What do you get when you combine an Australian with the autobahn? An adventure you won’t soon forget, that’s for sure. My flatmate Josie and I headed to Germany for our four day Easter weekend at the beginning of April to tackle Germany’s Romantic Road. I’ve had my eye on this route since seeing it in one of Rick Steves’ books and like most of his recommendations, it lived up to the hype.
There are different variations of the route you can drive. We flew into Frankfurt to pick up the rental car and drove south via Heidelberg and Rothenburg ob der Tauber, and departed from Munich. This route worked well and gave us the right balance of driving and tourist time each day. Prior to this trip I’d only been to Germany once before (to Berlin in 2013) so it was time for a reunion with Deutschland.
After picking up our rental car late Thursday night and circling the airport three times before successfully navigating the autobahn to our hotel, we were reluctant to get back in the car. So we took our time Friday morning researching road signs and rules over breakfast and then wandered around Frankfurt by foot to boost our tourist confidence levels. We set out for Römerberg square, the historic heart of Frankfurt rebuilt in 1986.
Ready to test our German driving skills once more, we hopped into our ride and set out for Heidelberg, a university town and home to a few of my favorite bloggers, Margo & Melanie. The sun was shining and we fell in love with this picturesque city along the river.
After parting ways with our lovely tour guide Melanie we set off for Friday night’s hotel in Rothenburg ob der Tauber. You can’t miss this medieval walled town if you’re driving the Romantic Road. It was my favorite stop along the whole route, I literally couldn’t put my camera down lest I miss an adorable photo opp.
We were sad to leave Rothenberg but the thought of Munich ahead kept us going. We made a quick stop in Dinkelsbühl for lunch, another equally cute but smaller version of Rothenberg.
After arriving in Munich and checking into our AirBnB apartment we made a beeline for dinner at Haxnbauer to fulfill Josie’s craving for pork knuckle. I was skeptical, but it was delicious. We capped off the night with beers at the famous Hofbräuhaus like ze Germans.
Another day we climbed to the top of St. Peter’s Church for these eagle eye views.
Since we had two nights in Munich we were able to fit in a day trip to Füssen (about 2 hours away) to see the inspiration behind the Disneyland castle, Neuschwanstein castle. This is where the snow comes in. Josie braved the storm and drove onwards to our destination resulting in some awesome views of the castle and town. So proud of her.
Seeing the castle up close was surreal, but we were so cold and unprepared for the snow that we didn’t linger too long.
I think we spent almost as much time in the car as we did in the towns we visited, but the driving was part of the journey and it gave me and Josie hours of bonding time together that we don’t have in our hectic London schedules. That #australianontheautobahn makes for a great road trip buddy. Danke Josie and Germany for the memories.
Know Before You Go:
- Driving on the autobahn is equally exciting and terrifying. Be prepared with this guide and these tips.
- As we learned on Good Friday, Easter Sunday, and Monday, Germans celebrate Easter to the fullest. Many shops and restaurants are closed on those days, especially in the über Catholic region of Bavaria.
- Helpful guides to Munich here and details on the Romantic Road here.