In case you haven’t been to Stuttgart before, we thought we’d share a few tips.
And if you have a few tips of your own, please share in the comments….
If it’s your first time visiting Stuttgart, it’s an easy city to get around using public transport. If you arrive by air, it’s a quick 30 minute train ride to the main Hauptbahnhof station in the center of town (Google Maps link), for only 4.20 €. The city is very walk able with many Pedestrian Areas.
Airbnb is currently holding a promotion where you can earn a € 30.00 credit when you sign up with Airbnb! If you do not want to stay at a hotel, Airbnb is a great alternative for your stay! With Airbnb, you can have the feel of staying at home while you travel away from home. Airbnb operates as a person-to-person rental and guest hosting network that rents out private rooms or even an entire house to customers like you! With prices averaging 25-30% cheaper than hotels and hosts from 191+ countries, you will most likely be able to find a place anywhere with Airbnb. Airbnb may not offer all of the luxurious features of a hotel, but you may be able to save money in the process! You can download the app via iOS or Android or sign up online here!
You will see signs in Stuttgart for both the S-Bahn (“S” logo) and the Stadtbahn (“U” logo).The S-Bahn is a system of seven train lines (numbered S1 through S7) that is a subsidiary of the venerable Deutsche Bahn. All routes flow to/from the city center (Schwabstraße stop) and out to the outlying areas. For much of the time, these lines are underground subway lines.
The Stadtbahn is a light rail system (numbered U1, U2, etc) that provides different routes and generally runs at ground level alongside roads, though some lines are on their own right of way.
Fares are coordinated on the two systems (and buses) and are based upon a “zone” system wherein the fare varies depending upon how far you travel. You can purchase your ticket at each station, where most have touch screen displays that can be switched to a variety of languages. Generally, if you’re staying in the center of Stuttgart, you’ll travel through one or two zones to get to where you’re going. The costs break down as:
A cash fare single one way ride is €2.90 (2 zones)
A day pass for unlimited rides in 2 zones is €7.00
(These were correct at time of writing but please confirm with the Companies)
If you have a credit card with a chip (not U.S. chips), you can pay via the machines at the stations as well.
The Google Maps app on iOS or Android is great for figuring out which stations, lines, and transfer points you need to use.
Google is your Friend (in some Cases)
This isn’t a Stuttgart specific thing, but if you use Google Maps be sure to download an offline version of your map. In the app, just do a search for “Stuttgart” and then in the menu on the left select “Offline Maps”. Click on “Custom Map” and you’ll be able to select the area of the map you want to cache for offline viewing. It’s a big help in saving roaming data charges or inconsistent mobile signals.
When traveling, I also find Google Translate indispensable. It’s not a perfect solution, especially for long paragraphs of complicated text. But if you’re trying to read a sign or figure out what “butter” is called in German (it’s “butter”, by the way), it’s incredibly useful. You can even take a picture of a sign use OCR to translate the text in the photo. Like Google Maps, you can also download languages for offline use.
Lunch Break-and where to get decent Food!
Here is a quick listing of a variety of places to grab a bite that are close to the Center of Town.
There are numerous places that have simple take-away sandwiches and other items, but one of our favorites is right near the Stadmitte S-Bahn station.
Backhaus is a German chain of bakeries which offers a selection of sandwiches, open face pizza-like slices, and other items available for take away (including coffee, juices, and other drinks).
Feinkost Böhm / Feinkost Böhm Sushi-Ya
An upscale market featuring a wide selection of take away items – salads, meats, cheeses, bread, sushi, fruits, vegetables, and more. It’s also a great place to grab some quality snacks for your hotel or Airbnb rental.
One corner of the building also houses Sushi-Ya, a great spot to grab some delicious Japanese food. The store (and restaurant) aren’t the cheapest places to buy lunch, but the quality is outstanding.
Tiffany Thai Style
Sushi & Wok
Both of these places are on the upper level of the street.
Just a couple of minutes from the Main Station, this chain has a variety of regional fare (menu) like Maultaschen, Kässpätzle, and Schnitzel. Just order inside and they’ll bring your meal out to your table in short order.
To beat jet lag or lack of sleep from too many weiss beers, a good coffee shop is critical. Two nice shops in the area are Cafe Treppe (Google Maps Link) and Waranga (Google Maps Link). Waranga is a non-descript place on the corner of the building overlooking the pedestrian plaza. It opens at 11am is especially nice in good weather because they can open up the glass walls to make it open air, with the added bonus that it is effectively a wine bar.
This spot has a been a favorite for years and generally serves as an informal meeting place. Amadeus Restaurant serves some local specialities such as Hefeweizen and delicious Swabian food like Maultaschen, Maultaschen, Schnitzel or fresh white asparagus salad.
What goes together better than copious amounts of beer, food, and crazy amusement park rides? Not sure those things do go together, but Europe’s largest spring festival is happening every year and if you haven’t been before, I suggest you check it out. Located a short ten minute ride away from the Stadtmitte station, the event runs from 1:00pm – 11:00pm. Just take the S1, S2 or S3 S-Bahn to the Bad Cannstatt station and follow the lights to the festival, which is free to enter.
There you’ll find an all ages mix of people wearing dirndl and lederhosen, live music, beer halls and tents, rides, and lots of food. Food selections run from the traditional Wurst, Schnitzel, roasted chicken to German favorites such as churros. The beer is great and the people watching even better. And since there are places to sit and drink outside, it’s not incredibly loud. You can still grab a table and have a decent conversation.
Hotels in Stuttgart
If you are looking for a reasonable priced Hotel not far from the Center of Town, the IB-Gaestehaus is highly recommended. Read the Reviews on Booking.com
Another hand-picked recommended Hotel right in the Center of Town and very reasonable priced is the Hotel Espenlaub.
Gästehaus Ziegler-This guest house is situated in the heart of Stuttgart, a 10-minute walk from the Schlossplatz square. Gästehaus Ziegler offers free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV in each room.
Some of the best, current Stuttgart Accommodation Deals on Booking.com.