I love the initial planning. Nothing gets me more excited about a trip than those first achievements of booking flights and beginning a rough itinerary. I love reading books on the location, not only about a place's history, but also fiction novels. Walking past buildings that you can connect to a story really brings a place to life!
Don't mistake this for planning days out. Personally, I think going with the flow on vacation is the best strategy. For big trips though, you need to understand the scope of the country and prioritize. Unfortunately, you can't see it all, and if you try, the trip will be a blur.
Getting ready to now depart for 15 days in Germany, here is some quick advice. It can be easy and should not be a deterrent for booking the big trip you always wanted to take!
Check out some travel forums and ask them the same questions you are debating. It is as simple as typing in "what to do in 2 weeks in Germany," and likely the first few responses will cover it. I have had luck posting questions on Tripadvisor. The travel community is an awesome group of people with unique perspectives and willing to help.
Guidebooks are great but use them as a "guide" and not an itinerary. They nicely establish the top things to do and contain educated tips and tricks. You won't see everything you want, so fight the urge to check boxes and see it all. Some of the best travel experiences happen outside the pages of these guidebooks, but they are always a fantastic start to researching a vacation.
Sometimes, just go with your gut. I have always found Berlin to be compelling, so we made sure to plan more time there. Could I give specifics as to why or what I want to do there? No, I just wanted to soak in that city. At the end of the day, any travel plan you make will be incredible, so don't get too caught up on the details. Unplanned moments are the memories that hang on the longest and make travel so rewarding.
All that said, here is our itinerary. Hopefully this is a help to others planning a similar trip.
Munich for 7 nights - This will come with day trips to Dachau and Neuschwanstein Castle. We are staying right in the heart of the city and will leisurely explore Munich and the surrounding region of Bavaria.
Bamberg for 1 night - A small town along the train route from Munich to Berlin, this is a UNESCO world heritage site with a ton of breweries, yes please!
Berlin for 7 nights - High speed trains make it so easy to explore cities far apart, so getting from Munich to Berlin is simple! Likely, we will spend all of this time in the city, absorbing the culture and history of the country's capital.