Planning The Next Perfect Itinerary

Meet You in the Morning is a travel blog, but months go by and I have not traveled!

I began travel dreaming this summer while waiting to welcome the birth of our new granddaughter. From the library I carried stacks of travel guides to help make the decision of where we might want to go next.

With the books stacked next to my recliner, my visiting granddaughter loved looking at them. It was funny how she called them “Gramma’s Comic Books.”

A little girl already being bitten with the travel bug?

Time to start planning a perfect new itinerary.

In August 2020 we are hosting The Footsteps of Luther in Germany and Oberammergau Passion Play Tour, a short 9-day tour that begins in Berlin and ends in Munich, Germany. (There are a few seats still available. We’d love to have you join us.)

We want to spend time in Europe prior to meeting the tour group, making the decision to choose between so many places difficult!

Germany is a country the size of Montana and borders Denmark, The Netherlands, Brussels, France, Lichtenstein, Switzerland, Austria, and Poland.

The Footsteps of Luther in Germany tour from Berlin to Munich.

The first big question was: Where should we go? The second question, How much time do we have?

Where should we go was a difficult decision. How much time do we have was easier.

It is a shorter travel window; we plan to return home to jobs and family, so we don’t have extra time at the end of the Luther tour. The travel all had to be done prior to the Footsteps of Luther tour.

We decided to concentrate on Germany and Poland, plus add Salzburg and Innsbruck, Austria (which we missed previously) and add a brief detour into France (because the province of Alsace used to be in Germany.)

I penciled out a month-long itinerary and booked accommodations. I was extremely surprised to find many hotels already sold out a whole year in advance! All but one accommodation was booked on and they are a mix of hotels and apartments. The average price comes to $81 per night.

I’m pretty excited about this intense and fast moving 31-night itinerary before we meet the tour group. The plan is to travel mostly by train and/or bus and rent a vehicle for a few days in Austria. The itinerary has us exploring museums, castles, river towns, beautiful countryside, lakes and mountains while sampling good food and a large dose of history.

I want it to be perfect! As I continue to read and research I keep finding new places I’d like to include, but if I add one place, I have to cut a place, move faster, or lengthen the trip. We don’t like to rush! I lament over what we cannot see. I’ve fiddled with the itinerary so much that I’ve messed up my dates and reservations. When I go to make changes I find the prices have gone up!

The itinerary may continue to evolve, but this is what we have planned as of today:

4 nights Gdansk, Poland (day trip to Sopot on the Baltic Sea)

3 nights Warsaw, Poland

5 nights Krakow, Poland (day trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau)

3 nights in Salzburg, Austria. (Pick up car for day trips to Hallstatt and Berchtesgaden)

1 nights in Innsbruck, Austria. (Return rental car)

2 nights in Nuremberg (I added this in place of Melk, Austria)

3 nights in Strasbourg, France (day trip to Colmar)

1 night in Trier (Germany’s oldest town)

2 nights in Cochem on the Mosel River

7 nights in Berlin, Germany (day trip to the Volkswagen museum in Wolfsburg)

Then we continue on the Footsteps of Luther itinerary:

2 nights in Wittenberg, Germany

1 night in Erfurt, Germany

1 night in Eisenach, Germany

1 night in Rothenburg ober Tauber

2 nights in Oberammergau

1 night in Munich

For a total of 39 nights.

Have you traveled in this area? If you have any advice or suggestions send them my way!

Right now I’m trying to decide whether to eliminate Trier and Cochem on the Moselle River in Western Germany in order to add Melk on the Danube in Austria and the German towns of Leipzig and Dresden.

In Eat Well, Travel Often we saw Kim’s beautiful photos of Melk, Krems, and Cochem

A big tour around Poland, Austria, and Germany before going down the center on the Luther tour.

I have been known to say that researching and learning about a destination is half the fun. There is no shortage of World War II documentaries; many I wouldn’t call fun. Here is a list of some of what I’ve been watching and reading:

Oberammergau, The Troubling Story of the World’s Most Famous Passion Play by James Shapiro was an interesting read.

Martin Luther by Eric Metaxas was very enjoyable and easy to read.

Eric Metaxas also wrote Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy.

Lilac Girls, A Novel by Martha Hall Kelly

“Inspired by actual events and real people, Martha Hall Kelly has woven together the stories of three women during World War II that reveal the bravery, cowardice, and cruelty of those days. This is a part of history–women’s history–that should never be forgotten.”–Lisa See, New York Times bestselling author of China Dolls”

The Krakow Ghetto and Plaszow Camp Remembered by Malvina Graf

Holocaust: Theresienstad (documentary)

The Reformation Overview video series on Wycliffe, Huss, Luther, Zwingli, Calvin, the Anabaptists and Tyndale.

The Morningstar of Wittenberg: The Life of Katie Luther

Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies.

Much of it somber, serious, and sad.

A delightful break reading children’s books has presented a new, but different journey. I’ll tell you all about it next time!

Granddaughter Number 2 arrived on September 9, 2019 at 9:09 pm. Sweet sisters!

I dream of 2021 travel too. Fun places. Beaches. Traveling with the girls I hope!

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