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train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

by destinationunlimited Online Now May 2, 2010 at 5:57 AM

Hi. I'll be in Darmstadt this week, and will have the opportunity to take a few side trips. I don't want to go too far, and I've been told that Heidelberg is a pleasant town to visit. Rothenburg looks pleasant also. I've heard that the train system is very efficient. Is it easy to figure out for someone that does not speak German - like me? I'll have a German phrase book, but just want to know if I can easily get to Heidelberg or Rothenburg for a day trip and back.

Thanks,
Denise

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6 Answers
  • HansDK's Profile Photo

    Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by HansDK Online Now May 2, 2010 at 6:04 AM

    You can find timetables here: reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/qu...

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  • GyuriFT's Profile Photo

    Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by GyuriFT Online Now May 2, 2010 at 6:25 AM

    Make sure you familiarize yourself with the "Länderticket" concept. This allows you very economic side-trips within one Bundesland and you can even "glue" multiple ones together.

    In German a good summary with the prices:

    de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Länder...

    In English a bit more:

    budget-transportation.suite1...

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  • Trekki's Profile Photo

    Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by Trekki Online Now May 2, 2010 at 6:59 AM

    Sorry that I didn't answer on your mail this morning but I was busy.
    The problem with "Länderticket" is that Darmstadt is southern state of Hesse(n) and Heidelberg and Rothenburg are state of Baden-Württemberg, that rules out Länderticket. When I read the website, @Gyuri gave you (thanks!!), they can't be used for either of the other state.
    IC trains from Darmstadt to Heidelberg cost 13,50 Euro one way and need 30 minutes, regional trains cost 11,50 Euro and need approx. 1 hour.
    Train connection from Darmstadt to Rothenburg is almost useless, the shortest trip with 3x train change takes 3,5 hours and is 39 Euro one way.
    Darmstadt train station has both, a ticket office with Bahn personnel and several of these ticket machines (red), which look like that:
    media.news.de/resources/thum...
    and are easy to operate. Menus are in several languages, inlcuding English. They take the usual credit cards and cash.
    Alternative to Rothenburg is Marburg, a lovely student town with thousands of half timbered houses. Trains to Marburg need approx. 1,5 hours and cost 26 Euro one way. But Marburg is also state of Hesse, which means the Länderticket option is the best.

    Sorry that I can't show you around but I am about to leave for holidays.

    Does this help at least a bit?
    Ingrid

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  • Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by destinationunlimited Online Now May 2, 2010 at 9:02 AM

    Thank you to everyone for your posts - they are most helpful.

    Ingrid - thank you for you kind invitation to show me around if you were not on holiday. I will only have two days to look around for enjoyment (first three days will be for business), so I think I will be okay. What do you (or anyone else who may know) think of the towns of Freiburg and Stuttgart?

    Thank you,
    Denise

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  • christine.j's Profile Photo

    Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by christine.j Online Now May 2, 2010 at 9:52 AM

    Stuttgart and Freiburg are both worth a visit, but too far for a day trip from Darmstadt, especially Freiburg.I'd stick with Heidelberg. Marburg is a very good suggestion, too. It's not as well known as Rothenburg, but you won't regret going there.

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  • Trekki's Profile Photo

    Re: train transportation from Darmstadt to Heidelberg and Rothenberg

    by Trekki Online Now May 2, 2010 at 11:47 AM

    Another daytrip option could be a boat trip on Rhein river. It works as daytrip, I do it quite often with colleagues from abroad.
    Take the first train from Darmstadt to Mainz at 7:40. Change trains and continue to Bingen. You arrive there at 9:00 at Bingen Stadt (train station). Walk to KD pier, which is approx. 5-10 min walk. The next boat stops there at 9:15. You could drive as far as Koblenz (it stops at Koblenz at 13:10 and you could either walk a bit in Koblenzs and take the train back or take the train back). But I would recommend to stop earlier, Boppard is a nice option (that's what I do, because after Boppard the route becomes a bit boring). By then you have passed 15 castles and fortresses. And take the train back.

    I wrote all the details about this trip here:
    Land Rheinland-Pfalz Transportation Tips by Trekki
    Scroll down to the second and third tip, the one which starts with "KD boat trip through Rhein valley". It contains all the links, like the one to KD boat lines. The third tip is about how to save costs. VT member @abalada told me all about this. In this case, the Länderticket is an option. As VT member, you can save these and other tips into your trip planner and print them out.

    Or, another idea for a daytrip is the city of Mainz. That's 30 minutes by train from Darmstadt. Mainz is Gutenberg's city and has a lovely and important cathedral and a museum and is really nice. Mainz is covered by several VTers:
    Mainz Travel Guide


    Ingrid :-)

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