Stuttgart is unlike any other German city it does not spread out on a wide open plain but has instead grown out from a narrow valley onto the surrounding hills that have been used for growing grapes much longer than the city has been around. The centre of the city is walkable, and a short trot between Marienplatz or Maria Square, one of Stuttgart’s summer hotspots, and Schloßplatz will take you right along one of Stuttgart’s main streets.
A city with two famous carmakers within its limits
The Mercedes-Benz Museum is one of the altars to Stuttgart’s automotive power. Perhaps no car brand is more renowned than Mercedes-Benz. If you particularly don’t care for the famous German marque, a visit to its museum could be an excellent tour through the history of the automobile.
Stuttgart is also home to the sports car builder Porsche. The Porsche Museum mostly concentrates on Porsche as a design company, showcased through approximately 80 cars on display. A lot of space in the museum is devoted to the proto-Porsche, the 356. Other icons found at the museum are the Volkswagen Beetle and the one millionth 911 built. Arrive at the museum by public transport and drive away in a famous German sports car! Keep it for anywhere between three hours and a whole week.
A bit like the theatre: creative and technical at the same time
For a city with such impressive industrial credentials, Stuttgart boasts a large number of leading art museums. One that’s impossible to miss is the high glass façade of the Kunstmuseum on Schloßplatz. To expand your overview of art history, head to the Alte Staatsgalerie (Old State Gallery), which displays heavyweights from Rembrandt to Duchamp.
Outside the city to explore a bit of Baden-Württemberg’s wine culture
Kappelrodeck lies some two hours west of Stuttgart and takes pride in being somewhat of a capital of red wine in Germany. Several wineries in the Kappelrodeck area open their cellars to visitors, show them around, and let them taste the many different local grape varieties. Local wine connoisseurs offer walks along the vineyards in the summer and especially at harvest time, from August to October.
For food and drink
Lumen on Schwabstraße is a really nice place for lunch, because it always serves very good-quality meals. Claus on Tübingerstraße, which is super healthy and hip, is also a great opetion. For something authentic, Simone Wild goes to Café Herbert’z in the south of the city on Immenhofer Straße. Grand Café Planie on Schloßplatz right in the centre of the city is a more traditional place – it has her favourite selection of cakes and a huge terrace.
A Stuttgart dinner institution for more than 20 years, Die Zirbelstube, has reinvented itself in recent years. Chef Denis Feix has earned a Michelin star with his regional and seasonal cooking. The menus are an evening-filling affair but well worth both the time and price tag.
Paul & George
Our insider Simone Wild, who co-runs the Ave fashion concept store, suggests going to the red light district! No worries though, it’s just one street and completely safe. The bar you need to look for is Paul & George. They mix some real love into their cocktails, and it’s truly one of those places you simply have to know about, otherwise you’d never end up there.
We might be in Germany’s wine region, but of course, there is still beer aplenty in Stuttgart. Kraftpaule craft beer bar proves that this country doesn’t make only pilsners and wheat beers. There are plenty of IPAs on the menu, along with the bar’s homemade Stuttgarter Helles and Casitra Pale Ale.
This eclectic fashion store for both men and women has a lot of local charm. The staff is very knowledgeable and welcoming – they even offer clients a cup of coffee as they enter the store.
Kauf haus Mitte
While the name sounds very middle-of-the-road German, this pop-up store on the long Königstraße has a lot of fun gifts on offer. Here you can buy bottles of German-produced gin, designer backpacks, local tote bags, and many other mostly Stuttgart-related items.