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Blick über den Rhein auf den Kölner Dom, Bild: ESB Professional / shutterstock

What is the best way to discover Germany?

Germany offers visitors from all over the world an incredible amount to see, whether picturesque cities or spectacular natural landscapes. But many people wonder what is the best way to discover and travel to all the different corners of the country. Of course, personal preference plays a very important role: some people prefer a short flight, while others prefer to explore the country leisurely by train. Due to the excellently developed infrastructure, there are numerous options, all of which have their own advantages and disadvantages.

You should inform yourself well from the beginning and make the appropriate preparations. However, this already starts with the planning of all accommodations, which it is best to book in advance. If you fall in love with a certain corner while exploring Germany, you can find attractive apartments on this site , for example, so that you can even live there long-term.

Explore Germany by plane

Berlin, Museum Island
The Museum Island in Berlin, Image: Boris Stroujko / shutterstock

If you mainly stick to the larger cities of the country, then the domestic flight connections are the best way to cover longer distances within a very short time. The flight from Berlin to Munich takes just over an hour. In addition, of course, there is the journey to and from the respective airport, which can usually also take one to two hours. The rule is that the further the distance, the better the total flight duration scales compared to the alternatives.

Flights are no longer quite as cheap as they were a few years ago. Fuel inflation, airline bankruptcies and additional climate protection requirements have made the low-cost flights of yesteryear virtually disappear from the scene. In addition, there are often the comparatively high costs at the airport, if you want to have a bite to eat before departure. Flying is therefore now one of the more expensive options. In general, it is only recommended if there is no fast railway line or easily passable motorway.

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Travelling around the country by train

If, on the other hand, you prefer to travel by train, you will get your money’s worth in Germany. The popular cities of Berlin and Munich are only 4.5 hours away from each other by train. At first glance, this seems to take much longer than the almost one-hour flight time. But on the other hand, you save a lot of important time by eliminating check-in. In addition, the main train stations of both cities are located directly in the city center, so a long journey is usually not necessary.

The other advantages of the train are obvious: the journey is more pleasant and you can see much more of the surroundings. Travelers enjoy more freedom, can move more freely and, for example, make a detour to the on-board bistro at any time. In addition, the costs are now comparatively cheap. For example, the train journey costs between 50 and 70 euros if you book early, while a flight costs an average of 100 euros. There are also often attractive discounts on train journeys, which are simply impossible for flight connections due to the high tax burden.

The bus as a cheap alternative

Dresden, Semperoper
The Semperoper in Dresden, Image: TTstudio / shutterstock

Ultimately, however, there is still an excellent road and motorway network in Germany. This can serve as a perfect complement to traveling by plane or train, also because it can sometimes be much cheaper. If you want to travel from Berlin to Munich with a provider like Flixbus, you ideally only pay 15 euros for the route. So there is a lot of potential for savings compared to the train or plane. On the other hand, the travel time on this route also increases to 7.5 hours.

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Nowadays, you don’t have to do without amenities on the bus. The seats are comfortable and there is usually good Wi-Fi that allows access to the internet even on long journeys. There are power outlets to charge your phone and even a small selection of snacks and drinks. Depending on the route and coach, you will even find a toilet on board. However, this is usually only the case on longer routes with correspondingly large buses.

By car even to the most remote places

Ultimately, your own car or a fancy rental car are the best options for exploring even somewhat remote places without any problems. Especially in rural areas without a large number of tourists, there is only a limited possibility of being able to rely on public transport . In such a case, your own car can make the most of all the advantages. While it’s usually the most expensive option (if you factor in acquisition or rental costs), it also offers you the most freedom by far.

The drive from Berlin to Munich takes about 6.5 hours, but offers the advantage over the bus that you can stop at any time if necessary. Travellers can therefore stretch their legs at the many well-equipped motorway service stations in Germany without having to wait for predetermined breaks. All other destinations can also be explored at your own pace. Holidaymakers from abroad should of course inform themselves beforehand about all the general conditions on German roads.