I am planning a three week trip with my daughter for the last 2 weeks of August and first week of september. I had planned to fly into frankfurt take the old trade road to munich and salzburg then head down to see a bit of italy. We were then going to take the ferry to croatia slovania (briefly) vienna and finally Prague and Auschwitz. I am not sure if this is doable in three weeks. We had planned to travel light so i am not sure if we should base ourselves in frankfurt and do day rail trips or carry our backpacks from point to point. My daughter is a big art and history fan and so am I. There is so much to see in this area that I am feeling a bit overwhelmed and not sure where to even begin. I would love some tips and really appreciate whatever advice I can get Thanks
Carol: I'm a little bit overwhelmed with your itinerary. You're right that it may be doable, but just a little too far than most on this forum would suggest. You didn't say if you were going by train or automobile or airlines. You'd do better to fly open jawed into one destination and work your way in as straight lines as possible. I'd suggest starting at Munich heading by train to Salzburg up to Prague, down to Vienna. Then catch a budget flight to Rome where you can base other trips thru Italy--like via fast trains to Florence and Venice. This would take every second of 3 weeks to complete, and believe me that you'll be overloaded on art and history. Dachau (NW Munich) is a substitute for Auschwitz, unless you have a specific need to got to this out of the way place.
Carol, I'm also somewhat "overwhelmed" in reading your proposed Itinerary. That's a lot of territory to cover in such a short time frame. As the previous reply mentioned, unless you have a specific desire to visit Auschwitz, you could substitute one (or more) of the other camps. I'm not sure if taking the Ferry to Croatia and Slovenia for a "briefly" visit is going to be worth the effort. Those don't really "fit" with the rest of your route. Keeping in mind that you're both "big art and history" fans, would something like this work..... > D1: Flight to Berlin > D2: Arrive Berlin > D3-D5: Touring Berlin (Sachsenhausen, the Wall, Third Reich & Cold War sites, Museums & Galleries - LOTS of history!) > D6: Train to Prague (~5H) > D7-8: Prague (there's one especially significant WW-II site here also and of course lots of other history) > D9: Bus or train to Munich (~5H) > D10-14: Munich (LOTS of possibilities: Ludwig's Castles, day trip to Salzburg, Berchtesgaden which has a Salt Mine, the Eagle's Nest and Dokumentation Centre & Bunkers and finally Dachau - you could perhaps add Matthausen also) > D15: Train to Florence (~7H:45M). You didn't say where you wanted to visit, but Florence has incredible art and history, and also a good location for day trips to Siena, etc. > D16,17: Florence > D18: Train to Rome > D19,20: Rome > D21: Flight home from FCO There are MANY possibilities, and this is only one suggestion. Good luck with your planning!
My nearly 17 year old daughter and I are visiting Berlin and Paris. We leave in a few days and return in early January. I'll post our thoughts on Berlin when we get back. She took AP world history last year and, like your daughter, has become a huge fan of art and history. I liked Ken's itinerary - we visited Florence and Rome two years ago (summer). My daughter loved the Florence museums (and view from the nearby hills) and Roman history. We are flying open jaw (in Berlin and out of Paris) and it was actually a bit cheaper.
Thanks so much everyone for the great suggestions. There is just so much to see and of course it appears to be fairly close in comparison to everywhere in Canada. I had thought that Croatia was very beautiful and the ferry across would be great but general consensous seems to suggest it is too out of the way. We were planning to use train travel for the most part as all advice I have read suggested cars or rather gas is a killer. A great suggestion to substitute Dachau for Auschwitz especially since it is on route. I had hoped to break up some of the heavy history with lighter tours of castles and beautiful vistas
I do like suggestions of both itineries but I had planned to skip Berlin for another trip and follow a line below Frankfurt and Prague I felt that although we would miss the Wall and many other prime historical sites Berlin would be very time consuming if we hoped to get as far as Rome
hoped to break up some of the heavy history with lighter tours of castles and beautiful vistas Skipping the trip to Poland, substituting Dachau (very powerful too as I remember) and staying a good part in Bavaria will allow that goal to be met...
If it fits into your trip, Mauthausen is the concentration camp I would suggest visiting instead of Dachau. Mauthausen contains original buildings, not reconstructions, and the countryside there is stunningly beautiful - all the more poignant to look out over from inside the wire. Dachau would probably be easier, though.
Thanks so much for all the imput. Would appreciate any thoughts on great things to see and hostels to stay in along the route or some cool cheaper tours