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Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

San Diego, CA
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Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

We are coming into Zurich on an overnight train, will pick up a car, and head towards Hohenschwangau. Our 2 boys (11 & 13) are going to need to stretch their legs after many hours on the train. Can you recommend stops and things to do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau? We are not in a hurry to get there (will spend the night & see castles next day). Just want to have fun on the way! Thanks!

Colorado Springs...
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1. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Depending on the route you take, Friedrichshafen along the northern shore of Lake Constance (aka Bodensee) has a very interesting Zeppelin Museum. It also has a decent restaurant. In fact, If it is in town, you can watch the Zeppelin NT from the F. airport. And if you want to splurge,you can take a ride at something like EUR 300 a pop, per person. Check their website

Before you get to F., you have to take the car ferry from Konstanz - Staad to Meersburg.( Great castle in town!). A few km side trip to the Insel Mainau (Mainau island) before you board the ferry is interesting, although perhaps more for someone who is interested in flowers. There are playgrounds and an outdoor electric train layout.

If you go via Bregenz and Arlberg, then the Pfaender cable car in Bregenz takes you to the top of the Pfaender, where you have a chance to walk around and enjoy the sights of the Alps, the Rhein where it enters the Bodensee. It also has a cafeteria style restaurant. PS: The Rhein leaves the Bodensee at Konstanz.

San Diego, CA
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2. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

The idea of the zeppelin museum is awesome! Definitely sounds like something my boys would be into. I'll do more research on the Pfaender cable car, as well. Great ideas- thank you!

Germany
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3. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

You can also take the route Zürich Airport - Romanshorn - car ferry - Friedrichshafen. In my opinion the easiest route.

http://www.bsb-online.com/faehre.html?&L=0

The Zeppelin Museum is directly in the harbor railway station at Friedrichshafen.

http://www.zeppelin-museum.de/home_en.0.html

map

bodensee-top-sites.de/kartenmaterial/bodense…

photo Friedrichshafen harbor railway station (the white one with the clock tower)

badische-seiten.de/bilder/bodensee-radweg/fr…

.

Not traveling via Bregenz means that you don't need a vignette (toll sticker) for the Austrian autobahns. And albeit a short stretch is is not easy to avoid at Bregenz which is anyway a notorious bottleneck.

Colorado Springs...
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4. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

I agree with abalada re Romannshiorn, in fact.I hadn't thought of it. The Meersburg route makes only sense if the boys want to see the castle there. I personally think it is more interesting than the Neuschwanstein interiors. Fo one thing, it is a real castle, i.e. it served a defensive purpose. Neuschwanstein is a faux castle. It's location , howvere, is very scenic.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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5. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

The castle in Meersburg ( www.meersburg.de ) is Germany's oldest inhabited castle, and also has some interesting side notes as the German female poet Annette von Droste-Hülshoff lived there.

Berlin
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6. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Whilst being in Meersburg you might also want to go just a little further to Unteruhldingen and visit the prehistoric stilt houses http://www.pfahlbauten.com/

It's a great place for kids. If you're lucky the guide will allow them e.g. to make fire with an original firestone

On your way there do stop by in Birnau, one of the most magnificent baroque churches ever built, situated on top of a vineyard: http://www.birnau.de/

with a very pittoresque view onto the lake.

A definite nod to the Zeppelinmuseum, too, which your boys will enjoy.

And I agree with Treplow and definitely would go up the cable car in Bregenz with your boys and attend one of the spectacular bird of prey shows, whilst looking across the entire length of the lake. You need solid shoes all year round up there.

If you have time, it might be worth to have an icecream in the harbour of the medieval island Lindau. It has a mediterranean flair and a very pittoresque view into the mountains: http://en.lindau2.de/index.php?sid=1027 (go up the lion, it has some fun murals inside)

And I also agree with the others on Neuschwanstein. I've been there last year again with Asian guests, who adored the visit, other than us. Mind that this is the most scenic, but also the most touristy spot you could go to and the guided tour (no other way) will make sure you're out of the castle within about 25 minutes again....

If you don't have a special interest, then skip the castle itself, but enjoy walking around it to the waterfalls and visit the older castle Hohenschwangau (where Wagner often stayed) instead, which has so much more to offer.

If you do go, make sure you book your tickets online to skip 1-2 hours in waiting lines just to buy the tickets, before walking up to the castle and wait again for your entry...

By the way, the route from Lindau to Neuschwanstein on B12 via Isny is very scenic!

Edited: 10:53 am, March 15, 2012
Melbourne, Australia
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7. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Then other thing you could investigate is the Hallein Salt Mines, just outside Salzburg. You take a giant slide down into the mine itself (dressed in miners clothing) and there is an underground salt lake which you cross on a small barge as part of the tour. Our kids loved it. Then there is also Schloss Linderhof, Ludwig's other castle, which I thought was beautiful, more intimiate & accessible than Neufschwanstein. But as said above, the Schloss Hohenschwangau (which Ludwig built for his mum & dad to live in) is really interesting too.

San Diego, CA
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8. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Those are some awesome ideas- I'll have to get out the map (again) and see where all that is! Thanks!

Colorado Springs...
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9. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Schloss Hohenscgawngau is where King Ludwig grew up as a child. Thus, he could not have built it for his parents. (Check Wikipedia, History of Schloss Hohenschwangau, German language version states that the Schloss was udwig"s Kinderstube,i.e. nursery)

The original building goes back to the 12th centrury, Ludwig lived at the end ofthe 19th century

Melbourne, Australia
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10. Re: Things 2 do between Zurich & Hohenschwangau?

Sorry - my memory failed me (it was three years ago that I visited them!). But it was definitely built in the 19th century, not the 12th, and King Ludwig insisted his family live there while he had the run of Neufschwanstein to himself. It may have been that he refurbished it for his mother, but I remember a chuckle in the group as the tourguide explained the separate family living arrangements. it was that kind of intimate detail which made it more interesting to visit than the very formal Neuschwanstein.