Rhine River, host to the Heidelberg Castle

Even when things do not work out the way you planned them, you might find a beautiful alternative.

River tours of the beautiful Rhine River.

rhine river in germany
Photo courtesy of Catherine Baxter.

One stop that I was looking forward to the entire trip was visiting Heidelberg, located along the Rhine River and host to the beautiful Heidelberg Castle. However, upon driving around the city, it was extremely difficult to navigate towards the castle itself.

A few kind locals tried to help us out, suggesting a lot we could park in (and chance a parking ticket), or parking in the town and walking or taking a bus up to the actual castle. Any of these options weren’t entirely practical, especially when you have a baby and a stroller with you.

Instead, we were able to find a few river tours that traveled up and down the Rhine River. For just a few Euros, we were able to depart on a small boat, relax in the back of the vessel and explore the town of Heidelberg. We parked inside of a parking garage – which actually are extremely hidden between buildings and organized very well, with each level being an entirely different color than the last – and walked a few blocks over to the river tour area.

Before boarding our boat, we decided to dip into a small bar located on the river. The local bartenders spoke very broken English, but were extremely nice and easy to suggest delicious local beverages. The drink chosen for me: a light, white wine with some sort of raspberry sauce and frozen raspberries. The girls knew just what would hit the spot on such a hot, sunny day.

After relaxing for a few minutes, it was time to board the boat. Everything else that afternoon was characterized by a nice breeze and beautiful scenery.

rhine river in germany
Photo courtesy of Catherine Baxter.

The back of the boat was empty, so we decided to take advantage of the spot. It was amazing to see the various landscapes that passed by. There were some interesting residential areas, full of brightly colored houses of various shapes and sizes. Most of the houses were almost a Spanish-style, multi-leveled and different colors.

We also passed many areas along the river were people were just relaxing, taking pictures of wildlife or playing games.

rhine river in germany
Photo courtesy of Catherine Baxter.

However, perhaps one of the most interesting things was the amount of kayakers and canoers that were speeding right past our boat. Kayaks with as young as 10-year-old boys flew past us, fooling around with each other and abiding by the various arrows and signs that were abundant up and down the river.

Although we were in a pretty large tourist area, the tour of the Rhine River gave us such an insight into the German culture. There were so many activities that people were partaking in, so many different types of restaurants and shops that we were able to pass. It was really exciting – and relaxing – to see so many parts of such a big city, all within an hour-and-a-half boat ride.

Read part one of my trip here.

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