Hi all, new to travellerspoint but been lurking a while.
Im planning a german rail trip for a month at some point in 2009. I will be looking to buy a 1 country 1 month interrail pass for £254. My rough itinerary looks a bit like- fly into frankfurt(ryanair)-stuttgart-nurnberg-dresden-leipzig-hamburg-hannover-koln-frankfurt(return flight ryanair). I am planning to spend 3 nights in each city with an extra 1 night in frankfurt before i fly home.
I figure this will take me 30 days including travelling. I like cities mainly and enjoy going out for a few beers in the pubs at night with a wander taking in the sights during the day.
Bearing this in mind is there any places you would drop/add/exchange in my itinerary? Any day trips that are a must? The reason I have not included Munich and Dusseldorf is i have already visited and I am visiting Berlin in a weeks time!!
I was also thinking £50 a day spending money, does this seem enough in these cities? I will mostly be staying in hostels cooking for myself but might treat myself to the odd meal out then of course a few beers/coffees etc!!
I think thats it for now, thanks in advance.
your plans sound reasonable and can definitely be realised. I think 50 pounds (converts to around 58 Euro) a day should be enough per day considering that most hostels cost around 20 Euro per night including breakfast.
It might be worth getting a Youth Hostel Pass (http://www.jugendherberge.de/en/ and http://www.jugendherberge.de/en/basics/membership/index.jsp), I paid 12 Euro last time (I'm under 26). Once you've got such a card, you can stay at the hostels of the German Youth Hostel organisation, they are usually in a really good shape, centrally located and not overly expensive (from around 17 Euro per night incl. breakfast, e.g. this one in Hamburg (http://www.jugendherberge.de/en/hostels/search/portrait/jh.jsp?IDJH=522) charges 19.60 per night incl. linen and breakfast). The membership cards can be bought at the hostel and are valid for a calendar year.
Apart from that, the Wombat chain is supposed to be really good. I just saw that they're only in Berlin and Munich though.
Frankfurt isn't really worth spending three days there as there is not that much to see, I recommend visiting Marburg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marburg) for a day while you're in Frankfurt, it is a beautiful medieval town with a castle, an old university (founded in 1527, the Brothers Grimm were there for a while), the 800-year-old Elisabeth church (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elisabeth_Church_(Marburg) which still attracts pilgrims and lots of half-timbered houses. It is a university town and has the highest pub density in Germany - lots of student parties and pubs are packed every night of the week. It's an hour from Frankfurt by train.
Weimar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weimar), the home town of Goethe and Schiller and founding place of the Weimar Republic, is not too far away from Leipzig and has a lot of history, especially concerning Germany's "poets and thinkers" and is a beautiful town as well. The former concentration camp Buchenwald (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buchenwald) is nearby, in case you are interested in the darker episodes of German history. It has a museum attached and gives you a really humbling idea of the living conditions for the prisoners and of the horrible things that happened there and all over Germany in the 40s.
Also, Eisenach with the Wartburg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wartburg), the castle where Martin Luther found refuge, is worth a visit.
Münster is also really nice and might be worth checking out on your last leg - Cologne to Frankfurt.
When you're in Hamburg, you could do a day trip to the North or Baltic Sea. Then again, Hamburg probably has a lot more to offer than you can see in three days so maybe you should do that next time you come.
Hope this helps, if you have more questions, feel free to contact me.
[ Edit: Edited on Nov 14, 2008, at 5:09 AM by butafly ]
If your trip is fairly fixed in terms of routes, it will be cheaper to buy point to point print yourself internet tickets on the web (in advance, and the sooner the cheaper) and then use local trains & regional tickets (user t_maia is an expert on cheap german travel and regional tickets), though you obviously loose a chunk of flexibility that way.
In terms of your route, it's fairly logical, but there are a few odd places there to spending 2 or 3 nights.
Comments and extra ideas:
- Hannover, for example, to my mind isn't anything special and is mostly a business/concrete city. I actually quite like it, and there are certainly worse places to be, but...
- Also agree that there really isn't much to see/do in Frankfurt
- You are missing out the whole of the SW of the country and Black Forest, which is beautiful
- I'd consider adding Heidelberg between Frankfurt and Stuttgart
- Between Cologne and Frankfurt, I'd suggest coming down the "slow" old route via Koblenz, as it is stunning as you mind along the river. If you have time, a couple of days around that area or in the Mosel valley are worthwhile. A trip down the Rhine valley by boat is pretty good as part of that journey leg, though can be very touristy.
- I'd also consider going via Rothenberg ob der Tauber between Stuttgart and Nurnberg (its NW of Ansbach, and West of Nurnberg)
- Bonn (as a side trip from Cologne or as a separate stop off) is worth a day, and has some interesting history a the former W German capital, especially because of why it became the capital
- Lubeck as a day trip from Hamburg would be a worthwhile daytrip.
- Marburg and Weimar are both excellent suggestions which i'd have also offered
- I would also add Bamberg (between Nurnberg and Leipzig, though that might mess up your route a bit, so you have to go Nurn-Bam-Leip-Dres-Hamb) for two reasons: it was not touched during the war, and much more importantly, its a very important brewing centre and the local beer is absolutely superb!
You obviously can't do all of that, plus your plan whilst still taking it easy, but it should at least give you a few extra ideas