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Are you looking for a Germany road trip itinerary? Or are you wondering what to do in Germany?

A trip to Germany allows you to see half-timbered houses, fairytale castles, dark forests and bustling cities. You get the chance to try traditional German food, visit stunning palaces and drive on the Autobahn, the highway without speed limits.

We want to show you where to go in Germany and how to plan your trip. This Germany road trip planner does not just help you discover the best of the country, we also give you lots of travel tips. As we are both living here, we know the country well and can tell you precisely what to look out for. Keep reading and start planning your trip now!

General Advice

About this itinerary for Germany

Calw in the Black Forest

If you only have around ten days or even less, you won’t be able to see all of Germany. That is why we have focused our post on a Southern Germany road trip. You’ll see lots of famous tourist attractions, like Neuschwanstein Castle, but you’ll also go off the beaten road when visiting the UNESCO pile dwellings at Lake Constance.

We have written this travel itinerary for Germany for 10 days, but you can easily adapt it if you have less time. Skip one day in Frankfurt at the beginning and try to see the highlights of the city on your last day. We would also advise you to not hike to Lake Schrecksee and drive onwards to Lake Constance from Neuschwanstein Castle.

View of Neuschwanstein Castle from far away

Last, you can save an additional day by either skipping Würzburg or Blaubeuren. They are both fantastic places to visit, but if you’re pressed for time, you can always come back later to see them.

As an alternative, you can also turn this itinerary into a Frankfurt to Munich road trip. Start from the end, visit the Black Forest, Lake Constance and Neuschwanstein Castle and end your trip in Munich.

Also, this itinerary starts in Frankfurt. The airport of Frankfurt is one of the biggest in Europe, so you should find it easy to fly here. If it’s easier for you, you can look for flights to Munich and start your trip there. This itinerary is a round trip through Germany, so you are free to jump in at any time.

How to rent a car in Germany

Car advertising the Open Air Museum in the Black Forest

We highly recommend that you book your rental car before you come to Germany. During the high season, prices can skyrocket, and it’s often much cheaper to reserve a car in advance.

One of the best websites to do so is rentalcars.com, as it compares prices from different rental car companies. This is much faster than going to the websites individually to find the best price! Plus, they include insurance and have lots of filters that help you find the terms and conditions you want.

Click here to search for a rental car in Germany now!

When searching for a car, make sure to double-check the mileage conditions. Some companies offer contracts that include only a limited amount of kilometres. While it may seem cheaper at first, every additional kilometre will cost you so much that it’s usually not worth it.

Also, if you want to start your South Germany road trip in Frankfurt and finish in Munich (or vice versa), you need to specify that you are going to drop off the car in a different location. It might cost you a little extra, but if you have limited time, it’s going to be worth it as it saves you another day of driving.

When to visit Germany

View of Black Forest village

As we just mentioned, you can visit Germany at any time. That said, some seasons are nicer than others.

Summer is generally a good time for a trip to Germany. The weather is great, and it’s fun to spend time outside. As a downside, you’ll run into lots of other tourists, and this is usually the most expensive time of the year.

As an alternative, you could visit during the shoulder season in spring and autumn. The weather starts getting better in May, and you can still experience warm days in September and early October. You’ll also see far fewer tourists than in summer.

In winter, you’ll likely encounter much more rain than during the other seasons. The trees drop their leaves, which can make regions like the Black Forest look slightly desolated. That said, you have the chance to experience some of Europe’s best Christmas markets in December, and you might also encounter snow in winter.

How to get to Germany

Wolfach in the Black Forest

For this itinerary, you can either fly to Frankfurt or Munich. Frankfurt’s airport is bigger, so you might find better deals to go here. It’s best to check out both cities, though, so you can find the best deal.

When searching for flights, we usually use websites like Skyscanner that allow us to compare lots of airlines at the same time. It’s very useful for finding a good deal, so go and check out flight prices now.

Germany road trip itinerary – Discover the best of Germany

Days 1-2: Frankfurt

Skyline of Frankfurt

Start your road trip in Frankfurt.

Frankfurt is not just the financial centre of Germany; it also features an Old Town full of half-timbered houses, a pretty riverside and lots of traditional pubs where you can spend your evenings.

We suggest taking your first day easy (especially if you had a long flight) and then spending a whole day in Frankfurt afterwards. Even though this is not enough time to see everything, it allows you to get a good glimpse of the city and its main attractions.

Are you visiting Frankfurt from overseas? Then make sure to check out which long-haul flight essentials you need for your flight.

If you only have one week in Germany, skip Frankfurt and pick up your rental car at the airport. You can visit the city’s main attractions at the end of the week when you return here. However, if you’re going to see Germany in 10 days, then you can wait to pick up your car and enjoy your time in Frankfurt first.

View of the Romerberg in Frankfurt

Highlights of Frankfurt:

  • Römerberg and the Old Town: The half-timbered houses surrounding Römerberg are amongst the most impressive you can find in Germany. After World War II, most of this neighbourhood was in ruins. Fortunately, the city decided to reconstruct the historic houses, so you can admire them today. Make sure also to take a look at the Town Hall. If you need any further information, you can find the tourist information there.
  • Eiserner Steg: Did you know that Frankfurt is the only German city with that many skyscrapers? From the bridge Eiserner Steg, you have one of the most iconic views of the skyline. It’s especially lovely in the evening when the sun sets behind the high buildings.
  • Apfelwein: The local speciality of Frankfurt is called Apfelwein, which translates to “apple wine”. It’s a drink similar to cider but with no gas and a slightly more tart aftertaste. The best place to try it is on the Southern side of the river Main, in Sachsenhausen. Here, you can find many Apfelwein pubs, which can also serve you traditional foods from the area.
  • Visit a museum: Frankfurt is home to lots of great museums. Our top picks include the Städel Museum, which houses an impressive collection of art, the Goethe House, which is the birth house of the famous writer and the Palmengarten. While the latter is technically not a museum but the city’s botanical garden, it is well worth visiting.
Make sure also to check out our post about the best things to do in Frankfurt for more information!

Where to stay in Frankfurt

Frankfurt Neue Altstadt

When planning a trip to Germany, we highly recommend that you look into hotels before you leave. Especially in summer, hotel rooms tend to book out, and prices go up if you wait for too long.

If you’re visiting in winter, you don’t need to worry too much. Nevertheless, for peace of mind, it’ll be great to have a hotel reservation already by the time you land in Frankfurt.

There are many great neighbourhoods for your stay in Frankfurt. However, since you only have a bit more than one day, we recommend you pick a hotel in the city centre. That way, you’ll be close to the city’s main attractions.

Street in Sachsenhausen, Frankfurt

Here are our favourite picks for this area:

Mid-Range: The Moxy Frankfurt City Centre has the perfect location. From here, you can reach Römerberg and the river Main within a few minutes. The rooms are stylish and the beds comfortable, so what else could you wish for? Click here to check out prices and reviews!

A little more comfort: The Hotel Steigenberger Frankfurter Hof has a history of more than 100 years. It dates back to 1876 and is well-known for its elegant and classic interiors. You can find a Michelin-starred restaurant in the hotel as well as a fantastic spa – perfect for relaxing at the end of the day. Find out availability and prices now!

Budget: It’s challenging to find a decent budget hotel in the centre of Frankfurt. Nevertheless, the Hotel Scala Frankfurt City Centre offers affordable rooms and is only a few minutes away from the main pedestrian zone. When it comes to value for money, this hotel is one of the best. Read reviews and book your room now!

Day 3: Würzburg

Wurzburg Residenz

This morning, take your rental car and drive to Würzburg. The first leg of your round trip around Germany is short, and as a highway connects Frankfurt and Würzburg, it should only take you an hour and a half.

In Germany, the Romantic Road is one of the biggest tourist magnets, especially for international visitors. It starts here in Würzburg and connects many traditional towns and villages with highlights like the Würzburg Residence. While you’re not going to follow it for this trip, it is worth checking out if you ever return to Germany.

For now, though, focus on Würzburg. Besides the Residence, a fantastic palace designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you can find many more attractions here. Hike through vineyards, explore the Old Town and drink a glass of local wine on a historic bridge.

Vineyards in Wurzburg

Highlights of Würzburg:

  • Würzburg Residence: The Würzburg Residence is one of the most beautiful baroque palaces in Germany. After visiting the inside, make sure to also stroll through the gardens. They are gorgeous in summer, but you can also admire the symmetry in winter.
  • Marienberg Fortress: On the hike up to Marienberg Fortress, you come past many vineyards and viewpoints. From the top, you then have a fantastic view of Würzburg. If you’re not too tired yet, join one of the guided tours of the interior and explore the Princes’ Hall and the Treasury.
  • Old Main Bridge: Explore the Old Town on foot and then end your day with a glass of wine on the Old Main Bridge. While German wine might not be that well-known internationally, the wineries in Würzburg produce some pretty good wine that they sell on the bridge. Go and grab a glass! If the weather is nice, you’ll find many locals joining you to enjoy the evening.

Where to stay in Würzburg

Wurzburg Old Main Bridge

We highly recommend that you book a hotel close to the city centre of Würzburg. That way, you can make the most of your time in this city and can walk home after having a glass of wine in the evening.

Here are a few options:

Mid-Range: The Franziskaner is known for its clean and modern rooms and its excellent location close to the Würzburg Cathedral. You can find public parking opposite the hotel, and it’s only a short walk to the Old Main Bridge. Click here to read reviews and check availability and prices!

A little more comfort: The Hotel Würzburger Hof offers beautifully decorated rooms close to the city centre. Reviews often mention the friendly and helpful staff, so go and check it out yourself!

Budget: It’s not easy to find a decent budget hotel right in the city centre of Würzburg. The Mainviertelhof, on the other side of the river Main, is a good option, and you can often find great deals here. Click to see availability and prices for your stay!

Day 4: Blaubeuren & Munich

Blaubeuren monastery

Today, you’ll drive all the way to Munich. Instead of going the shortest route or following Germany’s Romantic Road, though, take the highway A7 south towards Ulm and stop in Blaubeuren.

Blaubeuren is famous for the Blautopf, an impossibly blue pond. If you leave Würzburg early enough and don’t get caught in a traffic jam, you can also visit one of the nearby caves.

Highlights of Blaubeuren:

  • Blautopf: This natural wonder is a must-see during your stop in Blaubeuren. Limestone particles make this pond shimmer in bright shades of blue and green. The colours are most beautiful in the morning, but it’s worth coming here at any time of the day. While the Blautopf looks like a small lake, it is much deeper than you would imagine. Twenty-two metres below the surface, you can find an entrance into a giant cave system.
  • Blaubeuren Abbey: Next to the Blautopf, you can find the Blaubeuren Abbey. For a small entrance fee, you can visit the inside. Make sure to also stop by the Bathhouse of the Monks, which you can find behind the abbey. The wall decorations are very unusual, and you’ll get a great insight into how the life of the monks must have been hundreds of years ago.
  • Hohle Fels Cave: This cave is a short drive from Blaubeuren, but if you have enough time, make sure to stop here. Humans have sheltered in this cave for around 65,000 years, and archaeologists found the oldest instrument in the world here. If you want to see the instrument (and more man-made exhibits from about 40,000 years ago), make sure also to visit the URMU museum in Blaubeuren.

After having stopped in Blaubeuren, continue your Germany round trip by driving to Munich. Depending on traffic, it takes around two hours to get here. In German, the city is called München, so don’t be confused if you never see any road signs mentioning Munich!

Blaubeuren Blautopf

Where to stay in Munich

Stay in one of the hotels close to the centre, so it’s easy for you to explore the city the next day. As you have a whole day in Munich, make sure to book a stay for two nights.

Here are some good options:

Mid-Range: From Hotel Haus im Tal, you can reach the city centre in just a few minutes. The rooms are beautifully decorated, and the staff is very friendly and helpful. Click here to book your stay now!

A little more comfort: If you want maximum comfort, stay at the Vier Jahreszeiten Kempinski München. The hotel offers stylish rooms with lots of extras and amenities, a fantastic spa with a sauna and a gym. If you want to learn more, click here to read reviews and find out everything the hotel has to offer!

Budget: Hotel Eder provides clean and simple rooms close to the Old Town. Deals often include buffet-style breakfast, giving you excellent value for your money. Check out rates and availability on booking.com!

Day 5: Munich

Marienplatz in Munich Germany

Today, you have a whole day to explore Munich. The biggest city in Southern Germany offers lots of historic buildings, majestic palaces and the perfect chance to try traditional Bavarian food.

Highlights of Munich:

  • Marienplatz: Munich’s central square is one of the best starting points for exploring the city. Here, you can find both the old and the new town hall, a fountain and the Mariensäule, a column to the Virgin Mary that dates back to 1638. If you stop here at 11 am or noon, you can see the mechanical figures on the front of the New Town Hall move and dance to a song.
  • Nymphenburg Palace: Even though you only have one day in Munich, try to make it to Nymphenburg Palace. The splendid interior is well worth a visit, and you could spend hours walking through the gardens. As you’re short on time, opt for a brief stroll instead or go for a gondola ride on the canals that surround the palace.
  • English Garden: This massive park in Munich is a favourite for both locals and tourists.  In summer, it’s an excellent location for a picnic, but it’s fun to come here at any time of the year. Don’t miss the Chinese Tower, a 25-metre-high pagoda, and make sure to stop by the Eisbachwelle to see local surfers right in the middle of the city.
  • Hofbräuhaus: Munich is the perfect place to try traditional Bavarian food. While you’ll see some typical German food all over the country, the state of Bavaria is famous for some dishes you can only find here. If you’re travelling to Germany for the first time, we recommend that you try the Weißwurst with pretzel, or go for the Schweinshaxe, the pork knuckle. Both are very traditional dishes. The Hofbräuhaus, a beer hall that dates back to 1589, is the perfect place to try them.

Day 6: Neuschwanstein Castle

View of Neuschwanstein Castle from Marienbrucke

This morning, get up early and head to Hohenschwangau, the next stop on your Germany travel itinerary. The little town on the edge of the Alps is home to the famous Neuschwanstein Castle. Driving here takes a little less than two hours, which leaves you with plenty of time to see the castle and explore nearby attractions.

Highlights of Hohenschwangau:

  • Neuschwanstein Castle: Even though the castle looks as if it had stood here for centuries, it only dates back to the late 1800s. King Ludwig II of Bavaria, who built the castle, only lived here for 172 days until he died under mysterious circumstances. If you want to visit the inside and learn more about King Ludwig, you need to book your tickets well in advance (ideally, the moment you start to plan a trip to Germany). Fortunately, we have written a guide on how to visit Neuschwanstein Castle to help you prepare for your visit.
  • Marienbrücke: Just above Neuschwanstein Castle, you can find the Bridge of Mary. It takes around 20 minutes to walk here, and you’ll get to experience one of the most famous views of the castle. If you continue on the other side of the bridge, you can find even more fantastic viewpoints.
  • Hohenschwangau Castle: Make sure also to visit Hohenschwangau Castle, the yellow castle on the other side of the town. King Ludwig II used to spend his summers here, and this is where he got the inspiration to construct Neuschwanstein Castle. As his family lived in the castle for decades, the interior is much more interesting than in Neuschwanstein.

View of Hohenschwangau Castle from the town

After having explored Hohenschwangau, we recommend that you continue to the nearby town of Füssen. The Old Town of Füssen is well worth a visit, and you’ll have a much better choice when it comes to hotels and restaurants compared to Hohenschwangau.

Where to stay in Füssen

Street of Füssen

For your Germany trip, planning ahead is sometimes essential. Not only should you book your ticket to Neuschwanstein as early as possible, we recommend that you also don’t leave your hotel booking in Füssen until the last minute. Neuschwanstein Castle is one of the 10 top tourist attractions in Germany, and the nicest hotels tend to book out early.

Base yourself here for two nights so that you can explore the Alps the next day.

Mid-Range: You can find Hotel Fantasia on the edge of the Old Town of Füssen, in a beautifully renovated traditional Bavarian house. From here, you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Alps, or you can go for a stroll through Füssen itself. And the best part? Most deals include breakfast! Go and check out prices and availability now!

A little more comfort: Hotel Hirsch offers really cool themed rooms which are beautifully decorated. Most rates include access to the breakfast buffet, and you also find free parking here. Click here to see reviews and book now!

Budget: It’s not easy to find proper budget accommodation in Füssen, but we have managed to locate an affordable guest house for you. The Maurushaus offers excellent rooms in a great location for little money. Learn more and book your stay now!

Day 7: Hike to Lake Schrecksee

View of lake Schrecksee from a nearby mountain

Today, you have a whole day to explore the Bavarian Alps. We recommend going for a hike to Germany’s highest alpine lake, Lake Schrecksee, but you also have many other options.

To hike to Lake Schrecksee, you need to get up early and make your way to Hinterstein. Here, you can leave your car at the parking lot and start your hike to Lake Schrecksee.

It takes about three hours to get to the lake, maybe an hour more if you’re not used to hiking regularly. In summer, make sure to bring your swimsuit so you can cool down and go for a swim during your break.

You can find more information on the hike to Lake Schrecksee in our detailed hiking guide. We tell you exactly how to get there, what to take and where to enjoy the best views!

In winter, the hike to Lake Schrecksee is not feasible. But don’t worry, you can still find lots of things to do in the area. You could either go for a winter hike through the snow or ride a horse carriage through the snowy landscape.

Daniel looking ath the mountains near lake Schrecksee

An alternative is to drive to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, a cute town near the Austrian border with lots of things to do. Or you could visit the Linderhof Palace, another one of King Ludwig II’s palaces. It’s gorgeous on snowy days.

In Germany, the road conditions in winter are usually good. Nevertheless, on snowy winter days, you might find ice on the roads. Therefore, if you are driving in Germany as a tourist, make sure to respect all speed limits and be careful. Those winding mountain roads can be challenging to navigate for anyone who doesn’t use them regularly.

Day 8: Lake Constance & The Black Forest

Stilt houses at Lake Constance

Today, get up early to make your way to the Black Forest.

We believe that the best way to travel through Germany by car is by making lots of stops along the way. You can discover so many beautiful places that it’s easy to break up long driving days. And that’s exactly what you’re going to do today, by taking a detour to Lake Constance.

How to visit the prehistoric pile dwellings of Lake Constance

Lake Constance is Germany’s biggest lake, even though not all of it belongs to Germany. The borders with Austria and Switzerland run through this lake, but you’ll be staying on the German side today.

Stilt houses at Lake Constance

Make your way to Unteruhldingen, where you can visit one of Germany’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites – the prehistoric pile dwellings of Lake Constance. You need to leave your car at the parking above the village, but don’t worry. There are plenty of signs along the way to guide you.

The oldest stilt houses in the area date back to around 4,000 BC, and archaeologists found settlements in nine different locations. A boardwalk takes you around reconstructed pile dwellings, with separate sections dating back to different time periods.

Afterwards, make sure to stop in the museum, where you can see some of the ancient artefacts from the villages in the region.

Dinnele
Dinnele, a traditional dish from the area

If it’s lunchtime, walk to the restaurant Häfeli. Here, you can sit at the shore of the lake and enjoy a Dinnele, a traditional dish from the area similar to pizza. Ask for the one topped with fish from the lake to make it a truly unique foodie experience.

Where to stay in the Black Forest

The Bartleshof in the Black Forest
The Bartleshof, one of the best places to stay in the Black Forest

After you’ve visited Lake Constance, the next stop on your 10 days in Germany-itinerary is the Black Forest. You can find lots of cute villages that could serve as a perfect base to explore the region. We suggest that you either stay in Triberg or somewhere further north.

Do you want more information on the Black Forest? Then check out our post about the best places to stay in the Black Forest!

Here are some ideas for excellent accommodation that you’re going to love:

Mid-Range: We stayed at the Bartleshof in the Black Forest and absolutely loved it. This farm rents out rooms and small apartments furnished with traditional furniture from the area. Not only does this make for a lovely atmosphere, but the Bartleshof is also a quiet place far away from all trouble and noises of the city. Click here to check out current rates and availability!

A bit more comfort: The Adler 1604 Boutique Hotel is located in one of the cute half-timbered houses you can find in the Black Forest. The rooms are spacious, you can find free parking and breakfast is often included in the rate. Read reviews and find out more information now!

Budget: Finding proper budget accommodation in the Black Forest is not easy. Nevertheless, you can find some decently priced hotels here. The Rommelehof is one of them and often offers reasonable rates. It’s located in a very traditional building from the Black Forest, which means that staying here is a unique experience. Click here to see photos and book your stay!

Day 9: Black Forest

Black Forest traditional houses

Today, it’s time to visit the Black Forest.

The advantage of going around by car in Germany is that you can stop in lots of small villages along the way. The Black Forest has many of them, and they are all worth a visit! Besides that, you can also visit an open-air museum, see the world’s largest cuckoo clock or experience one of the best scenic drives in Germany.

Amongst the villages that we loved most are Haslach and Wolfach. Strolling through the towns, admiring the half-timbered houses, and sitting down to enjoy traditional food are among the best things to see and do in Germany.

If you like traditional architecture, make sure also to visit Rottweil. This city on the edge of the Black Forest is well worth a side trip, especially if you have some additional days to spend in Germany.

Black Forest Cuckoo Clock

Highlights of the Black Forest:

  • Vogtsbauernhof: This open-air museum gives you a fantastic insight into what life was like in the Black Forest more than a hundred years ago. You can explore the old buildings, participate in a guided tour, make your own butter or just watch the staff as they walk around, dressed in traditional clothing from the area.
  • The world’s largest cuckoo clock: On the road from Hausach to Triberg, you will come across the world’s largest cuckoo clock. Stop by the Eble Uhren-Park, where you can also see many other cuckoo clocks. If you want to, you can even buy your own in the shop!
  • Triberg Waterfalls: The waterfall in Triberg is the highest one in Germany. A trail takes you all the way to its top, from where you can enjoy the view. If you’re interested in hiking through the Black Forest (which was said to have inspired the Grimm Brothers to write their fairytales), you can also find lots of fantastic hiking trails in this area.
  • Panoramic Road: The Panoramic Road of the Black Forest, called Panoramastraße in German, invites you on one of the best road trips in Germany. You travel through the Southern Black Forest on winding mountain roads and through tiny villages. Information on the official website is available primarily in German, but you can find a map here that will help you navigate.

Day 10: Frankfurt

Eschenheimer Turm in Frankfurt

Today, it’s time to drive back to Frankfurt. Make sure to include a few stops along the way. We recommend Nagold, where you can hike up to the castle on the hill behind the city, or Calw. Out of all the places we visited in Germany, Calw has some of the best-preserved Old Towns, with lots of pretty half-timbered houses.

When you return to Frankfurt, your road trip to Germany has come to an end. Enjoy your last evening with a glass of Apfelwein, and spend some time walking along the river Main or visiting some of the sights you missed on your first day here.

If you only have a week in Germany, we recommend that you don’t visit Frankfurt at the beginning of your trip. Instead, pass Nagold and Calw today and head straight back to Frankfurt to see the city. This allows you to squeeze as much as possible into this one week that you have to see the country.

If you have more time

Blaubeuren street

If you have more than ten days for your road trip, we have lots of inspiration for you. You could spend more time in Munich or the Black Forest, or visit a completely different area in the country.

What you can see and do will ultimately depend on how many days in Germany you have. Here are some ideas for you:

  • Cologne: From Frankfurt, it’s easy to get to Cologne. You can either use your rental car or go by high-speed train. Cologne is most famous for its cathedral, but it’s also a fantastic city if you want to try local food, explore a chocolate museum and go for long walks along the river.
  • The Rhine and Mosel Valleys: The road trip through Germany we described above is only one option, and there are many more road trips in Germany worth doing. If you have enough time, you could extend your trip by visiting either the Rhine or the Mosel Valley – or both. Both are famous for their wine, their castles and their cute villages. Cochem is a great place to relax, or you could explore Eltz Castle, which gained lots of fame through Instagram lately.
  • Rothenburg ob der Tauber: If you have 2 weeks in Germany, or even more, you could consider adding more stops to this itinerary. After visiting Würzburg, for example, you have the chance to go on a detour to Rothenburg ob der Tauber. This cute town looks so typically German that you’ll see it featured on many guidebooks. It’s also part of the Romantic Road, so you can follow that road for a while.

Driving in Germany

Road in Germany

If you want to go on a road trip, Germany is the perfect country. Roads in Germany are usually well-maintained, and you have the Autobahn, the highway, connecting major points of interest.

Nevertheless, you might have a few questions about your road trip in Germany, which we are going to answer now.

What side of the road does Germany drive on?

In Germany, the driving side is the right side of the road. This is the same as in all of mainland Europe and North America.

If you’re used to driving on the left side of the road and have never been to a country where you have to go on the right, take it easy for the first few days. I learned to drive on the right side of the road, and when I rented a car in Malaysia, it took me a while to get used to driving on the left.

Eventually, it becomes easier, and you’ll get used to it pretty quickly.

Lindnerhof Palace, Germany
Lindnerhof Palace near Fussen
Driving in Germany – road signs

As a tourist, driving in Germany is usually straightforward. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the most common road signs before arriving in the country.

Fortunately, all road signs in Europe follow a European convention. If you’re coming from outside the continent, you only have to learn those signs once, and you’re good to go for most places in Europe.

Wikipedia has a comprehensive overview of German road signs that you might find helpful.

Speed limits in Germany

When driving in Germany, it’s essential to know about speed limits.

As a general rule, the speed limit is 50 km/h in towns, cities and villages and 100 km/h on roads outside populated areas. On the highway, we don’t have a speed limit, so you can go as fast as your car and traffic allow.

That said, you will often see road signs with speed limits, so on large stretches of the Autobahn (and on many roads in and outside cities), you have to respect these limits.

View in the Black Forest
Enjoy the views in the Black Forest
Can you drink and drive in Germany?

No, you can’t. The limit for blood alcohol is 0,5 ‰ and 0,0 ‰ for drivers under 21. If you drink more than that, you can get heavy fines, so it’s better not to risk it.

Are there paid roads in Germany?

In Germany, road toll does not exist – at least not if your vehicle weighs less than 3.5 tons. Regular cars are free to go on the highway and leave it wherever they please without having to pay anything.

Do I need a road map of Germany?

We usually use Google Maps to get around. As this will require you to either have access to data or download many maps before you leave, we recommend using maps.me if you come from outside the EU.

Maps.me is extremely useful for travellers, and so are many other apps. Click here to learn more about our favourite travel apps!
Christmas Market Frankfurt at Roemer
Visit in December to explore the Frankfurt Christmas Market!
Can I do this itinerary in winter?

You absolutely can! Driving in Germany in winter is not very different from driving in summer.

In the South, you will often see snow in winter, while in the rest of Germany, temperatures are above zero on most days. Drive carefully if there’s any snow and ice covering the roads, and make sure your car has winter tyres. They are mandatory in winter, so double-check when getting your vehicle.

Also, be aware that you won’t be able to hike to Lake Schrecksee in winter. Instead, we recommend staying an extra day in Füssen and going for a winter hike or a ride in a sledge across the frozen lakes.


We hope you found this Germany itinerary for 10 days useful. We don’t like driving much and even we thought that exploring Germany by car was a fantastic experience.

As we live in Germany, we have lots of other resources on our blog to help you plan your trip. Check out the following posts which you’re going to find useful:

Until your next adventure!

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