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Old 11-05-2006, 10:39 AM   #1
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Hi I am a new member, although I have been reading the posts since half a year ago. I bought ticket to Frankfurt for this winter from 12/30 to 1/13 (2weeks) from NYC.

Here is my itinerary. Most likely I'll get a 5/6 days 2/3 country train pass. My stratagy is to depart a major city city early in the morning and stop by 1 or 2 small towns along the train ride and arrive the next major city in the evening. The "major city" includes Munich, Austria (Innsbruck, Salzburg), Berlin, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Brussels, then back to Frankfurt.

Any suggestions and comments are appreciated. Thanks!!

12/31 - Arrive in Frankfurt at 1100 , then leaving Frankfurt immediately, stop by Wurzburg/Nurnburg, then arrive in Munich,
1/1 - Munich
1/2 - Munich
1/3 - Munich - Innsbruck - Salzburg
1/4 - Salzburg - Berlin
1/5 - Berlin
1/6 - Berlin
1/7 - Berlin - Wolfsburg - Amsterdam
1/8 - Amsterdam
1/9 - Amsterdam
1/10 - Amsterdam - Rotterdam - Brussels
1/11 - Brussels
1/12 - Brussels - Luxenburg - Trier - Koblenz - Rhein Valley - Frankfurt
1/13 Frankfurt tour before leaving for NYC

Here are some of the questions I have
1) I am concern with not having enough time to visit the towns in between of the train ride (e.g. innsbruck, rotterdam, ect.)
2) Should I see Innsbruck and Salzburg? What about Vienna?
3) Should I see Hamburg?
4) 1/12 is very cramped. I would like to see some castles and Rhein in my trip.
5) My friend would like to see a concentration camp. Where can we find one?
6) Does it cost extra to take a night train with beds?
7) I would like to do bobsledding in Germany or some winter olympic stuff. Where can I find those.
8) Should I see Mercedes-Benz and VW headquarter (included VW at Wolfsburg in my trip)

I know I have too many questions. I really appreciate your reading and your comments. Thank you.
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Old 11-05-2006, 11:13 AM   #2
 
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One of the huge problems I see is that you have waaaaay too much travel time in.
Nuernberg is an hour from Frankfurt, Wuerzburg an hour from that. Bother with loads to do. Munchen is an hour from Nuernberg. Salzburg is I believe a 2 hour train ride from Munchen. Innsbruck is 2 hours from Salzburg. Salzburg to berlin is 13 hours. Berlin to A'dam is 14 hours. It's an hour to Rotterdam. 3 hours to Brussels and then 6 hours back to frankfurt. That's about 43 hours in a train in a week and a half. Not a good idea. Europe isn't that small I would cut it down to one region. It's raelly awesome going and you want to see everything but it's just not feasible unless you never want to really experience a place. I would say 3 cities, 4 max. You'll want to settle down a little bit and meet some people and really figure out the town.
I think your best bet is to stay in Bayern (southern Germany). Go to Nuernberg, Muenchen, and Salzburg.

1. You won't have enough time to see thsoe towns most of them are huge cities with so much stuff to see. Don't try cramming it all in. Try to go to only three cities.
2. I looooove Salzburg. It's a beautiful city, one of my favorite castles ever is here. Vienna is waaay the fuck on the other side of Austria. Don't bother. and innsbruck isn't that close.
3. Hamburg is waaaaay the fuck to the north of where you're going. Skip it.
4. Go to Neuschwanstein. It's about an hour from Muenchen and an awesome day trip, especially in the snow. And if youdo the sound of music tour in Salzburg you will see tons of beautiful castles and lakes and churches and stuff.
5. Dachau is outside of Salzburg and it's amazing to go there. I really reccomend this one as well.
6. Night beds are more expensive. Skip it and stay in a hostel.
7. No clue.
8. Never been. Heard it wasn't that great.

When I went when I was 14 I spent a week and a half in just Salburg and Muenchen and I did day trips and I think that was perfect. haha so condense it down like whoa There will be other trips!
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Old 11-05-2006, 11:44 AM   #3
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I totally agree with slowing your trip down, or just going to feel like you are always in transit. You've got to realize that places like Rotterdam and Brussels are huge, and you are going to want to have time. Its sounds so tempting to jump off the train here or there, and sometimes a few hours is actually worth it, but make sure the train sched. is going to work and that you aren't waisting any time. For me personally, I feel the need to stay somewhere for minimum 3 days including the arrival day. I love feeling like I get the place, how it feels, what the people are like etc.....
If you are really into cars, than go and check it out, but plan on spending most of one of your days there. First off you will have to get there, and then touring the location will take most of your day. That comes down to you prioritys. Hope you work thing out and have fun!!! I have plents of info on A-Dam if you need it by the way.
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Old 11-09-2006, 12:57 AM   #4
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Yeah, I'd have to agree on cutting down your itinerary a little, Germany's a big country, and you'd be traveling from one end of it to the other, and top to bottom. However, I think you could get an interesting taste of the country (which differs widely from one region to the next) if you spent 3-4 days in Berlin, 3-4 in Munich and 3-4 in the Rhineland (Trier/Koln).

I'd actually start in the Rhineland, since you're arriving in Frankfurt - check out Koln and Trier while the Christmas markets are still in full swing (usually a couple of days into January). We live almost equidistant between Koln and Trier on the train route - it's really beautiful country and quite unlike north-eastern Germany. There are plenty of small villages on the train line that you can hop off and wander around for an hour or two, en route between the two major cities, and you'll be able to check out a few castles along the way. I'd recommend somewhere like Kyllburg or Gerolstein for a "small town" experience, or Murlenbach for a lovely little village atmosphere, with a castle of its own, and good food.

From Koln or Trier, take the train to Munich, aiming to be there around Epiphany - 7 Jan. I'm betting in Catholic Bavaria there's some sort of parade worth seeing that day. Explore Munich and environs for a few days, then head north to Berlin - you'll see the difference in landscape and (in former east Germany) in architecture along the way.

Can't help you with the bobsledding, though you may find a youth hostel at a sports complex which offers it. DJH is the German youth hostel organization. And www.diebahn.de has all the train info, in English.

I've heard the VW factory is a disappointment, unless you are a devoted car addict, I wouldn't bother.

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Old 11-15-2006, 02:28 PM   #5
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Thank you for those who applied. Here are few more questions I have.

1) How many days I should spend in Trier, Kolblenz, Rhein Vallley and Koln?
2) Can I find Rhein River boat tours that would operate during winter?

Thank you.
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Old 11-17-2006, 09:04 AM   #6
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As far as I've been able to determine, all the river cruises shut down, usually the end of October, for the season. It's just possible that there might be a New Year's type cruise, but I wouldn't count on it. However, you can take the train along the Rhine a ways, and still see a fair number of the castles and quaint riverside villages, so it's not a dead loss.

I would give Koln and Trier a minimum of two days each - they're not so far away (about 3 hours, if you get on the express train from Gerolstein), so you could leave early in the morning and arrive with time to look around in the afternoon. You'll see the Rhein Valley from trains running between Koblenz and Koln, and between Trier and Koln you'll see the Kyll and the Mosel valleys. You might want to pick a random small town along the way to get out and check out an actual Rheinland river village, many are served by the trains, and are truly lovely - especially during the quieter season. If you were really strapped for time, you could get a good sense of Koln or Trier in a day, but it would be rather a rush. I haven't been to Koblenz myself, but I would imagine two days would give you a decent impression.

If you do take the train between Trier and Koln, you'll pass right by our house, but unfortunately, we'll be moving two weeks before your trip, so we can't even wave as you go by. Enjoy it for us, we'll miss it.

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