Stuttgart facts for kids
Quick facts for kids
Clockwise from top left: Staatstheater Stuttgart, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Schloss Solitude, Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Neues Schloss, Marquardtbau, Königsbau, Stadtbibliothek
|Elevation||245 m (804 ft)|
|• Urban||2,787,724 (31 Dec 2018)|
|• Metro||5,300,000 (2015)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
Stuttgart is the capital and largest city of the German state of Baden-Württemberg. Stuttgart is located on the Neckar river in a fertile valley known locally as the "Stuttgart Cauldron". It lies an hour from the Swabian Jura and the Black Forest. Its urban area has a population of 634,830, making it the sixth largest city in Germany. 2.8 million people live in the city's administrative region and 5.3 million people in its metropolitan area, making it the fourth largest metropolitan area in Germany. The city and metropolitan area are consistently ranked among the top 20 European metropolitan areas by GDP; Mercer listed Stuttgart as 21st on its 2015 list of cities by quality of living, innovation agency 2thinknow ranked the city 24th globally out of 442 cities and the Globalization and World Cities Research Network ranked the city as a Beta-status world city in their 2014 survey., Stuttgart was one of the host cities of the official tournaments for the 1974 and 2006 FIFA World Cup.
Stuttgart is also a transport junction, and possesses the sixth-largest airport in Germany. Several major companies are headquartered in Stuttgart, including Porsche, Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, Daimler AG, and Dinkelacker.
Stuttgart is unusual in the scheme of German cities. It is spread across a variety of hills (some of them covered in vineyards), valleys (especially around the Neckar river and the Stuttgart basin) and parks. This often surprises visitors who associate the city with its reputation as the "cradle of the automobile". The city's tourism slogan is "Stuttgart offers more". Under current plans to improve transport links to the international infrastructure (as part of the Stuttgart 21 project), the city unveiled a new logo and slogan in March 2008 describing itself as "Das neue Herz Europas" ("The new Heart of Europe"). For business, it describes itself as "Where business meets the future". In July 2010, Stuttgart unveiled a new city logo, designed to entice more business people to stay in the city and enjoy breaks in the area.
Stuttgart is a city with a high number of immigrants. According to Dorling Kindersley's Eyewitness Travel Guide to Germany, "In the city of Stuttgart, every third inhabitant is a foreigner." 40% of Stuttgart's residents, and 64% of the population below the age of five, are of immigrant background.
- Landmarks and culture
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Since the 7th millennium BC, the Stuttgart area has been an important agricultural area and has been host to a number of cultures seeking to utilize the rich soil of the Neckar valley. The Roman Empire conquered the area in 83 AD and built a massive castrum near Bad Cannstatt, making it the most important regional centre for several centuries. Stuttgart's roots were truly laid in the 10th century with its founding by Liudolf, Duke of Swabia, as a stud farm for his warhorses. Initially overshadowed by nearby Cannstatt, the town grew steadily and was granted a charter in 1320. The fortunes of Stuttgart turned with those of the House of Württemberg, and they made it the capital of their county, duchy, and kingdom from the 15th century to 1918. Stuttgart prospered despite setbacks in the Thirty Years' War and devastating air raids by the Allies on the city and its automobile production during World War II. However, by 1952, the city had bounced back and it became the major economic, industrial, tourism and publishing centre it is today.
The core area of Stuttgart lies in a fertile bowl-shaped valley about 900 feet (270 m) above sea level, an hour from the Black Forest and Swabian Jura on the banks of the Neckar river at 115 miles (185 km) to the west and north of Munich. The city is often described as being "zwischen Wald und Reben", or "between forest and vines" because of its viticulture and surrounding forests.
Stuttgart covers an area of 207.35 km2 (80 sq mi) and sits at elevation ranging from 207 m (679 ft) above sea level by the Neckar river to 549 m (1,801 ft) on Bernhartshöhe hill – something rather unique in large German cities. The most prominent elevated locales in Stuttgart are the Birkenkopf (511 m (1,677 ft)) on the edge of the Stuttgart basin, the Württemberg (411 m (1,348 ft)) rising above the Neckar valley, and the Grüner Heiner (395 m (1,296 ft)) at the northeast end of the city.
Stuttgart is one of 14 Regional centres in Baden-Württemberg and is naturally the primary centre of the Stuttgart Region, making it the administrative centre for a region of 3,700 square kilometres (1,400 sq mi) containing a total of 2.76 million people as of December 2014. In addition to this, Stuttgart serves as a Mittelzentrum for Esslingen District cities Leinfelden-Echterdingen and Filderstadt, and Ditzingen, and Gerlingen and Korntal-Münchingen in Ludwigsburg District. Stuttgart is also chief of the three centres Stuttgart Metropolitan Region, an area of 15,000 square kilometres (5,800 sq mi) containing 5.3 million persons.
|Mittelzentrum / Middle-Stage centers of the Stuttgart Region|
|Backnang, Bietigheim-Bissingen / Besigheim, Böblingen / Sindelfingen, Esslingen am Neckar, Geislingen, Göppingen / Herrenberg, Kirchheim unter Teck, Leonberg, Ludwigsburg / Kornwestheim, Nürtingen, Schorndorf, Vaihingen, Waiblingen / Fellbach|
Stuttgart experiences an oceanic climate (Köppen: Cfb), just like the British Isles and Northern France, but it is very extreme at times. As a result of the urban heat island caused by the dense development of the city, inside its "Cauldron" average temperatures in the summer months regularly beat 20 °C (68 °F) from June to August and come very near in September. In the winter temperatures are quite mild, with daily means never sinking below 0 °C (32 °F) even in the coldest months (January and February). In spite of the heat, there is no dry season and the city receives frequent but moderate precipitation year-round. Annually, the city receives average 718.7 mm (28.30 in) of rain (German average national annual rainfall is 700 mm (28 in)). On average, Stuttgart enjoys 1,807 hours of sunshine per year and an average annual temperature of 9 °C (48 °F).
Typically during summer months, the nearby hills, Swabian Alb mountains, and Black Forest, Schurwald, and Swabian-Franconian Forest act as a shield from harsh weather but the city can be subject to thunderstorms, whereas in the winter periods snow may last for several days. Winters last from December to March. The coldest month is January with an average temperature of 0 °C (32 °F). Snow cover tends to last no longer than a few days although it has been known to last several weeks at a time as recently as 2010. The summers are warm with an average temperature of 20 °C (68 °F) in the hottest months of July and August. Summers last from May until September. Though it is a rare occurrence in Stuttgart, the city sometimes receives damaging hailstorms, such as in July 2013. In order to fight this phenomenon, weather stations known as "Hagelflieger" are stationed near the city and are largely funded by Daimler AG, who maintain several parking lots and factories in the municipal area.
Stuttgart has 613,392 people within city limits. It is the 6th largest city in Germany after Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne and Frankfurt am Main. According to a 2005 estimate, the Stuttgart urban area had between 1,238,000 and 1,250,000 people. Its metropolitan area has a population of 5.3 million (2008).
Landmarks and culture
The inner city
At the center of Stuttgart lies its main square, Schlossplatz. As well as being the largest square in Stuttgart, it stands at the crossover point between the city's shopping area, Schlossgarten park which runs down to the river Neckar, Stuttgart's two central castles and major museums and residential areas to the south west. Königstraße, Stuttgart's most important shopping street which runs along the northwestern edge of Schlossplatz, claims to be the longest pedestrianized street in Germany.
Although the city center was heavily damaged during World War II, many historic buildings have been reconstructed and the city boasts some fine pieces of modern post-war architecture. Buildings and squares of note in the inner city include:
- The Stiftskirche (Collegiate Church), dates back to the 12th century, but was changed to the Late Gothic style in the 15th century and has been a Protestant church since 1534. Exterior: Romanesque/Gothic; interior: Romanesque/Gothic/Modern. Reconstructed with simplified interior after World War II.
- Altes Schloss (the Old Castle), mostly dating from the late 15th century, some parts date back to 1320. Renaissance style; reconstructed
- Alte Kanzlei (the Old Chancellery) on Schillerplatz square which backs onto the 1598 Mercury Pillar
- Neues Schloss (the New Castle), completed in 1807. Baroque/Classicism); reconstructed with modern interior, currently houses government offices. The cellars with a collection of stone fragments from the Roman times are open to visitors
- Wilhelmpalais (the King Wilhelm Palais), 1840
- Königsbau (the King's Building), 1850. Classicism; reconstructed; has been housing the "Königsbau Passagen" shopping centre since 2006.
- The Großes Haus of Stuttgart National Theatre, 1909–1912
- Markthalle Market Hall, 1910. (Art Nouveau)
- The Hauptbahnhof (Main Railway Station) was designed in 1920; its stark, functional lines are typical of the artistic trend 'Neue Sachlichkeit' (New Objectivity)
- The Württembergische Landesbibliothek state library, rebuilt in 1970.
- Friedrichsbau Varieté (Friedrich Building), rebuilt in 1994 on the site of the former art nouveau building
Architecture in other districts
A number of significant castles stand in Stuttgart's suburbs and beyond as reminders of the city's royal past. These include:
- Castle Solitude, 1700–1800. Baroque/Rococo)
- Ludwigsburg Palace, 1704–1758. Baroque, with its enormous baroque garden.
- Castle Hohenheim, 1771–1793
Other landmarks in and around Stuttgart include (see also museums below):
- Castle Rosenstein (1822–1830) Classical
- Württemberg Mausoleum (1824) which holds the remains of Catherine Pavlovna of Russia and King William I of Württemberg
- Wilhelma Zoo and Botanical Gardens (1853)
- The Observation Tower of Burgholzhof an 1891 brick observation tower constructed by the Cannstatt municipal architect Friedrich Keppler on behalf of the Verschönerungsverein Cannstatt e. V. ("Society for the Beautification of Cannstatt"), in the style of a Roman tower.
- Weissenhof Estate (1927), (International Style)
- The TV Tower (1950), the world's first concrete TV tower
- Stuttgart Airport Terminal Building, 2000. In neighboring Leinfelden-Echterdingen
Parks, lakes, cemeteries and other places of interest
At the center of Stuttgart lies a series of gardens which are popular with families and cyclists. Because of its shape on a map, the locals refer to it as the Green U. The Green U starts with the old Schlossgarten, castle gardens first mentioned in records in 1350. The modern park stretches down to the river Neckar and is divided into the upper garden (bordering the Old Castle, the Main Station, the State Theater and the State Parliament building), and the middle and lower gardens – a total of 61 hectares. The park also houses Stuttgart planetarium.
At the far end of Schlossgarten lies the second Green U park, the larger Rosensteinpark which borders Stuttgart's Wilhelma zoo and botanical gardens. Planted by King William I of Württemberg, it contains many old trees and open areas and counts as the largest English-style garden in southern Germany. In the grounds of the park stands the former Rosenstein castle, now the Rosenstein museum.
Beyond bridges over an adjacent main road lies the final Green U park, Killesbergpark or 'Höhenpark' which is a former quarry that was converted for the Third Reich garden show of 1939 (and was used as a collection point for Jews awaiting transportation to concentration camps). The park has been used to stage many gardening shows since the 1950s, including the Bundesgartenschau and 1993 International Gardening Show, and runs miniature trains all around the park in the summer months for children and adults. The viewing tower (Killesbergturm) offers unique views across to the north east of Stuttgart.
On the northern edge of the Rosensteinpark is the famous 'Wilhelma', Germany's only combined zoological and botanical garden. The whole compound, with its ornate pavilions, greenhouses, walls and gardens was built around 1850 as a summer palace in moorish style for King Wilhelm I of Württemberg. It currently houses around 8000 animals and some 5000 plant species and contains the biggest magnolia grove in Europe.
Other parks in Stuttgart include the historic Botanischer Garten der Universität Hohenheim and Landesarboretum Baden-Württemberg at Castle Hohenheim (which date back to 1776 and are still used to catalog and research plant species), Uhlandshöhe hill (between the city center, Bad Cannstatt and Frauenkopf, and home to Stuttgart observatory), the Weißenburgpark (a five-hectare park in the Bopser area of Stuttgart South which dates back to 1834 and is now home to a 'tea house' and the 'marble room' and offers a relaxing view across the city center), the Birkenkopf a Schuttberg (at 511 metres (1,677 ft) the highest point in central Stuttgart, where many ruins were laid to commemorate the Second World War), and the Eichenhain park in Sillenbuch (declared a nature reserve in 1958 and home to 200 oak trees, many 300–400 years old).
There are a number of natural and artificial lakes and ponds in Stuttgart. The largest is the Max-Eyth-See, which was created in 1935 by reclaiming a former quarry and is now an official nature reserve. It is surrounded by an expansive open area overlooked by vineyards on the banks of the river Neckar near [Mühlhausen]. There are expansive areas of woodland to the west and south west of Stuttgart which are popular with walkers, families, cyclists and ramblers. The most frequented lakes form a 3 km (1.9 mi) trio made up of the Bärensee, Neuer See and Pfaffensee. The lakes are also used for local water supplies.
In the Feuersee area in the west of Stuttgart lies one of two 'Feuersee's (literally fire lakes), striking for its views of the Johanneskirche (St. Johns) church across the lake, surrounded by nearby houses and offices. The other Feuersee can be found in Vaihingen.
Cemeteries in Stuttgart include:
- The Hoppenlaufriedhof in Central Stuttgart, the oldest remaining cemetery which dates back to 1626, an infirmary graveyard last used in 1951
- The Waldfriedhof, the 1913 forest cemetery that is connected to Südheimer Platz by funicular railway
- The Pragfriedhof, with its Art Nouveau crematorium. Established in 1873 it was extended to include Jewish graves in 1874 and also now houses the Russian Orthodox Church of Alexander Nevsky
- The Uff-Kirchhof cemetery in Bad Cannstatt which stands at the crossroads of two ancient Roman roads and Cannstatter Hauptfriedhof, the largest graveyard in Stuttgart which has been used as a Muslim burial ground since 1985.
The city boasts the largest mineral water deposits in Europe after Budapest, with over 250 springs within the urban area.
Culture and events
Stuttgart is known for its rich cultural heritage, in particular its State Theatre (Staatstheater) and State Gallery (Staatsgalerie). The Staatstheater is home to the State opera and three smaller theatres. It regularly stages opera, ballet and theatre productions as well as concerts. The Staatstheater was named Germany/Austria/Switzerland "Theatre of the year" in 2006; the Stuttgart Opera has won the 'Opera of the year' award six times. Stuttgart Ballet is connected to names like John Cranko and Marcia Haydée.
Stuttgart is also home to one of Germany's most prestigious symphony orchestras, the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, with famous English conductor Sir Roger Norrington, who developed a distinct sound of that orchestra, known as the Stuttgart Sound. They mostly perform in the Liederhalle concert hall.
The city offers two Broadway-style musical theaters, the Apollo and the Palladium Theater (each approx. 1800 seats). Ludwigsburg Palace in the nearby town of Ludwigsburg is also used throughout the year as a venue for concerts and cultural events.
As a result of Stuttgart's long history of viticulture (Even today there are vineyards less than 500 m (1,640 ft) from the Main Station), there are more than 400 flights of stairs (known in the local dialect as the "Stäffele") around the city, equivalent to approximately 20 km (12 mi) of steps. Later, in the early 19th Century, the city continued to grow and many vineyards were replaced by houses and streets and the Stäffele were used as footpaths to connect the newly built neighborhoods. Some of the stairs were elaborately decorated with fountains and plantings.
The Schleyerhalle sports arena is regularly used to stage rock and pop concerts with major international stars on European tour.
Stuttgart's Swabian cuisine, beer and wine have been produced in the area since the 17th century and are now famous throughout Germany and beyond. For example, Gaisburger Marsch is a stew that was invented in Stuttgart's Gaisburg area of Stuttgart East.
In October 2009 the Stuttgart Ministry of Agriculture announced that the European Union was to officially recognise the pasta dish Maultaschen as a "regional specialty", thus marking its significance to the cultural heritage of Baden-Württemberg.
In 1993 Stuttgart hosted the International Garden Show in the suburb of Killesberg. In 2006 it was also one of the host cities of the Football World Cup. In 2007, Stuttgart hosted the 2007 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships. In 2008 it was host to the World Individual Debating and Public Speaking Championships. In 2015 Stuttgart hosted the Protestant Kirchentag (Chuchfestival)
Regular events that take place in Stuttgart:
- The world-famous annual 'Volksfest', originally a traditional agricultural fair which now also hosts beer tents and a French village and is second in size only to the Oktoberfest in Munich. There is also a Spring festival on the same grounds in April of each year.
- With more than 3.6 million visitors in 2007 and more than 200 stands, Stuttgart's Christmas Market, running from late November to 23 December, is the largest and one of the oldest traditional Christmas markets in Europe. It is especially renowned for its abundant decorations and takes place in the four weeks leading up to Christmas.
- The Fish Market (Hamburger Fischmarkt, late July) with fresh fish, other food and beer from Hamburg.
- The Summer Festival (Stuttgart Sommerfest, usually in early August) with shows, music, children's entertainment and local cuisine in Schlossplatz, Stuttgart and adjacent parks
- The Lantern Festival (Lichterfest, early July) in Killesberg park with its famous firework display and fairground attractions
- The Wine Village (Weindorf, late August/early September) – vintages are sold at this event held at Schillerplatz and Marktplatz (Market Square)
Stuttgart is home to five of the eleven state museums in Baden-Württemberg. The foremost of these is the Old State Gallery (opened in 1843, extended in 1984) which holds art dating from the 14th to 19th century including works by Rubens, Rembrandt, Monet, Renoir, Cézanne and Beuys. Next door to the Old State Gallery is the New State Gallery (1980) with its controversial modern architecture. Among others, this gallery houses works from Max Beckmann, Dalí, Matisse, Miró, Picasso, Klee, Chagall and Kandinsky.
The Old Castle is also home to the State Museum of Württemberg which was founded in 1862 by William I of Württemberg. The museum traces the rich history of Württemberg with many artifacts from its dukes, counts and kings, as well as earlier remnants dating back to the stone age. On the Karlsplatz side of the Old Castle is a museum dedicated to the memory of Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, former resident of Stuttgart who attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler on 20 July 1944.
Other leading museums in Stuttgart include:
- The History Museum (Haus der Geschichte, 1987), examining local history, finds, the conflict between modern society and its cultural history
- State Museum of Natural History Stuttgart (SMNS) in Park Rosenstein housed in Castle Rosenstein (with an emphasis on biology and natural history) and Löwentor Museum (paleontology and geology, home of the Steinheim Skull and many unique fossils from the triassic, jurassic and tertiary periods)
- The Mercedes-Benz Museum (1936, moved in 2006), now the most visited museum in Stuttgart (440,000 visits per year). The museum traces the 125-year history of the automobile from the legendary silver arrow to the Mercedes-Benz brand of today
- Stuttgart Art Museum (Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, 2005), the number two museum in Stuttgart in terms of visitors with a strong leaning towards modern art (the foremost exhibition of Otto Dix works. The museum stands on the corner of Schlossplatz, Stuttgart in a huge glass cube, in strong contrast to the surrounding traditional architecture.
- The Porsche Museum (1976, reopened in 2008 on new premises).
- Hegel House (Hegelhaus), birthplace of the philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel which documents his life works
- The Linden Museum, established in 1911, a leading international ethnological museum
- Stuttgart Tram Museum (Straßenbahnwelt Stuttgart) in Bad Cannstatt, a display of historical vehicles dating back to 1868
- Theodor Heuss House (Theodor-Heuss-Haus, 2002) in Killesbergpark, a tribute to the life and times of the former German president
- The North Station Memorial (Gedenkstätte am Nordbahnhof Stuttgart) in memory of the 2000 or so Jewish holocaust victims deported by the Nazis from the now disused North Station
The Stuttgart area is known for its high-tech industry. Some of its most prominent companies include Daimler AG, Porsche, Bosch, Celesio, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Sika – all of whom have their world or European headquarters here.
Stuttgart is home to Germany's ninth biggest exhibition center, Stuttgart Trade Fair which lies on the city outskirts next to Stuttgart Airport. Hundreds of SMEs are still based in Stuttgart (often termed Mittelstand), many still in family ownership with strong ties to the automotive, electronics, engineering and high-tech industry.
Stuttgart has the highest general standard of prosperity of any city in Germany. Its nominal GDP per capita is €57,100 and GDP purchasing power parity (PPP) per capita is €55,400. Total GDP of Stuttgart is €33.9 billion, of which service sector contributes around 65.3%, industry 34.5%, and agriculture 0.2%.
The cradle of the automobile
The automobile and motorcycle were purported to have been invented in Stuttgart (by Karl Benz and subsequently industrialized in 1887 by Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach at the Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft). As a result, it is considered to be the starting point of the worldwide automotive industry and is sometimes referred to as the 'cradle of the automobile'. Today, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche both have their headquarters in Stuttgart, as well as automotive parts giants Bosch and Mahle. A number of auto-enthusiast magazines are published in Stuttgart.
Science and research and development
The region currently has Germany's highest density of scientific, academic and research organisations. No other region in Germany registers so many patents and designs as Stuttgart. Almost 45% of Baden-Württemberg scientists involved in R&D are based directly in the Swabian capital. More than 11% of all German R&D costs are invested in the Stuttgart Region (approximately 4.3 billion euros per year). In addition to several universities and colleges (e.g. University of Stuttgart, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart Institute of Management and Technology and several Stuttgart Universities of Applied Sciences), the area is home to six Fraunhofer institutes, four institutes of collaborative industrial research at local universities, two Max-Planck institutes and a major establishment of the German Aerospace Centre (DLR).
The Stuttgart Stock Exchange is the second largest in Germany (after Frankfurt). Many leading companies in the financial services sector are headquartered in Stuttgart with around 100 credit institutes in total (e.g. LBBW Bank, Wüstenrot & Württembergische, Allianz Life Assurance).
A history of wine and beer
Stuttgart is the only city in Germany where wine grapes are grown within the urban area, mainly in the districts of Rotenberg, Uhlbach and Untertürkheim.
Wine-growing in the area dates back to 1108 when, according to State archives, Blaubeuren Abbey was given vineyards in Stuttgart as a gift from 'Monk Ulrich'. In the 17th century the city was the third largest German wine-growing community in the Holy Roman Empire. Wine remained Stuttgart's leading source of income well into the 19th century.
Stuttgart is still one of Germany's largest wine-growing cities with more than 400 hectares of vine area, thanks in main to its location at the center of Germany's fourth largest wine region, the Württemberg wine growing area which covers 11,522 hectares (28,470 acres) and is one of only 13 official areas captured under German Wine law. The continuing importance of wine to the local economy is marked every year at the annual wine festival ('Weindorf').
Stuttgart also has several famous breweries such as Stuttgarter Hofbräu, Dinkelacker, and Schwaben Bräu.
Images for kids
Courtyard of the Old Castle
The Hegel Museum, birthplace of Hegel
The mild climate and hilly landscape are perfect for viticulture, as the Romans discovered. Pictured are vineyards near Obertürkheim
Neckar river flowing through Hedelfingen and Obertürkheim
Vineyards on the Neckar river in the Mühlhausen area of Stuttgart during the Autumn of 2006
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