Stroll through forest areas in the middle of the city. Jog to work through the park. Look at tropical animals. Soak up the sun in the middle of one of Germany's largest and most complete Art Nouveau developments. Cycle along the Rhine and Neckar rivers. Discover a foreign world in the Chinese Garden. Exercise in the sports park... And all in one city: Mannheim.
The city in the Rhine valley, between the forests of the Palatinate and the Odenwald, combines urban living and leisure activities with extensive relaxation and recreation facilities. Nature is never far away. There is green all around you in the city centre and leisure activities are always close at hand. Mannheim is home to people who not only want to enjoy the advantages and comforts of a city, but for whom closeness to nature plays an equally important role. People who want to be able to easily switch between work and leisure, enterprise and relaxation, office and fresh air. And can, because their city offers everything they need.
Start jogging in the heart of the city centre and you will be enjoying a fresh breeze on the Rhine promenade within 15 minutes. The forest of the Odenwald is not far away and is perfect for walking and cycling. Alternatively, you can take a time-out over lunch in one of the many parks and green spaces and be back at the heart of the action again just as quickly. Mannheim's mixture of rest and activity ensures a healthy rhythm to life.
Even if you don't believe in fairy tales, allow yourself to be convinced by an enchanted spot of nature. With a two-thirds majority in Mannheim, natural green triumphs over asphalt grey. Almost a third of the city consists of nature and landscape conservation areas, such as the "Reißinsel" and "Silberpappel", which enrich the "Waldpark" with their unspoilt alluvial landscape.
Here you can enjoy untouched countryside in its full splendour. Hawthorn, spindle tree, and the guelder rose: unusual plant and animal species accompany you at every turn. What almost no one knows is that Mannheim is home to the largest contiguous meadow orchards in the Upper Rhine plain, which are well worth visiting. Stroll through countless fruit trees and discover the many old apple varieties.
The Luisenpark is a green oasis in the heart of the city, just a 15 minutes' walk from the city centre. The old and mighty trees of the Luisenpark are witnesses of the past, from when the park was laid out in the 19th century to when it was rebuilt and expanded for the Federal Garden Show of 1975. Today, it is one of the most popular parks in the region with its 41 hectares and many relaxation areas.
Whether drifting down the "Kutzerweiher" in Gondolettas in the summer or making the area around the mountain stream a haven amidst pastures, alders and marsh plants, taking part in a tea ceremony in the Chinese Garden or exploring rare fish in the fresh and saltwater aquariums - the Luisenpark is an experience for all the senses.
The 22-hectare "Herzogenriedpark" is also a popular recreation centre and the lively front garden for a whole district. Located in the Neckarstadt, the park is a popular meeting place for picnics, barbecues or just to soak up the sun. If you fancy a game of boules, basketball, football, tennis or table tennis, this is the place for you. Featuring a water playground, pirate ship, cave labyrinth, petting zoo and climbing net, the Herzogenriedpark is especially popular with kids. If you prefer something more peaceful, you can visit the glorious Rosarium with its 100,000 roses or simply enjoy the sun on the terrace overlooking the pond.
With the 1,800 hours of sunshine that soak Mannheim every year, this could end up being an extended outdoor experience.
Right next to the city centre is also the square “Friedrichsplatz”, Mannheim's calling card. It is considered one of the most beautiful and extensive contiguous Art Nouveau developments in Europe and is a popular meeting place. If you fancy relaxing after shopping, you will find plenty of opportunity here to enjoy some greenery around the "Wasserturm" or on the lawns of the "Lauersche Gärten".
The city's green coordinate system also includes the Rhine promenade. Together with the palace garden and the "Waldpark", it forms Mannheim's green axis. You can walk for six uninterrupted kilometres on gravel and sand paths under ancient park trees or along the floodplain landscape of the banks of the Rhine. And once you are feeling sufficiently refreshed and reinvigorated, you can be back in the thriving, bustling heart of big city life in no time. In Mannheim, nature and urban living can be enjoyed in a combination that makes for a distinctive city character.