Quite a number of workers in the expensive Mannheim-Heidelberg area try to take up residence in the cheaper outskirts. While most of those towns are quiet and peaceful (particularly along the Neckar River), Sinsheim is the opposite -- a vibrant Autobahn town that serves as a major convention zone.
Located roughly midway between Heilbronn and Mannheim, Sinsheim would normally be just another dot on the map... until you actually drive past it in the Autobahn. Because when you do drive by, you will see the scene in the first photo -- huge warehouse-style buildings with planes mounted on top of them.
It instantly catches your attention, doesn't it?
This is the Sinsheim Technical Museum, a massive display of aircraft, ships, automobiles, and other machinery off the Sinsheim-Steinsfurt exit of Autobahn 6 that also has an IMAX theater. Unquestionably the biggest reason people visit Sinsheim, it is open year-round, and it's a full day's tour. Underneath the Air France jet in front, you notice a staircase -- yes, you can climb inside each of these planes and get a good look, including that Concorde in the distance (it happens to be a Russian Concorde, and photo galleries show just how complex an operation it was to get it here).
The two-kilometer stretch between the Museum and Sinsheim's downtown is one big strip mall, mostly populated with auto shops, industry, and the Messezentrum.
When you get to the downtown itself, and move off further away from the Autobahn, Sinsheim takes on more of a normal German-town atmosphere. The second photo, of the Stadthaus, and the third photo, showing the pedestrian zone, are typical for the area -- with the simple buildings on a single half-kilometer long street tucked amongst the town's busiest roads.
Sinsheim also boasts a castle, which I did not visit, and some of the more unusual restaurants around. For example, one restaurant has crocodiles as its theme, and filled the place with every imaginable regarding crocodiles.
Sinsheim is a nice town to visit, and a nice place to live, according to the people I've spoken with. For such a small town, there seems to always be something going on.
Page last updated 01 September 2006 -- (C) 2002 Tom Galvin