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Germany - September 2020 Recommendations

My wife and I will be concluding a Rhine River Cruise/Passion Play 2020 tour in Oberammergau on September 16, 2020. We have the ability to extend our trip further on our own (a week or so) but are struggling with deciding where to go/what to do. We visited Munich and the castles in 2010 so we've visited the big tourist attractions in and around Munich. Any input on the following ideas:

  1. Go towards Munich as the Oktoberfest begins on September 19, 2020. This is intriguing as we'll be close by in order to experience this. Our intention would be to not spend multiple days at Oktoberfest. Any suggestions of where to stay with this option? How far outside of Munich for lodging would make sense while using public transportation to get to Munich?
  2. Go towards Berlin - and use as a base for other touring.
  3. Visit another country - Switzerland perhaps.
  4. Other suggestions?

We are open to using a city as a base rather than moving every day. Mode of travel is open - car or public transportation.

Thank You for your advice!

Posted by
4968 posts

"We visited Munich and the castles..."

Make sure that your Rhine cruise allows for a visit to Marksburg Castle in Braubach - the best intact medieval castle your boat will pass by. If you are referring to Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau near Munich previously, you indeed visited two major tourist attractions - but these are royal palaces built relatively recently, not castles - very different from what you'll find on the Rhine.

"Visit another country - Switzerland perhaps."

Don't worry - you've only begun to explore Germany. Nothing wrong with Switzerland though, as long as you have pockets full of Euros.

"We are open to using a city as a base rather than moving every day. Mode of travel is open - car or public transportation."

With that amount of time, the attractive city of Nuremberg (north of Munich) could be ideal for this sort of stay. From there you can make day trips by train to some of Germany's best destinations; do some research on Nuremberg and the following places nearby... they include UNESCO World heritage sites.

Bamberg
Würzburg
Regensburg
Bayreuth
Iphofen
Bad Windsheim
Rothenburg

Day passes cover you on these outings from Nuremberg for roughly €20 - €30 per couple per day. Look into the VGN Tagesticket Plus and the Bayern Ticket.

I've found Oktoberfest too over-the-top with crowds, costs, and tourists - and somewhat limited selections of beer. Bamberg and most of these other towns have long brewing traditions and wonderful pubs and nice venues for really pleasant beer sampling and local food specialties...

https://www.europeanbeerguide.net/bambpubs.htm
https://www.europeanbeerguide.net/nurnpubs.htm
https://www.europeanbeerguide.net/bayrpubs.htm

There is an intense collection of breweries in the Bamberg area:
https://www.franken-sind-keine-baiern.de/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Ausschnitt_Bamberg.jpg

Würzburg has a long tradition of wine production as well as some nice pubs.

Posted by
565 posts

Nuremberg is also high on my list - and honestly it is just an hour or so out of Munich on the train, so you could even do some Oktoberfest from there and avoid Munich prices. The Nuremberg region is known as Franconia and has a range of entirely different beers than further south. The Franconian hill country north east of N is lovely and a days driving tour can be really fun (Frankische Schweiz).

https://www.fraenkische-schweiz.com/de/

https://museums.nuernberg.de/nuremberg-municipal-museums/