1 Month Germany, Austria, E EU - opinions, suggestions, recommendations

I have had this itinerary penciled in my brain for months and am opening it up for any insider tips - everything is welcome. Background, we have been to italy, france, germany and switzerland in the past. We can fly direct to Frankfurt and one thing I missed in Germany yet that I really want to see is the Rhine Valley.

Rhine with day trip to Koln - 3 nights

Munich for Oktoberfest - 3 nights

Hallstatt - 3 nights

Vienna - 4 nights

Prague - 3 nights

Cesky Krumlov - 2 nights

Bled - 3 nights
*rent car (maybe) and drive to Plitvice park

Split - 2 nights

Dubronik and drop car - 3 nights

Fly home. We will be relying on trains other than where noted. Not sure what kind of travel it will take to get from Cesky Krumlov to Bled? I originally had Budapest in - but scrapped it to get thru Croatia in a reasonable timeframe without getting way out of our way. We love food, drink, cafes, art, history, the wacky and weird, music - really most anything goes.

Posted by Kathleen
Reston, VA, USA
497 posts

Amy, we spent one night in Hallstatt on the RS GAS tour in 2006, and that was plenty for me. It's a nice little town with a pretty lake, the salt mine, and a small museum - but three nights? I would cut back and add a night or two somewhere else [Salzburg or Vienna, perhaps?].
Sorry I'm no help on the rest of your itinerary; it sounds like a great trip!

Posted by Toni
Charlotte, NC, USA
3036 posts

I agree with the above. Add Salzburg. 2 or 3 nights in Vienna and 1 in Hallstatt, then 2 or 3 in Salzburg. You can easily add a day trip by train to Budapest. We did that last winter. It was nice to get a taste of it and we want to go back when we can spend more time there.

Posted by Amy
Madison, WI, USA
468 posts

I think in my mind, I picture Hallstatt as an Austrian type "Vernazza", where we can relax, take in local food and hike around. The original concept of this trip started with a friend saying he wanted to do a Hapsburg "Imperial Capital" tour of Munich, Prague, Vienna and Budapest. So if I should shave time in Hallstatt in favor of getting to Budapest - I just might do that. Anyone else think that is the way to go? I am trying not to cram because I can be a victim of road weariness and I have never done a one month trip before. 2 weeks is the most I have done in one shot. Oh and this will be in October too if that matters for anything.

Posted by Audrey
Keizer, Oregon, USA
577 posts

A day and a night in Hallstatt is enough. It is gorgeouus and you can take the salt mine tour. Take your extra days in Salzburg or Vienna. Two days not enough for both.

Posted by juliette
116 posts

I would def scrap the Hallstatt overnights, shoot, blitz through in a day if you must, but I really think if you're spending so much time in Germany/Austria already then you'll likely feel like you shortchanged yourself by not spending more time in Budpest/Croatia (beaches, drool, water still warm in late Sept./early Oct!!!).

Posted by Paul
NYC area
1757 posts

Hi Amy,

I agree with the rest... 3 nights Hallstatt? We spent the better part of a day there 2 years ago and that was enough for us. While it's a very charming town with beautiful scenery and we're very glad we went... it's just very small. You can walk from one end to the other in about 15 minutes. We also went in October. Pretty quiet at that time of year. Personally, I'd add 2 nights in Salzburg after Munich and 1 in Hallstatt or see it as a day trip from Salzburg. Salzburg's old town is not only beautiful, but compact. 2 days is enough to see it at a relaxed pace. 3 days if you plan to see Hallstatt as a day trip from here.

Hope this helps.


Posted by Laura
Virginia, USA
3249 posts

Hi Amy,
One night in Hallstatt will probably be more than enough. It is very picturesque, but I was a bit bored there. I'd take the extra 2 days and add them on to Croatia. I spend at least one overnight in Plitvice. It is spectacular.

Posted by Galen
Dallas, United States
462 posts

I agree that you don't need three nights in Hallstatt. Salzburg has its old town plus Mozart and Sound of Music sites. Also, Berchtesgaden and Hitler's Eagles Nest are an easy drive or you can take a tour. We did Hallstatt as a day trip by car from Salzburg.

Posted by Brad
Gainesville, VA
7870 posts

I agree with adding Salzburg and shortening Halstatt.

Vienna will have more to see than Prague or Budapest so I wouldn't shorten there.

Posted by Amy
Madison, WI, USA
468 posts

It's unanimous! I am defintely taking 2 days from Hallstatt and one from Vienna and going to throw in Budapest now. A lot of people have suggested Salzburg, but I think thermal bathes are a bigger draw for me than re-tracing The Sound of Music...a movie I have never actually seen in its entirety (gasp).

So the new path is now - Rhine (3), Munich (3), Hallstatt (1), Vienna (3), Budapest (3), Prague (3) and so on....

Other than the bathes, I don't know what else to do in Budapest? And I read on this blog that one of the bathes is sub-parr in terms of cleanliness...gotta avoid that one!

Is anyone concerned about the pace of this itinerary - not a lot of time to stop for laundry :)

Posted by Maggie
Lynden, WA, USA
57 posts

Hi Amy,

With all due respect to my fellow travelers, I have to disagree with their consensus on Hallstatt. I got the impression from your post and comment that you were considering Hallstatt for the relaxation and ambiance.

If that is the case, then please re-consider. I stayed at the Gasthof Simony in Hallstatt for two nights and I really wish I had spent one more night. It's the kind of place where you can be completely content sitting on your balcony or on a bench in the market square watching things go on around you. Or take nice walks, if you want exercise, hike up to the salt mine entrance. The views are spectacular.

I hope to return to Hallstatt some day. Someone else described it as an Austrian Vernazza. That's not a bad description. Do at least two nights.

Also, while in the Rhine region, if you have time, stop in at Bacharach for walk around, you'll be glad you did.