Sitting near the Neckar River and ringed by verdant forests and vineyards, Stuttgart is the capital of the state of Baden-Württemberg in south western Germany. The city's center rests comfortably in a valley and has a population of approximately a half million. Stuttgart is one of the best known and acclaimed German towns due to its cultural and economic importance.
Originally founded in the tenth century, Stuttgart previously was known by the name Stuttengarten (meaning "mare garden") and was used as place for breeding horses for the Emperor's cavalry. It acquired its present name as an abbreviation of Stuttengarten. Later, Stuttgart gained prominence by becoming the residence of the dukes of Württemberg. During World War II though, the center of the city was almost completely destroyed by air raids. After the war, the Marshall Plan merged the two states of Baden and Württemberg and declared Stuttgart as its capital.
The history of Stuttgart Germany hosts several important inventions. Two of these include the creation of the motorcycle, and the four-wheeled automobile. The city was the start of the automotive industry and car manufacturing remains prominent in it today. Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Maybach are all made in Stuttgart. Additionally, the first design of the Volkswagen Beetle was produced there. Further cementing Stuttgart's importance as an economic center is its stock exchange—it's the second largest in the nation behind the exchange in Frankfurt. As a result of this, many important German companies keep their headquarters in Stuttgart.
But there's more to Stuttgart, both in history and in present times, than automobiles, and high tech industry. The city is famous for its culture and vineyards with a rich wine-making tradition.
Because of the damage suffered during World War II, there aren't many original historic buildings standing. However, efforts have been made to reconstruct much of what was destroyed and are seeking to recapture history of Stuttgart Germany. A museum of particular interest is the Württemberg Museum. Located in the reconstructed renaissance castle, one can take in the history of Stuttgart Germany while inside and then stroll amidst the lovely architecture of the inner courtyard. From there, one can take a short walk to a nearby flea market in Karls Square.
The New Palace is the host of the Baden-Württemberg state government and features numerous styles: from Baroque to Imperial. A summer festival is held each summer, attracting over a half million people, and is a much see for any traveler in Stuttgart.
The city's cultural vibrance owes the most to the Staatstheater and Staatsgalerie. The Staatsgalerie is a world-class museum while the Staatstheater hosts an opera house and three smaller theaters. Within you'll find ballet, opera, concerts, and theater productions. For five years in a row, the Stuttgart Opera won the Opera of the Year award.
Those looking for palatial accommodations will not be disappointed. More than one luxury hotel in Stuttgart Germany is available to the traveler with a generous budget. The Le Meredien Stuttgart is an international five star resort that overlooks Schlossgarten Park. Both suites and regular rooms are available. Another luxury hotel in Stuttgart Germany is the Steigenberger Graf Zeppelin which is also located near the city center.