On the 5th day of our Rhine River cruise, we stopped at Heidelberg which is one of the most beautiful places we visited. In addition to touring Heidelberg castle, we also had a few hours to wander around the old town area of the city of Heidelberg.
Heidelberg is located on a hill above the Rhine River where the Rhine and Neckar Rivers meet. Since the city came through World War II mostly unscathed, there are many buildlings, bridges and churches that still look the way they did back in Baroque times.
The castle was built over the course of 400 years (!) and is a blend of Gothic and Renaissance styles. It was damaged during the 30 Year's War and the War of Succession, and was struck by lightning in 1764. At that point, all restoration work ceased.
According to information Viking prepared for us on Heidelberg castle, "So beautiful is the castle, even as much of it lies in ruins, that many believe American raiders during World War II steered their bombs away from it." Interesting.
So today's photos show the castle and also a diagram of the garden (see above) that existed in the early days.
The bottom photo gives you a glimpse of just how pretty old Heidelberg is. (click on it to see a larger image)