Friday, 18 December 2015

Heidelberg Christmas Market ...and 5 tips on driving in Germany

It is wonderful to have the opportunity to live in Germany at Christmas time. 
So many Christmas Markets to discover and enjoy. 
Heidelberg is perfect for a day trip from Frankfurt and lovely any time of the year. 
The university town is magical with the Christmas Market in full swing, the 
Heidelberg Castle as a stunning backdrop.

Tourists from all over the world come to Germany to experience the magic of
The Christmas Markets, driving all over the country to experience as many as possible.
In our nearly two years living in Germany, we have covered many kilometres, 
spent hours on the road and have learnt a few lessons on the road etiquette.

Here are our top 5 tips!

1. Autobahn = unlimited speed limit! Mostly, but beware... roadworks and traffic can reduce the limit. we have had more speeding fines in 2 years in Germany than in our entire driving lives, which is quite a few years!

2. Make use of rest stops. That drive that your GPS tells you will take two hours...due to aforementioned roadworks and traffic...may take four hours crawling along. Our drive to Berlin took five hours, same drive home to Frankfurt took nine hours..and we still managed a speeding ticket!

3. Make sure you have change for the rest stops. It will cost you to spend a penny...70c in fact! You put the coins in a slot at a turnstile to get in. You get a 50c voucher to get a discount in the shop though. Bonus is the toilets are always clean.

4. Watch out for trucks, they will pull out in front of you without warning. Sunday is a great day to drive, trucks are not allowed on the road in Germany without special permit.

5. Germans love to tailgate, sorry my German friend's, but it is true. If you can, change lanes to let them pass...if you can't...just don't look in your rear view mirror.

Bonus is against the law in Germany to run out of fuel on an Autobahn....

Now, after your lesson on driving in Germany...enjoy a little stroll around the beautiful
Heidelberg Christmas Market.

Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

The Flammkuchen is a favourite German food of mine, thin crispy base, topped with creme fraiche, 
onions and speck...delicious and best enjoyed with a warming local cup of course.

Gluhwein and Flammkuchen, Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

Lebkuchen, Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

Lebkuchen/Gingerbread biscuits, decorated and found most traditionally as hearts but 
you will find snowmen, Santas and lots more are a staple of most German Markets.

Kartoffelpuffer, Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

The Kartoffelpuffer.. a type of potato pancake, served with apple sauce is another 
yummy, must try Christmas Market food.

Heidelberg Christmas Market 2015

You can always take home some tasty liqueurs as gifts!

1 comment:

  1. Such a lovely time of year. Thanks for the driving tips. We have decided not to rent a car while in Germany in June. We'll use the trains. Our original plan was to fly into Munich then drive to Budapest. Now we will go first to Helsinki, fly to Budapest and once off the river cruise use the trains to the house we rented outside Munich.

    Safe travels home. Merry Christmas.