A Weekend in Stuttgart
Travel: From the Airport, taking the s-bahn train to the Hauptbanhof or whichever stop bahn is closest your hotel is cheapest and easiest, just a ride down the escalator from the baggage claim. Buy the ticket at the machine then stamp it before going down to the train. If 2 people are traveling round trip, get the 4 trip ticket and stamp it twice there then save it to use to return to the airport. Make sure you have euros. The machines don’t always take credit card. Many places in Germany including restaurants and bars don’t take credit here.
For getting around the city, it depends how many times you will hop on the train to determine which ticket you should buy. Traveling the downtown area is usually at the 2 zone price. Don’t forget to validate the tickets. The ticket machines are in English also.
Hotels: Whether you do a hotel, airbnb or vrbo rental, stay near the city center to reach Schlossplatz, Hauptbanhof, Charlottenplatz, Rotebuhlplatz etc and be in walking distance to most everything.
**Based on map location alone in no order:
- Steigenberger Hotel Graf Zeppelin Stuttgart
- Hotel Unger
- Hotel Motel One Stuttgart HB
- Althoff Hotel am Schlossgarten
- Kronen Hotel Stuttgart
Breakfast is typically provided in Hotels in Germany with full and random spreads of food. You may see everything from pasta, pad Thai noodles, dried fish, antipasti items, salad, fresh house made yogurt (must try), fresh juices, cereals, hard-boiled eggs, and tons of bread rolls with jams etc.
If there isn’t breakfast in the hotel, the local thing to do is get bread and a coffee from a bakery. They are everywhere and all cost about the same from the Frank Bäckerei, Kamps Backshop or Bäckerei Stefansbäck, they are all easy to stumble upon. There is not one in particular to recommend, any of them do the job. Our friends advised us to have a Butterbrezel when we arrived in Stuttgart. There are cheap stands throughout the main shopping street Koenigsstrasse (King’s Street) too. There is a crepe stand too on the left when you are leaving shopping going down to the Hauptbanhof main station.
“Americans” find solace for breakfast in the newly opened Dunkin Doughnuts that recently opened in the Hauptbanhof. For 5 euro they serve a bagel, egg, bacon, and cheese sandwich with a coffee.
Lunch or Dinner: There are lots of cute places downtown when the weather is good to sit outside, have a beer and a sausage. All have the menus posted outside too so you can look at the prices before sitting.
Typical Food: Schnitzel (fried pork steak), Kartoffelsalat (German vinegar potato salad), any kind of Weisswurst or Bratwurst (sausage), Putenbrust (turkey steak), halb Hähnchen (half chicken), Potato soup (traditionally with creamy sauce), Rostbraten or Saurbraten (roast beef) with zwiebeln (fried or sautéed onions) and last but not lease Spätzle. Note: Germans drench salads here with either vinegar or yogurt dressing so unless you like tons, ask for it on the side. A few we have tried in the downtown area specifically:
- The Cube (in the Kunst Museum) make a reservation ahead of time for some of the best views of downtown Schlossplatz. It’s a business lunch type of place, but we were surprised that the featured lunch specials of the day are under 10 euros for a meal. Its our new favorite place to bring out-of-town guests for the first time in Stuttgart before we go totally beer casual on them the rest of their stay : )
- Amadeus courtyard or indoor seating for lunch or dinner. Best Käsespätzle I’ve had so far apart from at festivals.
- Markthalle is a huge indoor year-round food market cool to walk through. It’s inside the side door entrance of the castle with not much signage. The restaurant upstairs above the market has good fresh lunch special pricing under 15 euros. The items/food in the market itself are pricey for Stuttgart at 5 euro and up for a Panini. In local bakeries, you can get similar sandwiches for about 3 euros. Upstairs has higher end shopping to stroll through.
- Carls Brauhaus has good salads, German items and good outdoor seating in Schlossplatz for people watching when the sun is out. If not, there is indoor seating too.
- Il Pomodoro great Italian style brick oven pizza. The one on Silberburgstraße 72.
- Late night: nothing beats a kebab.
- Further in the old part of Bad Cannstatt/Wilhemsplatz are some Weinstubes but not too much in that area otherwise. the cutest part of town (the old section) is really small.
Local Beer restaurants:
- Dinkelacker Brewery is in walking distance from the Johannes Church in Feuersee (S Bahn Stop) sometimes they have events with love music at the brewery outside in their huge courtyard so check the schedule.
- Calwer-Eck Brau local brew house with 3 beers and a seasonal of their own than other German beers on tap. Tricky to spot because its located upstairs but there is a sign above the entrance to the stairway.
- Sophies Brauhaus
- Zum Paulaner is a good late afternoon stop for a beer, a little pricey being in the center but its nice to sit and people watch outside. Note: Smoking IS allowed inside.
Other Local Beer To Try:
- Stuttgarter Hoffbrau don’t have a location you can go to but they make it locally near Marionplatz in Stuttgart.
- Schonbuch Brau have locations with restaurants too but may be too far to get to during a weekend so just try the beer if you see it at a bar.
- Drink Local German Wine Too! Stuttgart is a huge wine producer surrounded by vineyards. September is their big Wine Festival. The main wines grown in the Stuttgart Region are red varieties Lemberger, Spätburgunder and Trollinger though a Riesling is always good.
If you are here in October during Volksfest, the tents and the festival are a must. Take the U-bahn train to Mineralbadder (only a few stops away) and walk.
Link of Stuttgart Festivals through the year is HERE
Shopping Note: All stores and some restaurants close on Sundays so check the schedules of things to do this day. The big shopping mall recently opened in Stuttgart called Milaneo located at the Stadtmitte U bahn stop. I love to shop but it kind-of overwhelms me to shop there. I personally prefer walking downtown to shop.