Bergbahn Maschinenraum – Heidelberg, Germany - Atlas Obscura

Bergbahn Maschinenraum

A unique look into the bowels of a century-old funicular.  


Funiculars, sometimes called the missing link between trains and elevators, are a popular form of transportation in mountainous areas as they can scale areas of high inclination. This is achieved by attaching carts to cables that are pulled from the end station by enormous engines. Usually, these engines are hidden away from sight, but in the Bergbahn Maschinenraum, visitors get a rare glimpse of the inner workings.

The second part of the Heidelberger Bergbahn is a historical 1907 funicular that goes up from Heidelberg castle to the peak of the Königstuhl mountain, offering a fantastic view of the area, including a small exhibition on the history of the funicular.

However, one thing visitors can’t see from the main building is the surprisingly quiet machinery under their feet, as typically it’s hidden from sight. Therefore, it is important not to miss this rare exception, as a partially hidden stairway allows visitors to look at the new and old engines through a glass window. 

Know Before You Go

The machine room is to the right of the building if you exit the station terrace, and is marked with a small sign. It is sometimes closed after snow or rain in fear of people falling from the steep staircase. However, if you ask the ticket clerk, they will likely let you in. There is no entrance fee to see the machine room. 


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December 15, 2023

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