Whether this is your first time in Germany or you’ve previously visited some of its vibrant cities, it’s time to take a road trip through its sprawling countryside. Its most famous road trip destination, the Romantic Road, will see you travelling from medieval towns into the spectacular Alps foothills. Check out this list of three road trips to take for your first, second and third journey through the beautiful country.
First trip: Discover natural beauty
Choose a shorter route for your first time driving in Germany to get you used to the roads. Travel through otherworldly nature along Germany’s oldest driving route, the Schwarzwaldhochstrasse. A small route compared to others, this 60 km stretch from Baden-Baden to Freudenstadt has its own unique charm. This might be because it takes you through the dense Black Forest, which is said to be the location of the Hansel and Gretel fable. With its mystic surroundings and fairytale setting, it’s easy to get caught up in the magic of the forest. But, it certainly isn’t somewhere where you’d want to break down. Make sure you have relevant European breakdown cover from a trusted provider before making this epic journey. From Germany’s highest waterfall, the Triberg Falls, to natural lakes and thermal baths, there’s plenty to explore through the Black Forest.
Second Trip: Take the famous wine route
Perfect in the summertime and even better now you’re used to the winding valley roads. Take a week to discover the sunshine along the fragrant wine route, signposted as Weinstraße. Stop over in rolling valley destinations that start at the French border, in Schweigen-Rechtenbach and ending in Bockenheim; 85 km away. Enjoy tasting the famous exports from the different vineyards during a wine-tasting session. Pair with rich tasting food and feast on the sight of blooming cherry blossom.
Third Trip: Experience romantic charm
For the road trip of all road trips, take the picturesque Romantische Strasse, or Romantic Road, to you and I. It’s one of Germany’s most popular, with fairytale castles, Baroque palaces and impressive historical landmarks; the sights you’ll see along this route are spectacular. Stretching for 400 km to the Austrian border, there’s a lot to explore with many towns and quaint villages along the way. Be in awe of the charming Wurzburg Residenz where you can view its French-inspired facade and detailed frescos that decorate the interior.
Follow the Tauber River to Bad Mergentheim for a moment of relaxation in the mineral waters. Unwind in the thermal baths and sauna garden or take a dip in one of the swimming pools. There’s also a castle and medieval museum in this interesting town that was once connected to the order of knighthood. Once you’re rested, continue your journey across to the historic town of Nuremberg. Set in time, the city’s imposing fortifications and stone towers lead down to a place of pristine medieval charm. Admire the idyllic architecture – the city’s cathedral is well worth a visit.
One of the most beautiful stops along the Romantic Road is at the foothills of The Alps in Schwangau. The mesmerising Neuschwanstein Castle is a 19th-century fairytale fort that was said to be the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s castle in Disneyland. Photographs do not do this place justice; its beauty should only be captured in person.
Before any journey, make sure you’re well prepared for your Europe road trip with these tips and advice from RAC.
4 thoughts on “Exploring Germany behind the wheel: Where to go?”
Hi Jonny, I have been lucky enough to travel through the Black Forest, Bavaria & the Tyrol and I agree, the scenery is spectacular. The Wurzburg Residence with Tiepolo’s magnificent ceiling fresco and opulent mirror cabinet room is outstanding, an absolute ‘must-see’. Hope you are enjoying
the Polish summer in Gdansk! I spent 4 happy days there last July. As you like to discover towns ‘off the beaten path’ I highly recommend Bielsko-biała and neighbouring Cieszyn on the border of the Czech Republic. Meantime, I will borrow the words of my gym yoga instructor who finishes each class with “May you be happy, may you be well, may you be loved and may you be at peace”. PS: “The Power is Within You” is a fantastic book written by Louise Hay. ?
Hi Christine, thanks for the comment. Sadly I have not been updating this blog much or checking the comments and emails due to ongoing depression and issues in my life. I had a good time in Gdansk, thanks for the tips. Safe travels, Jonny
Thanks Jonny, I feel for you … long-term depression would be excruciatingly painful and isolating. We all have our bad days, but years … T.T … Totally Terrifying. You’ve coped with so much already … you’re tough, much tougher than you think … you’ll get through this and in time the hurt will fade. My own opinion (an uneducated one) is that relying on an apology to start the healing process is effectively giving the other person all the power. The only thing we can change about our circumstances … and life isn’t fair … bad things happen to good people all the time … is the way we choose to react. We can love ourselves and choose to respond in healthy ways with positive thinking, affirmations, good food and exercise. We all have problems (and I’m not trying to diminish yours). It’s just that it can be helpful to keep this in mind … for perspective … there’s always someone worse off. An old lady I know has a wooden sign on her door that says “Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.” Apologies for rambling. I will finish with a reminder, a casual farewell line we drop in everyday conversation but never really think about. You know the one … “Look after yourself” (‘cos if you don’t nobody else will, LOL … hope you’re laughing!). Seriously ‘mate’ (I come from Oz – the ‘land downunder’) I wish you lots of luck and lots of happiness in the future. You deserve it!!!
Hi Christine, thanks for following my stories and commenting. This post was a couple of years ago but I have struggled with depression and given blog posts and comments a miss for too long. Now with staying at home due to Coronavirus outbreak, I can finally go and get some old things caught up. Stay safe. Jonny