Bretten is a train, or rather tram, hub for the Kraichgau region. The tram line S4 between Karlsruhe and Heilbronn crosses the line S9 between Bruchsal and Mühlacker at Bretten Bahnhof (train station).
From Karlsruhe centre, the S4 takes you to Bretten in about 35-40 minutes depending where you board. Eilzüge (express trams) are faster. KVV tariff applies.
Bretten is not too big and the old town can be reached from Bahnhof in about 15 minutes. If you are on the S4, though, you better stay on the tram one stop further and get off at "Bretten Stadtmitte" which is just 5 minutes walk from the edge of the old town.
Well, the S4 isn't exactly a train because it runs through the streets of Karlsruhe on the tram tracks.
But it isn't exactly a tram because it switches over to normal railroad tracks when it gets out into the countryside.
This is a brilliant system which Karlsruhe pioneered and numerous other cities and regions have started to copy.
(Ironically, the city of Karlsruhe has been trying for years to downgrade the system by building a tunnel through the city center, but outraged citizens have so far prevented this. A tunnel would cost millions of Euros and would make the system slower and less convenient for passengers, who would have to make a time-consuming descent into the depths just to get their train.)
The tram-train we took was an Eilzug = Hurry-up train, meaning that it didn't stop at all the smaller stops out in the countryside. The final destination of our tram-train was Heilbronn, which is over sixty kilometers from Karlsruhe in a more or less easterly direction.
Our journey on the S4 from the center of Karlsruhe to the center of Bretten took about half an hour.
1. Isa (Belsaita), Sonja (yumyum) and Holger (HORSCHECK) on the S4 train
2. Bernd (Bernd_L) and Mariel (marielexoteria) on the S4 train
The fastest way of getting to Bretten from Karlsruhe is by S4 the tram that goes to Heilbronn as fast train. Don’t get off at Bretten Hauptbahnhof but at the next stop called "Bretten Stadtmitte". From there it’s only a 8 – 10 minutes walk to the market square. We travelled on Regiotickets.