How far is it from Paris to Bacharach, Germany by train and would anyone recommend a place? Thanks!!
Takes between 5 and 6 hours. You'll need to change trains a few times.
You can look up the times and number of changes on the German Rail website. I've always been impressed with Im Malerwinkel in Bacharach. It's in a beautiful location, well away from the sound of the train tracks and at the bottom of the steep hill to Stahleck hostel.
Avoid the Hotel Kranenturn. The noisiest place on Earth. The trains roar by all night about 30 feet from the hotel. That was the worst night we ever had travelling in Europe. Nice place for dinner but that is it.
Sara, One of the quickest trips I could find was a departure from Paris Nord to Bacharach, with a travel time of 5H:29M (two changes in Köln and Koblenz, reservations compulsory for part of the trip). As far as "recommending a place", it would help to know what type of accommodations you prefer? I've stayed at both Hotel Kranenturm and Pension Lettie and would recommend either of those. I didn't find the train noise to be a problem at Hotel Kranenturm and had a good sleep every night. The reviews on Trip Advisor reflect my experience staying there. If you'd like to stay in a somewhat "unique" location, you might consider Burg Stahleck Hostel, which is above town (it's a bit of a hike, so a Taxi would be a good idea, but you might have to pre-arrange that as the station is not staffed). You didn't say what time of year you'd be travelling, but it would probably be a good idea to pre-book accommodations if travelling in peak season. During non-peak times, you may be able to find something on short notice. Bacharach is a small town, so you could ask at the T.I. or the Irish Pub on the main street. Happy travels!
As for the Köln-Koblenz connection, if you are doing this on a railpass, beware. Most, if not all, of these connections utilize Thalys, and Thalys is noted for one of the biggest passholder surcharges (reservation fees). There are other connections, some of them faster using TGV or ICE out of Paris. These connections go via Luxembourg-Koblenz or Saarbrücken/Kaiserslautern- Bingen. Note: I added Kaiserlautern to satisfy Ken. Some of those connections change trains in Saarbrücken, some in Kaiserslautern, but they all cross the border at Saarbrücken.
One of the connections I looked at had two changes in Kaiserslautern and Bingen. As I recall, that was the fastest route.
Pensione Lettie is where we always stay. It's not fancy but the rooms are ocmfortable and the price is right. The owner (Lettie) is a Filipina woman who used to be married to a German then worked for the US Army after he died. Eventually she saved up her money and opened Pensione Lettie and travels to the US a couple times a year to Vegas. She's full of life, speaks perfect English, wonderful host and makes a fantastic breakfast.
It might sound odd, but you can take the train from Paris to Frankfurt, no changes and be in Frankfurt in 3.49 hours. From there, take the regional train to Bacharach. This just has 1 change, and takes about 1.15 hours.
"I didn't find the train noise to be a problem at Hotel Kranenturm...." Same here and I'm a very light sleeper. I though it was a pretty memorable place to stay.
Agree w/ post above re: Hotel Kranenturm (http://www.kranenturm.com/), as Rick suggests in his Germany guideboook. I loved it and thought it was a real winner. Clean rooms, nice terrace, which was great for meeting other travelers and helpful staff. One potential negative, my room faced the train tracks, but the windows were double paned and I never recall the noise being an issue at night. Great breakfast each AM, too. All in all, a good value and solid Rick reccomendation. Bacharach is lovely. Not a hell of a lot to do, per se, but after a day traveling on the Rhine, I LOVED staying overnight in Bacharch, enjoying a good dinner and strolling the cobble stone streets. Makes for a great over-night say on the Rhine.
Use the German Rail website to find the fastest connections. The fastest connection I see are 5h11m to 5h17m by ICE/TGV to Kaiserslautern, change, to Bingen, change, to Bacharach. There are one change connections but they go by Thalys to Koeln to Bacharach and take an hour longer. The reason a one change connection through Frankfurt might take longer would be the connection timing.
That was my secret ploy to get people to at least stop in Frankfurt for a few hours of sightseeing before moving on. Figure if you spend all this money to come to Germany, you might as well visit one of the important and historic cities while you are at it.
Thanks so much for all the suggestions!!
AL, I am 99.99999% sure she was joking.
"resume the journey from Frankfurt to Bacharach before 10 am next day?" Any journey on a Sparpreis ticket has to be COMPLETED by 10 AM the following morning, not resumed. There is a regional train getting to Bacharach by 10:26. That's too late. An earlier train leaves Frankfurt Hbf at 7:47 and gets to Bacharach at 9:20. IMO, 7:47 is too early. Of course, if you just booked your SparPreis ticket to get to Mainz by 10:00, Mainz to Bacharch is not to expensive (€8 pP).
@ Rik, "She's full of life, speaks perfect English, wonderful host and makes a fantastic breakfast." I definitely agree that Lettie provides an excellent (and filling) breakfast!!! I can't remember how many Waffles I had, but I'm sure my waistline is still recovering from my stay there. She also provides a great laundry service. The breakfast at Hotel Kranenturm is also fantastic, but is more of a European-style feast. During my time in Bacharach last year, the Irish Pub on the main street was holding a 4th of July party for all the U.S. travellers in town. They were kind enough to invite me as well, so I treated it as a somewhat belated Canada Day celebration (July 1). Lettie was there along with a lot of the other locals, and it was a fantastic party (even better after a few pints of Guinness!). Cheers!