I am going to give as much info as possible to be thorough- I hope it is not too much for all to read through! Thanks for your replies in advance :)
So far I have researched for over 10 hours. I have just over 5 weeks and I decided to explore Germany, Netherlands and Ireland arriving in Germany to Frankfurt March 27th at 8am and flying back to the USA from Dublin in early May.
For the Germany leg I was planning about 2 weeks, 15 Nights, 16.5 ish days (I am adding in 2-3 (apart of the 16) nights in Colmar France that's non negotiable :) I have the option of extending the trip a bit and cutting time in Netherlands. However I am planning two weeks in Ireland for another road trip as well so can not extend Netherlands - but am mainly going here for tulips so feel at least 5 days is a good amount of time (happy to take opinions on that thought as well)
I am planning to drive because I think it will be more convenient than train and not necessarily more expensive. A car for the two weeks is running $400-$482 depending on where I pick it up. But I am concerned about parking. Is it free in most areas? It is readily available? I hope this is a good option!
I am doing a lot of one night, two night options (because I don't see how I can do it any differently) and would not like to book too far out on accommodations but is that a mistake? In early April in your opinion, will last minute $100 a night or less accommodations be hard to find? I don't want to be too rushed but want to get it all in! I enjoy water, valleys, cliffs, hiking, biking, quaint cozy or medieval towns over museums, night life and modern architecture. so that's why the big cities sometimes don't interest me as much.
I've added a few notes in the plan below but overall I am looking for opinions on if I am trying to do too much and should cut back based on what areas may be similar or if a different area I have not thought of would be more enjoyable for me. Thank you again for your time!
So far my plan is:
Day 1: Frankfurt arrive 8am
Day 2: Afternoon pick up car drive 2 hours to Cochem -Mosel River valley
Day 3: Cochem - does this area deserve more time?
Day 4: Drive 3 hours to Baden Baden or Black forest/Freiburg -how much time do I need here if just admiring the town and forests? Baden Baden looks charming but is it comparable to Romantic Road or Nurnberg? I could drive through the Black Forest and head straight to Colmar for the night
Day 5: Drive 1.5 hr to Colmar, France (from Black Forest)
Day 6: Colmar
Day 7 Colmar
Day 8 Drive 4.5 -5 hours to Fussen/ Bavaria Alps From Colmar Fussen (any good stops along the way to break up the drive?)
Day 9 Fussen/Castles/Neuschwanstein
Day 10 Drive 1.5hrs to Munich – How is Munich with a car? Is Parking expensive?
Day 11 Munich (do I need two full days here? I like small towns more than big cities. I could spend extra night in Cochem or Baden Baden or along the Romantic Road unless Munich is a must stop – I haven’t research it yet :)
Day 12 Drive 30 mins to Dachau, visit then drive through Romantic Road to? Maybe Rothenburg ob der Tauber (2hrs)
Day 13 Romantic Road villages- Spend night at Wurzburg?
(45 mins to Wurzburg from Rothenburg) towns are: Neusch. Castle, Pfaffenwinkel, Landsberg am lech, Augsburg, Harburg Castle, Dinkelsbuhl, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Wurzburg.
Day 14 Drive 1.15 mins to Nurnberg
Day 15 Nurnberg
Day 16 Drive 2.5 hrs to Frankfurt to return car and fly to Amsterdam
If you got to here- yay!! I know it was not easy- Thanks for your thoughts!