Hello. We will be flying into and out of Berlin from NYC, spending 12 full days, not including flying. We would like to spend 6 days in Berlin, with 2 days devoted to touring outside the city. Any suggestions? Once leaving Berlin, we are interested in traveling 4-5 hours away, staying in a Charming Historical Village-Town, one that is within close proximity by train to touring other areas. We will then take a train back to Berlin the night before our flight. Any ideas? Thank you. Candi
Have a look at Lübeck, Quedlinburg, or perhaps Potsdam. You could also visit Hamburg for a bit of a change.
Haven't visited Lübeck yet, so can't comment. I have stayed in Quedlinburg. Quite simply, I haven't encountered another town in Germany such a large historical section. If I had bothered to count the number of buildings I encountered that were constructed after WWII, I think the total may have been less than 10. The great majority of the town seems to date from the 17th and 19th centuries. I'm not certain how easy it would be to reach from Berlin, though. Nearby Wernigerode and the Hartz mountains are all worth visiting too. Potsdam is very easy to reach from Berlin. It's remarkably well preserved.
Munich in Germany. Hallstatt in Austria, a recommendation from Rick Steves' Europe Thru the Back Door that was our favorite spot in 6 countries in 1996.
Thanks for the replies. We've been to Munich and Hallstat, beautiful areas, but are preferring not to travel that far south this visit.
Celle is a little farther then we want to go for a day trip. Since we are spending a week in Berlin and now a 5 days in Prague, we don't want to travel any more then 60-90 minutes one way by train outside of Berlin.
The cons on taking the train is our luggage. Last time we traveled through out Europe on the train, storing our luggage seemed to be an issue. Overhead area wasn't large enough to hold our luggage and the luggage compartment areas were full and out of sight. On the bus, we don't have to worry about the luggage, which is a huge plus for us.
Candi, Good that you're setting aside almost week for Berlin. I can suggest to you an interesting town fitting your description above, within a 2+ hr. radius from Berlin, on a trunk line, (thus making it easy to get back to Berlin Hbf.) and requiring only one transfer...Celle. This town escaped the war intact and unscathed. I don't recommend going to Hannover unless you have a lot more time to visit in Germany, esp up north. Potsdam is very much worth a day or even two. Take the S-Bahn, get on a tour at Potsdam Hbf...the Tourist Office is in the station, afterwards walk around the town, a most interesting and captivating place if you're interested in Prussian history.
Thanks Fred. I'll take a look at Celle. Yes, we've read about Potsdam and planned on setting aside a day to visit there also. After spending a week in and around Berlin, we're going to Prague for the rest of our time. We've been there before and loved it. Haven't decided between taking a bus or a train to Prague from Berlin. Suggestions?
Hi, Berlin Hbf to Prague is very doable by train. The EuroCity (EC) day train goes there ca 4 3/4hrs, direct. No need to take a bus. Traveling by bus, however, is a good experience in Europe, whether in France, Poland, and Germany, which are the places I've done it. As for other city possiblities within your time radius, it's best (timewise) the place is on a trunk line where you can take the ICE train to and fro. I agree with Lübeck and Hamburg, as suggested above; with either one you'll be taking the ICE. You have to go through Hamburg Hbf. to get to Lübeck.
I enjoyed Dresden very much. It's about 2 hours by train from Berlin. I ended my trip there and it was quite easy to get to the Berlin airport straight from Dresden.
Let me also vote for Dresden. Since the fall of the Iron Curtain, the city has really been in a transformation. Before the end of WWII, it was possibly the most beautiful city in Europe. My sister's been back twice, and loved it. And as far as luggage: We travel with one 21" rolling bag and a large shoulder bag. If you cannot personally transport your luggage 1 mile, leave it at home.
There will be 4 adults, each with one 24 inch rolling suitcase and a backpack. The issue isn't rolling our luggage one mile, which we have no problem doing and have done before. We've carried our luggage up and down stairs at numerous train stations, never an issue for us. The issue is storing of our luggage on the train. We've traveled throughout Europe 3 times before, so this isn't something that we're new at. On most trains that we've traveled on, there is an overhead rack for luggage, and an area at the end of each compartment on the train to store luggage. There has not been one time that we've been able to store our luggage overhead, as it's been completely full, leaving us to store our luggage out of view, hoping that it isn't taken accidentally, as we've seen that happen before to other travelers. Thanks for the suggestion on Dresden, although at 2 hours one way, is a little further then we wanted to go for a day trip. Hoping to find places to visit within 60-90 minutes one way outside of Berlin for a day trip.
Oh, I thought you were asking for a place to stay after Berlin.
Originally I was, but then I posted another message stating we were going to spend the first half of our trip in Berlin, the second half in Prague. We could make a stop for 2 days in Dresden, cutting short our stay in Berlin and Prague though. Would Dresden be worth a 2 day visit, cutting short our time in Berlin and Prague?
Hi, Setting aside rwo days for Dresden is much better than a day trip from Berlin. Still, the 60-90 mins time radius for a day trip assuming you leave from Berlin Hbf. gives you a number of choices. The closest and easiest is Potsdam, ca. 40 mins on the S-Bahn. I would recommend also Lutherstadt Wittenberg, only passed through it on the train but what I saw from the station was interesting for at least a day trip. If Dresden too far for a day trip, in between Dresden and Berlin is Leipzig, a little more than an hour on the ICE. This is one city that is underrated in Germany, esp. if you're interested in music and history. Leipzig was a culture center as was Dresden.
I think that you're correct to drop Celle. I agree that Dresden is both accessible from Berlin and has loads to offer, you also can easily include it on your Prague visit as it is basically a direct line between the two.