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Germany

Germany has historically been home to some of the finest minds in philosophy and literature – from Nietzche to Kant – and now a thriving contemporary art scene. It still maintains a firm grip on its identity through beer festivals which occur regularly throughout the country. Germany is also home to some of the finest automobile brands the world has to offer, so it isn’t surprising that driving in the country should prove to be a wonderful experience, with routes around the country ranging from the exciting cityscapes to countryside towns.

With the car industry a cornerstone in the country’s economy - Audi, Daimler, Mercedes, BMW, Volkswagen and Porsche are among the brands produced in the country – driving is a fabric of German society. Because of its ultra-modern and efficient freeway network, Germany is ideal for car travel, with the Autobahn one of the most famous roads in the world. Germans generally like to drive fast and have had a long love affair with the car ever since Karl Benz, founder of Mercedes-Benz, first patented his first automobile designs in 1886. With sixteen separate states all unified under the decentralized government, the range of experiences on offer starts with the famous beer festivals in cities such as scenic Bavaria to the cultural highs of the metropolis of the capital, Berlin, with its explosive art and party scene.

The fact that there are no speed limits can cause difficulties for those who are not used to the roads. However, to avoid any problems there is a well-maintained network of ‘B’ roads which provide ample opportunity for sightseeing. The most famous of these is the Romantic Road, or Romantischestraße. This stretches between Wurzburg and Füßen, bypassing twenty-eight towns and villages along the way; if you choose to drive this route, a recommended stop is the famous spa town of Bad Mergentheim. Other roads well worth a look include the Fairy Tale Road (Märchenstraße) between Frankfurt and Hannover – the stops along which were the inspiration for the Grimm Brothers’ Fairy Tales - and the Castle Road (Schloßstraße) between Heidelberg and Nürnburg.

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Cities in Germany