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5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

Category: News

Having reached the final of the men’s event back in 2021, all eyes will be on Gareth Southgate’s England squad this month, as the 17th UEFA European Championships kicks off in Germany.

Running from 14 June to 14 July 2024, the tournament will see fans from across Europe descend on the host cities, with around half a million Brits expected to make the journey.

If you’re planning on attending a game, you might be wondering what to do with your between-match downtime.

Look no further than your guide to five perfect day-trip destinations from Germany’s host cities.

1. Take a day trip to Neuschwanstein Castle and Linderhof Palace from Munich

5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

Munich’s Football Arena will host the opening game of the tournament and has the second-largest capacity of all host venues. It is beaten only by the Olympiastadion Berlin, which will host the final.

Situated in the country’s south east, Munich has plenty to recommend it before and after the whistle blows, but if you’re looking to escape the crowds for a few hours, try a Neuschwanstein Castle and Linderhof Palace Day Trip.

From £60 for an adult, you’ll leave the clamour of the city and head out into the Bavarian countryside. It’s here, in the foothills of the Alps and above the narrow gorge of the Pöllat stream, that King Ludwig II of Bavaria built a countryside retreat in honour of the composer Wagner. Around 1.5 million tourists visit the site each year.

Neuschwanstein Castle is just one of three projects commissioned by Ludwig II, with only one of these projects completed: Linderhof Palace.

A 50-minute drive from the castle you’ll find Linderhof Palace and its extensive landscaped gardens, perfect to while away a relaxing afternoon.

2. Visit Lake Constance from Munich for a relaxing day by the water

5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

You’ll need to set an early alarm to enjoy a day at Lake Constance but the lack of sleep will be well rewarded. Measuring around 40 times bigger than Lake Windermere, this sprawling expanse of water sits where Germany, Switzerland, and Austria meet.

Picturesque harbour towns are dotted all around the shore but the most memorable might be Lindau. This medieval town has remained unchanged for the last 200 years or more. Explore the impressive lighthouse, get a photograph next to the famous lion statue, and climb the 12th-century Mangturm watch and signal tower, part of the ancient town’s fortifications.

Elsewhere, you’ll find vineyards and wineries, ferry tours, and baroque castles.

3. Saxon Switzerland is a hidden gem just 2 hours from Leipzig

5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

England won’t play any games in Leipzig during the championships but it will host some tantalising first-round matches.

If you’re in the city to soak up the tournament atmosphere, you might want to take a day trip to discover one of the area’s hidden tourist gems.

The Saxon Switzerland National Park is 340 square miles of craggy outcrops and deep valleys situated between Dresden and Prague. It’s among the region’s most popular recreational areas and is considered one of the birthplaces of rock climbing.

Be sure to visit the impressive Bastei Bridge. A sandstone construction built in 1851 (to replace a wooden one from 1824), the bridge sits 194 metres above the Elbe River and links jagged rocks above a gorge created by erosion more than 1 million years ago.

4. Head to the medieval town of Lüneburg from Hamburg

5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

Just a 30-minute ride southeast of Hamburg lies the medieval town of Lüneburg.

Built on the proceeds – and the ravaged land – of salt mining, the town houses the German Salt Museum and red brick buildings that often lean heavily due to subsidence.

The wobbly buildings only add to the picturesque charm of this untouched town of cobbled alleyways, timber-framed houses, and historic gables.

Visit the local pub, the Krone Bauhaus, which dates back to 1485.

5. Bask in the beauty of the Spree Forest outside Berlin

5 incredible day-trip destinations from Euro 2024 host cities to visit now

If you’re lucky enough to have tickets for the final (or the third quarter-final), you’ll be heading to Berlin’s Olympiastadion with the hope of seeing England’s men make it that far.

But between matches, you might want to head to Lübbenau, the gherkin capital of Germany.

Just 60 miles south of Berlin, you’ll also find the Spree Forest, a vast wetland shaped during the last ice age. Between dense woodland, you’ll find gentle meadows and mineral-rich farmland designated a Unesco biosphere reserve in 1991.

With plentiful canals, the area is best seen by boat.

You’ll pass stunning villages of timber buildings and a huge array of wildlife. Stop off at Lehde to visit its open-air museum or head to the Cafe Kleinod in Burg to sample the area’s famous gherkin beer. All before heading back to Berlin in time for kick-off.

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