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Stuttgart may be known for being home to the headquarters of two major car manufacturers, but it's equally famous for hosting one of the country's largest Christmas markets – and plenty of beer festivals too. You can wander around an urban art museum and explore the variety of architecture from Gothic to Art Deco. Unwind in a beer garden with a local craft brew in hand, or lose yourself in the vine-covered hills surrounding this city in southwest Germany.
At hostels in Stuttgart you can expect to have free Wi-Fi, shared kitchens and communal rooms with TVs. In some Stuttgart hostels you'll also get a free breakfast. Stay in a contemporary-style hostel with an on-site bar for budget-friendly drinks or pick one that has views over the city from its hillside location. For more of your own space, you can spread out in a renovated apartment with a modern kitchen and comfortable lounge.
The city's neighbourhoods fan out from Stuttgart-Mitte, the town's cultural heart. Here, you'll find theatres, museums and historic palaces as well as some of the city's best clubs. For laid-back afternoons with a coffee, cool restaurants and wine bars, Stuttgart-West is the place to be. You can also head to Bad Cannstatt, the epicentre of Stuttgart's beer-drinking culture where two of the city's biggest beer festivals are held. It's home to MineralBad Cannstatt, with indoor and outdoor pools fed with water from five natural mineral springs as well as a sauna and steam room.
One of Stuttgart's biggest attractions (particularly for car enthusiasts) is visiting the Mercedes-Benz and Porsche Museums, where you can learn about the evolution of their models. For a different kind of opulence, head to the domed Schloss Solitude – an 18th-century palace with ornate frescos. Stop by the contemporary glass cube Kunstmuseum Stuttgart for abstract art and the kitsch Schweinemuseum, a former slaughterhouse that's dedicated to pigs. For a café with a view, take the lift to the top of the 217m-high Fernsehturm (TV Tower) and look across the city to the distant Swabian Alps.
From Stuttgart Airport, the frequent S2 and S3 line trains take less than 30 minutes to reach the centre. Stuttgart has a main railway station, the Hauptbahnhof, in the middle of the city, that has Germany’s high-speed ICE trains linking it to national and international destinations including Berlin, Paris and London via Eurostar. Public transport in the city ranges from buses and trams to underground trains.