• Speicherstadt district, Hamburg, Germany
    Hamburg's Speicherstadt
  • Cologne Cathedral
  • Bacharach on the Rhine
  • Rothenburg
  • Munich's Hofbräuhaus
  • Erfurt
  • Schlossplatz and Royal Palace, Dresden, Germany
    Dresden
  • Berlin

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Best of Germany in 13 Days Tour

from $3,495 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $675

See Tour Dates

The Best of Germany begins with the sound of seagulls in Hamburg, a city that tickles tourists with its people-friendly harbor and a nearly Nordic vibe. From there you'll daydream through fairy-tale forests, meander the mighty Rhine, have fun storming the castle, and clink frothy mugs of beer in Bavaria. You'll also time-trip through the medieval charms of Rothenburg, walk in the revolutionary footsteps of Luther, reflect on the tumultuous events of World War II, and marvel at the modernity of 21st-century Berlin. Join us for the Best of Germany in 13 Days!

Dates & Prices

2020

What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Germany come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 20 group sightseeing events • Hamburg walking tour • St. Nicholas Church • Hamburg's Elbphilharmonie • Hamburg Harbor boat cruise • Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp Memorial • Fairy Tale Highway drive • Cologne Cathedral • Bacharach walking tour • Rheinfels Castle • Rhine River cruise • Rothenburg Night Watchman's walking tour • Munich walking tour • Hofbräuhaus • Nürnberg Zeppelin Field and Nazi Documentation Center • Erfurt walking tour including its Augustinian Monastery • Erfurt's Old Synagogue • Wartburg Castle • Dresden walking tour • Dresden's Frauenkirche (when available) • Historic Berlin walking tour…and more
  • All group transportation from Hamburg to Berlin
  • 12 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • A tour kit including a guidebook (or books) and a moneybelt
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2020
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer or cancel your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above.

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles of walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to Germany

We'll meet at 5 p.m. at our hotel in Hamburg for a "Welcome to Germany" meeting. Then we'll take a neighborhood walk to get a feel for this prosperous, progressive city, and get acquainted over dinner together. Sleep in Hamburg (2 nights). No bus. Walking: light.

Day 2: Hamburg's Old Town and Harbor

Today we'll begin with a walking tour of the historic core of Hamburg, including the resilient St. Nicholas church, where we'll learn about "Operation Gomorrah" — the allied firebombing campaign that devastated the city in 1943. Then we'll stroll through historic Speicherstadt to the stunning new Elbphilharmonie concert hall and hop aboard a boat to see the city's massive modern harbor. When we return shore-side we'll set you free for the afternoon to explore more of this pedestrian-friendly town. Boat: 1 hour. Walking: moderate.

Day 3: Germany's Fairy Tale Highway

Today we'll take off for the countryside that inspired a thousand legends and visit the real-life settings where the Brothers Grimm did much of their fairy-tale research in the 1830s. We'll also stop to pay our respects at the site of the all-too-real WWII Bergen-Belsen memorial. Sleep in Lower Saxony (1 night). Bus: 3 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 4: Cologne and the Romantic Rhine

This morning we'll head straight for the single most-visited site in all of Germany: the Cologne Cathedral. You'll appreciate why as our local guide takes us exploring through northern Europe's most massive Gothic church. Then we'll continue on to the Rhine Valley and our charming riverside village where we'll have dinner together and sleep (2 nights). Bus: 6 hours. Walking: light.

Day 5: Rhine Castles and River Cruise

We'll begin our day in St. Goar, where we'll hike up the hill to tour the mighty medieval Rheinfels Castle, and enjoy its commanding view of the Rhine Valley. Then we'll board a boat for a relaxing Rhine River cruise, passing picturesque villages, vineyards, and feudal castles. After disembarking in Bacharach, we'll take a walking tour of the village with an entertaining local guide, followed by free time. Tonight you'll be free for dinner to feast like a feudal lord. Boat: 1 hour. Bus: ½ hour. Walking: strenuous.

Day 6: Medieval Rothenburg

This morning we'll continue our journey to Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany's best-preserved medieval town. After an orientation to town, the afternoon is yours to see the best woodcarving in Germany (Riemenschneider's altarpiece), walk the medieval wall, tour the Medieval Crime and Punishment Museum, or hunt down the best apple strudel in town. This evening we'll tag along on the legendary Night Watchman's tour. Sleep in Rothenburg (1 night) Bus: 3 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 7: Fascism and Historic Bavaria

Today we'll journey further into Bavaria, the romantic heart of Germany. Along the way we'll stop in Nürnberg, where we'll visit the city's Hitler-era rally grounds, including the Zeppelin Field and Documentation Center. After free time for lunch, we'll continue on to Bavaria's largest city, Munich, and cap the day with an orientation walk through the city's historic center followed by a "Welcome to Bavaria" dinner together. Sleep in Munich (2 nights). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 8: Marvelous Munich

We'll spend our morning getting a behind-the-scenes look at Munich with a walking tour through its historic Old Town and learn about the "checkered" history and traditions of Bavaria at the Hofbräuhaus beer hall. The rest of the day is yours to stroll around Germany's most livable city, appreciate its world-class museums, or rent a bike to pedal the car-free paths along the English Garden and Isar River. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 9: Road to Reformation

Today we'll say "Auf Wiedersehen" to Munich and transport ourselves back to the 16th century in the heart of Germany's "Luther Country." Just west of our final destination, we'll visit the captivating Wartburg Castle, where Martin Luther hid away in a small room and translated the New Testament into modern German. After checking into our hotel in Erfurt, we'll take an orientation walk through this historic town and share the day's insights over a hearty dinner together. Sleep in Erfurt (2 nights). Bus: 6 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 10: In the Footsteps of Luther

Erfurt's half-timbered old town is the perfect place for a walking tour. We'll follow the footsteps of Martin Luther as he became a priest in Erfurt's cathedral and later a monk in its monastery. We'll also learn about the town's historic Jewish population at the Old Synagogue. Your afternoon is free for wandering through the picturesque pedestrian zone and market square. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 11: Baroque Dresden and Dynamic Berlin

Our final driving day begins with a stop in the city of Dresden, where a local guide will take us on a walking tour of this delightfully Baroque city, reborn from the ashes of World War II. Its star is the inspiring Frauenkirche, destroyed in the firestorms of 1945 and rebuilt with donations from around the world. Arriving in Berlin this afternoon, we'll learn how to master the city's public transportation system, and get oriented to our neighborhood before free time and dinner on your own. Sleep in Berlin (2 nights). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 12: Berlin's Historic Heart

We'll begin our day with a fascinating walking tour through the historic heart of Berlin, including Unter den Linden, the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag, Checkpoint Charlie, and memorials to the earth-shaking events and sacrifices of the past century. This evening we'll have our last dinner together, sharing travel memories and toasting new friends. Prost! No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 13: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. It's a breeze to reach Berlin's airports by shuttle, S-bahn train, bus, or taxi. You'll have easy connections to home, or on to other points in Europe. Auf Wiedersehen!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Best of Germany in 13 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.

Reviews

Diane

Appleton, WI

Tour: 09/17/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed this tour. Although I liked our visit to Neuschwanstein Castle, I would have preferred more time in Munich or another location. A lot of time was spent driving to and from this castle. Erfurt was a wonderful surprise! What a charming location. Loved the slower pace here and the chance to relax and enjoy this picturesque city.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Munich and Octoberfest were a highlight of the trip. It was easy to get around using the subway system. I also loved our time in Bacharach, the Rhine river cruise and the Rhine in Flames festival."

Maureen

Depere, WI

Tour: 09/17/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"October fest"

Deborah

Sheffield Lake, OH

Tour: 09/17/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was a whirlwind tour of Germany. We were busy learning about and participating in the culture and society of Germany every day. Our guide, Holger, was tuned into what was happening in each area we visited and we were able to participate in local festivals, fireworks, and special castle tours all along the way. We enjoyed the company of the rest of our group when we would meet for group dinners and events. It was a vacation of making good memories with good people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite? There were many! From the "time-traveling" in small medieval towns, river views, fireworks on the Rhine, and being surrounded by the fresh beauty of the foothills of the Alps, this trip was filled with wow moments. As an amateur photographer the vistas were breathtaking. Loved walking over the bridge in Hann Münden in the morning and seeing the mist on the river. It was picture perfect."

George

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 09/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful. We got to see so many sides of Germany: castles and countryside to cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Reiner en Flamme. The crowds, the food, the fireworks."

David

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the usual (come to be expected) outstanding Rick Steves tour experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was much more to see in Germany than I would have guessed prior to the tour. This doesn't really belong in this section, but going on this trip made me a fan of pay toilets. The toilets were always spotlessly clean and there was always toilet paper. A big contrast to other European venues, eg France."

Jerome

Fond Du Lac, WI

Tour: 09/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My first trip using a passport. Was an experience I will never forget. The tour was planned out perfectly. Our guide was extremely informative and down to earth. Our travel group was small which added to the success of the trip. Had a wide variety of sites to see. Enjoyed the guide tours, but also appreciated the opportunities to for self guided sightseeing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pinpoint just one "wow" moment. Starting from Hamburg was a great introduction of things to come. The architecture and skills needed to construct the cathedrals and castles, was truly amazing. Combined with the postcard settings, truly memorable."

Carol

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 09/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was incredibly informative, visiting so many significant sites and cities in Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had never seen pipe organs designed in the Baroque style before. During our free time on this tour, I saw three outstanding examples of that style. We even heard 2 being played! Magnificent!"

Ella

Salt Lake City, UT

Tour: 09/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had amazing weather so the beautiful countryside, quaint towns, and big cities were even more magnificent. The bus was comfortable and the hotels nice. I especially liked listening to Maisie as she got behind the surface history found in the book (which I'd already read) and really brought things to life. Her take on current events, the German political system, and her perspective on how the German people are still dealing with the aftermath of WW2 was insightful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was such a nice mix of small towns and large, but I guess I was most impressed with Berlin. So many tangled layers of history in one city. I graduated from high school the year before the wall fell and was aware of the political upheaval, but to see the place..."

Robert

Eugene, OR

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful, even with all the bus rides. We had the right amount of "our time" in each city. The city orientations were very important in allowing us to make the best use of our free time later in the day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The boat tour of Hamburg harbor was spectacular. To see those container ships, knowing that most of what I have purchased probably came in one, was sobering. Then to know that each container needed a truck, and to see truck after truck , at the proper interval going over the bridge and out of Hamburg, showed just how large the container ship impact on the world was."

Connie

Orange, CA

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed the thirteen days we spent traveling in Germany. This was our third Rick Steves' tour, and this one definitely involved the greatest number of miles of traveling. We enjoyed the chance to see Hamburg - a place not a lot of American tourists are familiar with. We had a terrific group to travel with, and with very few exceptions, our tour guide was very effective and helpful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several ... I very much enjoyed having the chance to visit Berlin and to see the historically significant sites there. Our local guide was terrific - the best of the trip - and he covered a lot of ground (both physically and historically) with us. There were not as many 'natural beauty' WOW moments on this trip as on our Ireland and Italy tours, but we loved everything we saw."

Isela

Tallahassee, FL

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steve's tour and first ever trip abroad. Everything was beyond my expectations. From our wonderful/talented/funny/thoughtful tour guide Ms. Caroline to the hotels, food, itinerary, special tours and of course our bus drivers; Big John and Handsome Henry.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every moment of every day was a wow moment for me."

Jerome

The Villages, FL

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I very much enjoyed our tour of Germany. Traveling broadens a person's horizons by getting out in the world and learning new things. I enjoy history and it is great to get out and explore where that history took place. I have German ancestry so it was natural I would come here someday. The pacing of the tour was pretty good. Just the right amount of time in the small towns to get some flavor of them but not enough in the big cities to do everything there is to do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite was not a part of the tour but I am a huge Beatles fan and got to check out some of the Beatles sites in Hamburg on my free time. Other great moments were walking through the Cologne Cathedral, standing on a hill overlooking Bacharach and the Rhine river, drinking beer and listening to the music at Hofbrauhaus in Munich and touring Neuschwanstein Castle."

Cynthia

Ramona, CA

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Germany tour was a wonderful tour. Caroline was a great tour guide as she provided so much information but in a way that was so very interesting. I feel there was a good mix of planned time and free time. The individual tour guides were outstanding and provided a good understanding of the cities they talked about.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really can't say there was just one as this tour really tugged at my heart strings. It seemed each day there was something that came up, especially about World War II, that I didn't know and had me take a minute or two to understand my emotions. If I had to pick something though, then I would say Berlin. I am so glad we spent 5 extra days there as it has so much to offer."

Nancy

Longmeadow, MA

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the mix of cities and towns. Although there was a lot of bus time, the days were broken up to accommodate the travel.We were fortunate to be part of a weekend festive. I enjoyed the night walk with the watchman, even in the rain.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was powerful to go to Nurnberg and stand were Hitler stood.I was also moved by the stumbling stone memorials outside some of the buildings in Berlin."

Judith

Princeton, NJ

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Caroline was terrific. Her knowledge of Germany's history and her ability to weave that history with it's cultural and political implications was exceptional. Insight as to to differences between the peoples of Hamburg/Berlin and Munich was entertaining. Local guides ( particularly Bridget) were up to what we've come to expect from RS.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The extent to which the Stazi, with a relatively small ~2% of the population could control the remaining 98% of the people in Communist east Berlin. Also, the considerable nordic cultural influence in Hamburg."

Jerry

Georgetown, TX

Tour: 09/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Without question having been on previous RS tours, Carolina is one of the best guides from the standpoint of looking after the personal needs of the group, knowledgeable about the history of towns/cities visited and able to inject humor, music and personal information to keep the interest high in what we were seeing and doing. Looking back at over pictures taken on the tour, I am still amazed we were able to cover so much ground and many sites, still allowing free time.

Linda

Vincennes, IN

Tour: 08/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I felt that the trip was well planned and gave plenty of time to explore some on your own. Our guide was well prepared, knowledgeable, polite, and protective..meaning he made sure all of our group was accounted for before leaving and area.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I liked how well the guide was prepared and how he could get me interested into history. Wow! I didnt like history as a child or in school!"

Lisa

Braintree, MA

Tour: 08/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was awesome. I've traveled quite a bit over 37 years. I enjoyed going to Bingen Wine Festival Aug 31st. It as great being with the locals, tasting different wines and fire works. This was add on by Torben being the first day of the festival. The night watchman in Rothenburg was a blast! I greatly enjoyed Weissenstein I will embellished below. I enjoyed Berlin. I hope to return and see the Museums. The places we stopped in relation to World II were moving.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed going to Bingen Wine Festival Aug 31st. It as great being with the locals, tasting different wines and fire works. This was add on by Torben being the first day of the festival. I've seen many churches, cathedrals and castles therefore I am neutral on them being the "WOW" factor. Though I greatly enjoyed Schloss Weissenstein in Pommersflden. The castle was wonderful the magnificent staircase and the paintings.The local guide was good. This was a great stop set up by Torben. Keep it!"

Mark

Vincennes, IN

Tour: 08/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed the Best of Germany tour. I am glad that I went and hope to go on more Rick Steves' tours. The tour exceeded my expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I do not think that I had a favorite "wow" moment. Finding out how well prepared Torben Brown was, constituted a "wow" moment. Visiting WWII Bergen-Belsen memorial had a deep effect on me. History hit me head on. Learning about Martin Luther and following his foot steps provided great insight into my faith. As one of our tour members said "Berlin has an edge." I found Berlin alive, young, yet steeped in history. Looking at the history that my parents lived through was amazing."

Kimberly

Orefield, PA

Tour: 08/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed my tour experience. We were very lucky to have a great group of people on the tour. Everyone got along well - no grumps as expected. Torben, our guide, and John, our driver, did an excellent job delivering us to our destinations safely with fun side trips along the way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Dresden on the way to Berlin was an unexpected delight. What an interesting city. The Zwinger palace was amazing. Our local tour guide was very engaging. I also really enjoyed the walking tour with our local guide, Micheal, in Munich. He was very funny and entertaining while providing the history of the city."

Donald

Seattle, WA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was everything we expected and more. Packed into less than two weeks of intensive, active travel was a potpourri of modern German cities, charming small towns, castles, churches, synagogues, and a strong dose of 20th-century history. We came away with a clear sense of what Germany is today, and how it remembers its fascinating, checkered past.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the actual locations that marked Hitler's personal rise (Munich), heyday (Nuremberg), and ultimate fall (the minimally marked Berlin bunker)."

Sue

Shell Lake, WI

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour. I traveled with my brother and sister in law who raved about several other tours they have been on. This tour "The Best of Germany" truly lived up to it expectation. It was so well planned and provided so more than I could have ever imagined. I loved the fact that it wasn't just a tourist attraction type tour but it focused on the rich history and culture of the country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of the many "wow" moments was when I actually saw the breathtaking, beauty and enormity of the cathedrals and castles we visited. I had previously only seen them in books, but to actually be there was beyond WOW"

Alana

Burke, VA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The balance of small town/large city & modernization/troubled past reminders made this tour. Carlos' history/politics contrasted nicely with cultural trends told by Matthias. Cool, rainy weather (who can forget Neuschwanstein!) was more pleasant than Europes's recent heat. Hotels of character & modern convenience + brkfsts were great. Meals provided a sample of regional dishes. Peter & the bus got us efficiently around hwy repairs & long traveled dstances. Great group! It was a good trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow #1: Hamburg w/lakes/canals/river looks to a vibrant future while retaining the past in restored historic buildings. Harbor tour with our tiny RS-only boat chugging up close to mammoth cargo container ships & huge drydocks was outstanding. Wow #2: Münden's quiet/slower-paced town life & relaxing river sounds. 3rd wow: the # of "bus" treats & other surprises such as Bacharach wine-tasting, Wartburg Castle terrace lunch, Rothenburg dinner, Reichstag dome visit & Berlin Wall Gallery drive-by."

Virginia

Cambridge, WI

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The logistics, the food, the hotels, the guides, the places that were chosen for us to visit were excellent. Hearing the stories of our guide's families during the turbulent times in Germany added so much: it was personal, it was real, it happened to real people. It changed my perception of Germany, particularly how it is dealing with its past.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There wasn't one or even three favorite "wow" moments: there were many little "wow" moments. - Experiencing the towns along the Rhine, especially Bacharach and the Rhine river cruise. - Rothenburg - The Hofbrauhaus. Have to experience it to believe it! - Walking up to Ludwig's castle in the rain with the sun showing through - Experiencing/being in the places that changed world history: Luther sites, the street corner in Munich where the Putsch could have gone either way, the Nurnberg rally gr"

Linda

Augusta, GA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a very active and fast paced tour; We saw so many sights and learned so much related history - I would not have been able to accomplish this packed itinerary on my own! Loved seeing villages as well as cities - felt the route provided a nice overall view of Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many from which to choose; below are three of my favorite memories: 1. lunch at Wartburg Castle hotel was delightful - a fairy tale experience - delicious lunch, beautiful views, a nice relaxing break, and great company 2. harbor tour of Hamburg - I was surprised how fascinating I found this tour. Great local guide and very informative and interesting information. 3. the tour of the Reichstag Building"

Carlton

Augusta, GA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Saw many interesting sights, enjoyed good food, and learned a lot of history and German culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The fascinating harbor tour in Hamburg and the Night Watchman tour inn Rothenburg."

Anna

Glenmont, NY

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We saw A WhOLE LOT of this largest of European countries with a very knowledgeable guide (Carlos)and travelled with some fascinating people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the German Museum of Science and Technology at Munich; it rivaled our Smithsonian with great exhibits and clear explanations scientific principles in English as well as German. (Guides did not mention it on our trip)"

Sylvia

Niles, IL

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Ken and I had a wonderful time on our first Rick Steve's tour! We were hesitant at first to take a tour, but realize now that it is a great way to travel if you want to cover a large area without the hassle of planning your own itinerary and navigating through unfamiliar landscapes - let alone doing it in a foreign language! We visited so many sites that we may never had experienced on our own, and we enjoyed every single day of it!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had so many "Wow" moments! The harbor cruise in Hamburg was amazing. Our first look at the charm of Bacharach blew us away! We thoroughly enjoyed our meals spent with the other tour members - especially the one at the beer hall in Munich that started out with pretzels and where I had a pork knuckle - learning how to "cut off the skin like a surgeon", as Mattie instructed. We made new friends from Munich during our free time there. Being at Zeppelin Field was overwhelming."

Ann

Augusta, GA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very nice mix of big cities and small towns in Germany. We learned so much culture and history of the area as well as enjoyed the dinners together. A fast-paced and varied experience tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the very room where Martin Luther translated the New Testament at Wartburg Castle was outstanding. The lunch at the restaurant there was delightful. One "wow" moment was not enough. The guide on the boat tour at Hamburg gave a fantastic tour of the harbor. Our visit to the Reichstag was yet another "wow" moment."

Steven

Silverdale, WA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Tour Guide Carlos was outstanding, His incredible knowledge of Germany and the events that shaped the country are not available in books. Also Matty the other tour guide added personal hx that affected/impacted his family. I would reccomend this tour to anyone that is ale to walk many miles a day to explore each site.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everything was surprising and eye opening including Dresdon and World War 2 hx, how all of Germany rebounded to be the 4th largest industrialized nation in the world."

Steven

Sudbury, MA

Tour: 08/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

n A++ trip from start to end. The professionalism of the RSE organization and especially the top performance of our fabulous guide, Carlos Meissner (with a Ph.D. in history!) made our 13-day tour in Germany a life long, memorable experience. The Germany tour was a great value for our "traveling dollar." This was our second Rick Steves Tour, and I'd highly recommend it to fellow travelers who want most things planned out for them on a European tour. Steve M e s h o n , Ph.D Sudbury, MA

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many wow moments throughout the trip. Two especially colorful moments were the beauty and charm of Bacharach and Erfurt. Oh, I also can't forget the dazzling, towering, Disneyland-inspiring Neuschwanstein Castle! That's three wows -- for starters!"

Gaylen

Chapel Hill, NC

Tour: 07/09/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great overall experience. Hotels were high quality and in great locations. The tour director did a great job of getting us oriented to the cities and the various transportation options, pacing the activities, and her knowledge and insights regarding 20th century German History were amazing. My only criticism is that she did not share much about current topic, music, crops, economy) even thought we had prompted her in that direction on several occasions. It was nice having an Asst director.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The castle at St. Goar was fascinating and unique because of history of tunnels etc."

Bruce

Providence, RI

Tour: 07/09/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an excellent experience. Glad we did it. It was longer than our previous Rick Steves Tours (Ireland, Scotland), so a bit of an endurance run for us, albeit an enjoyable one. Glad we arrived in Hamburg two days ahead of time to rest and explore the city via hop-on/hop-off bus. We also stayed three days afterward to decompress a bit before flying home.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"None in particular. Lots of stand-out moments on this tour. Really appreciated Caroline's knowledge and honesty about Germany's long history, the Nazi years and Cold War years."

Darrell

Altamonte Springs, FL

Tour: 07/09/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very educational and rewarding tour. Every place we visited had so much to offer, and we usually wished we could spend more time there. Caroline's knowledge was fantastic, and her life story added a lot to understanding Nazi and German history and put WW II into perspective. She sometimes did set a pretty fast pace on our walks. Ben was also very helpful in so many ways.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We liked the big cities and all that they offered with their experiences after bombing in WW II, but we probably liked the smaller places best -- specifically Bacharat and Erfurt. I don't know if you would call it a "wow" moment, but the concentration camps and life stories probably had the most impact."

Lynda

Altamonte Springs, FL

Tour: 07/09/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was about what I expected--very informative and fast paced. We followed the advertised itinerary and saw some very beautiful and interesting sites. My only disappointment was that we did not see Wartburg Castle as listed on the original itinerary. I should have realized that it would mean lots of bus travel to go to all the included cities as the actual time on the bus was the only thing I didn't like. The summer travel season meant lots of traffic jams that slowed us down.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved visiting and staying in the small cities such as Bacharach--peaceful and beautiful scenery."

Alex

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful. It was a great mixture of large and small towns, of structured and unstructured time, and of differing levels of "tourist"-y feeling activities. I personally favored the places like Hamburg, Berlin, and Bacharach where I felt the least tourist-y (or, rather, where I felt the location wasn't tailoring itself or marketing itself primarily to tourists), but I appreciate the mixture of experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Neuschwanstein from the viewing bridge backlit in a thunder/hailstorm in all its dramatic Wagnerian glory. Second most "wow": Having a tarte flambe in Berlin, because it was German-ish food that wasn't heavy meat and potatoes."

Kathleen

Happy Valley, OR

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very well organized, great,informative guide, city guides were also very good in a whole. Hotel rooms were fine, no air during the heatwave was very uncomfortable. I found Hamburg to be an extremely boring city and would rather have spent more time else where, like Cologne. Loved the small cities like Bacharach and Erfurt ( my favorite).

Jim

Porter Ranch, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This our second tour and you company does not disappoint. We saw just enough of Germany. The time spent on the bus, walking, touring was just to my limit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed hearing Catalina's family experience with growing up in Germany and how the holocaust affected her interest in history"

Mike

Happy Valley, OR

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We went into this tour with no prior experience and what I would say as normal expectations. The trip was exceptional. My wife and I agree that any tour is going to be as good as your guide. Caroline was the best and having Matti was just one huge bonus! The are both professionals and it was obvious to us that Rick only hires the best! This wasn't just a sight seeing trip, we received all types of information, from historical to cultural, both current and past.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can specify one particular moment, they were all so good. Being able to see the room that Martin Luther studied as a monk was pretty special. Every stop had a professional guide specific to that town"

Mary

Rapid City, SD

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thought the tour was a very good mixture of urban and rural experiences. The bus offered a good place to cool off, rest and view the countryside. Routine stops helped make it never feel like we were on the bus for too long. Thanks John! The group was a nice collection of generations and I will forever be grateful that my kids were able to hear the personal experiences shared by Caroline and Mattie. Hopefully we will all share the insights we learned on this trip with others.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many moments when I experienced "wow" moments. The one that stands out for me is when as we approached the Bergen-Belsen Memorial, Caroline read from a book that detailed the experiences of Anne and Margot Frank. The words she quoted prompted me to compare the past to modern events and gave me chills."

Laura

Porter Ranch, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Caroline was a fantastic tour guide! We learned so much about the history of Germany from her, and she shared personal information about her family's involvement with WWII that she certainly didn't have to. It really brought everything to life though, and it was greatly appreciated by all.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Rheinfels Castle - when our tour guide sang to us at the end of the tour. It was AMAZING!"

Barbara

Long Beach, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed Germany. The food and alcohol was affordable. There was an extra hot time in Germany. Hamburg was hot at night! Munster had air conditioning! Air got cooler. Guides gave their personal family and stories about themselves. Very touching. It rained really hard during Neuswanstein Castle climb! We went to the bridge in shopping clothes. Worth it. Castle fascinating. Bavaria wonderful. Bacharach, Rhine boat, great St. Goar guide! Liked Berlin for access to all museums...

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Shocked most of Germany I saw on the autobabahn is for growing hops, potatoes, corn, and wheat! So many trees, also."

Thomas

Norton Shores, MI

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed this tour. Caroline and Matti are great guides. The itinerary was great, wonderful fellow travelers, great local guides. There was a nice balance between big cities and small villages. It addition to being fun it was very informative.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hearing our guides families experiences during World War Two. Their stories brought the war from a historical textbook into real life first hand experiences. Thank you for sharing your family stories."

Colin

Deer Park, WA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First Rick Steve's tour and first time in Europe so I wasn't sure what to expect, but our excellent tour guides Carolina and Matthias brought the tour to life and gave us the full experience of the history, politics, and culture of the different regions of Germany. From the food, to seeing castles on the Rhine, to visiting the Berlin Wall, the experience was amazing and a huge part of it was having two outstanding tour guides that and broadened our horizons with their own experiences of Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Bacharach and tasting the locally produced Riesling wine and then looking outside to see the castles and lush, green, vineyards on the slopes of the valley while the Rhine river flowed beneath them."

Derenz

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This 13-day Best of Germany tour was the best tour that I've ever experienced. Our guides were knowledge, fun, and caring. Our tour sites were culturally rich. Our hotels were centrally located. The food was delicious. I have been sharing my experiences of this meaningful and memorable trip with all of my family, friends, and coworkers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"These were my "wow" sites: Bacharach, Rothenburg, Neuschwanstein, and Erfurt. I didn't realize how much I would enjoy Bacharach and Erfurt. Münster was great, too. Loved the bicycles and our restaurant there. I liked seeing a German college town. And, the lunch at Bückeburg was delightful, especially, after spending time in Bergen-Belsen. I took a side trip to Dachau, my second day in Münich. Should Dachau replace Bergen-Belsen on the itinerary? It's worth a discussion."

Ernest

San Jose, CA

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great group of people, excellent guides, great food, good range of locations. More taken with Hamburg than I thought I would be

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Well, that would have to be the 1 hour torrential downpour with wind, thunder and hail that hit us at Neuschwanstein. Granted, this is not likely to be repeatable, but it sure had us all amazed (and soaked). Discounting that, I think it would be walking the entire perimeter of Rothenburg."

Xavier

South Bend, IN

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very educational as well as a great vacation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to say since there were so many different experiences."

Dan

Monroe, NC

Tour: 06/25/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, I had a great time – a lot of history and a great immersion into the Germany of the past and present. Caroline and our "apprentice" Matti were excellent. I learned so much from them on this trip. Also, we had a great group of fellow travelers who made the experience even that much better. This was our third RS tour and like the other two it was very, very busy. Our iPhone says we walked 97 miles in our 13 days. Next time, we are booking extra days at the end to relax!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pick just one thing so I will pick places & experiences. Places: Cologne Cathedral, Bacharach, Rothenburg, Erfurt & Berlin. Experiences: Bergen-Belsen when Caroline read about Anne Frank's last days as we were at her memorial marker – very moving. Alvin, our guide at Rheinfels Castle, who sang a beautiful song to the group. Finally, being helped by a local in Erfurt who just came up to us as we were looking for a good Bratwurst place (on our map) – such warmth of the German people!"

Gregory

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was a very nice mix of Germany's history (both distant and more recent), cultural factors, landscapes, foods, and current political and social issues. I learned much about the country's tragic infatuation with the Nazi agenda, the millions of Germany's victims, and the reflections and reconciliation which continue into the country's present and future. I really appreciated the independent free time that periodically occurred in the schedule.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I couldn't narrow my experiences down to one or two favorite moments. Sorry."

Nancy

Roseville, CA

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a great tour, but the itinerary needs some adjustments. 1. Start the tour in Frankfurt and end in Berlin. 2. Eliminate Hamburg which has absolutely no wow sights whatsoever. The Elbphilharmonie is not a 3 star attraction (per Rick's book). A view of the harbor and city was not exciting at all. 3. An extra day in Munich is a must in order to see Dachau (or Neuschwanstein Castle if it is removed from the itinerary). 4. Add the Black Forest if possible.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was seeing the Berlin Wall Memorial (which our local guide did not take us to). Also the Augustiner Keller Biergarten in Munich was very authentic (but not on our itinerary) and the food superior to the bier hall we went to in Munich for dinner. Going to Bergen Belsen was very moving. I liked learning about the "Stumbling Stones" too. I really like Bacharach and the cruise down the Rhine. And Erfurt was a very picturesque and far less touristy than Rottenburg."

Wendy

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Because this was our first Rick Steves Tour, I didn't know quite what to expect from the walking tours, as they had been described in the tour literature. So I appreciated that they included history and knowledge about the local culture, as well as extended time in a few places along the way. It also was a happy surprise that most days included free time to explore places of our choice after the a.m. walking tours. I do wish some of the bus days could have been shorter.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite overall day on the tour was the day spent touring the ruins of Rheinfels Castle, seeing the Rhine River and its castles from a boat tour, learning about Bacharach from our local guide, tasting local Riesling wines, and then, having independent time to hike the remains of some of Bacharach's medieval city walls. But I also enjoyed Wartburg Castle, Nurnberg's Nazi Documentation Center, and the roof-top tour of Berlin's Reichstag."

Dennis

Roseville, CA

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I enjoyed this tour since it rounded out our Rick Steves tours of Europe. Frankly I have more enjoyed our prior Rick Steves tours when they emphasized small town visits in addition to my own travels where I designed routes that emphasized random small town visits.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bacharach, Bergen Belsen, Munden, Erfurt (stangely all smallish towns)"

Sandy

Pine Hill, NJ

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

The overall tour was good, the guide was very knowledgable, however, I felt as if the tour guide was just doing his job and not really connecting with the group.

Lisa

Excelsior, MN

Tour: 06/11/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 2nd Rick Steve's tour and we were highly satisfied with our experience. The online description was very accurate so we knew what to expect. We specifically chose this tour itinerary for the immersion into all aspects of Germany's history. Each stop along the way delivered a unique slice from the emigrant experience in Hamburg, to medieval times along the Rhine, to WWII in East Germany. Touring the farm and wine-tasting Rieslings were nice ways to round out the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Bacharach from our 5th floor hotel room after climbing 5 flights of stairs, with our luggage! It was unexpected how breathtakingly charming the view of the rooftops, cafes, tower, spires and vineyards would be and definitely worth the climb! Another moment was at the Holocast memorial in Berlin. Walking through the maze of slabs was a very emotional experience that I will never forget."

Eugene

Battle Ground, WA

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"all good. Castles, Cathedrals, nightwatchman,etc"

Dean

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I took the Germany trip to learn more about German history and how the country evolved into its present configuration. The trip greatly helped me understand how prior ages set the course of present-day Germany. Our tour guide, Caroline, and specific city guides were instrumental in augmenting my understanding of the country. Overall, my experience was very positive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't have a specific "wow" moment. Rather, several notable moments: touring the Hamburg harbor; walking in Munich and seeing sights I have only read about come alive; spending valuable time in Nurnberg among WWII sights; and touring around Munich and Berlin with local guides."

Richard

Norwood, NJ

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a fantastic time touring Germany. It was a trip to discover the homeland for some of our family and the sites covered were diverse and very interesting. We saw some uncommon sites and some famous sites, and the balance was great. The participants were all friendly and game for discovery, which made it fun. Our tour guide Caroline was incredibly well informed and a great asset. This was a great tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is not possible for me to pick one, because there were so many great moments."

Barbara

Norwood, NJ

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great mix of touring with group & personal free time. SItes were interesting. TOurguide Caroline was knowledgeable & a pleasure

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Dresden"

Faye

Oley, PA

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was everything I hoped it would be and more. Our tour guide was the best ever ! The local guides along the way were also fantastic and very knowledgeable. Then there was our tour bus driver "Big John "! He was a great driver and very helpful and willing to answer any questions we had. Both he and Carolina could not do enough to make our experience the best ever. They even added a side trip that was on the initial itinerary but had been moved for something else.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "WOW" moment was riding on the autobahn and seeing the Alps come into view when we entered Bavaria."

Steven

Oley, PA

Tour: 05/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was absolutely fantastic. I would never have been able to see so much of Germany or learn so much about German culture, politics, and everyday life without our guide's fantastic knowledge and skillset. I loved being able to walk around the cities and towns as a group and on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't think I can place just one - it's a three-way tie. The first was seeing Cologne/Koln Cathedral - we saw a lot of cathedrals but something about it just blew me away. The second was seeing the Alps for the first time. I've never seen mountains like that before. The third was after our guide booked a special trip to Wartburg Castle. I am Lutheran, so being able to stand in the room where Luther hid and translated the New Testament was mind-blowing."

Kody

Verona, WI

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Loved it. Wonderful tour. Erfurt, Bacharach, and Rothenburg were tremendous. Berlin and Hamburg were definitely the low points of the tour. Everything in between was much better. I would suggest breaking up the tour into two separate tours. I thought we were on the bus just a little too much and we didn't get to stay in many of the cities long enough. Munich, Rothenburg, Erfurt, Nurnburg all deserved another day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Erfurt and Bacharach were the brightest of the highlights. The night watchman's tour was amazing. This was my first tour and it took a day or two before I got the "independent traveler" mindset. Once I did, I loved it."

Ginan

Carrollton, TX

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour of the Best of Germany was a great experience. The tour was well organized, our guide Maisie was great, and we saw a variety of things. There was a balance of small towns, medium towns and large cities, and a wide variety of experiences. Germany's history is complex and sometimes challenging to experience and confront. Our tour provided exposure to many topics that were a springboard to further research. Our group was great and added much joy to the trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many such moments and also many moments that inspired quiet contemplation. The beauty of walking through historic towns lined with half timbered houses and realizing "I'm really here!" was a recurring wow moment."

William

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first R.S. tour. I have only positive things to say about the whole experience. Preparation materials and information was very helpful, (esp. for first timers). The group was good size -- not too big to get around; big enough to have a good blend of people. At first, I thought the itinerary was a bit ambitious, covering a lot of ground, but it turned out to be very doable. There was a lot of guided, structured time, and also a fair amount of free time to do our own exploring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sorry -- can't possibly come up with just one. There were many, including castles, cathedrals, vineyards, Luther sights, historical venues, etc. I was "wowed" simply by being in and around towns and structures that were a thousand years old (or more)."

Gail

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steve tour and it was everything we had hoped for and more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had never been to Germany before so the whole trip was filled with wow moments. We spent an extra couple of days in Hamburg and Munich and loved both those cities. The small city of Erfurt was a real surprise. It is a lovely, walk-able city that has so much to offer."

Nancy

Lemont, IL

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour of Germany was a wonderful trip, but feel that it should be made into 2 separate tours. There is so much history and countryside I felt we barely scratched the surface. It seems a lot of time was spent on the bus & not enough time at certain stops, in particular our stop at Bergen-Belsen. There just was enough time to really absorb the museum & walk the area. Possibly an additional half hour would have helped or dropping that camp and when in Munch adding a day with a trip to Dachau.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the sites were wonderful, but stopping in Erfurt was Peaceful and a well needed rest before our sobering encounter of recent history in the next few days. Berlin was so amazing and such a learning experience I was glad we added a couple of extra days."

Louis

Lemont, IL

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our guide was excellent. Very concerned about everyone's well being. We had a quite a bit of rain and our guide when out and bought 6 umbrellas for those of us not having one. My wife took a couple of spills and our guide was very concerned

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Berlin. I found the post war history very interesting. I had basic knowledge but certainly expanded it"

James

Oakland, CA

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I went into the trip without any expectations and was pleasantly surprised. An interesting country historically and the apparent openness about their part in wwII. The scale of urban buildings, the many waterways, the vast amount of greenery was very comfortable. Also, pretty much enjoyed the food there, not as heavy as we thought it would be. I liked all the places we visited, even in the rain, but I must say Dresden was a little depressing even on a sunny day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Believe it or not flying into Hamburg and seeing all the pervasive greenery and many waterways. It was very pretty and not an urban bunch of boxes. It reminded me a little of Washington DC with a very human scale. Surprising. and somehow comforting."

Amy

Ogden, UT

Tour: 05/14/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour echoed past Rick Steves' tour experiences - great guides, accommodations, well planned itineraries, and really getting to know the history and culture of the country we visited. I've always been interested in World War II and I learned so much about that while on the tour. However, I also loved the beauty of the medieval towns we visited - wandering around felt like being in a fairy tale. I convinced a friend to come along this time and I believe she really enjoyed her experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I actually really loved exploring Hamburg -- which was an unexpected "wow" for me. I fell in love with the botanical garden and the harbor cruise was pretty cool. I enjoyed exploring the Elbphilharmonie and eating fish and chips on the harbor. I wasn't really aware of Operation Gommorrah and it was really sobering to learn about how it impacted the city; visiting St. Nicholas' Church and other sights set the stage for the pattern we would see in many other cities of destruction and rebuilding."

Stephanie

Spokane, WA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a great time. I liked how active the tour was. We had a good mix of ages of people. We saw so much more than we would have if left to our own devices. The places we went offered a balanced mix of modern cities, WWII history, and medieval to Renaissance history. It was so easy having all the transportation, hotels, and most attractions already reserved and taken care of. Our guide was really knowledgable and a lot of fun, and the guides in different towns were good, too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had a top floor, loft-style room with a sloping celing in our little historic Bacharach hotel. When I opened up the window over the fire escape, I could stand halfway out of it and see roofs and towers all around that probably haven't changed much in appearance in 400 years. It was amazing. Having never been outside of North America, I had never experienced being in a town so old. Bacharach was a WOW town for me!"

Barbara

Oakland, CA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Learned so much about Germany. It really enhanced my experience. Loved all the history. Learned that Hamburg related more to Scandinavia. Learned where Prussia was. Learned how Bavaria aligned more with France and Italy. Learned about situating cities on swampy land ("Ham") and how that facilitated canals and shipping. Learned about how rivers provided throughways to commerce from Sweden to China to London to Africa. Loved all the medieval cities, walls, customs, wars, Nazi info.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My WOW moment was better understanding the 30 Years religious war and why people would fight to the death over having your religion prevail. Got how, if Catholics were killed or their priests killed, people would die without last rites and were doomed to hell for eternity. Learned how Protestants were so against selling access to God as a hoax and the Church creating purgatory (which was not in the Bible) was a corrupt money-making power grab. So fascinating, and all the consequences..."

Kelly

Nashville, TN

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful! You see big cities, medieval towns, gorgeous countryside, sleepy villages, huge cathedrals and castles. All sprinkled with beer, brats and buddies. What could be better? Even the bus rides were fun, often stopping for lunch in meaningful spots like an open air museum or a castle off the beaten path. Our tour guide, Caroline, was amazing...weaving in historical, political, cultural lessons into each day's itinerary along with thoughtful, personal touches from a top notch RS guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hamburg was a pleasant surprise...with its beautiful harbor and park. Make sure to take a stroll through Planten un Blomen. I will never forget when Caroline read a passage from Anne Frank in front of her gravestone at Bergen-Belsen. Munich is a blast. Dresden is gorgeous. The entire city of Berlin is a "wow". Quit reading this and go already!!"

Zachary

Spokane, WA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Caroline is the best tour guide ever. I really liked the fast pace, because it meant we got to see more sites. We also got in enough walking to help counter the higher calorie intake of discovering delicious German food, and treats. Enough said.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I didn't have a single wow moment. Immersion into german life, and language, and learning about the culture throuout the entire trip was my "WOW"."

Janet

Calgary, AB

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first group tour, but, definitely, not my last. The tour was well organized,well paced with great narratives from our, knowledgeable, guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't have a "wow" moment. I was in awe the entire trip."

Shelley

Poway, CA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The locations we visited were great. The historical information we received from our guide Carolina and the local guides was outstanding. This was a good group of people on the tour with a smaller number that made everything more enjoyable. Our group meals were at great places and the hotels were nice. Overall a great tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The old city of Rottenburg was extremely interesting. The best wow moment was the "Night Watchman" tour of the City."

Jerome

Poway, CA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed all aspects of the tour. Very efficient and well coordinated. Super guides. Very good group of people on this tour. Carolina is fantastic guide and a star for Rick Steves Tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think the castle exploration along the Rhine was my best wow moment. There were a lot of wow moments on the entire tour. Had fun with this group of people and guides."

Chih-Tong

Wayland, MA

Tour: 05/07/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide (Caroline Marburger) is excellent

Katharine

Springvale, ME

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall our tour experience was great! It was our first tour experience of any kind and our first trip out of North America. We were amazed by all the things we saw. The walking tours with local guides through each new town were both interesting and informative. We particularly liked the attention paid to the details about what the "specialties" of the area were, be it wines, cuisine, fashion, museums or churches. We felt well informed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I most enjoyed the medieval city of Rothenburg, especially the Night Watchman's tour."

Linda

Saint Peters, MO

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was excellent. This was our second Rick Steve's tour. Saw so many beautiful places. We learned so much about the history as well as present life.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Munich Oktoberfest and Berlin."

Mary

Lexington, MA

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything about the tour exceeded expectations, and I expected a lot from Rick Steves. The choice of sites, hotels, restaurants, local tour guides: I have no complaints, only complements. Our bus driver was excellent, friendly and professional. On one trip, when there was a reported accident, he spent his break mapping out an alternate route. Growing up during the Cold War, I never expected to visit what was then East Germany and Berlin. That was thrilling.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments? There were so many. Each stop was delightful. I lived in Germany in the summer of 1973 and remember being awed by the beauty and magnificence of the Cologne Cathedral. It was just as awe-inspiring this time around."

John

West Kelowna, BC

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was excellent, but we didn't realize how large the country was. I think that Rick Steves tours could easily divide this country in 2 or 3 or 4, and make some more wonderfull tours as they do in Britain, France, or Italy. The country has a lot to offer tell.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favourite "Wow" moment was Erfurt. This was a town that feels like a "secret". Almost Germany's Brigadoon. Tourism is not its focus unlike Neuschwanstein which was a zoo. Erfurt has beautiful. Medieval buildings, squares, churches, and so on.The locals go about their day as if tourists weren't there. Erfurt has some nice pubs and restaurants where the staff are very helpful in navigating the menu. Often times they have a menu in English, but the buildings, and history is wonderfull."

James

Lexington, MA

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent trip! The first time I've done an organized tour. The first time I had been to Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The talk Caroline Marburger gave us on the bus as we travelled into the former East Germany was a marvel. She is vastly well-informed and able to tie together historical perspective, thorough detail, integrated interconnections, and personal experience in a wonderful way. A priceless moment in a never-to-be-forgotten setting."

Jodie

Claremore, OK

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our first tour, our first time out of the states and we were not prepared to have all meet our wildest expectations. Each city had its very own character and it's own unique spot in Germany's history. Country is beautiful and clean. Our tour guide that accompanied us thru the tour and the tour guides in each city were knowledgeable, passionate about the country and personable. The food and hotels were lovely. Our bus driver was professional, fun and would love to have him on our next tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was no one "wow" moment. Each location carried it's own "wow" moment."

Kurt

Wausau, WI

Tour: 09/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was much more structured than my previous Rick Steves tour. Group activities kept us on the go and consumed most of our waking hours. We had very little free time to plan for. That said the itinerary and the side trips picked by our guide were outstanding though very fast paced. I expect a Rick Steves tour to be slightly eclectic as you try to immerse us in the culture and I was not disappointed. The Concentration Camp and diary farm were particularly insightful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Caroline was talking about how different generations did or didn't take ownership of the Holocaust. That brought back a flood of childhood memories of angst. I grew up in a family that embraced its connection to Germany. We also maintained close connections to German relatives that were clearly not freedom fighters against the Nazis. I couldn't fathom how my loved relatives could be part of a system that murdered the relatives of my Jewish friends. My faith told me we ALL own the Holocaust."

Zoe

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was our second trip with your operation. Overall experience was very good. The highlights are the knowledgeable guides, Torben in particular, also many of the local guides as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Munich Oktoberfest was one of the main reasons that we picked Germany and the tour date. It didn't disappoint. The festival atmosphere was very impressive. So many locals dressed up and attended the Wiesn. The rest stops on the autobahn are impressive too with the diverse food, drink, shopping, play and rest options. Apart from the paying toilet."

Sukyee

Milpitas, CA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Torben is the best guide I've ever had. This is the first time I really feel like I learn about Germany from its real citizen. He gave us the first hand look at what Germany society is really like today. His wealth of knowledge in both American and German history past and present is marvelous. His sincerity shows in his conversation, in his demeanor and to everyone of us. Me and my husband really enjoy the trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Learning so much more about Martin Luther in Erfurt and the Walburg(?) Castle."

Thomas

Mechanicsburg, PA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Having watched your show on TV for many the tour pretty much provided the anticipated experience. Some of the hotels were a bit dodgy, but this evidently is part of the "Rick Steves" experience. At times the tour was rushed as we had too little time for the ground to be covered. Bacharach was a disappointment. Much of the town was closed, including our hotel, on the Wednesday afternoon we were there. The town has seen better days and should be dropped.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the The Brandenburg Gate in person."

G. Bonita

Mechanicsburg, PA

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a very well-planned tour. We saw and did so much in the 13 days. We had a great group of fellow travelers and I've made some new friends. I'm looking forward to booking another Rick Steves' tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Church of Our Lady in Dresden. It was a "bucket list" item of mine."

Chris

Henderson, NV

Tour: 09/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Stellar tour as always from Rick Steves. This is our third and definitely not our last.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Erfort and Martin Luthers church."

Kelly

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I had a wonderful time in Germany; there was so much to experience, learn and enjoy. The hotels, restaurants and tour bus were top notch, the local city guides were charming and interesting, and my fellow tour members were delightful people. Holger did a wonderful job leading my group, regularly checking in with us to make sure all was good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Being in the former GDR had a profound impact on me, particularly Berlin with it's checkpoints and wall. Amazingly, national divisions can heal and walls can come down. It's a message of hope, really."

Patricia

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour is a Germany smorgasbord. Because it's just Germany, it's easier to see the variations between regions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"From the tour specifically, I think it was the Berlin walking tour with a terrific local guide."

Christopher

Montrose, CA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the full tour experience, most everything fell into the "just right" category. Timing and stops were well planned and I never felt rushed or bored but very busy. It was a perfect balance of medieval, recent history and modern, just what I would expect from the best of Germany. If there is anything I could possibly ask to be different, it would be more German food. The food was great but it wasn't my idea of German, which could be my expectation was not realistic.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose a single wow moment but I was would say I was surprised by my experiences with local Germans at the various memorials we visited."

Connie

Humboldt, IA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Visiting Germany has been the number one thing on my bucket list for years and this tour did not disappoint! I would have loved to also visit Wittenburg. I enjoyed the guided tours in the 3 big cities, but I really didn't need any more time there, but I realize that is a personal preference and most people like the cities. . Visiting the smaller villages Bacharach, Rothenburg, Han-Munden etc were my favorite. Overall I loved my time on this tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Luther sites in Erfurt and going to Warburg Castle! Neuschwanstein was also pretty awesome."

Mona

Montrose, CA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed it a lot. The itinerary was a good mix of medieval towns and large cities. Side tours and stops were interesting and engaging. I like history. There was quite a bit I learned about Germany that I did not know on this trip. Our Guide was a good source of information as he was a German. There was a lot of walking and I enjoyed seeing castles and buildings up close. I love to take pictures up close. Our tour group was wonderful & lively This was my first trip to Germany. I will come back.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment hit me when we took our side trip to Wartburg Castle during our Erfurt stay. Seeing where Martin Luther studied in Erfurt, then hid out while he transcribed the bible into German and had thought about his 95 theses...well that changed the world for both Catholics and Protestants. What a great man he was and I had never really thought that much about it but it became very real being there where he had been."

Dianne

Renton, WA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

You have done a very good job covering the highlights and interesting places on this loop through Germany. i really liked your Martin Luther stops and learning more about him, his life and his influence in changing the world. Thank you for including that.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Being in East Berlin. Staying in East Berlin was a plus. We wandered all along the areas where "the wall" had been. I liked learning about the "Stumbling Stones" and looking for them on our trip."

Gerald

San Lorenzo, CA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I very much enjoyed this tour of Germany and felt it provided a complete overview of the country. The mix of large and small cities was good. Breakfasts buffets provide a means of meal flexibility for the rest of the day, ie. one can skip lunch if time is short.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was having lunch at the HofBrauHaus in Munich. The guide noted that this stop had been removed from the itinerary in favor of other restaurants, but it was one of my goals to visit the first and original HofBrauHaus in Munich. Yes, the food is perhaps not the best in Munich, and surely there are other quieter and cheaper restaurants, but the experience of being there with the band playing, and just once, holding a liter of beer in my hand was my Wow moment."

Michael

Renton, WA

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We lived in Germany 50 years ago, so this was a trip down memory road. We had seen a number of places since then, but we were able to revisit a number of places we hadn't seen for a very long time. It was a great survey of the places we knew so many years ago. It was a great pleasure to see the places again, even though some were now overflowing with tourists. Hamburg & Berlin were definitely the highlights for me. We visited East Berlin when the wall was up so the changes were amazing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was more than one wow moment, but viewing the Hamburg Concert Hall from the water and wandering in what use to be East Berlin behind the wall were the moments that were outstanding for me."

Dennis

Rapid River, MI

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Too busy. Needed more alone time. Tour seem very rushed. Did not need 3 castles!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting German war sites in Berlin"

Paul

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time. No unpleasant surprises and the logistics were as advertised and expected We enjoyed the scheduled free time and the guided portions of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two things stood out for me. The short Rhine River cruise was a bucket-list item for me. I might want to do a longer one in the future, but it was great to be on board during the time we had. Second, we loved the Berlin Wall Memorial, which we saw on our free time based on recommendations from fellow group members. Its strength is its strong interpretative material, particularly the stories about individuals trapped behind the wall, killed while trying to escape, etc."

Carolyn

Rapid River, MI

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was all good Rick. Things went smoothly and everyone was compatible. I have been to Germany before, about 20 years ago. Some of the cities overlapped from my previous tour. Rothenburg, Munich and NeuschwansteCastle. Still it was nice to go back Hamburg was interesting; seeing the St. Nicholas church was an eye opener. The waterfront was charming and I enjoyed the boat ride. Munich was great: my husband and I love good beer and a fun atmosphere. Munich provided all of that and more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was born on the exact day/date/year that Bergen/Belsen was liberated. That makes me 73 and I knew that it was about the time the war ended. But seeing that prison camp really brought it home. Also Nürnberg. Seeing the "coliseum" style building and parade grounds that Hitler built was shocking. What a megalomaniac he was. Made me shudder and still sad to think of all the pain, suffering and death one man with a warped world view created."

Jerome

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Holger, was excellent! Would take another tour with him in an instant. He opened up Germany with its regional customs, political dynamics, Nazi history, rebirth as a democratic and prosperous Germany, and the quirks of the locals in towns very small and large, from Bavaria to Berlin. His personal care, attention to detail and constant supply of unique German treats along the way helped to create a Very Merry Band of Travelers, We!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Actually, my favorite "Wow!" was in gaining a strong appreciation of Germany and its people, as a result of our amazing 13 day tour. Secondly, my next favorite "wow" moment was the time spent retracing the steps and times of Martin Luther through Erfurt to Castle Wartburg, where Luther translated the bible from Greek to German while in hiding."

Richard

West Bend, WI

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Having been on many previous RS tours, we were ready for a wonderful learning experience in Germany. Thanks to our guide, Holger, this trip surpassed my expectations as far as seeing so many different aspects of modern Germany as well as wonderful sites from its long history. That said, this tour was also more rigorous than we were expecting and some regular down time would have made it more enjoyable--getting to a new hotel at 5 PM and meeting for a walk & dinner at 6 PM is not down time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"While visiting the room where Martin Luther translated the Bible 500 years ago was probably the most significant moment, seeing the Neuschwanstein Castle in person after all these years was like standing in a jigsaw puzzle, and the walking tour of Berlin was a trip through the history of my lifetime. Wow!"

Martin

Edina, MN

Tour: 09/08/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an outstanding trip made exceptional but the extraordinary knowledge, leadership, attention to detail and support provided by our guide Holger. This tour (the best of Germany in 13 days) provided an excellent and efficient overview of key regions, cities, towns, and historical landmarks in Germany. The tour provided an effective balance between time in large cities like Hamburg, Munich and Berlin with time in small cities like Hannoversch Munden, Bacharach and Erfurt.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour also nicely balanced time at historical sites like Neuschwanstein, Nuremburg and Dresden. The food portions were large, the quality was suburb and we had nice variation across regions. The hotel accommodations were good and typical Rich Steve's style lodging. Each hotel was conveniently located in the core city areas. The transportation was excellent and lodging logistics were good. This is our 8th Rick Steve's tour and it exceeded our expectations. We highly recommended this."

Ann

Laingsburg, MI

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had such an amazing time on the tour. I saw so many wonderful sites and experienced such a wide variety of culture within the same country. I learned much history and was challenged to think about historical events from many different perspectives. The tour was the right length, we stayed in great hotels, and had very nice group dinners. I enjoyed the group of people we traveled with, and I felt well cared for & looked after by our guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"WOW, there were so many! 1) Seeing all the beautiful architecture of the buildings & churches 2) Learning about the Nazi's & concentration camps & realizing that I was standing right where those significant events happened. 3) Following Martin Luther's path & seeing the Wartburg Castle & the Jewish synagogue. 4) Looking at Neuschwanstein from the bridge 5) Being in an actual beer hall in Munich 6) Night watchman tour was cool."

Robert

Palatine, IL

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was great to get an overview of Germany. It was especially pleasing to be able visit towns that I wasn't familiar with prior to the tour (Bacharach, Erfurt). As I was taking the tour, I started to think of it as a sampler. There was always more to do in almost every city than we had time to complete. Therefore, I started to think about cities I'd want to visit again on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say the "Night Watchman's Tour" in Rothenburg. It gave a taste of medieval Rothenburg without romanticizing it. I'd be surprised if he hadn't read A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain since his tour was very much in the same vein. We had some rain on our night which limited our mobility, but it was thoroughly enjoyable."

Shirley

Grapevine, TX

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour! The Best of Germany in 13 Days Tour exceeded our expectations. It was an educational experience brought to life through actual field trips. Caroline was an exceptional tour guide. She had an in-depth knowledge of the political, economic, geographical, social and cultural history of the region. She shared her knowledge with us in a fun, informative and thoughtful manner. Caroline's extensive knowledge was supplemented by expert local guides. Great learning experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experienced many "wow" moments. We especially enjoyed our visit to the Pergamon Museum which houses the Ishtar Gate and the Market Gate from Miletus."

Catherine

Asheville, NC

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was our first trip to Europe, and I was so glad we chose the Best of Germany. I loved Germany from the first day. My weak ankles complained a bit about the stairs in Bacharach, that was a busy day of walking, but I powered through it. The weather was a bit warmer than we expected...but mostly, we had beautiful sunny days. Would have liked more time in Rothenburg and in Erfurt, but overall, it was a good mix of group activities and time on our own. Caroline was wonderful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole trip was a wow moment for me."

Timothy

Laingsburg, MI

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Amazed at how much I learned about Germany's people, history, regions, and culture. Appreciated the wide range of areas/attractions we visited with superb tour guide assistance. Our group was friendly and fun. Would highly recommend the tour to others.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but I would have to say that I was amazed at how Germany has protected its countryside, both farm and forests, without urban sprawl - much more beautiful than I expected. (Wow! number two is having observed how Germans seem less hyper and fast-paced than Americans). (Wow! number 3, if I may, would be my surprise how refreshing the Wiese bier is with a meal!)"

Patricia

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fantastic. Caroline was an excellent guide and provided great guidance and historical context to the journey. I had never been to Germany and now I feel like I've learned a great deal about the country and have traveled to most of the important places, as well as some unexpectedly wonderful little towns.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It seems like there were "wow" moments every day of the trip. I especially enjoyed biking through English Garden in Munich, the Wine Festival (in a small town in Saxony), riding in the bus (with our wonderful bus driver Richard) through the countryside and learning about the history of each town and region. The trip consisted of a really great mix of big cities and small villages and each was special and endearing for different reasons."

Patrick

Brookhaven, GA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceeded expectations: 1. Small group size. 2. The introductory meeting fostered camaraderie with "buddy system". 3. Great choice of cities and sites. 4. Most of all Caroline's vast knowledge of history,her sense of humor and genuine care and concern. 5. Our driver, Richard: professional with a memorable personality.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Neuschwanstein and its history."

Rita

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Caroline was great as were most of the individual city guides.We appreciated Caroline's historical perspective.Patrick in Munich was my favorite of city guides.Too much to see with too little time so I would recommend splitting into 2 tours of 7 or 8 days.We were so close to Dachau we would have liked option for day trip to go visit it.We are not yet retired so we won't do another 13 day tour until we are retired.Berlin was very hot and 4.5 hours with only a short bathroom break was insufficient

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I only knew Nurnberg for the trials post war so was amazed at the Nazi Documentation Center and the path to power for Hitler and Nazis."

Judith

Aptos, CA

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The R.Steves company is very well organized with well qualified tour guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really liked the cruise on the Rhine River from Rheinfels Castle to Bacharach."

James

Janesville, WI

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Caroline, is a history buff, and able to fill in so much of the "background story." Enjoyed the way that Rick Steves allows time for the group tour then allows for people to see and do things on their own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the Sunday morning fish market in Hamburg. WOW! It was worth getting up before the crack of dawn to see & experience this unique weekly event."

Alan

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 09/01/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Overall this was a good travel experience. I enjoyed my fellow travelers very much. Rick Steves tour participants are an energetic group of inquisitive, thoughtful folks. The bus was comfortable and the local guides were very good and the smaller towns and sites were enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't recall a wow moment. I enjoyed the Lutheran Church in Dresden very much. I wished there had been time to attend the service. Too rushed at times."

Sharon

Wichita, KS

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed this tour of Germany learning the culture, seeing all the beautiful and interesting sites. Following footsteps of Martin Luther was quite the experience. Torban was informative,energetic and made the trip interesting with all his knowledge, facts and stories. Great experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many but seeing the Church of Cologne, N Castle, seeing the bust of Queen Nefertiti, all the museums, Martin Luther, Berlin Wall etc. It is hard to say one wow. I went to Wunderland Museum WOW!"

George

Estero, FL

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful tour. Torben Brown is a terrific guide, and all his little extra treats were much appreciated by everyone on the tour. Every day seemed to bring something new and interesting to see.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Neuschwanstein castle, even in the rain, was amazing. We had looked forward to seeing it as part of the trip and were not disappointed."

Antonio

Ocala, FL

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great way to get to visit Germany, learn its history in the company of initial strangers that became a unit under the extraordinary guidance of Torbin who has an enciclopedia mind of readily available facts

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Basically was the guide Tobin which made the long hours of the bus rides memorable & entertaining"

Carmen

Ocala, FL

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The night tour with the town watchman in Rothenburg am der Tauber."

Jonathan

Archbold, OH

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well. The tour included a very good balance of history including the Middle Ages, Martin Luther & the Reformation, German unification, World War II and the present day. The tour group members were great. Germany is a large country, so the tour did include a fair amount of driving on several days, but Torben's bus talks made the time pass by fast.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"With the group, the Rhine River cruise was a nice scenic diversion from the mostly historically themed tour. On our own, the Residenz royal palace in Munich was spectacularly ornate."

Shelley

Walnut Creek, CA

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour really delivered on what they promised. Great and ambitious survey of much of Germany. Our tour guide and the walking tour guides (in each city) provided us with a great understanding of Germany past and present.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The 'night watchman' tour in Rothenberg. Also the memorial to those murdered by the Nazis in WWII in Berlin."

Susan

Estero, FL

Tour: 08/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was very-well planned and very comprehensive especially with regards to German history. The travel distance between stops was good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I did not have a favorite "wow" moment. The Cologne Cathedral was amazing and Neuschwanstein was spectacular even in the rain. But reflecting on my experience, I would say the German's ownership of WWII and all the memorials and centers that they have built not only to commemorate but also to educate future generations."

Carol

Hilton Head Island, SC

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful and, for me, a very personal journey. My grandparents, aunt and uncle emigrated from Hamburg to America in 1895. They had lived near the city that would later become Dresden. We had relatives there during the world wars and I inherited letters describing the hardship following World War II. They believed Hitler would restore Germany to glory and they paid dearly for that decision. Hearing about and seeing the places was a blessing and a curse. The beauty of Germany endures

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The many monuments to those murdered during World War II are poignant reminders to us all. Germany seems determined never to repeat the mistakes of the past. The peaceful, beautiful town of Erfurt and the monastery where Martin Luther studied and the picturesque Wartburg castle where he took refuge were particular favorites. My Lutheran faith is stronger and more personal since I have walked in his footsteps.The ancient city of Rothenburg and the night watchman tour was delightful!"

Ching

Dallas, TX

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was very good and informative! I enjoy the tour very much?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The welcome and farewell party went very well!"

Susan

Newport Beach, CA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour and I was very impressed with the overall experience, the cities and towns on the tour, the hotels, the local guides, the amount of free time we had each day to explore on our own, and especially with our tour guide Torben. He was so knowledgeable, provided an incredible amount of information (historical, current events, and cultural), and was very helpful to everyone in the group throughout the 13 days of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment would have to be spending 2 nights in the town of Erfurt - it was such a pretty town that felt so untouristy and very walkable."

Al

Bothell, WA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As usual, what helped to make our tour a positive experience is that it wasn't overly crowded. We had 24 tour members, which is just the right size. As a public school teacher, I am well aware of how a group's dynamic can be affected by over-crowding and I am very appreciative that you keep the tour group to a manageable size. Our tour guide Torben Brown was excellent! His mastery of the history of Germany and his informative lectures on the bus helped to enhance our visits to various sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Bergen-Belsen memorial was very moving and emotional, and Munich was warm and friendly; however, I think that the beauty of Dresden is what I will remember most. I was struck by how much has been rebuilt since the firebombing in 1945 and enjoyed our look through the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen, where we saw works by Van Gogh, Rubens, etc."

Frances

La Canada Flintridge, CA

Tour: 08/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I think the time is wisely used and allowed adequate free time to do things in our own pace. Our group get along well, nice group of people. we also helped each other fining things and ways. Torben is patient in explain how to get to places with subway- u bahn!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Love the underground tunnel adventure in St. Goar - what is that castle name? Liked the tour guide. The Holocaust tour is so sad but necessary."

John

Maumee, OH

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

germany was interesting. our tour guide was very good with information, personality, patience, humor, and answering questions and general helpfulness. the fact he lived nearly half his life in the u.s. and the rest in germany made him especially qualified for a tour with almost all american citizens. he never checked notes and knew his subject from start to finish.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"maybe the boat trip down the rhine in bacharach. there wasn't a wow moment such as cinque terre or the roman coliseum. it wasn't that kind of trip. it was more an informational trip with heavy emphasis on world war 2, which there should have been. the beer gardens were interesting and so was east germany's recovery. the scenery was quite good riding the bus."

Beverly

Anaheim, CA

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 6th trip with Rick Steves and we were not disappointed. Our guide was superior, the bus spacious and comfortable, the driver competent, and the itinerary varied and well thought out. The hotels were wonderful, especially Berlin and the delightful Munden. The wifi left something to be desired at several hotels, but overall our trip was enjoyable, meaningful, educational and FUN!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Rothenburg. Oh, my. I needed to stay until Christmas. The "wow" moment was walking back to our hotel after dark with my husband, looking up and seeing an almost full moon in the sky above gorgeous medieval buildings. I took a photo never thinking that it would come out, but like magic, it replicated the moment. I will treasure that for a long, long time."

Brad

Kingsport, TN

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour did an excellent job of delivering on all that was promised. I especially liked: the balance of big cities and quaint towns, scheduled tours and free times, group meals and those on our own (with suggestions from our guide). I enjoyed every place we stayed, location and hotel. Our guide was fantastic as were our traveling companions. I learned a lot about German history, culture and world view.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Difficult to determine a single "wow" moment. However there was not a single place we went to that I was ready to leave. Erfurt was a delightful surprise, Munich was friendly and comfortable and I could have spent at least a week in Berlin - all "wow.""

John

Wilmette, IL

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was simply phenomenal! Along with its breadth and length, the tour was made perfect by the astute and extremely knowledgeable guide (Torben), who infused vibrancy and life into the tour with his immense knowledge of German history and socio-political issues, both past and present. The destinations and events were carefully chosen and just outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The ongoing commentary and history and relevance to past and current issues made this tour a once-in-a-lifetime experience. As for a particular destination, the Rhine valley was out of this world!"

Pat

Houston, TX

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved Torbin, he shared so many insights about Germany.

Kurt

Peoria, IL

Tour: 07/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

There were many things that we can take into account that made this family trip successful. The tour guide (Torben) and the people that toured along with us were exceptional. Learning about the history, experiencing the culture, and seeing all of the amazing sites and views of Germany were second to none. We highly recommend the Best of Germany in 13 Days Tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are many outstanding tours and sites that I saw on this trip, but I would have to say that the Rheinfels Castle tour and the paddle boat ride down the Rhine was outstanding. The Neuschwanstein castle view can take your breathe away. Spending time in the world famous Hofbrauhaus in Munic was my goal that I accomplished. Never disappointed throughout this trip."

Jeff

Peachtree City, GA

Tour: 07/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall tour experience was very good. I had an enjoyable time meeting new friends and learning the diverse history and culture of Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Nurnberg. Visiting the Nazi Documentation Center and the Zeppelin Field. Two places I've read about in my history studies/reading. To set foot on the same ground that made such history was rewarding."

Mary

Peachtree City, GA

Tour: 07/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was such a fun & pleasant journey! We walked & walked some more; I never felt pressured, or had that "not enough time/keep moving" feeling. It was almost "laid-back"-a truly relaxing vacation where I learned, explored & had a lot of fun. Good group of people: no "cliques" formed, everyone, incl. Caroline & Katie (& John) chatted with, ate & drank with, sat with & had fun with everyone else. Bus: too big, no WiFi/ports. Poor John: some people used bus WC-Yuck!Even w/freq stops!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Surprisingly, the moment or "event" I find myself remembering & chuckling to myself about was the boat cruise in Hamburg. I learned so much about shipping & those huge container ships. The Local (Boat) Guide (Martina?) was so funny! Her English was great, her accent was easy to understand and she had such a great, dry sense of humor. I never knew learning about shipping could be so fun! I, also to my surprise, thoroughly enjoyed the town of Erfurt! So walkable, so lively, I could move right in!"

Thomas

Palm Beach Gardens, FL

Tour: 07/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Ms Caroline Marburger, proved to be an excellent teacher of everything German - history, geography, art, music, politics, religion, contemporary issues, etc. Her presentations on these issues while touring each city and traveling on the bus were the equivalent of a high quality college seminar. Itinerary, hotels, local guides, and bus transportation were all excellent.

Richard

Boston, MA

Tour: 07/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was an excellent overview of different parts of Germany. We got to see just enough of each area to make us want more. I feel there was too much time on the Bus. Hamburg was nice but way too far from the next stop. How about using trains for long stretches. Bergen Belsen could have been skipped for more time in a town. The Vox headsets were fantastic. I hope all your tours use them all the time!!! Nothing worse than being in the back of the with city noise trying to hear the guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The view of Neuschwanstein from the bridge was like a fairy tale picture.The weather was perfect with just a few puffy clouds. It was everything it was built up to be."

Sarah

Webster, NY

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour ended up being my favorite Rick Steve's tour so far.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was learning about the German history that isn't taught or talked about."

Amy

Webster, NY

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is tough to say because I have liked all the Rick Steve's tours we have been on, but I think this is now my favorite. We loved this trip! Before taking the tour, we thought we knew German history. What we found out is that we knew very little! This tour had a lot of history (that we love). Some of it was tough ... dark clouds in humanity, but it was well balanced by other more happy times. And It's refreshing to see that Germany has recovered and is thriving. It gives me hope in humanity

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Neuschwanstein Castle - I loved seeing such a spectacular Castle and learning about Ludwig II. It was well worth the crowds of people in a touristic spot. I really liked all the castles we saw in Germany. My other Wow moment was Hamburg. Loved the town. We really liked Bacharach and St. Goar were we visited the castle. I wish we had had a little more time in St. Goar. There were some unique stores we wanted to see, but didn't have the time. I would have liked to have helped their economy!"

Mary

Las Vegas, NV

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour exceeded expectations. It was clear that the itinerary was carefully chosen for a good blend of small towns and larger cities with an emphasis on interesting and meaningful experiences. Our guide, Torben, was very knowledgeable and engaging, with a gift for connecting the past and the present. We also lucked out with a most hospitable group of fellow travelers. What more could you ask for!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many moments and memories: rubbing elbows with locals at the "Yodeling Innkeeper" bar in Munich; exploring less-touristed but still charming cities such as Erfurt and Hamburg; listening to the droll tales of the Night Watchman in Rothenburg; seeing firsthand Germany coming to terms with its not-too-distant past; sharing a drink with two local women in Erfurt who were passionate about their city; being blown away by the Ishtar Gate at the Pergamon Museum in Berlin."

Timothy

Everett, WA

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a great experience! My son and I took this trip looking forward experiencing Germany and learning more about its history and culture. It did not disappoint! Our tour guide and local guides kept us learning the entire trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite experience from the trip was being in Erfurt. Like many places in Germany it is so rich in history, but it was away from most of the tourist crowds and a place where I felt I could blend in with the locals while I explored the old town. I returned to the Protestant Monastery of St. Augustine where our morning tour had taken us and was able be alone in the church. Amazing."

Mary Jane

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Torben was a great guide. He was very knowledgeable, available and approachable. Torben made sure that everyone was happy and provide for he had a good sense of humor and I would recommend him to anyone who was interested in a tour to Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My husband and I met two local young local women in Erfurt and spent the evening talking with them and sharing a bottle of wine."

Glenn

Las Vegas, NV

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed seeing Germany. Our guide, Torbine eve us a really comprehensive view of the country, the people and their rich history. As a photographer, I liked watching the people.in every day life, doing their thing, drinking beer, enjoying a soccer game in beer gardens and pubs on the streets of Berlin...enjoying the the warmth of summer.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had two wow moments. the first was from a fellow tour member, a trumpeter and band leader, who taught us a German drinking song. Together we sought out a really small pub in Munichand sang Bavarian music in a packed house filled with music and laughter! My second wow moment was running into a couple of locals, Claudia and Anja, who shared possible places to dine, as well as wonderful tidbits about the town! We even shared conversation and a bottle of rosé overlooking the town!"

James

Orlando, FL

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steve's tour and we had a blast!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Erfurt was an absolute delight. As a Lutheran, the Martin Luther experience was one I'll never forget."

Luis

Webster, NY

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

the best so far

Favorite "WOW" moment

"visiting the castle close to Bacharach"

Ellen

New York, NY

Tour: 06/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the best of my 4 RS tours. The "stars were aligned" - tour guide, group, selection of sites, hotels - everything! Torben was over the top fantastic! The itinerary reflected a perfect combination for answering the question, What is Germany? I am Jewish. I chose a tour which was not focused only on WWII and Hitler. I was grateful for the well-thought out selection of sites and experiences. Future tours should include one more day in Berlin

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had no one wow moment. Too many experiences qualified for a "wow." Hearing and seeing Germany's reckoning with its past was my "wow.""

John

Madison, WI

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was a wonderful introduction to Germany.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Reichstag in Berlin."

Gail

Waukee, IA

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a fantastic tour of Germany. It was a great mix of big cities and quaint villages. I really learned a lot of things about WWII that I did not know. The pacing of the tour was very good. We did so many fun activities to really experience German culture.Berlin, Mu

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a lot. I loved the walled city of Rottenberg and of course the Neuschwanstein castle."

Douglas

Princeton, NJ

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

great trip and guide. one of the best so far (this was #6)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"too many to count"

Carlana

Princeton, NJ

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guides (thank you Fabian and Maisie), great group, fascinating and beautiful country. I feel like we were given a very, very good overview of the history of Germany, with the good and the evil. And the tour covered different regions with a taste of life in small towns and large cities. All of the local guides were excellent and enthusiastic about their areas. It was especially interesting to hear the after effects of the Nazi period from so many perspectives.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Very hard to pick one out, but Erfurt was perhaps my favorite town."

Bruce

Deerfield, IL

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Don't really have one. Very much enjoyed the whole tour"

Tim

Parma, OH

Tour: 06/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fabian and his assistant made the trip great. Hotel locations were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cinderella castle."

Vivian

The Woodlands, TX

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful trip all through Germany, with a great group of people and the two best guides ever!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experiencing Munich."

Don

Portland, OR

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Both guides very helpful, well informed and did outstanding job of explaining German History, culture and politics. Driver was also very helpful, very safe, felt well cared for by all staff. As usual we had no grumps, what issues that did come up were handled in a courteous way. Was very impressed with attention paid to minor medical issues of 2 tour members. Caroline went way beyond expectations in securing medical attention for one tour member. Local guides were mostly excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watchman tour in Rotenburg. Very entertaining."

Jay

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an excellent tour. Torben could not have been a better guide, and the group was delightful. We saw and learned a great deal about Germany, such that I am eager to return and feel confident that I could tour in depth some of the places we visited without help.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty and charm of Bacharach, including the hotel and the hiking trails behind the hotel."

Robert

The Woodlands, TX

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour guides! Worked very hard to provide good experience and iron out little hiccups along the way for everyone. They both interacted well with all of the tour guests . Especially liked commentary on the bus and letting us sample the local food items from different places. Torben was effective at keeping the atmosphere light at times and in contrasting life in Germany with the USA. Caroline went above and beyond ( even after the trip ) for one tour guest.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many different moments, but I enjoyed Berlin and the Erfurt best for different reasons. Berlin has world class museums and so much history . Erfurt was a gem because the city center was full of unexpected interesting places and experiences."

Stephen

Philadelphia, PA

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our 10th RS tour. Impression was that we attempted to cover too much territory during the allocated tour time. This resulted in multiple days where we had to eat lunch "on the run" or in a freeway stop (compared with other tours where he had time for a more leisurely lunch). While I realize that Neuschwanstein is one of the top German tourist attractions and the surrounding area is beautiful, I don't think it was worth essentially spending a full day to get there for a 25 min tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hamburg (which you don't hear much about in the States) really impressed us. Especially the warehouse district, the harbor and the new concert hall. Impressed with regard to how much change in Berlin since we were last there 10 years ago (on our 1st RS trip). Additionally, blown away by how the guide in Bacharach personalized the tour with family stories and antidotes concerning Nazi times in the town, and the story of the previous Jewish owners of his family's home."

Mario

Reno, NV

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed Berlin and the trip down the Rhine.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not a good "WOW" moment was Rothenburg. Horrible place way to crowded. Felt like Venice when the Cruise ships come into town. Tourist trap - Food was bad and prices were to expensive. Disneyland at it's worst. Should have spent more time in Dresden, Bacharach, Erfurt, instead of Rothenburg. The thing that makes R Steve's different is that they do not spend to much time at Tourist traps."

Gaile

Portland, OR

Tour: 05/26/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We saw so much of Germany, three major ciities, and wonderful small villages. I learned an incredible amount about history, culture, relligion, and current times thanks to Torben and the local guides. Our tour group was diverse, and we got along with one another extremely well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was such a great tour that choosing one is difficult. I wasn't planning on it, but as a life-long Lutheran I had a thrill sitting in the chapel in Erfurt and noticing the rose that became part of Luther's symbol, and learning at Wartburg about his influence on the German language. With all that we learned about German history leading up to and including World War II, we found the Nazi Documentation Center in Munich, which my husband and I went to on our own, particularly informative and"

Kathy

Sacramento, CA

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Carlos and driver Rony are both exceptional, and I feel very lucky to have had them. The tour was balanced among the historical (medieval, WWII, Soviet Union), scenic (Rhine river, forests, castles, farm land), and current life in Germany. Every local guide put his/her heart and soul into sharing that aspect of the tour--as though it was their first time talking! Allowing each person to have his/her own seat on the coach was a great luxury and made for increased comfort.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't list one. Rhubarb strudel in St. Goar! Learning how strategic and scripted the Nazis were in gaining public trust (Nurnberg Documentation Center). The balance of included vs. independent time and meals. The number of charming medieval towns with timbered buildings. Learning about the thousands of volunteers who've supported the refugees as well as those on the other side politically. Being delighted in Munich with music at dinner. (I've run out of space.)"

Tammy

Hurstville, NSW

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very well planned and organised. Gained excellent insight of German culture and history. The tour guide Carlos and the tour members were the best I had.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The quaint town of Munden! Straight out of a fairy tale."

Diana

Essex, CT

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was awesome and exceeded my expectations. Itinerary was very well thought out and the time spent in each stop was perfect. I felt like we saw as much as we possibly could in the time allowed and liked the fact that we went to places where we didn't see a lot of fellow tourists. I also felt i was experiencing the real Germany with Carlos and the local guides that we had and felt more personally immersed in the history, culture and local flavor than a more generic tour would offer.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Honestly every stop had it's own wow moment! I was really in awe of Carlos and his personal attention to all of us (local snacks included!) as well as our farewell dinner and individual awards he presented. I was also wowed by the great group of people on our tour and the comradery we developed."

Robert

Essex, CT

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first guided Rick Steve's tour (we had done My Way Spain in 2015) and it exceeded expectations. The most significant factor contributing to our outstanding experience was our guide Carlos Meissner. He was knowledgeable, organized, helpful, and a delight to be with. The tour itself was jam packed with great experiences and kept a very busy pace. The immaculate cities and beautiful landscape of Germany were all memorable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"While the tour had many "Wow" moments, one that stands out is the approaching walk to Neuschwanstein Castle, when out of the woods appears Cinderella's castle!"

David

Sitka, AK

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Germany was great, Hamburg was more than I expected , the museums the the food , easy to walk around. good start . While the bus rides could be long ,just being on the autobahn was fun. Carlos would give great commentary along the way, and get us prepared for what was next. I enjoyed staying in and exploring the small towns , I really like the use of local guides it adds depth to the experience.Enjoyed going thru eastern Germany never thought that would happen. it was all wonderful good time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cruise on the Rhine was great, going past all those robber baron castles lots of fun."

Wayne

Ridgecrest, CA

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I found the trip an excellent and convenient way to explore a country I'd never been to before. We enjoyed the smaller, out of the way hotels and every one of the cities and sites we visited. Having a local guide at most of the cities provided an additional level of information that I had not anticipated. A very good trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hmm. I think it was when we were staying in a little town. We had a room with a balcony that overlooked the cobblestone street. I noticed that the house across the street had been built in 1099! Wow, old stuff, something there's just not much of in the US."

Michael

Reston, VA

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed learning about German history and what current German culture is like. Enjoyed the mix of seeing both large cities and smaller towns. Architecture was awesome, and would consider visiting several cities such as Hamburg, Munich, and Dresden. I must admit that, because we had some hot days during the trip, I got tired of staying at hotels that did not have air conditioning, nor ceiling fans. Getting a good nights sleep will be high on any future Rick Steeves tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say that my overall "Wow" was our trip guide Carlos. I can't imagine a better tour guide. His knowledge of German history is to be commended. He was perfect in every way. In any possible future Rick Steeves tour I would seek his tours."

Kevin

New Orleans, LA

Tour: 05/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Team Germany from May 19th through May 31st was awesome. This tour was one of the best experiences I've ever had period. Carlos Meissner is extraordinary, and the [INVALID]ion of tour guides in Hamburg, Munden, Bacharach, Munich, Erfurt, Dresden, and Berlin were all beyond my expectations. The value of a Rick Steves tour group far exceeds independent traveling. I loved every minute of this tour except for the "Truth and Lies" buddy introduction in Bacharach.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had a "wow" moment every day on this tour. If you want a vacation, then take a trip to the beach in Florida. If you want to really travel and experience what a beautiful country such as Germany has to offer, then take a Rick Steves tour with Carlos Meissner. Germany is a gorgeous country, with a rich history and you learn about this rich history on a Rick Steves tour. To say that there is "one" moment on this tour that stood out would be very difficult."

Linda

San Antonio, TX

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great overview of a complex country with a difficult past. Good mix of historical, political and cultural sites. Wonderful group of traveling companions led by an excellent guide.

Robert

Carmel, CA

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was an excellent overview of the diverse cultural and geographic regions of the 1990 unified country of Germany. The combination of a well planned itinerary with the leadership of Holger Zimmer insured a wonderful and efficient exploration of the cities and small towns of both the former West and East Germanys. I appreciated the history lessons while transiting from one stop to the next and the available free time to explore each location on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our visits to sites from all the major time periods brought history alive. One can read about from a book and study the characters and locations of the famous events but it takes walking in the footsteps of those historical figures in the actual locations to make it real and begin to connect the dots of their significance."

Edward

Central Islip, NY

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very well organised.This is my fifth time travelling with the Rick Steves group.Well balance schedule between free time for self exploration and group activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day is a "vow" day. The Rhine river cruise is my "vow" moment.."

Katie

Washington, DC

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I learned alot about Germany and its history and culture. I particularly enjoyed traveling through the former east Germany and east Berlin. Holger Zimmer was the best guide I have worked with. The best prepared, imformative and kind. He had a great deal to do with making the trip so special for the group. I appreciated the ways that he engaged the group and helped us get to know one another. His on the bus radio interviews were a lot of fun. The accommodations and itinerary exceeded

Raleigh

Seattle, WA

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Berlin."

Carol

Seattle, WA

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour exceeded my expectations. We received an excellent view of present day Germany as well as its past history: both the good and the bad. We saw a great deal of the country from Hamburg on the North Sea, to Munich and Neuschwanstein in the south, and to Berlin in the east. We ate lots of great food and managed to walk off most of it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was driving into the medieval town of Hann.Munden. It was the first of four medieval towns or cities we would visit: Hann.Munden, Bacharach, Rothenburg and Erfurt, all with great charm, interesting architecture, churches, lively street life and unique histories. However, Germany's big cities were exciting too."

Gordon

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall very good. Holger is a tremendous guide, and Germany was covered quite completely. Important high points were covered. I felt I really learned Germany well. The local guides were very good, but the very best local guide of all Was Jim in Berlin. The guide for Rheinfels Castle was also superb. Holger maintained his zeal and enthusiasm.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Tour of the Night Watchman in Rothenburg. Next was the Rhine River cruise. Next was Neuschwanstein Castle. Then Erfurt. But also highly meaningful tome as a Christian was the room at Wartburg Castle where Luther translated the Bible into German."

Cheryl

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 05/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great tour, outstanding tour guide (Holger) and some fascinating experiences. Germany is an interesting and varied country and we saw some of the best parts of it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Most impressed with the way the Germans have come to grips with their role in WWII. They have erected some touching and memorable monuments to those who suffered terribly and written pointedly of their part in this terrible war. Loved the Night Watchman tour in Rottenburg! Totally surprised with the beauty of Hamburg."

Theresa

Freeland, MD

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall experience for me was top knotch! We did and saw and experienced more than i can even say! Our guide Carlos was incredible. He went out of his way to make sure we all were having a great time and that we all had what we needed. There were so many unexpected treats along the way!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to answer! Seeing the perfect small German town like Bacharach, and Rothenburg, the quaint hotels where i opened my window and saw the whole town!! Or the very sobering visit to Bergen- Belsen where we learned so much. Also very much loved Berlin and our tour there was so insightful."

Helen

Wheaton, IL

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Good overview of the country. We saw large cities as well as charming small historic towns.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Rhine River cruise. But the most impactful sight was the Bergen-Belsen Memorial."

Sue

Valencia, CA

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was great to see and learn about Germany, from the big cities to the smaller towns. Our guide, Carlos, shared his experiences, making the lessons of the division/reunification of Germany that much more vivid. Some days were long as we were on the coach for 6+ hours, which meant we got into some towns just as the sites and shops were closing up. Great for wandering around looking from the outside, but left me wanting to see more and sad that there wasn't time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved Hamburg, especially the "Planten un Blomen", and also Erfurt was lovely. Also, Rothenburg's Night Watchman's tour was a highlight. In Berlin during free time, I went to the Pergamon Museum, but was disappointed that the Pergamon Alter exhibit was closed due to remodeling (will reopen in another couple years), but was blown away by the Istar Gate."

Tim

Roseville, MN

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Though I had seen a number of the attractions on this tour (Cologne Cathedral, Rothenburg, Munich, Neuschwanstein), I still enjoyed this tour immensely. Seeing the "Let's Go Modern" Hamburg contrasted with the "Let's Redo The Old" Dresden showed the two ways Germany has used to recover from WWII. Carlos' daily historical and personal talks brought the country's history to life and, as in all our previous Rick Steves tours, my fellow travelers made every day enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The chance to see Berlin was the prime attraction for me on this tour and it did not disappoint. I wanted to see all the sights that I have read about - Brandenburg Gate, Holocaust Memorial, Pergamon Museum, German Historical Museum, and German Bundestag - and all were fascinating. Staying in old East Berlin and seeing the transformation was also really eye-opening. I especially liked our Berlin Tour with Jim, who brought a lot of the city to life."

Nancy

Roseville, MN

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

As with all RS tours, well planned. Pleasant traveling companions. Good mix of group and individual activities. I appreciate the effort to show us all parts of Germany, but some of the stops felt hurried and perfunctory. Personally, I would have liked more time in Rothenburg, and would skip Speyer. I'd also skip Neuschwanstein - not worth the crowds and driving time. (Carlos did facilitate our requests for alternate tickets to Hohenschwangau, however.)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, this tour was a series of "how could they?" moments. Everywhere we went, the dark stain of the Nazi years lay over what I saw. Hamburg and Dresden's destruction, the stumbling stones and concentration camps, the Documentation Centers in Munich and Nurnberg, the bunker site and memorials in Berlin, stories told by guides about murdered family and neighbors... awful. The East German oppression witnessed of the end of the tour added to my gloom. Like Ludwig II, I wanted more fairy tales."

Thomas

West Lafayette, IN

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, the tour guide, Carlos, was excellent. The driver was very personable and helpful. The hotels exceeded my expectations. The meals were great. Some of the tours were not all that insightful. Riding on the bus was pleasant, but took too much time. A faster means of transportation would leave more time for touring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tour of Berlin with Jim and his explanation of the Nazi regime and life under the Communist regime."

Robert

Wheaton, IL

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Met all expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Turkish dinner in Berlin with a local Turkish guide."

Joe

Houston, TX

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed all the stops on the tour especially Erfurt.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"see how much Berlin has changed in 12 years."

Gregory

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I knew what to expect in general from our trip to Greece last summer, and I was not disappointed. Carlos was a wonderful leader. He kept us organized, shared with us his impressive knowledge about European history, and told us his personal stories that related to our various destinations. The local guides were also interesting and well-informed about their towns.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved seeing the desk where Martin Luther sat as he translated the Bible into German."

Anne

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 05/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a beautiful tour but also informative. I did not know much about the German history and how young it was as a country. And it was quite thoughtful in dealing with all the things in the 20 th century.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the small villages. Mundane was a favorite but I think it was the guides personal stories of their family living in Germany through the War and the Cold War."

Angela

Laguna Niguel, CA

Tour: 09/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

In a nutshell - A+++

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Actually, my first wow moment occurred the first night of the tour. My friend and i were the only ones in the room that hadn't taken a Rick Steves' tour. Several people were on their 12th, 13th and 14th trip. Guess we have a lot of catching up to do ! I really can't pick just one wow moment, as they happened daily. So much to discover in each and every place we visited. Simply amazing."

Kathy

Chatham, ON

Tour: 08/05/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a terrific tour! I loved it! I learned so much!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Woo I loved the city of Erfurt. It was such a lovely place."

Weather

Germany / Berlin

Berlin Weather


Germany / Munich

Munich Weather

Hotels & Flights

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email, as well as in the Itinerary section of your online customer account. One month prior to the tour departure, you'll find the directions to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying in the Documents section of your customer account.

Flights

Our tours don't include airfare, so your flight arrangements are completely up to you.

Most tour members arrange to fly into Hamburg (HAM) and out of Berlin (TXL) — choose "multicity" on flight-booking websites. Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Germany.

We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves Germany guidebook.