Friday, March 27, 2015

A Weekend in Heidelberg

We had a wonderful time exploring Heidelberg, Germany with fun friends of ours  -- the Sanfords -- who live here in Luxembourg.
We made the 2 1/2 hour drive on a Friday afternoon and got into Heidelberg with enough time to walk to a traditional German restaurant, where we ate dumplings that looked like giant meatballs, bratwurst, schnitzel and pan fried potatoes, all washed down with a German beer. That night, it took the kids until 11pm to finally drift off to sleep -- they were wired and having so much fun sharing a room all together in our rented house.
The next morning, John, Elizabeth and I explored the charming farmers market a block away. Next, our group -- Leanne, Matt, Nolan (6), Stella (4) and our crew of six drove into Heidelberg's Old Town to visit Heidelberg Castle, which was built in the 13th century and was hit by lightening twice in the next couple of centuries. We rode its funicular railway (which uses a pulley system) up 280 steep feet to the castle, then hopped back on and rode up higher to a lovely cafe, where we sat with blankets on our laps and enjoyed a snack in the sunshine.
Here come the funicular!
A tour director ran over to tell us that the fountain would turn on in 3 minutes! Ha!
A beautiful snack at the top of the steep incline overlooking the city
That afternoon, we went to Luisenpark in Mannheim, where we took a boat ride (the kids laughed and screamed at the giant carp in the water), played on the playgrounds, and walked through the bird sanctuary with flamingos, penguins and parrots.
Our confidence traveling in Europe with a large family, including an infant, grows with each trip. Not only have Rob and I caught the travel bug, but so have the kids

Bitsy, John and I had a quiet morning
The kids were climbing up the ruins....ah!
Rob loves history
Riding the funicular back down!
View of Heidelberg
Love this shot. Traveling with kids.... They run EVERYWHERE!
Leanne and I jumped on the trampoline too!

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