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Help with 3/4 day Rhine/Mosel area honeymoon itinerary

We will be flying into Dusseldorf airport early morning Monday 5/15 and will be flying out of Frankfurt Hahn airport early morning Friday 5/19. We are considering renting a car at the airport and spending the first night in Cologne (we have a lot of hotel reward points that we can use there) and then spending the other 3 nights in the Rhine/Mosel area.
We would like to visit some wineries, see Burg Eltz via hike through the woods, visit some of towns along the Rhine and do the river cruise from Bingen to St. Goar. My fiance is a car enthusiast so we are also planning to make a trip to Nurburgring one evening as it is open to public from 5-7PM.
We don't have a strong preference between staying on the Rhine or the Mosel, but would like to base ourselves in a somewhat central location. Koblenz appears to be the most central location- but I have read many reviews that there are better places to stay and the smaller towns of Cochem or Boppard may serve as better base locations. Any feedback regarding the best town to base ourselves in and where to stay would be appreciated.
Also, is it worth it to spend a night in Cologne or would it be more ideal to drive straight from Dusseldorf to the Rhine or Mosel and then spend 2 nights on each river?

Posted by
5567 posts

If you are arriving in DUS after an overnight flight, I disagree with the idea of renting a car that same day. Take the train to Cologne for overnight. You don't know how you'll be feeling that day and you need some time to adjust your inner clocks to the time schedule - a few unplanned hours in Cologne are a good idea. Pick up the car the next morning.

Since you'll be cruising to St. Goar, stay in St. Goar for nights 2-4. Take the train to Bingen first, and cruise back. Boppard could work as a base too. Train from Boppard to Bingen, then either cruise to Boppard instead of St. Goar, or get off in St. Goar and return to Boppard by train. Boppard is a little closer to the Mosel and to the Nürburgring.

There's no need for a Mosel base town just to visit Eltz and Cochem.

You might consider doing this whole trip by train (except maybe you rent a car for the day you do the Nürburgring.) Your destinations are easy to reach by train - and there's a shuttle you can get to Hahn airport from Koblenz or possibly elsewhere.