Embracing Adventure “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” ~~Hellen Keller

Heidelberg Christmas Market & Our First Time Up to the Schloss

About halfway through December we went to Heidelberg’s Weihnachtsmarkt (Christmas Market). We started at Bismarckplatz around 3p and parked in the Darmstädter-Hof-Centrum parking garage, the best one we have found if you want to start at the Bismarckplatz end of Hauptstrasse. Rain started as soon as we came out of the parking garage, but we kept walking for awhile. We didn’t end up buying anything, but I took some pictures.

Walking down Hauptstrasse

One of the booths at the Christmas Market.

I liked that there were paintings around the top of the carousel.

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This is the Weihnachtspyramide (Christmas Pyramid).

I found out on Germany Ja that there is an ice skating rink at the corner of Karlsplatz and Hauptstrasse (where I found there is also a parking garage), but I did not see it, perhaps because we just walked past the platz and looked in rather than walking through it. This is the view of the Schloss (castle) from near the parking garage.
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I also found out from that article that there is a Christmas market at the castle. We had yet to go up to the Schloss, so we decided to find our way up there. First we ended up walking toward Karlstor (Karl’s Gate), which we hadn’t ever seen before. It was built in honor of Prince Elector Karl Theodor.

Karl’s Gate viewed from down the street

Walking under Karl’s Gate

On the other side of Karl’s Gate

Then we walked back the other way. To get up to the Schloss, we walked up Zwingerstrasse. The walk was not as bad as up to the Philosophenweg via the winding trail, but it’s still a bit of a trek. The rain stopped part of the way up.

Walking up the trail on the way to the Schloss.

You could go to the garden for free or pay to go up to the castle, so we took the left fork toward the garden. When we walked up the side we could either go to the left or right. I chose the right. What we found was not much of a garden so I think perhaps we should have gone left, but I did take some pictures of what is in that area. Here are a couple.
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As we kept walking, we came up the stairs and found the Christmas market outside the Schloss. There was a small parking lot there also. Again we looked around but did not buy anything. I did notice the glasses people were drinking Glühwein from were nicer than the ones at the rest of the market. The cups at the rest of the market looked similar to the ones from the previous year, but this time they were red instead of grey. The cups at the Schloss were glass with an etching of the castle.

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Part of the market.

A lighted arch

The best thing about going up there was probably the view, and I took several pictures.

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It started to rain again and was getting dark, so we decided to save going in the castle for another day. A friend later told us there are two more levels and that we could walk them but it would take all day, so he suggested we take the funicular railway next time and go all the way up. When we were done, we went down a different road, Schlossberg.
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We walked back through the Christmas market on the way to the car. I think the atmosphere as it got dark was nice with all the lights. Then we headed home.
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While there were other things that happened between visiting the Christmas market and the end of the year, this is the last thing about that year I had planned to write about. So, as of next post, I’ll be writing about 2013. That’s right, I’m officially caught up to the present year! Next time I’ll tell you about getting my USAREUR (U.S. Army Europe) license in January of this year.

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2 Thoughts on “Heidelberg Christmas Market & Our First Time Up to the Schloss

  1. Glad to read this post! A friend and I were literally talking about the market 5 minutes ago because family is coming to visit and I’m thinking about taking them to this. It’s a very timely post then, even though it’s about last year 🙂

    • I’m glad that you’re glad 🙂 If you take them to Heidelberg, I would definitely go up to the castle one if for nothing else than that they can get a nice view over Heidelberg. Depending on how far you want to travel, a reader recommended the Ludwigsburg Christmas Market to me as one that is supposed to be really nice: http://www.germany-christmas-market.org.uk/ludwigsburg_christmas_market.php It’s about 10 minutes away from Stuttgart.

      Yay! That’s the second time I’ve managed to do that. The first was my 4th of July post that I ended up posting on 4th of July. It’s good to know that things can still be timely even if they’re about the year before. We actually haven’t done a lot this year though so I will probably be catching up to date pretty soon.

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