OT Travel Itinerary: Explore Germany Like Never Before

From its many great cities to fabulous restaurants, hotels and more, here's our quick guide
Aerial view of Cologne, Germany
Aerial view of Cologne, Germany Shutterstock

In Germany, everything is on the more extreme end of the spectrum—the Autobahn highway system has no speed limit, beer is celebrated so much that there is a half-month-long beer festival, and sausages are good and plentiful with over 1,500 varieties. But that's not all! Germany has had and continues to produce some of the greatest music stars from—Sebastian Bach to Rammstein (metal) to Zedd (EDM). And that's before we consider the over 20,000 castles, with their diverse medieval architectural styles and beautiful locations, that are a treat for anyone inclined towards history. This European country is great for any traveller - read our many destination features on Germany if you doubt that and is blessed with good weather, a rich cultural history, unique metropolises, iconic food, and stunning natural beauty.

Bahnhof Potsdamer Platz
Bahnhof Potsdamer PlatzFlickr

Things To See & Do

In Berlin, there are many great museums and exhibitions such as Topography of Terror (a Jewish history museum), the Tränenpalast or the Palace of Tears (which has an exhibition highlighting the consequences of German separation) and Dal - the exhibition at Potsdamer Platz (a permanent exhibition of over 400 exhibits by the well-known artist of surrealism). You must visit the Holocaust Memorial: The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Brandenburg Gate with its great architecture, the splendid Reichstag building, which housed the Imperial Diet of the German Empire in the 20th century and, of course, the memorial of the Berlin wall. See visitberlin.de for more. Bike tours such as one offered by Berlin on Bike are a great way to see the city.

Das Städel Museum
Das Städel MuseumWikimedia Commons

Similarly, there's much to see and do in Frankfurt, Germany's leading business and financial city. Start off with the Alte Oper, Europes largest English theatre museums such as Städel Museum, a spectacular repository of art, Liebieghaus for sculptures and Goethe House, a memorial to the great writer and statesman, are some of the best-known sites in the city. The city's town hall with its three-garbled roof and sprawling architecture, is a must-visit too. For shoppers, a visit to the Zeil, a pedestrian promenade, is a given. The many weekly farmer markets such as those at Berger Strae, Schillerstrae, Ostend, Konstablerwache and Hchst are greatplaces to buy farm produce and other flea market products. See visitfrankfurt.travel for guided city tours and more.

The Bavarian capital, Munich, is one the great world cities. Oktoberfest is perhaps the highlight, where fun, frolic and beer are everywhere. Castles and palaces such as the baroque Nymphenburg Palace, where the Bavarian monarchs stayed during the summer, Neuschwanstein, the fairytale castle, and Lustheim Palace, the hunting palace, are worth a visit. The Church of St. Peter provides some of the best vistas of the city and the 15th century Frauenkirche church, the largest brick church north of the Alps. The Olympic Park, where the 1972 Munich Olympics were held, the huge English Garden and museums such as the Beer Museum, German Museum, Neue Pinakothek art museum and Pinakothek der Moderne modern art museum should be included in your itinerary. For shopping, visit Schwabing, which used to be a small village until a few decades ago and the traditional Christmas market. See muenchen.de for more.

The Port of Hamburg
The Port of HamburgJorge Franganillo/Flickr

Germany's second largest city, Hamburg, is known for its famous harbour area the Port of Hamburg, which you must visit. The Elbe Tunnel is an engineering-marvel worth experiencing, and so is the Miniatur Wunderland, the world's largest model railway. At the port, take one of the tours departing from Landungsbrücken and ride across the 4 km bridge there. The City Hall, the Hamburg Rathaus and the famous St. Michaels Church, a Baroque masterpiece, as well as the Inner Alster and Outer Alster artificial lakes, and the Ohlsdorf Cemetery are some of the prime attractions of the city. See hamburg-travel.com for more details.

Dusseldorf is known for its fashion and art industries. Here, visit the elegant Knigsallee avenue with its high-end real estate and beautiful architecture, and the Kaiserswerth neighbourhood, parts of which date back to the 10th century. Explore the the church of St. Suitbertus and Kaiserpfalz, an important seat of the old Holy Roman Emperor, here. The Museum Kunstpalast (Museum of Art) has more than 70,000 different artworks which can keep you occupied for days. Enjoy shopping on Knigsalle or just K, one of the best places for high fashion in Europe. Visit duesseldorf-tourismus.de for more.

A view of Regensburg city
A view of Regensburg cityGetty Images

At Regensberg, enjoy sailing down the Danube river, which itself is quite a tranquil experience. The city's gothic Cathedral was built over 500 years and is a stunning piece of medieval architecture. Visit the Goldener Turn (Golden Tower), St. Emmeram's Abbey, over 1200 years old, and the Walhalla, a German Hall-of-Fame, named after 'Valhalla' of Norse mythology. For shopping, the huge bookshop, Bücher Pustet, TK Maxx for German fashion and Schau Hi for paper craft must be tried. Visit tourismus.regensburg.de/en

Finally, at Cologne, there is the Museum Ludwig, with its Picasso collection, the Cologne Cathedral, with its gothic architecture and twin spires, the interesting waterside chocolate museum known as Imhoff-Schokoladenmuseum and the Great St. Martin Church, which is Romanesque. Visit cologne-tourism.com.

More Things To Do In Germany

Embark on an enchanting journey through the heart of Germany, where rich history meets modern innovation. Begin your adventure in Berlin, where the iconic Brandenburg Gate stands tall amidst a bustling metropolis steeped in culture. Traverse the scenic Romantic Road, winding through picturesque Bavarian villages and fairytale castles straight out of a storybook. Indulge in the vibrant atmosphere of Munich's beer gardens, alive with the spirit of Oktoberfest year-round. Explore the medieval charm of Heidelberg, with its majestic castle overlooking the Neckar River. Conclude your voyage in the historic city of Dresden, where Baroque architecture and timeless beauty await around every corner. From the vibrant streets of Berlin to the serene landscapes of Bavaria, Germany offers an unforgettable tapestry of experiences waiting to be discovered.

A shot of Autobahn
A shot of AutobahnShutterstock

Between your visits to these cities, do not forget to drive across the Autobahn. At almost 13,000 km long with no speed limits to speak of, driving down the highway makes for an unforgettable road trip. Visit the Black Forest in the southwest corner of Germany, dark and densely-wooded hills, beloved of hikers everywhere. Drive across the Rhine Valley, along the Rhine River. The upper middle Rhine Valley section is a 65 km stretch with around 60 medieval towns and 40 castles. Museumsinsel or Museum Island between River Spree and Kupfergraben is home to many of Berlin's important museums. The oldest here is the Altes Museum, which was built in 1830. Visit the old town of Bamberg in northern Bavaria and its smaller boroughs for a taste of traditional German art and architecture. The Baltic Sea boasts of a gorgeous landscape with its beaches, old growth beech forests and white chalk cliffs. It's a part of the Jasmund National Park.

Where To Eat & Drink

Beer is Germany's most popular drink
Beer is Germany's most popular drinkBrandon Price/Flickr

Brauhaus Lemke am Schloss is Berlin's oldest craft brewery and it also serves authentic German cuisine. Rogacki is a legendary deli, known for its sausages or trout and eel. The home of Currywurst, a gravy sausage dish, Krasselts Imbiss, is worth a visit as well. Cafe am Neuen See is a biergarten absolutely worth the visit. Nobelhart & Schmutzig, known for its modern Nordic food, is fine indulgence. Some of the amazing places to drink in Berlin include Tausend, with its wasabi cocktails and 3D installations, Bei Schlawinchen, which is open all hours and Schwarze Traube, with an award for best mixologist in Germany, is another great watering hole. For street food, there is Bite Club in Kreuzberg, which is a mix of many one-off vendors, especially famous for its cheeseburger by the vendor Bunsmobile.

Frankfurt has plenty of options for a great. Visit Ebert's Suppenstube for traditional Bratwursts and also enjoy their potato soup and salad. At Holbein's, situated along a river, the eclectic menu samples dishes from around the world. Villa Rothschild is a Michelin-starred gastronomical delight, while two-Michelin starred Villa Merton is very experimental with their food. As for drinks, enjoy Luna Bar, known for its cocktails and Strandperle, where beer and tapas go just about perfect.

Germany's famous sausages
Germany's famous sausagesFlickr

Munich is the place to enjoy Bavarian food and great beer. Asam Schlssl is known for its Bavarian cuisines while Hofbrukeller serves beer and Munichs delicacies. Augustiner am Dom is traditional with a comfortable atmosphere, while Bratwurst Glöckl is famous for its original Franconian sausages. Furthermore, enjoy beer at Zum Spöckmeier and Ratskeller. Biergarten or Beer gardens, which are outdoor garden where beer and local food are served, are famous here. Hirschgarten restaurant, noted for its beer garden, dates back to 1791.

In Hamburg, head to Haerlin for some excellent authentic German cuisine, while Caramba Especial is a treat for fish lovers. Uhlenhorster Weinstube is another German option. Hamburg's old town has some great bars, especially Luba Luft for its cocktails and Goldfischglass for its quirky drinks.

In Dusseldorf, there's Zum Uerige on Berger Street where the locally-brewed Altbier is served. Zum Schiffchen, similarly, is a traditional Dusseldorf restaurant, while restaurant Takumi is known for its ramen.

At Regensburg, visit the Historische Wurstkuchl, which 900 years old and calls itself the worlds oldest sausage kitchen. Dicker Mann is about 700 years old and serves wurst and roulade with beer.

At Cologne, fine-dining restaurants such as Hanse-Stube, which serves French, German and European cuisines and MaiBeck, an all-purpose European restaurant, are two great options. Cheaper options include Lommerzheim and Max Stark, where you can enjoy German food with a glass of beer.

The Information

Where To Stay

In Berlin, hostels such as Hostel Adler and Shipotel (From €31) are the cheapest options. Mid-range options include the 72-room Lux 11 (From €154). For a luxurious stay, head to Hotel Adlon (From €839). Airbnb has plenty of options across all price ranges.

In Frankfurt, five-star options include Steigenberger (From €190), Frankfurter Hof, and Sheraton Frankfurt Airport Hotel & Conference Center (From €136). A reasonable option is NH Frankfurt Niederrad (From €83). The chain has 6 other hotels in the city.

In Munich, five-star options include Hilton Munich Park (From €354) and Le Meridien Munich (From €893). More reasonable options include LetoMotel München City Ost (From €60).

In Dusseldorf, stay in either InterContinental Dusseldorf while a cheaper option is NH Dusseldorf City Nord (From €163).

In Hamburg, go for Hotel Europischer Hof Hamburg (From €170) or the more affordable Holiday Inn Express Hamburg City Centre(From €119).

In Regensburg, stay at Goldenes Kreuz, which has 9 rooms the Bischofshof am Dom, a former bishops residence now a luxury hotel. If you prefer contemporary lines and French windows, there's the Best Western Premier Hotel Regensburg.

In Cologne, go for Eden Hotel Früh Am Dom (From €155)

Germany is an iconic destination serving as a gateway to exploring other parts of Europe. From culture to clubs, from architectural wonders to Wurst, this country is certainly one of the top destinations in Europe and a must visit.


You'll need a Schengen visa (for the Schengen zone). The official website germany-visa.org has all the information on how to get a tourist visa. On the website, fill either the online form or print and fill the offline form for short-term visa (up to 90 days). German visa application centres, where you submit your documents and application, are available in most major Indian cities, while the German Embassy is in New Delhi and German Consulate Generals are present in Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Kolkata.

Getting There

There are direct flights and stopover flights connecting India and Germany. Direct flights are more expensive, but you reach in a comfortable 8 to 10 hours. There are direct flights from Mumbai, Chennai, Bangaluru and New Delhi to Frankfurt and direct flights to Munich from Delhi andMumbai. Turkish Airlines, Kuwait Airways, Aeroflot, Qatar Airways, Jet Airways, Lufthansa, Air India, Air France, Emirates, Airberlin and Etihad Airways operate flights between India and Germany.

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