Tuesday, 31 July 2018
'Summer in the Alps' Day 29 - Schloss Schwetzingen Gardens
Andrea and Thomas kindly loaned us their bikes on another hot day. They went to work early, leaving us to gorge on the contents of their fridge - a fine selection of meats and cheeses.
By 9.30 we were zooming off down the hill to the River Neckar, the reverse of which came rather slow, some hours later.
Cycle paths make Heidelberg very 'bike friendly' though you have to get used to a series of traffic lights specifically for cyclists. Everyone seems compliant.
Through the other side of town, we tried to follow the Schwetzingen signs as best we could, passing fields of sunflowers and wealthy looking suburbs. We managed to lose our way a few times and by the time we reached Schwetzingen we'd clocked up 25 km for the 21 km route.
The gardens were wonderful. We spent the best part of three hours exploring them - shady avenues, flower gardens, lakes and grottos, a bath house with an enormous walk-in bath, a mosque, lots of topiary, Temples of Apollo, Mercury and Minerva, numerous fountains, etc, etc. Great!
Cycling back home in conditions likened to being under a hot hair dryer was a little taxing, especially the final 170 metre steep hill up Wilhelmsfelder Strasse. Luckily we had lots of water and came across some shady benches on which Sue could take a nap.
After the 21.5 km ride, we were back by 4.30. Plenty of time to eat ice cream, shower and catch the number 34 bus to meet Andrea and Thomas at 6pm in Bismarckplatz. Then a stroll to Kulturhausbrauerei restaurant to enjoy an evening of good food, great company, and excellent beer that is brewed on site.
The evening wouldn't have been complete without a run for the bus and (in a separate incident) my tripping over a kerb - thus relegating me to light duties, if any, and an easy chair with some ice.
Today: 4.5 km walk around the gardens, plus 46.5 km bike ride with 300 metres ascent
Heidelberg - across the Neckar
Schwetzingen Gardens - entrance
Schwetzingen Gardens - one of very many views
Sue returns across the bridge