I’m dreaming of our next trip and would love your input. This is what I’m thinking: Three weeks starting in mid-June due to school schedules. Flying from the west coast. Two adults, two teens. We love small villages, mountains, forests, castles, history. We’ve travelled extensively throughout Europe. We prefer to drive for the flexibility, and know there could be high drop off fees with renting in one country and returning in another. We would have to weigh this against the hassle of picking up/dropping off three separate cars and taking the train between countries. We like to have a home base at a house or apartment and day trip if it makes sense. Prefer 3 night minimum per stop.
I’m thinking of starting with the northern Italian lakes/Dolomites. We’ve been to Lake Como. Lake Garda looks beautiful. Also interested in some lakes in the Dolomites. Then train to Switzerland - but from where? Milan? Bolzano?
In Switzerland, Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald call to me. We’re not really into big cities. Any other great villages in Switzerland to see? Spectacular drives?
We would then continue to the Alsace region (by train?) to visit family history sites near Colmar.
For the return flight, we’d travel by train probably from Strasbourg to either Paris or Frankfurt. I’m leaning toward Frankfurt, just because we’ve been to Paris 3 times but have never been to Frankfurt. We’d arrive a day before our return flight.
I‘d love to hear about any recommendations you have for must-see places in these areas. Also, any tips on travel between the countries? How would you allocate 19 days (not including arrival and departure days) to these three regions?