Ray and I learned some lessons about German trains today. It wasn’t horrible but I want to pass on what we learned to other travelers so you don’t make our mistakes.
We were on our way to Heidelberg, when they announced the Stuttgart station. Whoops. That’s further along the train route than Heidelberg. We were at the right platform at the right time so we either forgot to check the side panel on the train to confirm our train number or Ray didn’t double-check the itinerary for that particular train to make sure it wasn’t an express. In either case, we went the right direction but didn’t stop at our city. It wasn’t a big deal. We got off in Stuttgart, did our research and were on a train that did stop in Heidelberg within about 10 minutes. Unfortunately, I did not pick up a brand new Porsche while we were in Stuttgart.
Later, when we returned from Heidelberg at about 5 pm on a Sunday night (peak time), we didn’t have a seat for half the trip because having a pass or ticket guarantees one a ride on the train but not a seat. Seats are reserved separately. Normally, that’s not an issue but this was peak travel time and and an ice 1 style train (so lots of compartments, fewer seats, and most riders had reserved seats (a separate process.) So if you’re traveling on Friday or Sunday evening, it might be worth booking a seat on the train you’ll be using.
Despite those minor glitches, we had a great time in Heidelberg. Coming out of the railway station, there was an ocean of bikes. In the distance we could see a cool statue.
There were also done huge wall murals but I spotted them on the way back when we we’re getting drenched so I didn’t try got pictures.
But I got pics of the pens in their windows. Drool.
And their website has great pics of the interior.
So it was a great day; we learned a lot, and we made it back safely to our hotel. What more can one ask?