If you’re visiting Heidelberg, plan on spending some time at Schloss Heidelberg and the Deutsche Apotheken Museum.
We visited during early March 2017.
Heidelberg Castle / Schloss Heidelberg
The red sandstone ruins tower majestically over the Neckar valley. From its lofty position, the palace’s silhouette dominates the old town centre of Heidelberg. | Schloss-Heidelberg.de
Whilst the castle is accessible via a funicular railway, we chose to walk. There are two main routes available to the tourist on foot – follow Burgweg from the Kornmarkt and you’ll be given a choice: A more scenic route without steps, or a shorter route which is almost entirely steps.
I enjoyed the shorter route myself, with the light spring rain taking turns against the sunshine, surrounded by greenery and hidden houses, it felt quite special – like exploring a secret garden. Of course, the exertion of climbing up to a castle 300 feet above Heidelberg town could have something to do with it!
Make the journey up to the top and you’ll be rewarded with views across Heidelberg. You’ll also be able to access the castle gardens and view some of the external ruins free of charge. A ticket includes access to the courtyard, German Pharmacy Museum, Great Tun and the funicular. However the only way to see inside the buildings is on a guided tour.
Guided tours require an additional ticket, though I would highly recommend it. Our guide was very knowledgeable and full of fascinating bits of information, from the site’s relationship with an English princess to explaining why the castle is in ruins today! The tour took about an hour and if you’re a person that loves hearing about the detail behind the building, don’t miss it!
Opening Times | Daily, 8am to 6pm – Closed on specific holidays
Admission | Combination Ticket: €7 Adults | Scheduled Guided Tour: €5 Adult – Various Times
Find Out More | Website | Tourism-Heidelberg
Always check with the attraction website to confirm any details important to you before you travel!
German Pharmacy Museum / Deutsches Apotheken Museum
In the German Museum of Pharmacy introduction area, themes like the prehistoric beginnings, the antique basis of medicine, and especially the exciting evolution of pharmacy from the 13th to the 21st century are presented. | Deutsches Apotheken Museum
This might sound a bit unusual but it’s actually an interesting and well thought out museum, hidden away in the courtyard of Heidelberg castle. The only way to visit is by purchasing a combination ticket for the castle (detailed above).
Information is clearly and consistently displayed in both German and English languages. Covering the development of the German pharmaceutical trade, the museum displays tools of the trade within elaborate replica shops and stores. They’re really wonderfully detailed arrangements.
Supported by an exceptional collection of precious drugs from the 17th up to the 19th century, here you‘ll find the foundation of pharmaceutical production itself. | Deutsches Apotheken Museum
There’s also a large room showcasing more than 1000 exhibits featuring raw materials and long forgotten ‘cures’. If you’re anything like me, you’ll find yourself going “Oh wow!” and tapping your other half on the shoulder to say “Have you seen this?”.
Because they’ll be stood right next to you, chances are they have already, in fact, seen it.
If you want to have a good look at everything, as well as reading plenty of the available information, give yourself about an hour to work your way through all the rooms. We spent around fourty minutes in here and had a good look at the bottles, artwork, historical cures and replica stores but didn’t read everything on offer. It might be tucked away in a corner of the courtyard but it’s a surprisingly large museum!
Opening Times | Daily, 10am to 5:30pm (Winter) or 6pm (Summer) – Closed on specific holidays
Admission | Access is only via the Castle Combination Ticket: €7 Adults
Find Out More | Website
Check with the museum website to confirm any important bits!
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