Mannheim Hbf is a hub station for the network of ICE trains in Germany.
It's where the route from Frankfurt to Basel meets the route between Koln/Cologne a0nd Stuttgart - and on to Augsburg, Ulm and Munchen.
Trains from the Frankfurt direction also heads towards Stuttgart and trains from Koln also head for Basel.
All of the ICE routes through Mannheim operate on a 1 x train every other basis, so in the hours when there is no direct train between the stations towards either ends of the route, the journey planner/ticket booking websites, will usually offer a change of trains in Mannheim.
However, making these connections between express trains in Mannheim, usually means having to transfer to a separate gleis (platform/track) to thaty which your train will have arrived at.
There are escalators and steps leading down to the main passage way that runs beneath the platforms/gleis at Mannheim Hbf.
If you arrive by train and have luggage etc, you may have to walk passed the stairs to reach the escalators.
There also lifts on each platform, but they are located at the north end of the gleis/platform - by the rear of trains arriving from Koln/Frankfurt, Hamburg etc - and by the front of trains arriving from Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe direction.
So you may have to walk the length of the platform to access the lift.
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