Planes, Trains and Automobiles: A Guide to Exploring Germany

With seasonal nonstop service to Frankfurt and an extensive rail system, travelers have numerous options for exploring Germany directly from Pittsburgh

By Lukas Langel

Published May 29, 2019

Read Time: 2 mins


Germany is known for its fairytale castles, historic sites, picturesque old towns and, of course, highways without speed limits, the Autobahn. But did you know that Germany also has one of the world’s most efficient passenger rail systems?

More than 5,000 stations connect small German villages with cosmopolitan cities like Berlin and Munich. And while the myth of highways without speed limits is only true for a few sections of the Autobahn, the InterCity Express (ICE) is a high-speed train providing transportation to Germany’s major cities.

With top speeds of over 200 mph, ICE is an extremely fast and convenient alternative of traveling across Deutschland. Additionally, more scenic train routes are offered along rivers, traditional vineyards and historic castles for those who may prefer traveling at a slower pace.

So how can you get to Germany from Pittsburgh?

Seasonal nonstop service between Pittsburgh and Frankfurt on German-based Condor Airlines launched in 2017 and resumed Friday with twice-weekly flights.

Frankfurt Airport, which is located in the heart of Germany, is the third-busiest airport in Europe and has the largest airport train station in the country, according to Rail Europe, making it an ideal place to begin a trip.
The long distance train station at Frankfurt Airport has over 200 daily departures with destinations including:

Munich: In less than four hours, travelers can connect to Bavaria’s capital of Munich and visit the traditional Hofbräuhaus and nearby Neuschwanstein Castle.

Cologne: With history reaching back to the ancient Roman Empire, Cologne is only one hour from Frankfurt by train. Right next to the Central Station is Cologne Cathedral, the tallest twin-spired church in the world and one of Germany’s most famous landmarks.

Stuttgart: A little over an hour away from Frankfurt and filled with popular parks, the city is also known for its manufacturing hub. Tourists can visit the Mercedes-Benz Museum and the Porsche Museum, as both companies are headquartered there.

Along with providing service to Frankfurt from Pittsburgh, Condor partners with Alaska Airlines, allowing travelers to earn Alaska Mileage Plan miles. And considering nonstop service to Seattle from Pittsburgh on Alaska, this is an added incentive to fly the Frankfurt-based airline. Additionally, Condor’s first-class passengers can enjoy access to Pittsburgh International’s common-use lounge, The Club, prior to takeoff.

More information on train schedules and fares from Frankfurt Airport can be found at Rail Europe.

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