Day 1 : Frankfurt International Airport to Wurzburg
Arrive in Frankfurt and pick up your rental car at Frankfurt International Airport or in Frankfurt City Centre. From the airport take the "Autobahn" to Aschaffenburg to visit Johannisburg Palace and Gardens (30 minutes, 47 kilometers - 30 miles). The important Renaissance Palace was built 1605-1614. It also features an art gallery. From Aschaffenburg follow the Autobahn right into Würzburg, your first stop at the Romantic Road (55 minutes, 80 kilometers - 50 miles). Your hotel is located in the City Centre (e.g. Hotel Wurzburger Hof).
The city is idyllically located amidst vineyards, with the mediaeval fortress Marienberg towering above. Würzburg is old bishop´s see and lively town, proudly presenting monuments of different eras. Culture, art, history and hospitality are ever-present in this remarkable city!
The fortress Marienberg, Würzburg´s landmark, has of course changed its appearance a great deal since it was first mentioned, today the oldest part of the fortress is the "Rundkirche" (round church) which was built in the year one thousand. The Cathedral, the Marienkapelle, the "Alte Mainbrücke" (old bridge across the river Main ), the Juliusspital and the "Käppele" are musts, but make sure that you do not miss out on the "Fürstbischöfliche Residenz", Prince bishops residence. This "Palace above all Palaces" is today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are only a few cities in Germany which present buildings of so many different eras as Würzburg does, some of them being true masterpieces of their time. Enjoy this beautiful town which offers not only cultural but also culinary highlights such as the hearty cuisine and of course the world famous Frankenwein!
Day 2 : Day trip to Rothenburg ob der Tauber
In the morning follow the Romantic Road via Bad Mergentheim (you might want to visit the market place), Weikersheim (Renaissance Palace and Garden) and Creglingen (Riemenschneider Altar in the Church of the Lord) to Rothenburg ob der Tauber, one of Germany's most beautiful mediaeval cities. Taking a walk thru this charming little town is truly a journey back in time. Rothenburg ob der Tauber was once a powerful free imperial town and its monuments, landmarks and buildings still bear witness to these days.
Marvel at the half-timbered buildings and at town walls which are withstanding time since hundreds of years, protecting the city since the Middle Ages. Visit the town's most famous spot, the Ploenlein square, probably the most photographed place in Rothenburg. Also very interesting to see is the Spitalbastei Gate, created by Leonhard Weidmann, the latin inscription on the gate reading: " Peace to those who enter, health to those who leave".
The Gothic St.James church is the town's most prominent church, here you can take a minute and relax in quietness while you enjoy the beauty of the famous Altar of the Holy Blood and the Twelve Apostles Altar. Every step you take in this old town is a step thru history with yet another beautiful spot to be discovered around the corner.
Rothenburg also offers museums which are cultural highlights, such as the Christmas Museum with an exhibition showing Christmas tradition in Germany, the Doll and Toy Museum where the history of playthings is shown, as well as the Crime Museum, where the visitor gets an insight into the law and especially its execution during the last 700 years.
In the evening return to your hotel in Wurzburg.
Day 3 : Lutherstadt Wittenberg
Take the Autobahn directly to Leipzig. In the eighteenth century Leipzig developed into a major music metropolis. Great musicians such as Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Robert Schumann, and Richard Wagner all lived and worked in the city. The Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the St. Thomas Boys Choir, the Opera House Ballet, and a host of other ensembles form cornerstones of a lively music scene.
One of the most frequented sights in Leipzig, along with Bach's tomb in St. Thomas Church, is St. Nicholas Church. St. Nicholas is the oldest church in Leipzig's city center and dates back to the year 1165. Visit the Old City Hall which was built in 1556. It is today held to be one of the finest example of municipal Renaissance architecture in Germany.
Drive on to Lutherstadt Wittenberg. A “must see” in Wittenberg is, of course, the Schlosskirche (Castle Church) where texts of the 95 Theses are cast in bronze on the door. Next you can tour the Lutherhalle (Luther House) Museum. In 1508, when Martin Luther came to Wittenberg, he lived here with other Augustinian monks. Later, Luther and his wife, Katharina von Bora, raised six children here and hosted many guests. You may also want to visit the Stadtkirche St. Marien (St. Mary's church) where Luther preached and where his children were baptized.
Day 4 : Berlin
In the morning drive directly to Berlin, Germany´s capital city.
It is not easy to describe this great metropolis, which fascinates the visitor both with it’s culture as well as with it’s history. Of course every Berlin visitor wants to walk thru the Brandenburger Tor, Berlin’s only preserved town gate which became a symbol for the separated city as is was once located in “no man’s land” directly at the Berlin Wall. The Reichstag (parliament) with its new dome is the most visited monument in Berlin, its eventful history reflecting the turbulences of German history. Berlin’s “Museumsinsel”(Museum Island) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this “title” has also been rewarded to the castles and parks of the city of Berlin. Stroll along “Unter den Linden”, Berlin’s most beautiful street, the “old” heart of the city, leading from the Brandenburger Tor to the “Schlossbrücke”. Or how about Friedrichstrasse, this legendary road where the tradition of the “Golden Twenties” is combined with the architecture of the new Berlin.
Day 5 : Berlin
Spend another day with sightseeing in this graet city. Visit the Memorial Church on Kurfürstendamm, the Gendarmenmarkt square which forms a beautiful and harmonious architectural synthesis with the Konzerthaus (concert hall). There are the German Cathedral and the French Cathedral with their impressive architecture and the Potsdamer Platz with ultra modern buildings, with shops and entertainment. “Checkpoint Charlie” hardly needs any explanation at all, at the former border crossing American and Russian tanks stood vis-a-vis after the wall had been build in 1961.
Day 6 : Hamburg and Bremen
Take the Autobahn to Hamburg, Germany’s second largest city, where quite often a fresh breeze coming from the North Sea greets the visitors.
You might want to start your sightseeing at the „Jungfernstieg“ where the „Binnenalster“ (a lake) is located right at the City Center. From here you can take a ride on a boat along the Alster river. Along the short cruise you will see some romantic and hidden places which otherwise can not be seen. Take a walk thru the Speicherstadt (“warehouse quarters”), the houses all have an entrance to the street and one out to the water in order to easily unload the ships bringing in merchandise.
In the evening drive to Bremen where your hotel is located.
Day 7 : Hamelin
Today you go to Hamelin. Driving time from Bremen to Hamelin is just about two hours. So you may start your day doing a little bit of sightseeing in Bremen before you drive to Hamelin.
Bremen, the heart of North West Germany and home to the famous Bremen Town Musicians. The city's Town Hall with its Renaissance architecture is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, together with the statue of the "Roland" on the Bremer marketplace and the famous bronze display of the Bremen Town Musicians on the Town Hall's western side it is an incomparable tourist attraction. Whoever wants to meet them personally has come to the right place. Here in the Hanseatic city the town musicians tell their own story - live, large as life, open air und free. From May to September every Sunday at 12 noon in the Cathedral courtyard, city centre.
Then there is the "Mühle am Wall"(mill) which is the last mill left out of originally eight which were once built on the wall of the inner city. The mill was used up until 1950, today it is used as a café. Visit the "Schnorr", the towns oldest living quarters, and do not miss "Böttcherstrasse", Bremen's "secret main road".
Take a ride to the famous city of Hamelin. And who is responsible for the towns fame?
Of course the "Rattenfänger von Hameln", the "Pied Piper of Hamelin"! For centuries now, the "Pied Piper" has been the town's landmark, quite often especially during the summer there are open air plays showing the somewhat sad story of the loss of Hamelin´s children.
Visit Hamelin's beautifully restored Old Town, which is also quite unique as the historic Old Town is still to be seen almost uninterrupted by modern buildings on the main roads. There are a great number of historic stone- and timber-framed-buildings to be seen, many of them build in Renaissance style, such as the "Rattenfängerhaus" (Piet Piper house), the "Dempterhaus" and the "Hochzeitshaus" (wedding-house).
The town offers quite a few "Pied Piper" guided tours, taking you to the famous spots and historic locations out of which the fairy-tale evolved. Explore this very charming town, and who knows, in some narrow cobblestone alley maybe you'll also hear the sound of a flute, resounding from afar … .
The Glaserlebniswelt (Glass Adventure World) of the Glassworks Hameln was created in the historic Pulverturm [(Gun)powder Tower]. In the lobby, you get information on the 6,000-year-old history of glass as work material. Here you are at the heart of the Glass Adventure World – the glassworks and glass engraving shop where you can watch the glassblowers at work every day. For more information please visit www.glasblaeserei-hameln.de
The Münster is the oldest church in Hameln. Services have been held here for over 1,000 years. The Münster is open every day from 9am to 6pm.
Day 8 : Alsfeld
Today you may want to drive to Kassel and Hannoversch Munden before you go to Alsfeld where your hotel is located.
Start your tour in the Old Town of Hannoversch Munden with its more than 700 half-timbered houses. In front of the Town Hall you find the "Doctor Eisenbart Play". Daily at noon, 3pm and 5pm the carillon played the Song of Doctor Eisenbart.
Go on to Kassel, the heart of the fairy-tale route. Here in Kassel the Brothers Grimm lived for over thirty years, working as librarians at the Electoral Library, known now as the Fridericanum, Europe's first public museum, which today is the centre of the documenta exhibitions.
Throughout the city you can enjoy a unique range of museums, top of the fairy-tale-fan's list should be the Brüder Grimm Museum in the Palais Bellevue. Do not miss the Murhardsche Bibliothek (Library) which houses the Brothers Grimm archives and is seat of the Brothers Grimm Society in Kassel. Within the beautiful Schlosspark Wilhelmshoehe there is the Lion's Castle, built in the years 1793-1806, it resembles the ruin of a mediaeval English knight's castle.
Take an excursion to the Hercules monument, Kassel´s landmark, from here you have magnificent view over the city.
In 1830, Jacob Grimm said: "The years I spent in Kassel were the happiest of my life"
Drive on to Alsfeld. Take a walk thru the historic town center with the late gothic Town Hall, one of the most important half-timbered buildings in Germany. About one mile from the town center is the Altenberg Castle and Castle Church built in the 18th century and also worth a visit.
Day 9: Frankfurt International Airport
Today your tour ends. If your flight is later that day you might want to visit Frankfurt. Frankfurt is a very modern metropolis which nevertheless offers many historic sites such as the Römerberg with its beautifully restored timber-framed houses, of course the Goethe Haus where the world famous poet once lived, the Paulskirche, symbol for democracy and freedom in Germany, “Alt-Sachsenhausen”, where in Schellgasse number 6 you will find Frankfurt’s oldest timber-framed house which was built in 1291, to name only a few of Frankfurt’s historic landmarks.
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