Stand on the northern shore of the River Neckar and you can see why Heidelberg is such a popular spot for overseas visitors to Germany. This classic view of the city encompasses the old stone bridge with its salt-and-pepper shaker towers guarding the way to the old town crammed with narrow lanes and romantic old townhouses, as well as the castle looming on the hills behind.

Take Heidelberg’s hillside castle as your starting point: hop on the funicular from the Kornmarkt and save your energy for a descent on foot. Actually, the “castle” is a rambling complex of buildings from various centuries; that most of them are in ruins only adds to the charm. The site is open for guided tours of the stucco-covered rooms that are still standing and the terraced gardens. The Apothekenmuseum, with its vials and phials and potions, is an entertaining overview of remedies through the ages. 

Back down in the old town, the winding streets encourage exploration, from the heights of the Heiliggeitskirche to the pleasing expanse of the Rathausplatz. A large student population prevents the ancient city streets from becoming a museum and keeps the taverns busy.

Practical Info

Heidelberg is 50 miles (80 km) south of Frankfurt, approximately one hour away by road or rail. The town can be seen on a day trip (perhaps combined with a visit to medieval Rothenburg), but with plenty to see and overnight accommodations ranging from hostels to five-star hotels, you should consider a longer stay.

Tours & Tickets

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Four Day Frankfurt to Munich - Romantic Road, Hohenschwangau, Neuschwanstein

4.5 star rating: Recommended 13 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, concludes Munich, Germany
Duration: 4 days / 3 nights

From USD $717.84

Romantic Heidelberg 2 Day Package

Location: Heidelberg, Germany
Duration: 2 days

From USD $372.68

Heidelberg Half-Day Trip from Frankfurt

4 star rating: Recommended 149 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 6 hours

From USD $90.59

Heidelberg and Rothenburg Day Trip from Frankfurt

4.5 star rating: Recommended 21 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 9 hours 30 minutes

From USD $249.98
From USD $118.11

Four Day Munich to Frankfurt - Romantic Road, Linderhof, Hohenschwangau, Neuschwanstein

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 9 Reviews

Location: Munich, concludes Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 4 days / 3 nights

From USD $858.89

Heidelberg and Baden-Baden Tour from Frankfurt

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 2 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 10 hours

From USD $261.45

Private Tour: Heidelberg Half-Day Trip from Frankfurt

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 6 hours

From USD $59.11

Heidelberg and Rhine Valley Day Trip from Frankfurt

4 star rating: Recommended 78 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 11 hours

From USD $181.18

Heidelberg and Nuremberg Tour from Frankfurt

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 3 Reviews

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Duration: 10 hours 30 minutes

From USD $261.45

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