We arrived in Worms, Germany at 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday to take an excursion to Heidelberg, one of Germany’s oldest cities.
Fortunately, for me and my arthritic joints, the Viking tour bus drove us to the top of the hill.
While we stood and enjoyed a panoramic view of the Altstadt and Neckar Valley from the castle grounds,
our tour guide, who was a native German, explained the history of the Schloss and surrounding area. He explained how much of Germany was damaged during WWII. One of the most touching moments of the trip, for me, was when he specifically addressed the Americans and Canadians. He looked us in the eyes and very sincerely thanked us for getting involved in the war and for our help in bringing Hitler’s reign to an end.
This is a very large tower that provides entrance to the castle. In the late 17th century, French incursions totally destroyed medieval Heidelberg, including the castle. The ornate sculpture was one casualty. The family shield, made of some kind of valuable metals, was removed from its prominent place between the two lions.
This is a closer view of some kind of time or season dial. I really need to look it up and find out what it’s all about.
And this little window really appeals to my romantic sensibilities. Who might have stood there? What were they watching? What was the idea behind building this onto the side of the castle? So many things to wonder about.
Here’s a close-up view.
We left the castle on top of the hill and took a short ride down into the old town. The city was left in ruins by French troops in the 1600s under Louis XIV. It was rebuilt during the 18th century.
Today it’s something of a tourist attraction with its shops and restaurants. Rick Steve, author of many travel books, does not recommend it in his Germany guide book. We thought it was charming and might have enjoyed wandering around a bit longer. We had less than an hour to spend before we had to meet the bus to take us to our ship.
Next up: Tuesday, afternoon – Cruising up the Rhine to Rudesheim