns have great train transport, and most of the towns I've suggested after Freiburg aren't so big they'd be a hassle.
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Jul 5th, 2012, 04:31 PM
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If this is Monday, it must be Berlin.
have a great trip.
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Jul 5th, 2012, 04:41 PM
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"trying to be aggressive and see as much as Germany as possible.."

Well, You are right, it IS aggressive. But you are wrong if you think that allows one to see more. W/ all the driving, finding parking, checking in, packing, checking out over and over, you actually have less time for sightseeing.

Try fewer one night stands and slow down a bit.
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Jul 5th, 2012, 04:49 PM
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My favorite Amsterdam hotel is the Marriott Renaissance! Great choice! Great location!
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Jul 5th, 2012, 05:42 PM
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Good advice, I wanted to get some reactions before finalizing everything so much appreciated
All advice is welcome. Thx
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Jul 8th, 2012, 08:16 AM
  #7
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Ok based on many thoughtful member responses - I have a proposed less aggressive plan, seeing less of Germany seems to be necessay. - still a few one night stands but only long drive is from Stasbourg to Rothenburg. any thoughts on Strasbourg or this plan overall?

2 nights in Amsterdam
train to Cologne, drive to Boppard via Koblenz
1 night in Boppord
drive to Trier via Cochem
1 night in Trier
drive to Strasbourg France
2 nights in Strasbourg
drive to Rothenburg
1 night in Rothernburg (or near by)
drive to Wurzburg
1 night in Wurzburg (or nearby)
drive to frankfurt airport
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Jul 8th, 2012, 09:48 AM
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Time to take a break from posting smarmy responses JerryS
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Jul 8th, 2012, 10:16 AM
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jp;

Virtually no regular poster in here will "recommend" 1 night stops. That is probably a consequence of most of us having the means and opportunity to travel to Europe over and over. It always strikes me as strange how that seems to make a significant subset of responders arrogant in the manner in which they reply. None of that means that you shouldn't travel the way you want to as long as it fulfills what you want to get out of your time.

Your original itinerary was very aggressive and I see that you have revised it quite a bit. You are now seeing, in 10 days;

Amsterdam
Rhine/Mosel
Trier
Strasbourg/Alsace
Rothenburg/Wurzburg

You state that the only long drive planned is from Strasbourg to Rothenburg, but the Trier to Strasbourg leg is almost as along (2:50 vs 2:30). Just thought I would point that out - it makes staying in Strasbourg for 2 nights a wise choice, I think. Strasbourg is your stretch objective, but you will be in the Alsace around harvest season and that is a good time to be there.

It might make sense to spend both of the final 2 nights in Wurzburg or Rothenburg (1:50 to FRA) since they are only 45 minutes apart. Wurzburg is closer to FRA (1:15). You could visit the other one as a day trip.

Another way to condense a little would be to drive to Cochem, seeing Boppard on the way, stay there for 2 nights, and then see Trier on the way to Strasbourg (3:30 total driving time).

That would get you down to 0 one night stay while still seeing all your preferred places.

I agree with the comment on Heidelberg, but then I don't find Trier that interesting apart from the Porta Negra and the cathedral either.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 12:35 PM
  #10
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Aramis
Love your suggestions on how to easily eliminate all 1 night stays, makes perfect sense.
If I was going to add 1 night to any of the 4 locations (making the trip 9 nights in europe total) is there any place you would extend to 3 nights?
Thanks again for the thoughtful replies
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Jul 8th, 2012, 02:21 PM
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Well, Amsterdam is not one of my favourites, but since your first day will be a partial jet-lag day and you will have to leave early on the morning of your 3rd day in order to train to Cologne, see the Dom, and then drive on to Cochem, it probably makes the most sens to stay an extra night in Amsterdam and maybe take half day trip to Delft, or Leiden, or Haarlem.

Alternately, an extra day in Strasbourg would allow you to visit some of the small wine towns just south of the city - look up the "Alsatian wine route" - like Riquewihr, Hunawihr, Ribeauville.

Finally, a third day in Rothenburg would allow you the chance to visit other places in Franconia, like Dinkelsbuehl, Nordlingen, Nurnberg, or Bamberg.

A third day in Cochem is probably the least useful, the quiets meandering of the Mosel is the aim - there aren't as many good day-trip options off of the river - except Burg Eltz.

It's a personal thing, but Franconia is probably my favourite area of Germany.

So, three very different options. I always suggest that folks do some research and see which possible option they have appeals to them the most. Chance are, as you are researching these something will jump out at you and you find yourself saying; "I have to go there!" and then your decision is made and you move to the planning stage.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 05:48 PM
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IMHO Heidelburg has a nice castle but there are other places more interesting. I might cut that out in favor of more times in the alps at Oberammergau, Linderhof, Ettal Monastary and Mittenwald. I would also drop Augsburg in favor of more time in Munich. Munich is a good place to fly home from.
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Jul 9th, 2012, 12:30 PM
  #13
 
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jp-
When I saw your original post I thought "WOW!"
Since I type so slowly I thought I would let others provide the many details you needed to slow down and make this a memorable trip. And they have come through...

I have several suggestions to make.
1. If you make your reservations in advance you don't have to spend any of your precious time hunting for new lodging every night.
2. Try to get a rental car with GPS. That way you won't waste time finding your lodging. This is especially useful if it is after dark or it is raining. I know several folks who have given up and spent the night sleeping in their car...

Have a good time...
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Jul 9th, 2012, 12:42 PM
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i would cut heildelburg and konstanz and head directly to bavaria.. i would want an xtra day in munich and an overnight in rotenburg...
stay along the river before you reach trier..lovely little towns with small inns
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Jul 12th, 2012, 08:04 PM
  #15
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so many choices....starts to make your head spin
here is our final trip itinerary....thanks to all for tips.

3 nights in Amsterdam
train to Cologne and pick up a car
2 nights in Cochem (Rhine Valley0
2 nights in Colmar, France (near Strasbourg)
2 nights in Rothenburg
drop off car in Frankfurt and say goodbye.

day trips to various towns and castles in between.
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Jul 12th, 2012, 08:23 PM
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Much MUCH better/more enjoyable IMO. Good work!
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Jul 12th, 2012, 10:38 PM
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I would suggest not staying in either colmar or Strasbourg but to stay in one of the little towns in the Alsatian wine country, like the ones Aramis suggested: Riquewihr, Hunawihr, Ribeauville

or do more research and come up with a small town of your own.

The smaller towns are so much more interesting.

Oh, and you can also take a boat down the Rhine - very relaxing - and stay in any one of the smaller towns along the Rhine itself. Believe, Bacharach was suggested.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 04:38 AM
  #18
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Trip is set, hotels are booked, not changing anything now, will have a trip report when I get back. happy trails to all.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 02:04 PM
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A friend recently said to me on a trip, "Is there any autobahn in Germany that isn't under repair?" There is a lot in Germany (and Italy & France), or it seemed to us this summer. It can add hours to your driving to say nothing of the stress. Occasinally the roads are closed and detours are necessary. It can be very confusing and frustrating once you get off major highways. Please take that into consideration.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 03:31 PM
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Kick it jp!
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