Frankfurt Airport to Heidelberg

A drive from the Frankfurt Airport to Heidelberg via the castle-strewn Bergstrasse. Essential to this drive is ADAC Karte #9 or a comparable map scaled at least 1:200,000.

From the Frankfurt Airport, head south on Autobahn (A5) toward Heidelberg.

Just past the Darmstadter Kreuz take the exit to Eberstadt. At the southern edge of that city you'll join the Bergstrasse, federal highway #3. However, at the very beginning of this portion of the drive the you'll want to find the Alte Bergstrasse, a yellow road which runs parallel of highway #3 to the east and goes through Malchen, Seeheim/Jugenheim and Alsbach. The main highway, #3, misses these villages and you rejoin it at Zwingenberg.

The Bergstrasse runs at the foot of the Odenwald mountains. Schloss Heiligenberg at Seeheim/Jugenheim is one of several castles along the way. Some are open and some are in ruins. The best to visit are Auerbach Castle, above the town of Auerbach, and Wachenburg above Weinheim.

Of the villages, Heppenheim seems the most interesting. Also at Auerbach is the Fürstenlager National Park. About 53 kilometers (33 miles) south of Eberstadt the road runs into Heidelberg and crosses the Neckar.

August 2000