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1 week tour of Germany

Jackson, Tennessee
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1 week tour of Germany

Some friends and are meeting up in southwest Germany, in Kandern. We have one week to see as much as we can without feeling too rushed (or broke!) We are thinking renting a car might be the cheapest way with flexibility in traveling. We want to see castles, historical sites, a concentration camp, free tours (if any!?), and anything else that's a must see!

Here's our idea. Start in Kandern, drive to Berlin - stay 2 nights, to Prague- 1 night, Munich- 1 night, and 2 nights in Kandern (w/ 1 day seeing the Alps.) Is that a crazy schedule? Would we see enough? Should we stay longer somewhere instead of Berlin? Or add a stop in Frankfurt?

If you had one week- where would you go??? (Our budget isn't the largest, keep that in mind!)

sydney
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1. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

<<Is that a crazy schedule?>> absolutely

We had 6 nights each in Berlin & Munich and barely scratched the surface - and you want effectively one day in Berlin and half a day in Munich... and the same for Prague ... are you just wanting to tick places off a list or do you really want to see & experience a bit of Germany?

If I had a week in Germany and had to start at Kandern I would go no further east than Munich and no forther north than Cologne.

Best advice I can give at this stage of your planning is to go back to the drawing board - with a good map of Germany and a more realistic set of expectations

Hanau, Germany
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2. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

Since you mention budget, the more you move around the more expensive it gets, use http://www.viamichelin.com/ to see how much ground you want to cover and how much gas is, it's over twice the prize than in the US, also you might have problems finding a rental company that lets you take to car into Czeck.

With the little time you have explore the Black Forrest http://www.schwarzwald-tourismus.info/ and http://www.bodensee.eu/?lang=2 area, if you go to Munich you can visit Dachau www.kz-gedenkstaette-dachau.de/index-e.html I think with that you have plenty to do, can visit 4 countries in Europe, Germany, France, Switzerland and Austria and keep your travel budget low.

Going to Berlin from Kandern will take one day, then to Prague at least a 1/2 day, so if you stick with your plan you will see a lot of freeways but not much more.

Boppard, Germany
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3. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

Alternatively, if you are more interested in visiting Berlin, look into budget flights from Basel-Mulhouse to Berlin and spend several days there.

Paradise, California
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4. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

"We want to see castles, historical sites, a concentration camp, free tours..."

Assuming Kandern is a given place to start... then here's a workable tour that shows you some of Germany and that meets your goals and your budget needs.

Day 1: In the morning, visit Freiburg for a few hours. Head north to Heidelberg after that. Both places are active university towns with a nice vibe. Not sure how many people are involved, but 5 friends can make this trip by train for less than €8 each with a daypass called the "Baden-Württemberg Ticket":

bahn.com/i/…baden-wuerttemberg-ticket.shtml

Day 2: Visit Heidelberg Castle. Take the train along the Neckar River Valley in the direction of Heilbronn and Stuttgart. You'll see numerous castles and castle ruins on this route. Make a stop in Stuttgart or Esslingen. Esslingen is another university town with a nice old town center and handsome buildings. Then continue by train to Ulm for the night. Trains: €8 again with the B-W ticket daypass.

Esslingen half-timbered building: …wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/80/…

Day 3: See the Ulm Cathedral, the tallest church on the planet. Catch a train for Munich for 4 nights (Bayern Ticket Daypass, €8 each again.)

www.munich-touristinfo.de/Bavaria-Ticket.htm

Days 3-7:

Munich

Daytrip to Dachau.

Daytrip to Garmisch-Partenkirchen in the Alps and maybe the Zugspitze, Germany's tallest Alp (Bayern ticket again, €8 each.)

"We are thinking renting a car might be the cheapest way with flexibility in traveling."

Highly unlikely that with rental fees, gas, parking fees (at hotels you'll normally pay to park), etc. you will beat these daypass prices on a train trip like the one above. You can always check. There are luggage lockers at the Freiburg, Stuttgart, and Esslingen stations for those short visits I've suggested.

Jackson, Tennessee
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5. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

Yeaaaa, I figured that was a bit of a ridiculous dream :) Maybe I'll just go for a whole month! If only...

Thank you all for your suggestions! Russ- I like that plan! That helps a lot. I was trying to find a cheaper train option. With tickets you mentioned, do you buy them in advance or can you get them that day?

Paradise, California
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6. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

Besides the low cost, the beauty of local/regional train travel with these daypasses is threefold:

1.) You can buy them on the day of travel - they never sell out.

2.) You cannot make reservations for these regional trains so there's no need for that fussing around and extra fees.

3.) You have almost total flexibility with these passes. On weekdays you can't start before 9 am - that's the only hours restriction. If you want to stop in some town along the way, just get off, then get on again when you're ready (train service is generally every hour or better.) If you want to add a side trip to any of your planned journeys, go ahead - it's fine as long as your pass covers the area you choose for your side trip.

In order to find schedules for these local/regional train trips, be sure to specify "only local transport" under "means of transport" at the DB itinerary page:

http://reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/query.exe/en

If you fail to follow the above instruction, you'll get itineraries that include some high-speed trains which cannot be used with these cheap passes.

Comments about the route I gave you:

1.) Take the bus to leave Kandern. The DB page shows bus schedules; both trains and buses are included with the B-W ticket. Buy the ticket from the bus driver directly.

2.) I suggested Ulm as an overnight stop in part because you can arrive there on the B-W ticket and depart there on the Bayern ticket, which will keep your travel costs down - Ulm is covered by both tickets.

There are MANY other options for routing yourselves to Munich than the one I provided. But the one I gave you gets you around a bit and relatively quickly. If you find other places you want to visit instead of Heidelberg, the Neckar Valley, and Esslingen, I'm sure you can work it out. It is also possible to overnight in Memmingen instead of Ulm and have access to both the B-W ticket and the Bayern ticket.

Paradise, California
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7. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

You can use this rail line map for trips to Freiburg - Heidelberg - Ulm:

bahn.de/p/view/mdb/pv/deutschland_erleben/ba…

Use this one for Bavaria (Ulm - Munich - Garmisch-Partenkirchen)

www.bayern-fahrplan.de/streckennetzkarte.pdf

Las Vegas, Nevada
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8. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

"It is also possible to overnight in Memmingen instead of Ulm and have access to both the B-W ticket and the Bayern ticket."

Ther same is true if you stay in Ulm.

Have a look at what I wrote in #1 of tripadvisor.com/…49932873 , which will give you many weeks' worth of excellent sights in the German state of Baden-Wuerttemberg (SW Germany) without having to spend time on traveling instead of sightseeing.

9. Re: 1 week tour of Germany

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