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Trip to Germany Itinerary

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Feb 15th, 2016, 02:01 PM
  #1
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Trip to Germany Itinerary

Hi Everyone,

I am planning my first trip to Germany with my husband. We are departing Mid May and going for 3 weeks. Our main goal is to travel the Rhine River area and Romantic road, stop off at a few places along the way, and really take in the German culture. We are in our early fifties, we like scenery, historical sights, people watching, drinking beer and wine, and eating good authentic food.

I am a rookie at this, so if you can please provide some insight on the below first draft of our itinerary that would be great. We have yet to book accommodation's. Any suggestions are welcome our budget is approx. 100 Euro a night. We are also planning to rent a car for the first part of our trip.

Canada to Germany: Fly in to Frankfurt May 14, train to Boppard

BOPPARD: 4 days, 3 nights
- First day/night relaxing, getting over Jet lag
- Rhine River trip to Bacharach and St. Goar
- Exploring city
- We will be training to Koblenz to rent a car (thoughts?)

TRIER: 2 Days, 1 night
- Worth stopping to see?
- Recommended by Rick Steves

KARLSRUHE: 5 days, 4 nights
- Explore city, visit friends
- Day trip to Stuttgart to see the Porsche and Mercedes Museums
- Day trip to Maulbronn Monastery, Lichtenstein castle
- Stop off at Baden-Baden on the way to Strasbourg

STRASBOURG: 3 days, 2 nights
- See petite France, Cathedral, explore city

MUNICH: 4 Days, 3 nights
- Beer Gardens, English Gardens, markets
- Day trip to Fussen see the Neuschweinstein Castle
- Drop off rental car, train to Salzburg (undecided on when is best to rent a car during this trip)

SALZBURG AUSTRIA: 2 Days, 1 night
- Eagles nest

NUREMBURG: 2 Days, 1 night
- Not sure how long to stay, is it worth staying more than one night?

ROTHENBURG OB DER TAUBER: 2 Days, 1 night
- Again, not sure if we are staying for more than one night, is it worth seeing?

WURZBURG: Possible stop off on the way to Frankfurt or stay one/two nights
- Suggestions welcome

FRANKFURT: Flight home, mid afternoon.

Thank you in advance!!
KerryCS is offline  
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Feb 15th, 2016, 02:07 PM
  #2
 
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For car rental, check autoeurope.com or kemwel.com. They are sister agencies (brokers) that will give you a good idea of what rentals will cost. You can always compare their rates with the rental agencies', such as Hertz, offers.

The basic rate given by autoeurope and kemwel assumes that a third party (usually your credit card company) will carry the CDW--liability is always included in the rental price.

For which part of the trip do you intend to rent the car?
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Feb 15th, 2016, 02:32 PM
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Hi Michael, thank you.

We were thinking of renting for the first leg of the trip, from Boppard to Karlsruhe.

But we are open to other options. For example is it better to train from Karlsruhe - Strasbourg - Munich, or should we keep the rental and drive this route and leave the rental in Munich?
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Feb 15th, 2016, 02:53 PM
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Trier is definitely worth it, used to be the capital of Carolus Magnus (or was it Aachen ?). Anyway, lots of Roman ruins and a very nice old city.

Nurnmberg is great - I stopped one day and found it not enough.

Munich is imho too many days, as is Karlsrhue but you are there with friends.

Not been to Rothenburg (heard it is very nice) nor Wurzburg.

I disliked a lot Stuttgart so be sure you are a fan of Porsche and Mercedes !

Have fun ! Sounds good !
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Feb 15th, 2016, 02:57 PM
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Thanks Whathello!! Great feedback
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Feb 15th, 2016, 03:25 PM
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You don't need a car for your destinations - Rothenburg, Würzburg, and many other Romantic Road towns (Füssen, Nördlingen, Augsburg, Harburg and more) are accessible by train (although not every last RR town.) I think only Lichtenstein (and maybe Maulbronn) requires a car, so maybe just a 1-day rental, or maybe your friends have a car? The RR itself isn't especially scenic, and driving every km of it isn't necessarily that rewarding. In fact, there are many very good towns that are served by train which the RR completely overlooks.

If you WANT to drive, that's a different matter. But train travel in Germany is pretty easy and often less expensive. And less trouble... you ought to read some of the threads on Tripadvior about shady agency practices and trumped up damage bills (Sixt, Hertz, and others) in Germany.

Trier: only if you're into Roman history. Otherwise, a visit to Cochem (also on the Mosel River) and maybe Burg Eltz castle (near Cochem) would make for a great day trip from Boppard.

http://www.der-takt.de/typo3temp/_pr...087e83a8d1.jpg
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Feb 15th, 2016, 03:31 PM
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I would add that 3 days in Strasbourg sounds a bit much. I'd advise you (after Baden-Baden, or after skipping Baden-Baden which is mostly casinos and spa treatments) to settle into Gengenbach for that time instead - and to spend one day on a day trip to Strasbourg (very easy by train from Gengenbach.) Gengenbach is on the Black Forest Railway line so you'd be able to venture southeast into the mountains as well. Train travel is free (with the free KONUS Card you get from your hosts in Gengenbach) and this is one of Germany's most scenic train routes (along with the Rhine.)

Gengenbach: http://www.stadthotel-gengenbach.de/...innenstadt.jpg

http://www.black-forest-travel.com/p...t-railway.html
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Feb 15th, 2016, 03:36 PM
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Generally one-way rentals do not represent any extra cost with a autoeurope contract as long as the car is returned in the same country.

The train or drive issue depends on your tastes and desires. Look at a guidebook and decide if it is worthwhile keeping a car for the things to see between destination points. The Michelin Green Guide offers driving itineraries which cover different areas of Germany. They usually are loops, but the loop can be broken to begin another suggested itinerary.
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Feb 17th, 2016, 06:27 PM
  #9
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Thank you everyone for your comments they are greatly appreciated and helpful.

Cheers
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Feb 17th, 2016, 10:28 PM
  #10
 
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Hi KerryCS,

Well, using the great train system in Germany -- and especially in Bavaria -- is rewarding on its own. The trains are more entertaining than a drive since you are not stuck inside your private bubble, and you get to interact with locals and other travelers; at the very least, you get a few hours of prime people-watching time. You can also nap, read, enjoy a picnic, play cards, chat, meet your seat-neighbor, and listen to music while enjoying the passing scenery. You won't get lost. Using the train system is also more unique to most north American travellers, so it would add a layer of "European adventure" to your European adventure.

Finally, using the trains is more green (yaaay!). Scientists said a few years ago that all the glaciers in Bavaria will be gone in 30 years . . . might be down to 25 years now. Using the trains here is a fun and easy way to reduce your carbon footprint for a few days. You may be happy with yourself to help save the beauty you came over to see. (I live in Garmisch and don't have a car.)

Have fun as you plan!

s
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Feb 20th, 2016, 08:21 AM
  #11
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Thank You swanda/2000 for your comments. Yes keeping it "Green" is an important factor. Planning is fun but can't wait to actually get there!!
Cheers
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Feb 20th, 2016, 10:01 AM
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Love the trains in Germany also. If you do rent a car watch your speed because of cameras. We have always used Budget but last time we rented from Frankfurt and upon return we had filled the diesel VW full. The guy in the garage wanted ten euro because we did not have a receipt for gas... My husband went back out and over filled to get a euro receipt and upon return the guy didn't want it then so they were running a racket. Save that last receipt.


Rothenburg ODT is worth a night over because the tour buses leave at 6 and you have the watchmen tour at night which is hokey but fun.
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Feb 21st, 2016, 10:23 AM
  #13
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Good Point on speed flpab, I believe we have decided to take trains for the most part if not all as the feedback I have received is pointing me in that direction.
We have decided to stay one night in Rothenburg for the hokey watchmen tour ha
Thanks again
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Feb 27th, 2016, 03:46 PM
  #14
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Thank you everyone for your great help. I am now in the process booking of hotels. Most booked however I have questions regarding Salzburg Austria. I know my post is about Germany but we decided to actually stay over in Salzburg for 2 nights. I am confused about the best place to stay if we are arriving by Train from Munich. Is it better to stay near the train station or in Old/New Town??
Thanks again for your time.
K
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Feb 27th, 2016, 04:24 PM
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In Salzburg, I'd think that you'd want to stay in the old town near the pedestrian zone as there is a lot to see there including the festung on the hill.

Your original plan stated only 1 night in Salzburg and I was going to suggest adding a night or two if you were planning on going down to the Berchtesgaden area for the eagles nest (known as Kehlsteinhaus in German.) You used to be able to get a tour in English that covered some of the WWII history when the allies took it. I don't know if they're still doing that.

There are some nice things to do down in the Berchtesgaden/Obersalzburg area (Königsee, the salt mines, Hohenwerfen isn't far, either, and then there's Innsbruck) some day when you have time -- it could basically be its own trip.
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Feb 27th, 2016, 10:30 PM
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Hi KerryCS,

I spent a week in Salzburg many years ago, and I stayed across the river from the old town. It was about a 15-minute walk to the train station, but I never minded it for my 3 or 4 excursions out. I think I remember walking along the river for part of the way.

If I were you, I would stay in the old town, the prettiest part of the city, and take a taxi to/from the station for arrival and departure (w/luggage). For any excursions out of Salzburg, the walk to the station without luggage is an opportunity to see more of the city --

Have fun!

s
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Feb 28th, 2016, 04:43 AM
  #17
 
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I think you are underestimating travel times in some case, eg Trier to Karlsruhe, Strasbourg to Munich. Often 4 nights actually means 3 and a bit days, it certainly doesn't mean 5 days in one place.
Don't shorten the time in Strasbourg! It is beautiful and we found plenty to occupy us over two and a half days (we stayed 3 nights). With more time you could have added the Alsace Wine Route http://www.alsace-wine-route.com/
I also think there is little point in going via Baden-Baden to Strasbourg (maybe your friends can take you on the Maulbronn day?). If you just do Strasbourg and then go to Munich, the quickest/cheapest is to take the train, the TGV takes only 38 minutes from Karlsruhe to Strasbourg, and you can get a direct train from Strasbourg to Munich at the end of your stay there.
I really have to go to Gengenbach, when next in the area,it is recommended so often on TripAdvisor too!
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Feb 28th, 2016, 07:52 AM
  #18
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Thank you lynda_berlin!!

We have altered our plans a bit, due to the great advice I have obtained from the forum. I look forward to looking into the wine tour.
Cheers
K
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Feb 28th, 2016, 08:43 AM
  #19
 
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I agree with several above trains are great and will take you everywhere you indicate you want to go - inter-city driving to get anywhere fairly quick is on boring autobahns - side roads are great but at times very slow going - anyway for a fix on German trains check www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com. And check out the German Twin Railpass which for the number of days you'd need can be really cheap per day and gives you totally unfettered travel - hop on any train anytime with very few exceptions.

Or keep the car the whole way - can't figure out why half by car and half by train - Fussen is an easy day trip by train from Munich.
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Mar 1st, 2016, 07:40 PM
  #20
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PalenQ,

Thank you for the fix on the German trains. I will definitely be looking at it as I still find it confusing ha.

Thanks Again,
K
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