Since relocating to Germany we are trying to use our weekends travelling Germany as well as Europe. Heidelberg being only an hour by car from our new hometown, turned out to be one of our favorite Saturday getaway options.
Heidelberg is located in a picturesque valley, with the Neckar flowing thru the city. On the hill to the south you will see an old castle. While looking to the north there is a narrow path going up a steep hill , surrounded by greenery and grapevines.
Old Town, with its cobble stone alleys is worth a stroll. You can spend some time looking at the small none chain shops, selling local sweets and locally produced liqueur.
In the center of Old Town you will find the Church of the Holy Spirit, one of many churches in the city. The church is open for visitors and for a small fee of 2 Euro you can climb up the 38 meter high tower, on top of which you have a marvelous view over the surrounding.
Afterwards take advantage of the proximity to the castle ruins and walk the short way up to the entrance. As an alternative you could also take the Funicular Railway. It starts at the Kornmarkt and will also bring you up to the entrance. In the 7 Euro ticket price for the castle the railway ride is included.
At the castle walk around the grounds to take
in the beautiful view over the city. If you decided to buy a ticket take your chance of not only seeing the castle but also exploring Pharmacy Museum and stopping by the Great Wine barrel.
As my husband and I were rather hungry after exploring city and castle grounds we decided to take a break from walking and went to a German restaurant, Vetter’s. I am not a big fan of German food, as it’s rather heavy with a lot of meat and potato but he loves it.
They not only offer traditional German food, such as Sausage, Pork or Sauerkraut, they also brew their own tasty beer. The restaurant is located near the river and the Old Stone Bridge. During the summer they even offer outdoor seating.
After indulging in a rather heavy meal we started our second part of the day by crossing the Old Bridge. It’s one of only a few left examples of classical stone bridge structures and impressive to see. Also, before crossing take notice of the Bridge Gate and the Bridge Monkey located next to the gate. The monkey, a bronze sculpture is holing up a mirror and a big photo attraction.
Once crossing the bridge we went up the Schlangenweg (Winding Path). It’s a steep walkway, walking between grapevines and woods and the further you walk up the better the view over the city. Besides from this side of the river you also have a spectacular view onto the castle ruins. When walking far enough up, the path crosses the Philosopher’s Path. This one is also worth taking, as it leads to the Philosophers Garden. I was surprised about the variety of plants found in that garden. Due to the climate in the area you can see lemons, cypresses, bamboos and many more Mediterranean and Asian plants.
End your day back in the Old Town and depending on the season enjoy a hot chocolate or ice-cream in one of the little cobble stone alleys.