Germany Travel Guide
Located in the very heart of Europe, Germany is a diverse country with a rich history. The more you visit Germany, the more you want to explore it, learn about its culture and discover most hidden corners. Germany played a substantial role in shaping the cultural development in Europe. Once a confusing crazy quilt of states, now a prosperous country with a list of beautiful cities offering so much to do and see.
Germany has everything a backpacker may need – cheap food, beer, castles, great nightlife and all year round festival season. Since the country is quite big, there is little chance of seeing everything at once. Take your time, just pick the region you love the most and start with it. All major cities in Germany have their own charm and character. Thus, Frankfurt am Main boasts its lovely bridges and skyscrapers, Munich is a city with tiny streets, great beer halls, and amazing food, Berlin has lots of festivals, night clubs and historic sites. There is also a German hinterland, with quiet and picturesque towns, where people gather together for a chat in kneipe to get their pint of beer. Germany is on almost every traveler’s bucket list, and it’s totally worth it.
Accommodation in Germany
Since Germany is the birthplace of a hostel, there are plenty of affordable options all over the country. Prices depend on the location and services and usually vary from 10-25 EUR per night for a dorm room. Private rooms in hostels start around 45 EUR per night. In small towns, located in tourist areas, there is always a chance of finding an entire apartment or home with prices starting from 50 EUR. It might be more difficult to find cheap accommodation in major cities.
The extensive network of hostels in Germany (Jugendherberge) means cheap accommodation for every member of the German Youth Hostel Association. The most attractive feature is that hostels usually located in old castles, beautiful mansions or any other historic buildings. While Youth Hostels are open to everyone, they give second priority to guests over 27. Camping is another great option to save on accommodation. With more than 2000 campgrounds around the country, expect to pay 4-15 EUR average per night.
Food in Germany
Street food in Germany is cheap. Most meals like currywurst, bratwurst or rostbratwurst come for 2-5 EUR. Most fast food meals cost between 6-10 EUR. Dinner with beer will set you back 20 EUR as most mains cost around 16 EUR. Beer at the traditional Brauhaus or Кneipe will usually cost around 4-5 EUR. For a meal at mid-range Restaurant, expect to pay around 25 EUR. When buying your own groceries, expect to spend at least 45-70 EUR per week on food. To save on food, stick to local supermarkets like Rewe, Real, Lidl or Netto.
Getting Around Germany
Germany is synonymous with highways and rail network density. ICE (InterCity Express) and IC (InterCity) high-speed trains are quite popular but really expensive. The one-way ticket price can be as high as 150-170 EUR. These trains usually run between the largest German cities and make a small number of stops. Slower regional RE and RB trains connect local towns with larger cities. Expect to pay around 45-65 EUR for a second class ticket. Discounts are usually available for youth, seniors, and families.
Buses are omnipresent in Germany. Some bus stops in Germany are marked with a green “H” symbol (Haltestelle) and usually equipped with displays to present bus arrival information at stops. Night buses as well as sightseeing tours are available in major cities. Rapid transit systems like U-Bahn (Untergrundbahn) and S-Bahn are reliable with prices around 1-3 EUR per single ticket. You can always cut down your transportation expenses by purchasing day-passes with a better rate. While some cities have narrow cobbled streets, it is quite easy to find great cycle routes. Expect to pay between 9-25 EUR for daily rental depending on the location.