Stuttgart is considered to be the superficial and industrial capital of Germany, with their fast cars, big houses and general materialistic culture, but there is more to Stuttgart than meets the eye. Situated in southwestern Germany, south of Frankfurt and close to the French border, the city has a huge outdoors culture, where the locals like to get out and explore the countryside. The city is surrounded by vineyards and, sprawling parks and valleys and was ranked 30th in Mercer’s best cities to live in in the world. If you’ve already been to Munich and Frankfurt and want to explore a new city in Germany, there is a good supply of self-service apartments and studios in the area that will really allow you to experience the city like a local.
Where to stay
There are 23 different districts in Stuttgart, but the city itself is fairly small in comparison to Munich or Frankfurt. The central city is very densely populated, meaning it is wise if you can, to find an apartment here instead of an outer district. Downtown Stuttgart is the most ‘happening’ part, where most of the bars and cafes cluster. If you would prefer to stay in an area with a good view, then you’re better off heading north to areas such as Killesber or Weinsteige, but it doesn’t matter all that much as public transport here is excellent, as it is within the whole of Germany. In terms of accommodation, you could go for one of the fancy hotels in the area or an expensive Stuttgart bed and breakfast but an affordable alternative that gives you a chance to really explore living like a local in the city, is to opt for a self-catered apartment or studio flat.
How do I book a private apartment in Stuttgart?
If you’re happy to share you flat, there are sites online dedicated to ‘WG gesucht’, but if you’re looking for something more private, the booking your apartment through Wimdu can make it much easier. On Wimdu locals rent out their own homes, which means you automatically have a contact in the city, who you can ask questions about access and travel times etc. These features can make for a much more enjoyable vacation in Stuttgart and more time spent doing what you came here for.
- In general, Stuttgart has one of the highest standards of prosperity in Germany.
- Stuttgart is one of Germany’s largest wine-growing cities in Germany, alongside Moselle and Saxony.
- Stuttgart has an excellent reputation in Germany as an outstanding automobile manufacturing location.
- Stuttgart is spread across an area of hills and surrounded by a cluster of small towns: it is actually more green than industrial.
- Like most of the rent of mainland Germany, Stuttgart enjoys polar extremes in temperature, with incredibly cold winters and summer days where the temperature can reach up to 38 degrees.
What can you see and do?
Stuttgart, the capital of Baden-Württemberg, is often noted as being an auto-manufacturing hub, but it is much more than this. Containing many hills and parks, the city is less known for its astounding natural settings, castles and botanical gardens. Walking through the inner city is a pleasurable experience, and you'll find plenty more outdoor activities to keep you occupied if you’re not into your automobiles.
Southern Germany is well known for its festivals and Stuttgart is no exception. Stuttgart hosts a number of events during the summer, like the Summer Festival and Lantern Festival, and a few coinciding with other seasonal holidays, such as the largest Christmas Market in Germany.
Museums and galleries
There is also a great selection of museums, galleries and historical monuments in the downtown area. There are a total of 4 main museums in Stuttgart: the Staatsgalerie, the neo-classical and contemporary art gallery, with a collection of works by Rembrandt, Picasso, Warhol, Monet, Dali; the Mercedes-Benz Museum, fitting for the area with a collection of Mercedes models the 1800s right through to the very latest makes; the Kunstmuseum , which showcases a range of modern art, displaying the likes of Otto Dix, and Roth; and the Porsche Museum, which showcases the history of the porsche from its beginnings in 1948.
Hiking and trekking
The vast and lucrative vineyards around the area provide excellent walking trails for those that want to get away from the motor car factories just over the hills on the other side. But be careful to follow the guided routes or you could end up completely lost in the vineyards, not to return to your apartment until late into the night.
Parks and gardens
Germany does parks like nowhere else in continental Europe. These impressive expanses of greenery provide another well needed get away from the industrial activity of the city, providing the perfect spot to sip a beer in the sunshine if you’re visiting Stuttgart in the summer.
You'll find it easy to get around from your apartment with the excellent German public transport system: U-bahn and S-bahn services run from the outer districts and through the centre and an electric rack-rail runs through the city too, which is the only one of its kind in Germany. When you’re not taking public transport, the alternative is to travel by foot or bike. Unless you really do want to live like a local, and ride around the city showing off in your band new (or rented) Mercedes.