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Sorry, another itinerary question!

Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
31 posts
70 reviews
Sorry, another itinerary question!

Hi everyone and thanks for reading! I've tried to find the answer to my question searching the forum but can't find just what I'm looking for.

I'm taking my 13-year-old daughter on her first trip to Europe in March, and we have a very limited amount of time. We fly into Paris and plan on two nights there, then I'm thinking about one day/night in Amsterdam, then we'll have four nights left before we have to get back to Paris for one last night there before our flight home the next morning (couldn't find an open-jaws flight cheap enough, unfortunately).

I want to spend those four non-accounted-for days in Germany, but I have never been and I can't decide where to go.

I absolutely love Europe and I know my daughter will too. This is intended as sort of an introductory trip, with the idea that she will be back. Many, many times, I hope! We do not need to see everything; it's more important to me that she get the vibe of European travel and see how easy and fun it is to do.

I'm interested in everyone's ideas of what would be best to see in only four days/nights. I am thinking about the Rhine river area, maybe Dachau, possibly Munich. I've read nice things about Salzburg, too (though I know that's not Germany, haha). I'm not interested in trying to make it to Berlin this trip.

We would probably prefer smaller, more atmospheric towns and are not really interested in a lot of museums for this first trip. We like cathedrals and castles. We do not have unlimited funds but don't mind spending what we need to to have the best trip we can have. We travel light and don't mind jumping from town to town. We like to try new, interesting (and good!) food but don't want anything fancy.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance!

Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
31 posts
70 reviews
1. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

Whoops! It looks like I posted this under the Fussen forum. I meant to post it under the general Germany one. Sorry!

County Cork, Ireland
Destination Expert
for County Cork
Level Contributor
3,025 posts
134 reviews
2. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

It's in the general Germany forum too. Look to see what the price of flights are to the various German cities from Amsterdam. Try skyscanner.com to find the cheapest flights. Personally I'd go to Munich and you could also do a day trip to Salzburg from there since you mentioned it.

Level Contributor
40 posts
6 reviews
3. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

I spent almost same amount of time in Germany I can share my experience and thoughts for you... I stayed in Munich and booked tours from grey line... That was a very good decision for me as I don't have to drive and enjoy the scenery .... Day 1 I took Salzburg and lake st Wolfgang .. Day 2 I book the tour for Rothenburg and day 3: neuschwanstein castle linrerhof and 4th day for Munich city itself like marienplatz etc... For all three I booked the tours as I have limited time and wanted to cover more areas and believe me it was all worth it.

Edited: 03 January 2017, 06:15
Mainz, Germany
Level Contributor
11,462 posts
65 reviews
4. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

I understand your intention, but just the idea of leaving Paris after one full day for Amsterdam for one night makes my head spin... I would rather invest the time for sightseeing instead for sitting on trains crisscrossing the continent.

From either Paris or Amsterdam you can reach the Middle Rhine in a half day of travel. Getting to Munich adds another half day, so that means one of four days already wasted just getting to places instead of doing anything on the ground. If Munich and surrounding is on your bucket-list I'd rather fly there directly from Paris or Amsterdam. Plenty of different places to visit from there. Or you could take a train from Paris to Strasbourg (instead of Amsterdam) just to add another great city with a magnificent cathedral, and travel onto Munich from there, possibly breaking up that trip in Ulm, to see the world's highest church tower of the Ulmer Münster.

Florida
Level Contributor
1,888 posts
173 reviews
5. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

One day in Paris, why go there at all? Maybe you've been there already and it's just your jump-off point. There should be a fast train to Cologne to see the cathedral and then head south to the Middle Rhine Valley to see the castles. Don't squeeze in Munich, too much travel time. If you can, fly back from Frankfurt.

Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
31 posts
70 reviews
6. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

Wow, this is a lot to think about. Thanks, everyone! I really just want my daughter to get a taste of Europe, and the cheapest flight I could find was in and out of Paris. She likes Anne Frank so I thought we'd go to Amsterdam, see the Anne Frank house, walk around Dam Square and the canals a little, spend the night and leave. She LOVES Germany and I've never been there, but with four days there's not time for much. I think we might prefer to see some of the smaller German towns, maybe the middle Rhine. While I don't want to waste too much time on trains, I actually love train rides. It's so hard to make a decision, but the great thing is that I know that no matter what we do we'll have a great time!

Fairfax, Virginia
Level Contributor
44 posts
45 reviews
7. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

We took our daughter to Germany for the first time when she was 13. It was not her first time to Europe as we had visited London and Paris the year before. We flew to Munich and trained to the salt mines and neuschwanstein castle. We also went to Salzburg and did the Sound of Music tour. She is now 20 and tells us that she remembers every minute of our castle tour and how magical it was for her.

Germany
Destination Expert
for Train Travel
Level Contributor
40,744 posts
8. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

A fairly straight route would be Paris - Heidelberg - Middle Rhine Valley - Cologne - Amsterdam. Would also show you quite a variety of Germany.

Highspeed train from Paris Est to Mannheim change there for one of the very frequent traint to Heidelberg (10-15 min travel time)

http://www.heidelberg-marketing.de/en.html

romantic-germany.info/holiday-regions/…

http://www.marksburg.de/en/

http://www.cologne-tourism.com/

Victoria, Australia
Level Contributor
2,833 posts
300 reviews
9. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

If you stick to visiting Amsterdam, make sure you prebook for the Anne Frank House. From 9am to 3.30pm entry is with prebooked, timed tickets only. From 3.30pm onwards you need to queue.

Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
31 posts
70 reviews
10. Re: Sorry, another itinerary question!

Thanks for all the great advice, everyone! There are so many good options!