Written by sararevell on 22 Aug, 2011
We had been fortunate enough to get a lift from Frankfurt to Heidelberg but as our friend was traveling to Munich, we had to make our own way back to Frankfurt Airport. Fortunately, the German public transport system, in this part of the country at…Read More
We had been fortunate enough to get a lift from Frankfurt to Heidelberg but as our friend was traveling to Munich, we had to make our own way back to Frankfurt Airport. Fortunately, the German public transport system, in this part of the country at least, is fairly easy to use and it is possible to get the train directly into Frankfurt airport without too much trouble. Tickets aren’t necessarily cheap though, with a one-way adult ticket from Heidelberg to Frankfurt costing 49 euro (about £43 / $70).We didn’t have the most auspicious start when we arrived at Heidelberg’s Aldstadt (old town) train station. There was no obvious ticket office so we waited in line behind a young girl who spent about ten minutes playing around with the ticket machine and then left empty handed. We were fairly sure she was German so immediately began to think that if it was that complicated for a local, we had no chance of making a successful purchase. Fortunately you can choose English instructions, which made the process a whole lot easier for us and in less than five minutes, we had two single tickets to Frankfurt ‘flughafen’ (airport). To this day we have no idea why the lady in front of us had such a hard time trying to buy her ticket. Our friend had given us train times to Mannheim, where we had to change for the train to Frankfurt Airport. We soon realized that the trains coming through the Aldstadt station seemed to be terminating at Heidelberg’s main train station so we jumped on the next commuter train that came through and alighted at the main train station which was the next stop. From here we joined another commuter train to Mannheim. It was a stopping train but only took about twenty minutes to reach Mannheim. At Mannheim we quickly found a timetable which detailed the time and platform for the next departure to Frankfurt Airport. This train was a lot faster and the regular carriages were probably more like first class compartments in the UK. Our tickets were checked on this part of the journey. About forty minutes later we pulled into Frankfurt Airport. Our friend had given us a good idea of the amount of time we needed to travel from Heidelberg to Frankfurt. By train, the journey takes about one hour but given that we were unfamiliar with the system and had to buy our tickets at the station, we allowed about an hour and a half, which got us to the departures terminal in good time. I would probably recommend trying to leave from Heidelberg’s main train station as I’m not sure what we would have done had the one ticket machine at Heidelberg Aldstadt not been working properly. Close
Having less than a day to explore any city is never ideal, especially one as pretty and historic as Heidelberg. In our short time there, we managed to explore the Castle and a very small part of the old town but I did regret the…Read More
Having less than a day to explore any city is never ideal, especially one as pretty and historic as Heidelberg. In our short time there, we managed to explore the Castle and a very small part of the old town but I did regret the fact that we had to leave so soon and would advise others to allow a full day, if not more, to visit. Heidelberg has great charm and is therefore a very popular tourist destination. However on the day we were there, it wasn’t overly crowded and the streets were thankfully quite quiet. We started our walk on the south side of the Karl-Theodor Bridge. We passed by the brass monkey (which I mistook for a cat) and made our way up Steingasse to the Church of the Holy Spirit, which stands in the middle of the marketplace, surrounded by souvenir stalls and bistro tables that spill out into the square. While it is very pretty, I suspect that eating and drinking here is probably not very cheap. We walked a short way along Hauptstrasse to Kornmarkt then up Zwingerstrasse to join Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage which took us up the short but steep cobbled path to the Castle entrance. After walking around the Castle, we descended by way of Kurzer Buckel. Someone had decided to number the steps in big white paint strokes and I was quite glad to be counting them down, rather than up. We walked through the market place again, stopping in at one souvenir shop that sold a wide range of traditional clothing as well as some other more practical garments such as jumpers and hats. Walking west along Hauptstrasse we came upon il Piano cafe where we stopped in for a coffee before continuing on. We passed by a few more unimaginative tourist restaurants as well as one or two promising chocolate and sweet shops. We got as far as Marstalstrasse and wanted to continue on but had to decide whether to turn back and head to the Heidelberg-Altstadt train station or try and find the main train station, which looked to be a bit further away. As we had driven past the Old Town station earlier in the day we went with what we knew and turned back, but this time walking along Lauerstrasse and Obere Neckarstrasse. These pretty back streets aren’t really worth exploring if you’re short on time as they don’t contain much in the way of shops or places to eat but there were a few hotels and guesthouses and the location probably doesn’t get much better as both streets are close to the Castle, the shops and the riverside. We eventually reached the Old Town train station but with the feeling that we were leaving behind more than we had seen. Heidelberg is by no means a large city but I do wish that we had stayed overnight and had a few more hours to walk around. The old town is flat and easy to navigate, especially as the main shopping areas are pedestrianised. The only obvious challenge is walking up to the Castle but there is the option of taking the funicular. Funicular trains leave from Kornmarkt every ten minutes between 9am and 5pm (later in the summer). Close
Written by zabelle on 27 Jan, 2004
I feel terrible that we weren’t able to give Speyer the full day that it deserves. There were some fascinating museums that we were not able to visit. We had discussed with Becks which city we should visit as we traveled south; we…Read More
I feel terrible that we weren’t able to give Speyer the full day that it deserves. There were some fascinating museums that we were not able to visit. We had discussed with Becks which city we should visit as we traveled south; we had narrowed it down to Worms and Speyer. His vote for Speyer was the deciding factor.
There is great public parking in Speyer. It is "pay and display," so make sure you find the machine. If you are lucky, someone will be leaving at the time that you arrive and give you their ticket. This happened to us, and we passed our ticket on to someone when we left. It is an easy walk to the cathedral.
The Kaiserdom is one of the most impressive cathedrals I have ever seen. Done in the Romanesque style, it is almost stark in its simplicity. There is no ancient carved choir stalls here; everything is very new, and I thought, very ugly. Yet, to some extent, it must be the most perfect example of what the interior would have looked like 600 years ago. The pews are metal, modern, and portable, and I could picture the cathedral so easily with them removed and all the medieval people standing in the vast open space.
For a peaceful moment, slip into the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament. The crypt is an amazing place. It houses the royal vault and four Holy Roman emperors and four German kings are buried here. The one you won’t want to miss is Rudolf of Hapsburg. Because it was January, there was the most amazing nativity scene that I have ever seen. People were literally in line three-deep to see it.
The treasure of the cathedral is housed in the Historisches Museum , which is just down the street.
There is a small gift shop along the way you will need to travel.
A large part of the history museum was closed for renovation, but if you have children, there was a Play Mobile exhibit that covered two floors of the museum, where there were what seemed like millions of kids. The treasury was still open, and we had to pay full price to visit only it. I entrance was, I believe, €8. You need to go to the basement for this exhibit, and the high points are all the items removed from the royal graves at the Kaiserdom. You can see the crown of Konrad, as well as hair sample of him and his wife, Gisela. There are little holes in the wall that you look through to see the skull and bones
and I think I did a good job of lining my camera up with the hole. Our problem was that there was no English guide, no English booklet, and no English commentary. No wonder my German is improving. Would I pay this price again? No, not unless the rest of the museum is open.
Written by tm8nelson on 16 Apr, 2005
The area between Darmstadt and Heidelberg, along Autobahn 5, is full of things to do. Dotted along the landscape and nestled into the hills are castles, castle ruins, majestic churches, monasteries, vineyards, hiking trails, and plenty of sights to stop and enjoy nature. Located south…Read More
The area between Darmstadt and Heidelberg, along Autobahn 5, is full of things to do. Dotted along the landscape and nestled into the hills are castles, castle ruins, majestic churches, monasteries, vineyards, hiking trails, and plenty of sights to stop and enjoy nature. Located south of Bensheim is a small airstrip that launches gliders. For a small price, you can ride back seat as you soar above the landscape. In the springtime, the flowers are in bloom and the towns have festivals with rides, food, and local beers and wines.
The summer has less rain and is ideal, if not close to perfect, for hiking the many trails that crisscross in the Odenwald. Autumn brings more festivals to attend, and the wine harvests begin. A classic drink called Federweiser, or Neuer Wein, is wine in its beginning state. It is as sweet as grape juice, contains alcohol, and still has the yeast in it. It must be tried.
In winter, the fun doesn't stop. The hiking trails are covered in snow, and cross-country skiing becomes the rave. Special machines are driven around to create special trails to ski on.
Written by meaganleigh on 14 Jul, 2002
The movie, "I was a Male Warbride," starring Cary Grant and Ann Sheridan was filmed in Heidelberg in 1948. In the opening the market place next to the Holy Ghost church is shown and also city hall (Rathaus). You can go inside the…Read More
The movie, "I was a Male Warbride," starring Cary Grant and Ann Sheridan was filmed in Heidelberg in 1948. In the opening the market place next to the Holy Ghost church is shown and also city hall (Rathaus). You can go inside the Rathaus and see where civil marriage ceremonies are conducted. In Germany you have to have a civil ceremony, religious ones are optional although many couples do get married in church but receptions are smaller and more low key than in the United States. Close
Written by jg_heidelberg on 29 Apr, 2005
Across the street from the Heidelberg Haupbahnhof (main train station) is the Print Media Academy. The building is a training center, auditorium, and office space for Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (my employer). I work on the 10.OG (11th floor) and have a nice view of the…Read More
Across the street from the Heidelberg Haupbahnhof (main train station) is the Print Media Academy. The building is a training center, auditorium, and office space for Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (my employer). I work on the 10.OG (11th floor) and have a nice view of the city. The building opened in April 2000 and continues to attract a lot of attention from the city and companies who rent space for meetings and special events. I advise you to skip the bar and restaurant in the building, as the customer service is as bad as the prices. Close
Written by permenter2004 on 25 Feb, 2006
Heidelberg, Germany, has the greatest historical tours. There are castles and cathedrals. The castles are neat because when you tour the inside, there are wine cellars and courtyards. You learn so much. The cathedrals are huge. I have never seen a church so big in…Read More
Heidelberg, Germany, has the greatest historical tours. There are castles and cathedrals. The castles are neat because when you tour the inside, there are wine cellars and courtyards. You learn so much. The cathedrals are huge. I have never seen a church so big in my life. They are beautiful. The detailing on the outside is just amazing. The inside had beautiful art sculptures and pretty stained glass windows. Not to mention the roads. They are cobblestone, and there is nothing prettier than seeing old cobblestone roads. I highly recommend visiting these places. You will never forget it. Close
Written by Jehcekah on 26 Jul, 2002
Heidelberg is many things. It is a college town, a historic site, a river city, and a great place to visit. We were lucky enough to have a guide with us on this leg of our honeymoon, but it is an easily navigable…Read More
Heidelberg is many things. It is a college town, a historic site, a river city, and a great place to visit. We were lucky enough to have a guide with us on this leg of our honeymoon, but it is an easily navigable city. Obviously the castle is the main attraction here. It sits atop a hill and can be accessed by foot or by the funicular (a train that requires a ticket). We went up on foot and while it is a long, steep hike, it was an interesting way up. Atop the hill you have to buy a ticket for the Castle Gardens, which also includes the Grosses Fass (Big Barrel), which is the largest wine barrel in the world. Once in the gardens, you have to buy another ticket for the guided tour. We decided to skip the tour because we had heard that it was short and boring. Instead we wandered around the gardens and the inside courtyard, which was well worth the price of our admission. After spending some time atop the hill, we made our way down and found an outdoor cafe to have lunch in the Markplatz. Our German friend then suggested that we take a walk up the Philosphenweg, little did we know what we were in for! We walked across the new bridge, away from Bismarckplatz and then followed the road upwards. This way is pretty steep at the beginning I'm afraid. We actually walked up through one of the most expensive areas in Heidelberg to live - most of these houses have got great views of the old town and castle. We also passed a number of University buildings. By the time we made it up to the top, we were very out of breath. We walked back down the other side of the hill and found ourselves the closest Italian Eis shop. We took our Eis and went down to the river "beach," where hundreds of college students were laying in the sun. This was a great way to experience the local scene. We thought about taking a ferry to another town, but it was getting late and the boats weren't going out again. So we made our way back into the old section of town and found an Italian restaurant for dinner. We had the best pizza ever here!! There is something about European pizza, very different from American Pizza Hut (yuck!). Close