Spring is finally around the corner. With warmer temperatures in sight, nature awakens, and so does the centerpiece of Heidelberg: the picturesque Neckar River. The boating season on the river starts on April 1st. On this occasion, we’d like to invite you to discover the city from a new perspective: during an unforgetable river cruise. Enjoy in Heidelberg in spring and discover the beauty of this historic city from its river!

The Neckar River, the centerpiece of Heidelberg

The history of the Neckar River in Heidelberg is closely linked to the history of the city itself. It stands for the development of trade, culture and society in the area over the centuries. The Neckar River is one of the most important rivers in Germany and features a long history that is closely linked to the city of Heidelberg. The river stretches over 367 kilometers from its source in the Black Forest to its mouth in the Rhine near Mannheim. In Heidelberg, the Neckar flows through one of the most picturesque and historically significant cities in Germany.

The history of the Neckar in Heidelberg goes back a long way. People were already settling along the river in ancient times, and the Romans used the Neckar as an important trade route. Later in the Middle Ages, Heidelberg developed into an important center of the Holy Roman Empire. From then on, the river played a decisive role for trade and transporting goods.

Heidelberg’s famous Old Town, whose picturesque silhouette stretches along the Neckar River, was founded in the 13th century. The beauty of the city, with its wooded hills, is particularly striking in spring and fall and is dominated by the majestic ruins of Heidelberg Castle. It has been attracting visitors from all over the world for centuries.

During the Renaissance, Heidelberg flourished under the rule of the Counts Palatine. At that time, the Neckar served as a lifeline for trade and culture. HeidelbergUniversity, founded in 1386, is one of the oldest and most renowned universities in Europe. It made a decisive contribution to the intellectual and cultural development of the city.

In the following centuries, Heidelberg was plagued by wars and conflicts several times, and the Neckar was often the scene of military conflicts. Nevertheless, the city survived these turbulent times and remained an important cultural center.

The Neckar today: a special highlight in spring

Today, the Neckar River in Heidelberg is not only an important transportation route for freight transport and tourism, but also the go-to spot for recreation and leisure for locals and visitors alike, especially in spring. The riverside promenades are ideal for walking and cycling. A boat trip on the river, on the other hand, offers a unique view of the historic city.

2022 saw a new addition in the river panorama: the small private boats by Riverboat have been operating here since then, which can be hired exclusively for groups. The almost 100-year-old historic boats were restored with great attention to detail before they went into service. Always on board: a skipper, a few bottles of wine, mineral water and great spirits! Experienced tour guides who specialize in guided tours from the water are available on request when booking. Even without a guide, a river cruise on the Neckar River is also absolutely worthwhile in a group or with your loved ones. The view of the city, the hills and the sights of the city by the Neckar River guarantee for an unforgettable experience. The boat rides are also a great opportunity to capture unique souvenir photos without any crowds in the background.

Things to do: a boat tour on the Neckar River in spring

The boat tours start in the heart of the Neckar city, not far from the town hall and the Heidelberg marina. Each boat can welcome up to 12 passengers. For larger groups of up to 24 people, two boats can be rented at the same time, which then glide side by side. Guides count as passengers. Children are also welcome on board. At a leisurely speed of 5 km/h, you can put your feet up, relax and enjoy the view to the fullest with a glass of wine or the drink of your choice. Some local wine and mineral water is included with every trip. Of course, you can also bring your own food and drinks. An absolute highlight for the whole family that you should not miss during your next city trip to Heidelberg!

Take the opportunity to experience Heidelberg in spring and let the blossoming beauty of this historic city inspire you. Book your boat tour on the Neckar River today and experience Heidelberg from its most beautiful side – from the heart of the city, where history and nature merge in a unique way. The boats operate every day from Monday to Sunday from 8 am to 10 pm.