A visit to Heidelberg Palace must include a walk through the romantic palace garden.
In former times, the geometrically designed terraces of a Renaissance garden stood out against the wooded background of the Heidelberg Castle. Before the 30 Years' War, contemporaries even considered the "Hortus Palatinus" as being the "Eighth Wonder of the World". In the south-east corner of the garden, visitors will find the remains of the "Great Grotto". Rocks were blown up to create this romantic grotto displaying musical water arts. The walls were abundantly decorated with rare polished stones, shells and corals.
Left of the grotto, a pond contains the enormous sandstone sculpture of a resting "Father Rhine". A monumental dimension is added to the Castle Gardens while strolling on the "Great Terrace" and enjoying the wonderful view of the Castle's east front rising dark into the sky as well as a view of the Rhine Valley. It was the famous garden architect Salomon de Caus, who discovered this unique spot and view. He created the Castle Gardens as a homage to Heidelberg's surroundings.