Viking Baldur arrives in Heidelberg and Rudesheim

Viking Baldur illuminated in the early morning hours of December 13 in Mannheim, Germany. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Viking Baldur illuminated in the early morning hours of December 13 in Mannheim, Germany. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Viking RiversViking Baldur was already in Mannheim, Germany this morning when I woke up, preparatory to another morning of exploration – this time, in the nearby town of Heidelberg.

The rear section of The Restaurant aboard Viking Baldur, facing aft. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

The rear section of The Restaurant aboard Viking Baldur, facing aft. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Dear Viking: please sell these wooden fruit bowls in the gift shop! Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Dear Viking: please sell these wooden fruit bowls in the gift shop! Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Located in the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg, Heidelberg is renowned for its naturally-romantic setting that includes the baroque Old Town area and the alluring Heidelberg Castle. Words like ‘storybook’ and ‘fanciful’ come to mind when strolling through the streets. But this city is also renowned as a University town; Heidelberg University was founded in 1386, making it one of the oldest in all of Europe.

Heidelberg survived World War II largely unscathed, and even went on to become the main base for American operations in Germany. The Americans are still here, but are transitioning operations to Wiesbaden by 2015. The former barracks and infrastructure utilised by the Americans will be returned to the state for civilian use.

Touring the remains of Heidelberg Castle - in ruins, but still grand. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Touring the remains of Heidelberg Castle – in ruins, but still grand. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

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Our Live Voyage Report along the Christmas Markets of the Rhine aboard Viking Rivers’ Viking Baldur continues tomorrow from Koblenz, Germany! Be sure to follow along on twitter by following @deckchairblog or the hashtag #LiveVoyageReport.

 

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