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Introducing Germany

Discover Germany, both old and new.
To say that Germany has a historical legacy is an understatement—this is a European nation with more than 2,000 years of upheaval under its belt, from the Saxon Dynasty through the global wars of the 20th century. In the past few decades, Germany has reemerged as a progressive, industrious nation and cultural powerhouse, with one of the best-loved capital cities in the world. 

When is the best time to visit?
Like most nations in Europe, Germany’s high season is in the summer. Beat the crowds in spring when the weather is pleasant and the cherry blossoms are at their prettiest (the blooms are best seen in the city of Bonn). Throughout Germany, spring is also the time to enjoy music, dance, and beer festivals—in Hamburg, there's even a celebration of the aforementioned cherry blossoms each May.

Late September and early October coincide with Germany’s world-famous Oktoberfest beer fest in Munich and throughout Bavaria. And if you visit during the snowy holiday months, you'll enjoy the quintessential Christmas markets of Hamburg, Dresden, Cologne, and Berlin.  

Where should you go?
Start your trip in Berlin, and stay for a while—it's a city filled with culture and history. This is where you'll find great restaurants, incredible nightlife in the Kreuzberg district, sites of interest like the Reichstag building and Brandenburg Gate, and important memorials and museums related to the Holocaust. For museums and medieval history, visit the historic Old Town districts of Cologne, Munich, and Hamburg. Outside the capital, travelers can encounter WWII-era history in Nuremberg, the Eagle’s Nest (Hitler’s bunker complex in the Bavarian Alps), and at the concentration camp at the town of Dachau. 

How many days do you need?
You can see the major sites of Berlin in a day or two, though you can spend much more time getting to know its many distinct neighborhoods and attractions. If you have at least a week, you can pair the capital with another major city: eat and drink your way through Munich, see the tony Elbe River port town of Hamburg, or visit the cathedrals and bridges of charming Cologne. Spend two weeks and add some time in the Rhine Valley, or road trip through the forests of Bavaria.

Germany Travel Insights

Head to Leipzig this month for classical music at the Bach Festival
Germany in June: Travel Tips, Weather & More

June is a spectacular time to visit Germany, with great weather and the longest days of the year—which means more time for exploring city attractions and scenery in the form of mountains, rivers, forests, and lakes. Summer tourists begin to trickle in this month, but you're still ahead of the peak crowds, especially in the first half of the month.

Visit the Eltz Castle in October for prime autumn colors
Germany in October: Travel Tips, Weather & More

Fall in Germany quiets down after Oktoberfest—a great time for scenic road trips that prioritize leaf-peeping and outdoor activities that may combine hiking and wine tasting. The cities, for their part, have plenty going on, from Berlin's festival of lights to an international book fair in Frankfurt. Read on for more on what to expect in Germany in October.

Hohenschwangau Castle in the Bavarian Alps
Germany in July: Travel Tips, Weather & More

In July, summer is in full force in Germany, beckoning visitors with warm sunshine and fun activities. This is a great time to plan a city break, while those looking to skip the crowds can head for smaller towns and lesser-known destinations—especially those near beaches and lakes (and there are plenty of both).

May is a great month to explore the gardens at Dresden's Zwinger Palace
Germany in May: Travel Tips, Weather & More

Without a doubt, May is one of the very best months to travel throughout Germany, thanks to the supreme spring weather. It's also before the summer crowds arrive, leaving you perfect conditions for enjoying a wide range of popular attractions and local festivals celebrating everything from white asparagus to cherry blossoms.

The southwestern town of Heidelberg kicks into spring in April
Germany in April: Travel Tips, Weather & More

Welcome to "Frühling" (spring) in Germany, when colorful blooms take the place of dull winter landscapes. This is a great time to explore the country post-hibernation and hit April fairs and festivals in cities like Frankfurt, Munich, and Stuttgart. Prices will increase during the week of Easter, so it's best to book early.

Munich's Christmas market in the courtyard of the Rathaus is one of many
Germany in December: Travel Tips, Weather & More

December in Germany is that special time of year when charming outdoor markets, or Christkindelsmarkt, pop up across the country. You won't have to travel far to find gingerbread and Glühwein from Hamburg down to the Austrian border in the shadow of the mighty Zugspitze (Germany's tallest peak). While you're in the Bavarian Alps, head to the lively ski resorts, which open this month just in time for the holidays.

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