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Germany with kids next summer

(13 Posts)
sacbina Sun 30-Nov-14 23:28:02

have a family event somewhere rural near Frankfurt next august, so looking for inspiration on where to go to extend into longer holiday, maybe another two weeks

flying from Heathrow and will then hire car (with car seats?) for family event but then open to suggestions. happy to get somewhere else by train, or what's in the area for dc aged 4.5 and 3?

thank you smile

TheWave Sun 30-Nov-14 23:30:28

Playmobilland near Nuremberg plus look at Nuremberg itself? Then Munich and the beginning of the alps, outdoor pools in lots of villages etc.

noramum Thu 04-Dec-14 19:51:50

Do not hire a car seat. Totally expensive and we had terrible issues. We hired one and .german is our mother tongue. It took an hour of sorting it out. Never again.

Germany can offer you. Bit of everything and Frankfurt is bang in the middle. So it really depends what you like.

You have the North Sea and the Baltic Sea, both great with children. We spent last year 2 weeks at the Baltic Sea on a farm stay.

You have middle range mountains and very thing up to the alps. You have lots of small and large town, cities like Munich, Hamburg or Berlin.

What do you like to do during your holiday should be your first thought.

Playmobil land is great for that age, just to let you know. And Nurernberg is great as well, I lived there for 3 years.

sacbina Thu 04-Dec-14 21:04:34

interesting, but rather worrying about the car seats!

my dcs will still only be nearly 5 and 3 so into everything and nothing and who knows what by then.

my dhs family live in the area but I kind of wanted to plan this trip myself without the organisational skills of the Germans if you get what I mean.

I wondered whether travel by train to different areas would be a good thing to do. we are not a two weeks in one location kind of family!

pinkcheese Fri 05-Dec-14 13:20:00

Please be aware that the law in Germany States that a child MUST be in an approved car seat until they are 1.50m or 12 years old. If you hire a car there, they will insist on you having seats if they know you have children with you. (My friend was stopped and cautioned for not obeying this law)

sacbina Fri 05-Dec-14 13:57:33

will have to hire seats as I'm not carrying their own through Heathrow!

would never dream of not having them in a car seat in a car hmm

Archfarchnad Fri 05-Dec-14 14:14:21

Something you could do relatively close to Frankfurt is a barefoot trail. You'd just need to check it's one suitable for younger children. We went to one of these a few years back, unfortunately I can't remember which one because friends took us. The kids were older than yours - about 12 and 8 - and absolutely loved it, us adults too.

"a child MUST be in an approved car seat until they are 1.50m or 12 years old." Well yes, and they'll enforce it with DC of the OP's age, but most kids we know stopped using car booster seats around 9 or 10 and just had a cushion from then on. But we're in Berlin, which is notoriously sloppy about such things - perhaps West Germany is a bit more uptight. And it's true we've never hired a car with kids in Germany, so the hire firms might be more willing to try to earn money from seat hire law-abiding than private people.

As a long-suffering Berlin resident, I really wouldn't recommend it with DC of that age in August unless you have family there you can stay with free of charge.

The Baltic coast is LOVELY and practically unknown by English speakers - fine sand, no tides, great architecture. Our favourite island is Usedom, but others swear by the car-free Hiddensee and the biggest island is Rügen.

Heels99 Fri 05-Dec-14 17:15:47

Make sure your accommodation has air con, we have made a mistake in that in Germany in the summer before and broiled the nights away.
Didn't like Lake Constance, very hot, lots of Mosquitos, couldn't really swim in the lake, we went to Austria for the day to cool down.

Like Munich but whether it's somewhere for summer I am not sure.

The Baltic recommendation sounds good from pp

EightFiftySix Fri 05-Dec-14 20:24:33

Munich is wonderful in the summer, the children will like the Englischer Garten. You could take the train south to Berchtesgaden, the alps are gorgeous there.

MagnetsOnItsTail Sun 14-Dec-14 15:36:41

Munich or Rhineland would be good. Boppard or Rüdesheim are good-ish places as a base, with river trips:

We stayed here a few years ago, it's lovely and welcoming, especially if you speak a bit of German

hellyhants Sun 14-Dec-14 17:29:26

Archfanad - my son is 12. We were considering a trip to Berlin next summer. Is it normal for parents in Germany to let their 12+ children stay in separate hotel rooms? I was looking for flights and hotels on the BA website a few weeks ago and as soon as I put in 2 adults and 1 child in one room, all 33 hotels showed no availability! They want us to have two rooms. Yes I know one of us can go in the room with son but why can't we share? We went to Rome last year and had a room in the Crowne Plaza with two queen size beds - perfect.

As a comparison, I did a similar search for Helsinki and had no problems finding hotels that are happy for adults and one child to share a room. I was about 14 before I had a room on my own. I guess if you have two children it's fine for them to have their own room, or if you can get interconnecting rooms.

Is this a normal thing in Germany? I usually stay with friends, but none live in/near Berlin, sadly.

Archangelfarchnad Sun 14-Dec-14 19:40:48

Hi helly, I can only talk about other places in Germany, as being resident in Berlin we've not really needed to book hotels here that much. To answer your question directly, I would be really peeved if I had a single child of that age and the hotel tried to force me to book two rooms - it's absolutely not normal. We've certainly not had any problems with hotels putting a collapsible bed in a double room and have done that many times - most recently at Easter somewhere between Hamburg and Berlin. We went just with DD2 and she was 11 at the time, I think we just paid a few euros for them to set up the bed. I wonder whether it's a problem that he's 12, as that seems to be the age at which many travel operators stop regarding children as children, as it were.

When friends of ours came to stay in Berlin a few years back they had two interconnected rooms which formed a mini suite - but they had two DC who were 14 and 10 at the time, so it suited them fine. As you say, it's less suitable for you.

Perhaps it would work better if you didn't try to book via a website, which has all sorts of inflexible rules, but rather tried phoning the hotel directly and asking. The word you're looking for is Aufbettung:

"wir suchen ein Hotelzimmer mit Doppelbett für zwei Erwachsenen und Aufbettung für ein zwölfjähriges Kind. Bieten Sie das an, und wenn ja, zu welchem Preis?"

noramum Mon 15-Dec-14 10:30:43

Heels99 - air con is virtually unknown outside from larger hotels. You have decent blinds outside the window, shut them during the day and open everything wide and it works.

I grew up with hot Summers there and no self catering apartment or small hotel will have air con.

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