Edit Blog Post
Published: April 25th 2019
We walked from the apartment to the nearby Kornmarkt shortly before noon, then decided to have a light lunch of paninis at the Cafe Grano, a tiny place on the square, before heading to the funicular station for a ride up the mountain.
While visiting the Heidelberg Castle yesterday, we were intrigued by the funicular railway that delivered us from Heidelberg's Kornmarkt to the castle.
We discovered that the Heidelberg Mountain Railway (German: Heidelberger Bergbahn) system is a two-section funicular railway, with the first section running from a lower station at Kornmarkt in Heidelberg's Altstadt, via an intermediate station at Heidelberg Castle, then to an upper station at Molkenkur. Here passengers may change trains to the second section, which runs a considerable way up the Königstuhl, a nearby mountain with good views over the city and the River Neckar.
The upper and lower sections of the funicular have different histories, and are sometimes referred to separately by the names Königstuhlbahn and Molkenkurbahn respectively. These two sections present quite different appearances, with the upper section using wooden bodied cars of historic appearance, while the lower section uses modern-style cars. The upper stations at Molkenkur and Königstuhl are of the
original design, while those further down the hill at Kornmakt and Heidelberg Castle present a more modern image.
The crowds at the Kornmarkt station were much thinner than yesterday, so we boarded quickly for the short ride to the castle stop, then continued for the 5-minute ride to the station at Molkenkur, about 570 feet above the town.
At this level, there is a small snack bar and viewing area where we rested a few minutes, took a few photos, then changed to the vintage wooden train for the steeper, 10-minute ride to the Königstuhl station. The views from this level, at almost 1,500 feet above Heidelberg, are quite impressive.
The Königstuhl ("King's Seat") itself is a 1,863 ft.-high hill that is part of the Odenwald Mountains. The Max Planck Institute for Astronomy is located near the summit of the Königstuhl, as is the historic Landessternwarte Heidelberg-Königstuhl astronomical observatory, established in 1898. Between 1912 and 1957, Karl Wilhelm Reinmuth discovered almost 400 asteroids while working from this observatory.
It was about 3 PM by the time we finished our descent to the Kornmarkt station, whereupon Dee decided to do some shopping on the Hauptstrasse, while I
limped back to the apartment to nurse the sprained back muscles that continue to plague me.
One of Dee's stops was at a pharmacy, where she thoughtfully purchased some temporary heating pads, and sought some advice from the pharmacist. We'll stop there again tomorrow to follow-up on possible pain medication options.
Chef Dee prepared a German-style meal of pork, sauerkraut, pureed potatoes, baguettes and salad, for dinner tonight. It was outstanding! Dee's Comments:
Happy Hump Day! Yes, it is, up early to do some laundry, make breakfast, and then out we went.
We stopped at a lovely little cafe for a light lunch, and then off to our mountain adventure for the day. It seemed like a very long way on the tram before we reached the top of the mountain, but what a view! We could even spot the street where our apartment is located.
It was a great afternoon. When we returned to the town, I left Mitch to go poke around a little bit. I've been craving olives, so I returned with some, and some fresh strawberries as well.
Things I observed today: Could not believe the number of parents who
brought toddlers and strollers along on the funicular, especially with all the steep stairs and ramps; one especially unruly child kept slapping and screaming at her mother during the entire train ride; noticed lots of Chinese tour groups; a storm kicked-up in the early evening in Heidelberg, bringing gusty winds (but no rainfall).
Tot: 0.045s; Tpl: 0.018s; cc: 6; qc: 25; dbt: 0.0079s; 1; m:saturn w:www (220.127.116.11); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.2mb