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Travel to Germany

Old Oct 20th, 2004, 12:52 PM
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Travel to Germany

My wife and I are going to Frankfurt dec. 16 to 21. Does anyone have any suggestions about what to do where to go(stay in Germany or go to surrounding countries)? Rent a car or use other modes of transportation?
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 01:13 PM
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Sorry to sound glib, but if you don't have any idea where to go the why are you flying into Frankfurt?

I think I'd go over to Rothenburg for the first night as it's less than 2 hrs from Frankfurt airport. Then maybe to Baden Baden for a day and finish up somewhere on the Rhine. Of course you could also spend the entire time around the Rhine and Mosel river area. Depends on how much moving around you want to do. I definitely recommend driving if the weather is good as it gives you more flexibility.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 02:00 PM
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Not much time so I would agree with BettyK about renting a car. Make sure you familiarize yourself with autobahn etiquette and roadsigns before you go.
I would probably head down to Bavaria. More picturesque with the Alps and small villages.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 02:04 PM
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Ruchir, if you tell us what might interest you, I am sure that you would get some good feedback. I would recommend a car, it is the best way to travel, as long as you have no problems driving in a foreign country or winter weather.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 02:17 PM
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Ruchir07,

By Fodor site records this is the first time you have visited this forum, and your question shows that you have never been to Germany before.

If you have a bookstore or library nearby go and buy or read some travel books. If they don't have Michelin then go to Amazon.com and buy the Michelin Green Guide to Germany.

I've lived in Germany and driven all over the country. I disagree with the other posters about renting a car. If you are not quick to learn and hot on the pedal you might
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 02:20 PM
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finishing what my cornfuter cut . . .

You might find it better to take the train.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 03:32 PM
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You're much better off without a car for such a short visit in my opinion as well (I've also traveled in both fashions extensively in Germany.) There are more than 6,000 train stations in Germany - it's a well-connected region - and with the possibility of nasty driving weather, who wants to deal with it?

That's a great time to visit Christmas markets, and there are some good ones right near Frankfurt in some attractive cities and towns. Mainz, Rudesheim, and Trier are three I visited last Christmas season in about the same period of time. Train service is frequent and cheap with the daypass option for local trains (Rheinland-Pfalz ticket on weekdays, Happy Weekend ticket on Sat or Sun, unlimited travel for up to 5 people for less than 30 Euros.) Once in these cities, getting around on foot is simple (but you'll need a good map for Mainz and its tangle of streets.)
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 04:11 PM
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I would rent a car since you only have 5 days. Having to use public transportation can really put time constraints upon you.

I think you could do this in 5 days: Frankfurt to Rothenburg to Nordlingen through Black Forest to Colmar (France) up the Rhine and north back to Frankfurt. You could stop in Stasbourg (Fr.) or Baden-Baden on your way back up. Do you like castles, big cities, wine, shopping? This dictates where you would want to stop.

If I only had 5 days, I would fly in to Munich instead. Lovely places in closer proximity IMHO.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 04:15 PM
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Well said Russ.

There is enough within an hour's train journey from Frankfurt to keep anybody happy for weeks, let alone five or six days.

Find a nice hotel near the main station as your base and just do day trips out:

1. East to Wurzburg
2. West to Mainz, Worms
3. South to Heidelberg and side trip up Neckar Valley (a train runs east from Heidelberg to Neckarsteinach)
4. North-West to Rudesheim and the Rhine valley as far as Bacharach
5. North to Limburg with a short side-trip from there to say Runkel.

Enjoy

Harzer
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 04:43 PM
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BettyK and everyone, I realize my message sounds a bit weird, we are actually traveling to Asia and we have a 6 day layover in Frankfurt. My wife and I are in our late 20s, and we like nature, castles, wine country and good brew.-- Thanks for the feed back
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 05:02 PM
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I go for the public transport crowd. The reason to get a car is that you have plans to go here or there "at a certain time." I think Harzer has a good idea, and looks like a good itinerary. If you get a train or bus into a place and explore, you get to spend time really there. You can do day hops or get a taxi if there is something you must see that's outside of an available route. Just go, eat drink and visit the markets. It'll be great. Have fun!
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 07:21 PM
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Winter is a rough time for nature, wine, and the like, but you can still tour a castle in the town of Braubach, just south of Koblenz on the east bank of the Rhine: Marksburg Castle, the only never-destroyed, tourable medieval castle on the Rhine, and open all year (11-4 in the off season.)

The smaller villages along the Rhine will be virtually shut, but a train ride north along the east bank of the Rhine to Koblenz oand back along the other side will still be scenic, with many castles visible along the way on each side.
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Old Oct 20th, 2004, 08:02 PM
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Ruchir07: Wherever you decide to go and however you decide to get there, please post a trip report upon return.

December may not be the best time for nature and wine country, but anytime is a good time for brew!
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Old Oct 21st, 2004, 02:36 AM
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Ok, I wrote earlier and recommended car rental but as I have done both, i.e. 5 days on train and 5 days in car they both have merits. If you decide the former check into the German rail pass deals www.railpass.com and find out more about the German rail system on their website www.bahn.de. We bought a "twinpass" which worked out great for us. I am pretty sure you have to buy this pass BEFORE you go. It worked out well for us not to have to fool with the ticket machines. I wouldn't go to any other country and would find a homebase - Munich? And just explore, hang out, drink beer, visit museums...the towns should be very festive that time of year. The days are short that time of year. Experience has taught me that the most enjoyable trips were the ones that I planned less ambitiously and took time to enjoy my surroundings instead of having a frantic agenda of trying to see too much in a short period of time. You can go to the Germany tourism website and find out about festivals that time of year. www.germany-tourism.de
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Old Oct 21st, 2004, 07:54 AM
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Sorry, but I am NOT a train person. I'm sure there are many good reasons to take the train, but I like to do my thing on my own schedule. Maybe when we get too old to feel comfortable driving we'll do the train thing, but not before.
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Old Oct 21st, 2004, 08:04 AM
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Ruchir07, you got a whole lot of good recommendations already.
I'm about your age, grew up in Heidelberg and lived in Clogne for the last 3 years (before moving to the US 5 months ago).
If you'd like some more specific info on either of those cities or their surroundings, feel free to contact me at kascha912 AT gmx.de
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