Saturday, March 27, 2010

Want to see Mannheim?

W hen we first arrived in Heidelberg, we had the distinct impression that Mannheim got no love. People told us it was ugly, that there was nothing worthwhile there, the people have horrible accents, and maybe it was even dangerous. One person told us his wife gave birth in Heidelberg even though they lived in Mannheim, because they didn't want the kid to be marked with Mannheim as his birthplace for the rest of his life. Later, people started to say different things - Mannheim is cheaper than Heidelberg, it's better for shopping than Heidelberg, it has better/more restaurants/clubs/events. I wonder now if at first, people were treating us as tourists when they told us not to go there. As we settled in, they admitted that Mannheim can be pretty important in the life of anyone living in Heidelberg!

Even for a tourist, I think Mannheim has a bit to offer. I guess by German standards it's considered ugly or sketchy or at the very least, not very special. If it were in the US, though, I think we'd call it one of our finer cities. It has a castle - not the most exciting one ever, but of some interest nonetheless, and HUGE! It has pretty churches and nice parks and a few cool landmarks. We've been there many times for various things, but we finally took a weekend last month to actually walk around and play tourist a little bit.

Mannheim Feb 10

We got a perfect, sunny day! Check out the photos to see a few Mannheim landmarks in the sun. I'm not a big shopper but we did take advantage of Mannheim's other big draw: food! I read on Toytown that there is dim sum in Mannheim at a place called Pavillon, so we went to check it out. It wasn't the best dim sum you could have, but it's the only thing I've seen nearby other than in the frozen section at the Asian shop, and it works in a pinch! Which we are in!
Then we went to the Turkish area and had treats at Taksim (see photos). So delicious. We wanted to save room for one of the awesome doener you can get over there, too, but in the end we had already eaten too much! So, just another excuse to go back to Mannheim soon. (Maybe tomorrow?) We also have been told there's a pretty wicked sunset along the Rhine, with the giant industrial complex of BASF in the foreground, and want to check that out!

Coming soon: We also went to London recently! (And again food was a highlight!)


  1. A lot of people have nothing good to day about Mannheim, but I like it. They have great museums too. We went to the Alexander the Great exhibit at one near the palace and it was fantastic.
    Great photos. The last one cracked me up.

  2. The castle is the second-largest Baroque-era Castle in Europe - after Versailles.

    Of course it sorta suffers from the fact that it's not in its original state - the western wing was destroyed in WW2, and rebuilt differently.

    Gotta hand it to Mannheim wrt to the parks btw - it's one of the "greenest" cities in Germany, with plenty of public green spaces everywhere.

  3. Oh, and yeah, sundown over BASF is awesome. If you don't mind the occasional smells on Friesenheimer Insel on the opposite side of the Rhine (from the industry and the trash burning plant).

  4. Hmm I'd been avoiding Mannhein because everything I'd heard about it is negative. Though their accent really is awful =/
    I'll have to check it out ^_^


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