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9-day roadtrip around Southern Germany, parts of Austria, and one city in France. This was a fast-paced trip of the area's highlights. Stops below include suggested sights and quick review of places we (SO and I) stayed.
Landed in Munich. Stayed at the Courtyard Marriott in City Center on points (much nicer than you would think). Visited Hofbrauhaus, the city center glockenspeil, the marketplace for beer prezels and shopping. Also took the bus to walk around Schloss Nymphenburg. Very pretty with swans in the pond.
Perfect place to be on May Day!
Picked up rental car and drove to Salzburg afternoon of day 2. Stayed in Hotel Goldener Hirsch on points (very very nice). Walked around Salzburg, visited Mozart's birthplace and residence, the fortress, Schloss Hellbrunn and the water fountains.
Stayed in the Hotel Goldener Hirsch on points. Wow. Terrific. Expensive if not on points, but superb regardless.
Drove to Berchtesgaden evening of Day 3. Small town charm. Went to two different Hofbrauhaus restaurants here, both delicious. Drove up the windy mountain towards the Eagle's Nest but didn't get to see it because it was closed (opens May 15 each year), went to Lake Konigssee and took the boat tour (highly recommend it even in the rain).
Stayed in Alpenhotel - very sparse and door locks impossible to manipulate. Needed assistance getting into hotel room every time. Otherwise, okay.
Drove through Kossen (not much there) and stopped in Kufstein just briefly on the way back to Innsbruck. Would've liked a little more time here, but not too much time is needed. Cute small city with very old-world charm. Biggest draw here is the castle/tower from 1205. Much like visiting the Salzburg fortress - just walked around the grounds, but a building from 1205 is AMAZING.
Great night and part of the morning in Innsbruck. Stayed at Romantik Hotel Schwarzer Adler which was very nice and romantic. Had dinner in the hotel restaurant and was pleasantly surprised. Excellent food in a small, cozy, and polished atmosphere. The hotel provided a list of top attractions and a corresponding map, which was very helpful. Walked around town to the university area and took lots of pictures of the architecture. Fun narrow old roads. Be sure to check out the shops.
Stayed here one night but should've stayed two because this was a good anchor spot for visiting the nearby castles. Instead had to drive all the way to Lindau the next night and drive back to see the castles.
In the morning, drove to the castles. Saw Linderhof Palace (did tour and recommend), Hohenschwangau Castle, and Neuschawnstein Caslte (did tour and recommend). Also drove up to Hornberg to see tower remains there.
In the early evening, drove to Lindau. Short distance but long drive due to the windy mountain road you must travel down. Lindau is an idyllic island town at the edge of Bavaria. As most shoretowns, this was a very laid-back area to relax and do nothing. The island town was small enough to walk around entirely in under an hour. Took lots of pictures and had an incredible dinner at a Swiss restaurant on the water facing the harbor. The restaurant had an eclectic menu of local fare, pasta, etc - all somewhat nouveau. Yummy. Walk around and see the buildings and other attractions from a variety of eras.
Stayed in the Hotel Garni Brugger Lindau. Nothing remarkable about this hotel - furnishings very Ikea-like. Bathroom was very small. Breakfast selection was small but very good. Try the pretzel rolls.
Drove to Frieburg the next afternoon. Stayed in the Hotel Oberkirch. Very nice. Reserved parking and had to drive on cobblestone to get to the garage (right next to the hotel). That was a little difficult.
Beautiful, fun city. Drank beer and had weiner schitzel at Hausbrauerei Freierling - not in the beergarden unforunately but inside, which was still nice due to the 3 floors each with bar. Walked around the old town and briefly along the canal. Scenic. Visited the Munster Cathedral and went inside (not on a tour). This place was simply amazing. Check out the Last Supper scene on the lefthand side.
Stopped into Triberg (home to the cuckoo clocks and the world's largest) on the way to Strasbourg. Hiked up a small hill in the nearby park to see Germany's largest waterfall. Pretty as a picture.
Drove to Strasbourg the next afternoon. Stayed at the Hotel Gutenburg which was fantastic for location. Easy quick walk to the Cathedral and restaurant area. Steps from public parking garage and the old town area with the carousel. Like Freiburg but bigger and not as clean. Could've easily replaced Strasbourg with Baden-Baden for more German culture, but enjoyed the short diversion into France overall.
I liked the hotel but think most will want to avoid the 6th floor. Not at all appropriate for older travelers.
Left Strasbourg in the morning for Munich, stopping at Dachau just short of Munich for a sobering visit to the concentration camp. You really need some time for this even if just doing the audio tour. The starting point is poorly marked on the tour map, and the people at the information desk did not want to be bothered. Be sure to arrive in time to catch a showing of the film.
Back to Munich the night before our flight out. Returned the car and went to dinner at the Augustiner for some more spargel (white asparagus) and beer. Stayed at the Le Meridien near the main train station on points and were upgraded to a suite. Definitely a very good place. Free internet for 15 minutes in the business center - enough to print boarding passes and go.