Germany bound?

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

If you had just read my blog for the past few months, you would probably have no idea how much I love to travel.  Why?  Because I've been absolutely nowhere in the past 8 months.  Not very long really but it feels like a lifetime to me.  It wasn't always this way (see my travel page).


So we have our sights on a short trip this summer. We are batting around lots of different options but a few days in either Berlin or Munich has come to the forefront. Anyone been?  Which city did you prefer?  Any baby friendly activities?

I've definitely missed seeing the world and want to get back to it - even if its at a slower pace.

And speaking of the world, isn't this globe project from patina white so fun? I think it would make a great inspiration for an entire room.  

37 comments:

  1. Fun! I'm glad you're doing it! I've found it's easier to stay in a condo or apartment with a child so you don't have to eat out for every meal if your child gets cranky...plus you usually get more space. Check out VRBO (vacation rental by owner). Have fun!

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    1. Thanks Heather. Ive actually found several apartment like hotels in both Munich & Berlin with really reasonable rates. That is part of the reason why Im itching to go there. Having a kitchenette makes it so much easier!

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  2. Been to Munich twice. Loved it both times. But I would recommend instead checking out Bamberg, Germany. Gorgeous! Trip recap here.

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    1. Thanks Sarah. Off to read all about your trip now.

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  3. Oh my gosh, I LOVE that image. I need to try to do that.

    I haven't been to either, but I've heard great things about both.

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  4. I was born in Germany, and I love Berlin and Munich,but I liked Munich better than Berlin.

    http://www.tierpark-hellabrunn.de/1/munich-zoo/

    http://www.destination-munich.com/munich-for-kids.html

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  5. i fell so hard for berlin we're planning on moving there. so obvs that's my vote. we rented an apartment which was great. the food is great. it's easy to get around the city. email me & i can put you in contact with the guy we rented from. he's an american & owns a few properties he rents out, all in great neighborhoods. (that was cheaper than a hotel for us & then we did breakfast in the apt while getting ready.)
    i only saw munich during oktoberfest so my view is probably skewed, it was a fun place though. more expensive in general & the food isn't as varied. beautiful gardens & biergartens though.

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    1. Thanks Jamie. Berlin definitely seems the more hip of the two based on what Im reading. But Im not a very hip person. Would love to hear more about the apartment you rented. My email is bklimestoner at aol dot com.

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  6. Do Munich - you can also do day trips to Dachau and Neuschwanstein from there. I visited both cities when I studied abroad in Vienna, and Munich is more charming.

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  7. I have been to Munich and Germany several times and love them both! But they are very different. Berlin is a modern city and it is fun to see the differences between East and West Berlin - and Schloss Sanssouci is a fantastic palace with super gardens that is about an hour train ride away from Berlin. But my heart lives in Munich. The city is beautiful and who doesn't love Bavarian food?!? Yumm! Also, Salzburg is only about a 1.5 hour drive from Munich and there are a ton of amazing castles and towns near Berlin that are easily accessible with a car if you are in town for a few days.

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  8. That sounds like a fun adventure. I have driven through Munich a couple of times to go skiing in Austria. I have never been to Berlin. I did live in Bonn for almost three years(down by Cologne) back when that was still the capital in the 80s.

    I would go to Berlin, I think, to get that urban fix :) Also, there is so much history there, that I would want to check out.

    Can't wait to see what you choose!

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    1. Thanks Katja. I'm totally fascinated by the WWII era so I would imagine Berlin would hold some interesting sites for me (although hard to say if any of that exists anymore) but it does look a bit more gritty than Munich.

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  9. Munich! We went last summer with our kids when they were 3 and 7. They ask to go back at least once a month. This will not apply to you much now, but there are play grounds everywhere and little biergartens in the playgrounds. You will see how they are meant to be used by the entire family and not just 18-35 year olds w/out kids. You should do an overnight in Salzburg too. Email me if you want a a family friendly pensione recommendation.

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  10. I can only comment on Munich, as I've not been to Berlin. I went with my hubby (sans children), and it was Christmas, so it was a different experience from what you'd see. But, I think you'd love it! It's a contemporary city with the charms that are "so German!" The beer halls are pretty cool too...maybe you could break away from the kidlet to visit one. They have a host of outdoor markets each day, and everyone stops at them to eat some 'wurst and mustard for brekkie!

    And have you been to see a concentration camp? Dachau is a sobering experience, but one to do if you haven't ever been.

    We are heading out soon on a 21-day trip to Iceland & Ireland. Have you been? I'd assume it's pretty family friendly if you don't mind having a screaming baby in a car for a few hours a day.

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  11. Both are great! I've been to Munich twice, Berlin once, and would gladly return to either in a heartbeat. Can't go wrong!

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  12. I lived in Munich for 4 years and it holds a very special place in my heart. I have not been to Berlin but Munich is a wonderful city to visit. We took our kids and they loved it. There are lakes and mountains close by day trips. The huge Englisher Garten park would be wonderful to walk around. Can't say enough about it! Good for you for taking the trip.

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  13. I have had 2 extended layovers in Munich for about 8 hours each. My husband and I took the train from the airport to Marienplatz, visited some of the beautiful churches and historic sites. We popped into beer gardens and it was an easy city to get around. My 2nd layover was during Oktoberfest (late Sept) so we had to go see that. So much to do; beers and pretzels the size of my head, everyone dressed up in traditional wear and the whole place is like a giant carnival. I thought the city was so charming and beautiful and I would love to go back and tour more of the town.

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  14. I was just in Berling earlier this month for a week (half personal/half business). I wouldn't say I fell in love. I stayed in both East and West Berlin during my stay. East Berlin was great for seeing all the history however West Berlin felt very touristy. I've never been to Munich though several coworkers had been and preferred it over Berlin by far. Wish I'd had a chance to explore Munich while I was there!

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  15. Munich is amazing! You can take a day trip to Salzburg, Austria and another to Dachau. But, make sure to set something fun for the evening after Dachau. It's absolutely worth going, but you will probably need to re-set to a different frame of mind. Hit up Hofbrauhaus. It is touristy and not at the same time. My husband and I met people from 21 different countries in two trips there and tons of locals, too. I think the Residenz will resonate with some of your personal style...

    Whatever you choose, Prost!

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  16. I went to Berlin in April. Loved it! It's not as romantic as Paris or London, but there is so many history! If you go to Berlin, you should definitely visit Tempelhof (old airport in the middle of the city). Berlin is the perfect city to expore by bike!

    This is a great place to have lunch: http://www.barcomis.de/index.php

    Have fun!

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  17. I love that you will start traveling agin soon. I do not have kids yet but I think Germany is a great first place to visit. So fun!

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  18. Munich! We just got back from 3 weeks in Germany and actually went to Munich 2 times and loved it! Very family friendly and has a slow pace to it. Super clean and conservative. We took a day trip out to the Neuschwanstein Castle with sandeman's tours and loved it! Tons to do in the city though - downtown area is beautiful, beer gardens are lovely (the beer is great too and served in huge Liter mugs), BMW museum, English Gardens, and there is a concentration camp nearby that was interesting as well. Have fun!

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  19. My husband & I hit both Munich and Berlin last year. To be honest, I wasn't super fond of Berlin. It was full of amazing history, but something about the city feels cold. And the people seem to carry a heavy burden around all the time, as if they have to continually pay for the sins of their ancestors. I know that probably sounds hokey, but that's honestly the way I felt.
    Munich is kitschy, but very warm feeling. The very best place I found in Germany for kid-friendly activities was the lakes: Lake Constance, etc. Either way I hope you have fun on your first big excursion post-baby :-)

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  20. Our baby's first flight was 8 hours to Berlin when she was 9 months old! Berlin is a very walkable city so for that reason I consider that pretty baby-friendly. We weren't there long since we were on our way to Poland so I don't have specific recommendations for activities. But we had a lovely albeit short stay with our little one.Thumbs up for Berlin :)

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  21. I've been to both cities and loved them both for different reasons. Berlin is much more big city cool with a cool artist vibe while Munich is more laid back, relaxed fun with the added bonus of proximity to Salzburg and small, quaint Bavarian towns. So, it really depends on the type of vacation you want, amount of time you have, and your baby's temperament. Personally, I'd probably chose Munich for the first vacation as a family and keep Berlin for an adult vacation getaway. Hope that helps!

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  22. As a German living close to Cologne I'd recommend Cologne or Hamburg if you want to see the real Germany. Or take a ship cruise on the river Rhine. Bavaria may seem German to an American but it's like a whole different country down there (just like the South in the States?). Berlin is pretty good for walking around but there's not much on the sightseeing part (wall, gate, parliament.). It's quite expensive and full of hipsters.
    If you decide on another city or area other than Berlin or Munich, have in mind that there was a severe flooding in a large part of Eastern and Southern Germany just a few weeks ago. Certain areas may still be not such a beautiful holiday destination even if you'll only be visiting in a few months! It looked really bad for weeks and weeks!

    Have a great trip!

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    1. Thanks. Good to know. We did look at river cruises but evidently they are pretty restrictive on bringing children so thats a no go.

      And for the record, I wouldn't say the South is a different country. The US is huge and pretty much every region has its own unique flavor. There isn't one part that is better for everyone - just that going to California is totally different than NY and thats totally different than going to Georgia and thats totally different than going to Alaska. Not that you asked but I thought it was worth mentioning :)

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  23. mog did you see the nytimes did a '36 hours in munich" just yesterday.

    we're trying to think of a 'babymoon' location and germany is on my list..still trying to decice :-)
    jackie

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  24. omg there was ust one of those "36 hours in munich" articles in the nytimes yesterday!
    we're still trying to figure out our early august babymoon and we're considering germany as well. now this really makes me want to go!
    jackie

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    1. Yep, I read it. Althought not much in there that would be practical with baby in tow. That said, I pretty much devour the travel section every Sunday.

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    1. What you are describing is one of my bigger concerns about traveling. It all depends on how she reacts and we will only know if we try it. I've asked almost everyone I know who has traveled with baby and most seem to say that their experience wasn't so bad. Hopefully we will get lucky and have an easy transition back. If not, we'll know what to consider for future trips.

      (But why 15 years? Surely a 5 year old can handle a time change much more easily than a infant.)

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    1. I don't really blame any parent for staying home with all of the extra effort required to drag the kids around but on a personal level, I enjoy travelng so its important I at least give it a try. How much I will enjoy it with such a young baby is yet to be seen. I just might be back with tales of horror :)

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