In the southwest German region of Baden-Württemberg, the city of Heidelberg is one of the most prominent settlements along the Neckar Valley. Its idyllic location on the river helps to bring in thousands, if not millions of visitors to the city, while the local university is the oldest in all of Germany. Much of its historic centre is intact, escaping bombing during World War Two. Today, people tend to visit Heidelberg to see its many examples of baroque-style architecture, its historic landmarks and explore the rest of the Neckar Valley, which leads up all the way to Frankfurt in the north. Heidelberg also has a nightlife which is welcoming of visitors, making it all the more popular with tourists.
For getting in and around the centre of Heidelberg, a small car is a must-have. it would also go down well with locals who are encouraged to drive efficient vehicles.
Driving in Heidelberg
Road Driving Side
Urban Speed Limit
Rural Speed Limit
Motorway Speed Limit
Important things to note
Heidelberg has a public tramway which goes around the city centre. Be sure to give way whenever you see a tram in transit.
Traffic can be a little on the heavy side heading towards Frankfurt on the A5. The same can be said going south to Karlsruhe.
Be careful not to drive in the older part of the city, as many roads there are pedestrianized and strictly off-limits for all cars.
Highlights & Hotspots
The main street in the city centre, the Hauptstraße, is one of the longest pedestrianized roads in Europe. Along the street, you’re likely to find many great shops, bars, restaurants and the city’s main train station, which has trains going to most major German cities.
Heidelberg Castle is the city’s most prominent landmark. Built in the early 13th century, it has partially been destroyed over the centuries and is currently in the process of being restored. Today, guided tours are available of the castle’s grounds.
Dominating the landscape to the east of the city, the Königstuhl-Mountain is over 1,560 feet in height. Despite being so tall, the mountain is pretty easy to climb, while if you reach the top, you’re treated to panoramic views of Heidelberg.
There are eight theatres in Heidelberg, the most famous being the Stadttheater and Zimmertheater. The latter has a wide range of performances including opera, classical, plays and even musicals. It’s the oldest privately-run theatre in Germany.
Heidelberg is close to two main international airports ‚Äì Frankfurt, which is 27 miles north of the city, and Stuttgart, which is just a few miles further away in a south-easterly direction. Mannheim City airport is the nearest domestic airport, just five miles northwest.
Frankfurt Airport can be reached directly via the A5. As for Stuttgart Airport, take the A5 south to Karlsruhe and then go east on the A8 before reaching the airport near the town of Echterdingen.