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Rothenburg or Fussen Castles

I want to take a day trip from Munich. At first I really wanted to go and see the castles of Fussen, then I was thinking of going to Zurich to see more of the Alps, but now I am considering Rothenburg. What shall I ever do??? :)I am so grateful that the biggest problem in my life is deciding what day trip to go on while in Europe. If you have another suggestion let's hear it!

Posted by
18228 posts

Munich is a great place for side trips. In a few hours you can get to Würzburg, Bamberg, Nürnberg to the north, Passau, Burghausen, and Salzburg to the east, Oberammergau, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, and Mittenwald to the south, and Augsburg, Nördlingen, and Ulm to the West. That's in addition to Füssen and Rothenburg, and is certainly not a complete list. Of the two, Füssen and Rothenburg, I would prefer Füssen for a day trip. Rothenburg is also nice, but takes a little longer to get to and really deserves an overnight trip.

BTW, although you can see the Alps from Zürich, I would not really describe it as "in the Alps". For a better Alpine experience go to Oberstdorf in the Illertal (in Bavaria, near the border with Baden-Württemburg and near Lindau on the Bodensee). The Iller river valley is a narrow valley surrounded by mountains, and at the head of the valley is Oberstdorf, one of the major ski areas in Germany. From there you can get to Kleinwalsertal, a beautiful alpine valley, which is part of Austria, but only accessible from Germany.

Posted by
2712 posts

Hi Laura,

Two recommendations...

To see a great castle/palace, Ludwig's Herrenchiemsee is about an hour from Munich.

www.herren-chiemsee.de/englisch/n_palace/index.htm

Zurich to see the Alps? No need to go all the way to Switzerland (especially Zurich). A MUCH shorter trip from Munich to see theAlps is to visit the "quintessential Bavarian village" surrounded by mountains... Mittenwald, Germany! This is hard to beat.

We have some photo's of Mittenwald at:

www.worldisround.com/home/pja1/travel11.html

Hope this helps.

Paul

Posted by
192 posts

Hi Laura,
I can't comment on Zurich because I haven't been there but it doesn't seem like a feasible say trip.
If I had a choice between Fuessen and Rothenburg I would choose Fuessen. The Chiemsee is also a personal favorite.
Mary

Posted by
1179 posts

My vote is for Fussen. There is lots to see and it is closest to Munich. Rothenberg would be a lot longer travel time-too far to go and come back the same day (possible- but maybe not enjoyable). If you want to see the Alps, there are many beautiful places much closer to Munich. Berchtesgaten can be beautiful, as well as the Zugspitz area. Switzerland is really too far for an enjoyable day trip. Also, you might want to have a back up option, since the Alps can be covered by clouds. My husband and I got snowed out of a three day hiking trip this last September. Of course, this is all my opinion and it is your trip. It will be hard to go too far wrong. But for me, I would rather spent more time out of the car or train than in it. Have fun.

Posted by
1717 posts

Fussen : visit Neuschwanstein, and ride in the gondola on a cable up to Tegelburg. I think you will have time to do both of those, if you depart from Munich in a train at a fairly early time in the morning. Reserve your ticket for Neuschwanstein before you leave the U.S.A. For the guided tour of Neuschwanstein I think a guide talking in the English language is not necessary or important. I recommend : ride in a carriage pulled by horses up the hill toward Neuschwanstein. (Motor vehicles are not allowed on that road).

Posted by
1449 posts

you don't say what month you're planning on traveling, or whether you're doing it by car or train. Supply these minor details and I think you will get suggestions better tailored for your trip :-)

Posted by
1358 posts

I agree with those who suggest Fussen and the castles. Depends on whether you like castles or walled cities like Rothenburg. They are entirely different. Do a google search for 'Fussen sights' and 'Rothenburg sights'.

You wont see much of the Alps in Zurich. It is just another large crowded city.

Posted by
123 posts

Well from the responces I think I am going to research Fussen, Salzburg, or Innsbruck. Rothenburg would be neat to see but again to much time travelling like Zurich would also. I will be travelling in December 21-25 in Munich.

Posted by
5 posts

I would opt for Lindau on the Bodensee (Lake Constance), Salzburg, or Berchtesgaden for a day trip from Munich. There is so much to see and do that it is difficult to decide; but those places are beautiful with lots of things to do.

As for Switzerland, several years ago, we took a train trip to Arosa which is supposed to be second only to St. Moritz. We left from Oberstaufen, Germany through Chur, Switzerland and caught a narrow gauge to Arosa which was a breathtaking trip. I expected to see Heidi come out of the houses on the side of the hill!

Have a great trip. Whatever you decide to do will be unforgettable!

Posted by
62 posts

You don't mention if you are going by train or car. If train consider Garmisch-Partenkirchen and then Zugspitz(Alps) tallest point in Germany by train station in Garmisch. If you have car you can go to cable car or train station to Zugspitz plus Oberamergau, Ettal Abbey, and Linderhof castle(last time I went you can take pictures) you can't do this in Fuessen castles. It would be easier to do on overnight than day trip. It would be easier than going to Zurich as day trip.

Posted by
389 posts

Hi Laura, seeing you are traveling late Dec. (Xmas time), I would definitely choose Salzburg. Easy to get to by train and the city is "magical" at that time of year (or any other time too). If fact, the only problem you will encounter is that you'll want to stay overnight. Good luck!

Posted by
123 posts

Sorry...I will be travelling by train. The more I read about Neuschwanstein I would love to see the outside but not really interested in the inside. What else is there to do in the Fussen area accessible by train? Could I leave Munich in the morning and see Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau then hop a train to Salzburg? Or should I do two day trips one to Fussen the other to Salzburg? I want to leave myself plenty of time to explore Munich sites. We arrive at 9:30pm 12/21 and leave 9:30pm 12/25.

Posted by
389 posts

This is just my opinion but I think if given the choice of spending more time in Munich or in Salzbug...Salzburg would win hands down. Munich is nice but it is big city. The only time you want to spend there is in the old section. Salzburg has so much charm and so much to see and do that only a day is short-changing it.

Posted by
123 posts

Most of the reveiws of Neuschwanstein interior said it was lacking but that the exterior and views are amazing.

Posted by
2712 posts

Hi Laura,

You're looking at approx. 3.5 days total. Fuessen and the castles would use an entire day. Salzburg is small (for a city) and very easy to navigaite and see the old town on foot. Very doable as a day trip. You can't go wrong with Salzburg, it is beautiful. That would leave 1.5 days for Munich. While I like Ludwig's other castle's (Linderhof, Herrenchiemsee) interiors better than Neuschwanstein, it'd be a shame to go through the trouble to get there and not take the tour. Just my opinion.

I've never used the trains in this area, but to go from Fuessen to Salzburg, I think you may have to go via Munich anyway. If that's the case, I'd make seperate day trips.

Hope this helps.

Paul

Posted by
123 posts

The bad reviews of the castles were not here but other forums and they said it was a joke how rushed you are and that you don't get to see many rooms. I think I would like to tour a medieval castle myself but the pictures of Neuschwanstein are so gorgeous!

Posted by
62 posts

I have been to Neuschwanstein 4 times and each time I have gone the tour has been smaller and limited in the space allotted to stand during tour and more expensive but if you have never gone it is difficult to determine what experience would be for you. I also think Salzburg would be a good choice for a day trip. There a few nonstop trains from Munich to Salzburg. Have you looked into Herrencheimsee? This would also be an easy day trip from Munich.

Posted by
1449 posts

Laura, I just remembered a book that is perfect for you! It is "Daytrips Bavaria" by Steinbicker and would be ideal for you in planning your trip.

Posted by
123 posts

I ordered a travel book today about Munich, Bavaria with Salzburg and Rothenburg included. I have a Germany book but it is really generalized, but now I will have a specific book about the area. Thanks to everyone for their input!

Posted by
389 posts

Laura, do you have RS's book which covers Germany, Austria & Switzerland. It really is all you need for what you are talking about seeing. It is great and you will be able to plan out an itinerary with it. Also, his book was what introduced me to Hallstatt, Austria. It's covered in the book.

Posted by
121 posts

Laura, the castles at Fussen are amazing! The tours and the travel is a full day from Munich. My family and I arrived in Munich in the early am (from a night train) and then headed off to see the castles. We were not disappointed and had no regrets. After that we headed back to Munich, changed trains and were at our hotel in Salzburg by 9:30pm. German trains are so timely and efficient! We ended up back in Munich later in the week and enjoyed it as well. Best cappuccino in Europe was at the restaurant in Mozartplatz (Salzburg) looking up at the fortress. Have fun!

Posted by
123 posts

Linda, I have Foders book about Germany and France that my sister in law gave me then today I ordered RS-2009 Rome and Paris and Foders 2008 Munich, Bavaria, and Salzburg in one.

Posted by
192 posts

Laura,
We travelled by train from Fuessen to Salzburg this summer. It will take about 5 hours. You will change trains in Munich.

Posted by
74 posts

I'll be taking my first trip to Germany next year and King Ludwig II's castles in Fuessen are my top pick for a day trip from Munich. Of course, if you have a couple more days the Linderhof Palace near Oberammergau, the Herrenchiemsee Palace near Prien am Chiemsee, Salzburg, and Regensburg also make good day trips from Munich.