It was a day in Germany …part of our whirlwind honeymoon in Europe and we were in Heidelberg! We were staying at Aditya’s friends’ home and were being taken to Heidelberg by a friend of his Moms…so it wasn’t exactly the romantic-couple honeymoon trip that day… but…I’m always up for adventure and so off we went!
It was a cold morning and I slept in. After a late brekkie , we were picked up at 12 p.m. on the dot and driven to the student town of Heidelberg for lunch. We weren’t very hungry (late breakfast to blame!) and we said we’d be fine just walking. She seemed a bit peeved but maybe I was just being too picky and it was a bit chilly, so we started walking to the University.The lanes were pebbled with little shops on either side and seeing my very red nose she suggested a warm cup of coffee and these little cookies that were supposed to be shared by those in love! Maybe she wasn’t so mad at us after all. The coffee was much needed and the cookies DELICIOUS- though she said we should eat while we walk.I wasn’t sure what the hurry was but I was excited about seeing the University. Grand and imposing you knew as you stepped in to the university that it had incredible history and wonderful stories. She took us to the Student karzer – a jail like detention centre where for years students used to be sent. Writing on the walls, painting , notes dated back to the 1800’s and it was scary to think of student having enough time to write not only messages and paragraphs but paint drawings and do sketches. In this scary , once dark cell it must have been lonely and scary to have been imprisoned like a criminal. Not really romantic, for our honeymoon,I thought…but very interesting!
Studentkarzer over we made our way to the Heidelberg Castle. Perched on a hillock it had a glorious view of the entire town. Now I was hungry as was Aditya. However we were told “Time for lunch has passed.” And thus ended that discussion. Hungry, we trudged on!
The wine cellar of the castle houses the biggest barrel in the world, holding 55,345 gallons of wine and I was delighted that I could purchase a bottle of wine in my Dad’s name as a gift for him. He’d understand the significance and he loves his glass of wine! I’m not sure how it actually tasted or whether he ever opened it even but I think it made for a nice tourist stop and a great , personal gift to take home!
After loads of history and walking around this beautiful castle , it hit 4 p.m. and we were ‘allowed’ a coffee break in a nearby restaurant overlooking the castle. I swapped coffee for soup despite her rather cross glare and finally I had ‘lunch!’
Much of travel is about the memories you make while traveling…!”The time for lunch has passed!” makes for one of my most fond, funny memories of this little, German woman who kept us on the clock!
Best Times to Travel-: Use the summer months- May to September
Cost-: Only very few 5 star hotels and they cost approx $400 a night…I’d say maybe make Heidelberg a day trip from one of the several very close German cities…. BUT DO GO- THIS QUAINT TOWN, LOST IN TIME…IS DEFINITELY WORTH THE TRIP!
So now that your in Edinburgh, what should you do?- apart from catching some of the best theatre, comedy and musical performances at The Fringe Festival!
Here are a couple of MUST DO’S!
- Walk the Royal Mile (several times)! Street theatre, live statues and the most incredible collection of artistes all around you! Get inspired!
- You must go eat at the Elephant House cafe – where JK Rowling wrote her first Harry Potter book!Look around you Edinburgh reeks of inspiration…may be you can write your own novel/ novelette here too!
- A day trip to Loch ness and experience the beautiful Scottish Highlands!
- If you like grand military spectacles complete with a marching band, fireworks and a spectacular lighting display ; then stand in the hour long lines and catch the Edinburgh Military tattoo
- Explore the gorgeous Edinburgh Castle at your own pace and linger through the church and lawns in the Castle!
- Explore Edinburgh’s underground and buried past with a chilling Ghost tour under the city! We did! And I even saw a ghost! I swear!
- Enjoy the Scotch Whisky Experience just to see how Scotch and Whisky is made (if your just a casual taster) or visit one of the many distilleries in and around Edinburgh if you are a more serious whisky drinker!
- Take a day travel pass and keep hopping off the bus and exploring Edinburgh on your own. Museums, gardens. monuments,Edinburgh is an old city with an old city charm!
Things to remember
- The city starts early and shuts early. Don’t be confused if you still have sunlight at 11 p.m.. The shops still shut at 6 p.m.!
- Even in summer, be prepared for rains and a sudden chill. Carry something warm and carry an umbrella!
- Eating on the Royal mile is expensive… Try George’s Street for some fabulous fine dine options which are far nicer and not ridiculously expensive!
GO BE PART OF THE MADNESS OF THE EDINBURGH FRINGE ONCE!
It’s an experience like none other…! And the city with it’s old world charm and it’s youthful vibrancy is a symphony of experiences, colour and culture! Go to Edinburgh… but PLAN IN ADVANCE!