Berlin, Hamburg, and Frankfurt, when someone tells you they are going to Germany they are usually headed to one of these three destinations to eat sourkraut & currywurst, head to some festive markets, and drink some majestical German beer from the shoe of a one legged giant. However, there is a lot more to this amazingly vast country than what most people seem to expect and Hiedelberg is a great example of that.
While it isn’t exactly a little tiny village in the middle of the arsehole of the country, it is not one of the most well known places (according to people I have met/conversed with) yet it beholds such beauty that it truly should not be missed.
My introduction to the lovely little town, situated in the southwestern region of Germany along the Neckar River, came about in Christmas last year when I was visiting my old man, in Frankfurt, with my partner.
After searching the area for things to do, and speaking to a few locals, we kept hearing the name Hiedleberg being thrown about as a lovely place to see, and so we decided we should investigate!
When arriving in Hiedelberg the firt thing you will notice is the huge hills and river that stretches further than the eye can see. As we went in the winter time we were also lucky enough to be met by more festive decorations than I could even begin to count. The instant feeling was of being in a truly German town – the streets covered in a mix of traditional German restaurants & pubs, confectioners and coffeeshops/bakeries.
As mentioned, the area is covered in hills and atop the highest one lays Hiedelberg Castle, a historically significant ruin from the renaissance period. You can take a small train up the hill, or walk it, and then take a tour of the overwhelming castle grounds/buildings which are still standing. The castle and tour is breath-taking to say the least and it is so unexpectedly vast that you could definitely lose an entire day exploring the grounds.
When back on the ground you have to be sure to investigate the traditional german pubs for some scoff and to wet the old whistle. As we went as Christmas time the festive decorations were in full force and of all the places I have been to in Germany, Hiedelberg’s Christmas market is most definitely the most all encompassing.
As you walk down the main street of the town you are confronted by market after market, decoration after decoration, bratapfelwein after bratapfelwein. In a word, it’s glorious.
So there you have it, a very brief and undetailed report of the amazing town of Hiedelberg. If you are looking for a festive getaway it is most definitely worth it. Go to the castle and overlook the whole town, then go get yourself a good traditional meal followed up by some confectionary and bratapfelwein. This is what Christmas is all about.