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Itinerary Check

I am in the beginning stages of planning my next trip to Europe this summer. I will be taking my son who will be 15 years old at the time. He wants some WWII history, interested in British History. (Tudor period) and Paris (taking French in school). He also wants to experience oompah music and liederhosen (sp)type of entertainment. I am afraid that I might be moving around too much. Please look over my itinerary. Any suggestions or ideas will be helpful.

London for 4 nights, including Imperial War Museum and Hampton Court.

Eurostar to Paris for 4 nights, including Les Invalides.

Fly to Salzburg. Train or bus to Berchtesgaden for 3 nights. See Eagle's Nest, and museum.

Train to Munich for 4 nights.

We will of course be seeing the typical tourist sights. I am hoping this will touch on each countries participation in WWII without turning trip into class field trip.

Posted by
18944 posts

I'm not sure of the bus fare pP from Salzburg to Berchtesgaden without a return (you can get a Tagesticket for a round trip for €9,-). One way from Salzburg to Berchtesgaden by train is €8,40 pP.

When you go from Berchtesgaden to Muenchen, you can use a €28 Bayern-Ticket for both of you using regional trains.

Hosen is pants, Lieder is "songs", so I guess Liederhosen would be pants that sing? Leider is unfortunately, so Leiderhosen would be "unfortunate" pants. Leder is German for leather. Lederhosen are the leather pants traditionally worn in the German Alpine areas.

Posted by
2630 posts

Given everything you are trying to fit in, I think you've come up with a good itinerary. It just seems a shame to miss Normandy. It's by far the best WWII site in Europe IMHO. I love Paris and enjoyed Les Invalides, but it is nothing compared to Normandy if you are interested in WWII. I can't argue with a stop in Paris, but I can't imagine skipping Normandy. Is there any way you could extend your trip for two days (preferably three) to take the train from Paris to Bayeux to take a Battlebus Tour -- either the one or two-day American tours?

Posted by
2090 posts

Kristen, I agree with Carroll...If you are interested in WWII, the Battlebus tours of the Normandy beaches and the war museum are absolutely outstanding. We considered it a highlight of our 2 weeks in France this year. Please at least look into one of the tours.

Posted by
18944 posts

I think that the Eagles' Nest (Kehlsteinhaus) is worth seeing once. I had lunch in the octagonal room at the front, where Hilter once entertained Mussolini. It was an eerie feeling. The "museum" at the foot of Kehlstein, the "Dokumentation Center", is very interesting, as are the remains of the bunkers attached to it. There are other things to see in Berchtesgaden, particularly Königssee, but I think two whole days will cover it.

Posted by
32111 posts


Your Itinerary looks reasonably good, however a few comments and suggestions to add to the others.

  • LONDON: The Imperial War Museum is excellent! Plan to spend at least four hours there, as there's LOTS to see. You may also want to try and fit in the Cabinet War Rooms and HMS Belfast which is moored near the Tower Bridge. On the next visit, you might consider trips to the awesome Tank Museum (Bovington, Dorset) or the Fleet Air Arm Museum (Yeovilton). The Tower of London is also an interesting site to visit.

  • PARIS: Les Invalides is huge, so you may want to prioritize your visit to the sections that are of most interest (WW-2 section?). I definetely agree with the others in that a night or two in Bayeux and a BattleBus tour would provide an outstanding learning experience for your Son (the American Highlights tour will include a stop at the cemetery above Omaha Beach). There's a small Museum in Bayeux (and of course the famous Tapestry which describes a much earlier battle in 1066), and a much larger Museum in nearby Caen. The Longues sur Mer Gun Batteries are also a short distance outside Bayeux (the Command Bunker there was used in the filming of The Longest Day). The sites in Normandy are quite "spread out" so I find a tour the most efficient way to see these.

  • SALZBURG: My suggestion would be to "base" in Salzburg and visit Berchtesgaden on a day trip. You can take day trips to the Eagle's Nest either with Bob's Special Tours or Eagles Nest Tours (check their respective websites). There's also a Salt Mine to tour in Berchtesgaden and the Documentation Centre above town (displays are in German but the Audioguide can be set to English). The Bunkers attached to the Centre are very interesting, but only a small part of them are open for touring. Your Son may also enjoy visiting the Hohensalzburg Fortress (which provides great views of the city).


Posted by
32111 posts

Part II.....

  • MUNICH: During your visit to Munich, you may want to visit Dachau which is located a short distance from the city. You can travel there and tour the site on your own, or take a guided day tour. Check the website for Radius Tours as they offer a very interesting and moving tour of Dachau. They same firm offers Walking Tours of Munich and a tour which describes the origins of the Nazi party and the Third Reich. You could also visit Neuschwanstein Castle (via day tour or on your own) which is located near Fussen, again a short distance from Munich.

For "Lederhosen" type entertainment, one place that offers that is the Hofbrauhaus in Munich. Last time I was there, I was treated to a very "authentic" show in the large banquet room on the top floor, with wood chopping demonstrations, yodelling, etc. I've never had occasion to check on the age limits, but that sort of thing is much more "relaxed in Europe than on this side of the pond so your Son may be able to enjoy the entertainment without having a Beer.

You may also enjoy visiting the Deutsches Museum, as it contains lots of WW-2 exhibits. However, it's VERY large (over 16 kM of exhibits at the main site in Munich), so you'll have to prioritize.

All of the areas you're planning to visit have lots to see. Be sure to allow adequate travel time between cities. Even using budget flights will likely take a minimum of six hours.

Good luck with your planning!

Posted by
8784 posts

I don't think I would do a "day trip" from Paris to Bayeux in Normandy. I would be cranky and miserable too. It is probably better if you either do not go at all or go with the idea of doing some sort of tour there like Battlebus, which of course means staying there for 1-2 nights. You won't regret it and it might pique a deep interest for your son.

Look for some bike tours in some of the cities you are visiting. Or walking tours. These are usually very interesting for all ages and very reasonable in cost too. For Munich, also have a look at "Dark History" walking tours. Get some really fascinating tidbits of Munichs past history.

Posted by
199 posts

Thank you for all the replies. Steve- I am planning to making a day trip from Munich to Dachau. I have looked into to Radius Tours which seems to allow more access than doing on your own. Its sure to be an emotional experience. Thank you for the suggestion.

I looked into doing a day trip from Paris to Normandy. It seemed a lot of work, time and $$$. I was really surprised that my son suggested seeing WWII sites/museums. He never showed interest. His original request was "Castles and a boat ride". I am afraid that too much of one thing (WWII) will get him bored, thus creating a long day with a moody teenager. Sure to be a miserable day. He is active and athletic, so I would like to somehow add some time hiking in Alps. (Mt Jenner?). Still need to research.

I was thinking about using Berchtesgarden as my base to: Visit Eagle's Nest, museum and Documentation center, boat ride on Konigssee, hiking, and possibly the Salt Mines. I am not sure that it can be done in one day.

Ken- After reading RS Germany, it looks like the only "authentic" show is Hofbrahaus in Munich. It think the show would be excellent. Hopefully, he will be allowed to attend. I have Neuschwanstein Castle on my list to see. I was also thinking of doing Tegelberg luge near the Castle.

Posted by
188 posts

Our sons loved the luge (actually so did I) when they were that age. They also liked biking in Salzburg and hiking up to some castle ruins, where they could fully explore on their own. We did a combination of different activities and sights just as you are thinking of doing. Have a great trip!