Published on : Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Frankfurt Rhine-Main is conveniently located in the heart of Germany and Europe. The region disposes over a well-developed mobility network that allows for quick and easy travel by road, rail and air. The Frankfurt Rhine-Main region is also home to several major urban centres, including Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Darmstadt and Mainz, all of which are well worth a visit.
Thanks to their close proximity to one another, it is possible – and recommendable – to visit more than just one within a short period of time, or to plan a longer stay and thereby discover some of the Rhine-Main region’s many sightseeing attractions.
Frankfurt Int’l Airport is easy to reach from all across the globe. With over 58 million passengers (Status: 2013) coming through “the gateway to Europe” every year, “Fraport” ranks amongst the world’s largest and busiest airports, offering international travellers direct connections to 295 destinations in 105 countries. Frankfurt Airport is also home to two separate train stations – a regional station and a long-distance station.
The latter is a regular stop on the routes of the Intercity-Express (ICE), the InterCity (IC) and the Eurocity (EC). And since the completion of the new Cologne-Rhine-Main line, trains now also stop at the airport’s AIRail Terminal. Commuter trains (S-Bahn) and Regional and Regional Express trains arrive and depart at the regional station. Thanks to these comprehensive connection possibilities, travellers are able to reach downtown Frankfurt from the airport in as little as 15 minutes.
The bus station in front of Terminal 1, meanwhile, is made up of three individual bus terminals. These include the public transport terminal for connections to the city and surrounding region, a terminal for charter buses and a nearby terminal for Lufthansa airport buses and hotel shuttle-buses.
Those travelling by car will also find Frankfurt to be a destination that is quick and easy to reach, regardless of their point of origin. The Frankfurt motorway interchange, known as the “Frankfurter Kreuz” and situated just a stone’s throw from Frankfurt Airport, is the most important junction of the entire German autobahn network. This interchange is the meeting point of the A5 and A3 national motorways.
The A5 connects the north of Germany (Hanover and Berlin) with the south (Karlsruhe), from there continuing on to Basle, Switzerland. The A3, on the other hand, runs from the western part of the country (Düsseldorf and Cologne) to the east (Nuremberg). In the Rhine-Main region, travel by car is equally unproblematic, with distances being short and connections convenient. For example, it’s only a 25-minute drive from Frankfurt to Darmstadt, while trips to Mainz and Wiesbaden take 33 minutes and 30 minutes, respectively.
Frankfurt Main Train Station is one of Germany’s most important railway hubs. Over 1,100 trains connect the city with countless national and international destinations every day. Regular train services take travellers from Frankfurt to every corner of Germany, including Stuttgart (1 hr. 18 min.), Munich (3 hrs. 15 min.), Hamburg (3 hrs. 37 min.) and Berlin (4 hrs. 12 min.). The EuroCity and InterCityExpress, meanwhile, run between Frankfurt and Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Warsaw, Prague, Brussels, Budapest, Vienna and Zurich, among others. And finally, there’s the French high-speed TGV and its German counterpart, the ICE, which connect Frankfurt with Paris Gare de l’Est in less than four hours.
For trips into Frankfurt’s surrounding region, locals and visitors have the commuter trains and regional trains of the Rhein-Main Transport Association (RMV) at their disposal. The most important regional destinations include the cities of Aschaffenburg, Hanau, Fulda, Wiesbaden, Darmstadt, Limburg and Mainz. These and other hubs ensure that the entire Rhine-Main region is superbly interconnected. For example, it’s no more than a 30-minute train ride from Frankfurt to Wiesbaden, the Hessian state capital.
Frankfurt’s main bus terminal is conveniently situated on the southern exit of the city’s main train station, making it easily accessible from both near and far. From here, buses depart for numerous German and European destinations. For domestic coach travel, bus companies such as FlixBus, MeinFernbus and DeinBus, among others, provide services to cities including Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne, Weimar, Heidelberg and Munich, just to name a few.
Travelling outside of the conurbations of the Rhine-Main region, one soon comes across a superb variety of local recreation areas, forests and low mountain ranges. The areas in and around the romantic Rhine Valley are particularly popular and feature many places of great natural beauty. It’s no coincidence that the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, nestled between the cities of Bingen, Rüdesheim and Koblenz, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here, the RheingauLine runs along one of the most beautiful railway routes in all of Germany. A Rhine river cruise is an equally excellent way to become acquainted with some of the many beautiful spots along this fabled waterway.
Last but certainly not least, Frankfurt Rhine-Main’s myriad recreational opportunities, also deserve a mention, in particular those found in and around the region’s time-honoured spa towns. The Taunus, for example, is the perfect place for heading off on hiking or cycling excursions.
This hilly and densely wooded region is also home to a large selection of thermal baths, natural springs, health resorts and other wellness destinations. Königstein, a regal spa town known for its healthy climate, is only a 25-minute drive from downtown Frankfurt, for example. It is just one of the countless places worth a visit in Frankfurt’s surrounding region.
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