Rhine Getaway Day 5 - Heidelberg, Gemany
|Heidelberg with the Castle in the Background|
What a day! Whew! We traveled through the night from Rudesheim to Mannheim, Germany where we bused to the ruins of Heidelberg Castle in Heidelberg, Germany. We had an excellent guide that took us through all the terraces overlooking the city and explained the interesting history of the castle which you can read on the link I made to Wikipedia.
Mark Twain, described the Heidelberg Castle in his 1880 travel book A Tramp Abroad:
must be rightly situated, to be effective. This one could not have been better placed. It stands upon a commanding elevation, it is buried in green woods, there is no level ground about it, but, on the contrary,
there are wooded terraces upon terraces, and one looks down through shining leaves into profound chasms and abysses where twilight reigns and the sun cannot intrude. Nature knows how to garnish a ruin to get the best effect. One of these old towers is split down the middle, and one half has tumbled aside. It tumbled in such a way as to establish itself in a picturesque attitude. Then all it lacked was a fitting drapery, and Nature has furnished that; she has robed the rugged mass in flowers and verdure, and made it a charm to the eye. The standing half exposes its arched and cavernous rooms to you, like open, toothless mouths; there, too, the vines and flowers have done their work of grace.
The rear portion of the tower has not been neglected, either, but is clothed with a clinging garment of polished ivy which hides the wounds and stains of time. Even the top is not left bare but is crowned with a
flourishing group of trees & shrubs. Misfortune has done for this old tower what it has done for the human character sometimes – improved it."|
After this, I photobombed Brandy from Atlanta's (one of the smart lawyers) video of the castle. It is an inside joke, and ask me about it some time.
After this, we bused down to the city center to walk in the old part of town. It was charming. (Please tell me why Rick Steves refuses to write anything about this charming town in his Germany Guide Book.) We feasted our eyes upon the famous kurfuerstenkugel in the window of Gundel's. We bought one later for the road.
|Gundel's with the famous kurfuerstenkugel|
At the end of the tour, we walked across the old bridge to the Philosophers' Way on the other side of the Neckar River. Our tour guide said it was for the Heidelberg University students to go and contemplate heady things, but she said it was mostly a place to meet with sweethearts. There is a nice stone staircase path that leads up to the actual Way with many terraces for great views of the city.
|The View from Philosophers' Way|
The actual path is a tree-lined nature trail. It was gorgeous with the fall colors on the leaves of the trees. We tried to find the path to Stephen's Kloster, but we were just not clear where it was and even a local had never heard of it and tried to send us to the Roman ruins far above it. If we had a whole day to hike, we would have gone for it, but we didn't want to get lost and miss our meeting time to get back to the bus.
View video of our walk on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/B49375dHUgf/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
After this, we went back to the bus but were too tired to explore the city of Speyer, Germany where the boat had just docked. Apparently, it was has a lovely cathedral (but no tower climb).
We rested and then joined other repeat Viking journeyers in the Aqua Vit terrace. We met a nice group of six from Wisconsin and laughed a lot.
After this, we had dinner again with Mary Ida, Brandy, Chris, and Lydia again. I really like them. They asked how George and I met and how they all met, and it was grand. We also talked about favorite books and movies.
There was a movie quiz after this, but we were TOO TIRED to go. So, we went to our room and got in bed.
What a fun day! Too much fun!
I love hearing all your comments on Facebook and Instagram, friends. Thank you for coming along with us on this fantastic journey!
LOVE TO YOU ALL!