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visiting college student in southern Germany with grandparents

Our son will be studying abroad in Tübingen, and we're planning to visit this summer with our daughter (17) and my parents who are 75. This likely will be my parents' only trip to Germany, but neither our first nor last, hopefully! I am trying to make the most of our time at a reasonable pace, with emphasis on scenery and history. My parents are used to luxury trips so we're looking for nice accommodations. We have about 10 days and would like to travel by train:

1 night in Frankfurt with day trip on the Rhine from Rüdesheim to St. Goar
2 nights in Stuttgart with visit to Mercedes museum
3 nights in Tübingen with day trips to Schloss Lichtenstein, Burg Hohenzollern, or Kloster Bebenhausen
1 night in Nürnberg with visit to Nazi Documentation Center and Historic Art Bunker
3 nights in München to see Hofbräuhaus, Marienplatz, and Viktualienmarkt; day trips to Gramisch Partenkirchen and/or Zugspitze
(considering skipping Nürnberg and visiting newer Nazi Documentation Center in München)

Any insight or suggestions welcome!

Posted by
20485 posts

Looks like a great trip. Should be no problem finding higher end accommodations. Since I am generally a budget traveler, I have no specific recommendations to make.

Wondering about that first night. Are you planning on spending first day in Frankfurt and doing the Rhine journey on the next day, then going from St Goar to Stuttgart? Might be a good idea for the grand parents to have a little jet lag recovery, although I am close to that age and still hit the ground running. But I must admit it is getting tougher.

PS assume you fly back to Chicago from Munich.

Posted by
33339 posts

since you will be there, give Tübingen enough time. it is a lovely town, grandparents may be a bit slower on the hills but it is worth it. Plenty in the vicinity too.

Posted by
7579 posts

Depending on your parents' preference, I'd mention that we were surprised to find that two or three high-end German hotels we stayed in during a past summer, had air conditioning that was unable to keep up with a brutal heat wave. It's just not engineered the way systems are in the United States.

Posted by
2486 posts

I would rent a car for schloss Lichtensein, burg Hohenzollern, and Kloster Benenhausen ( altho it is an easy bus ride )

Posted by
550 posts

One consideration could be the White Rose sites as a DIY tour (as much or as little as interests you; the sites themselves are not all super exciting per se) and the associated museum. It's a great profile in civil courage and restores the faith in young people--great for a 17 year old and a college student but also great for older folks.

Posted by
2 posts

Thank you for the suggestions! I had been thinking we would tour the Rhine the first day to keep us awake, but I'll make sure we have the option of doing it the second day if we need a rest. We're now planning to skip Nürnberg to extend our stay in Tübingen and keep changing accommodations to a minimum. Thanks, too, for information about the White Rose walking tour—we would all appreciate that powerful perspective of history.