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Stuttgart – take the stairs to the Swabian metropolis

This capital of German state of Baden-Württemberg lies at the centre of a heavily populated area, circled by a ring of smaller towns. Totally, there are over 2 million people living there, which makes Stuttgart the third largest city in Germany. Nevertheless, being one of the leading economic centers in Europe, Stuttgart with its friendly inhabitants offers a mixture of excitement and relaxation, of old and new. Stuttgart is both picturesque vineyards growing on the hillside, parks, or the Black Forest in the distance, and lots of shopping and site-seeing in a one mile radius of the Hauptbahnhof (main station). Stuttgart has also one of the largest mineral water reserves in Germany; most baths are located in Bad Cannstatt, Das Leuze being the most prominent one.

Attractions and things to do

  • Stuttgart Rathaus (Town hall) with Pater Noster elevators still functioning
  • Schlossplatz
  • Altes Schloss
  • Stuttgart Television Tower - the symbol of the city
  • Wilhelma Zoo and Botanical Gardens
  • Mercedes-Benz Museum
  • Porsche Museum
  • State Museum (Stuttgart Staatsgalerie)
  • Spring fest (similar to October fest) and Volkfest
  • Long Night of the Museums
  • Christmas Market
  • Stuttgarter Weindorf (wine festival)
  • Stuttgart's Hamburg Fish Market

Hotels
Stuttgart has a top-quality hotel infrastructure which, together with tourist apartments, youth hostels, and vacation flat rentals provides comfortably accommodation for every taste and every budget.

Dining out, entertainment, nightlife 
Many rustic beer gardens, wine pubs and cocktail bars tempt with Swabian or international food. Most those places are concentrated within the inner city. Nightlife area is in Schwabenzentrum, Calwer Straasse and especially in the Theodor-Heuss-Straße.
 
Getting here and getting around
The airport in Leinfelden-Echterdingen has S-bahn connection to the city centre.
The state highways A8 and A81 form a cross near Stuttgart ('Stuttgarter Kreuz').

The public transport (S-bahn, U-bahn, and buses) is fully integrated; one ticket can be used while combining different means of transport. The inner city area is relatively small and can be easily explored by foot. Since Stuttgart is a city of stairs, biking (except outer areas, e. g. the Neckar Valley) is not recommended. The funicular railway, and especially Standseilbahn, the only one urban rack railway in Germany, are charming peculiarities of the city.

History
Evidence of Roman settlements had been found around the banks of the river Neckar; the settlements of the Christian era were owned by Margraves of Baden. In the beginning of 14th century Stuttgart became first residence of Counts of Württemberg, then the official royal residence. The kingdom of Württemberg joined the German Empire in 1871, and after its fall, Stuttgart became the capital of the Free State of Württemberg which was part of the Weimar Republic.

Many of Stuttgart's most important buildings such as Wilhelm Palace, Katharina Hospital, and the State Gallery were built under the reign of King Wilhelm (1816-1864). Later on, at the point when the first automobile was invented here, Stuttgart´s population reached 176,000.

During WWII, the majority of the Jewish population fled the city or had been deported, and in the final period of the war Stuttgart suffered heavy Allied air raids.
The Cold War period that followed the end of the war brought United States military forces in Europe to Stuttgart, since the city was chosen for EUCOM´s headquarter. In the 1970s, Stuttgart became the main stage for what would be one of the most controversial episodes in German post-war history when the trial of members of the Red Army Faction was held in the city prison.

Climate & weather
Stuttgart has a continental climate with four distinguished seasons. The nearby Black Forest and Swabian Alb hills shelter most of the city from extreme weather; however, in the very centre it can be quite hot in summer (the average summer temperature is 20 °C / 70 °F), and snow can appear for a short period during winter (December to March; the average temperature is then  0°C /30 °F).
 
Time zone: UTC (GMT)+1. Daytime saving time (DST) is observed.
 
Currency: Euro (EUR, €).

 

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