We are seeking advice for a week itinerary in late June/early July.
We have a few days booked for our gig at University of Utrecht, after which time we are looking into renting a car and driving around Germany (and/or Switzerland, Austria and Belgium), then need to get to London to fly home.
After living in London, we want to avoid cities and, instead, see mountains and rural charm : )
Thanks, in advance, for your expertise!
Lara and Scott
Just a note about hiring a car:
Although all the countries you mention are in the Schengen Zone you must tell the hire company if you intend to take the car into a country other than the one where you hire it (Germany I assume?). You may be charged an extra premium for taking the car into other countries and will definitely be charged extra for a one-way hire (which may not necessarily be allowed, depending on the individual company). So, if budget is a concern, do make sure you plan a round-trip, dropping off the car where you picked it up.
You should also double-check the legal driving requirements for each country. For example, some countries require particular equipment to be carried and that requirement may differ from that of Germany.
As another example, Italy requires all non-EU licence holders to carry a legal translation of their driving licence. An International Driving Permit fulfils this function. As you are living in London but, presumably, have a US licence (?) this might be difficult to obtain. Here's the official site with info about IDPs for US licence holders:
For route-planning use www.viamichelin.com It will give you route, route info, alternative routes and estimated driving times. Always allow more time than even that excellent site suggests. :-)