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Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

Singapore
Level Contributor
80 posts
45 reviews
Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

Hi

I will be spending three days in Strasbourg before heading to Germany. I am undecided between exiting from Frankfurt or Munich airport.

We are 2 adults and one child 9 year old. And we are there in 1st week of December for Christmas markets and other sights. We are interested in trying great local cuisine. An art museum or two (my child does not take to it very much)

Am undecided on how to spend my 4- 5days of my remaining leg in Germany.

Option 1 would be Strasbourg to Stuttgart for the two car museums. And day trips to Esslingen medieval Christmas market and Ludwigsburg. Before I leave to Catch my flight at Frankfurt airport.

Stuttgart seems to be ranked a bit lower than Munich and Nuremberg in what they offer over Christmas markets.

Option 2 would be Strasbourg to Munich for old town and Christmas markets and BMW museum. And day trips to Nuremberg for old town and market. and possibly either Fussen for the castle (too cold?) or Salzburg day trip as well. Before catching my flight out of Munich.

Munich has more events but longer train ride from Strasbourg. And it seems like the crowds could be quite an issue if I am travelling with a child.

I have been reviewing the forums and in a dilemma on which option to take. Any advice and what would help me decide?

It's just my general impression after reading the reviews. Pls don't take any offense if I have the wrong impression.

Thanks in advance!!

6 replies to this topic
SaarLouis, Germany
Level Contributor
675 posts
1. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

I think you are right: There is no clear answer. As for art museums, Munich has the more famous ones (the three "Pinakotheken"). I'm not really into art, so there is not much more I can say about them :) I also think that Munich is the more interesting and nicer city, and is also better climate-wise (with Stuttgart being located in a basin).

On the other hand, Stuttgart has enough to offer for a few days, and I'd also add that there are more day trips possible from Stuttgart than you mention, such as Heidelberg or Tübingen. The Mercedes-Benz museum is excellent as well; I cannot compare it to the BMW museum, but my impression from articles that I read is that the Mercedes-Benz museum is *the* best car museum.

In the end, if you consider both options as equally interesting, I'd decide based on logistics.

Las Vegas, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg
Level Contributor
15,673 posts
53 reviews
2. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

Stuttgart ( www.stuttgart-tourist.de ) is one of Germany's largest, oldest, most visited and most beautiful Christmas Markets ( www.stuttgart-weinachtsmarkt.de ). The highly and beautifully decorated stall roofs have for years set the standard for what a well-decorated Christmas Market stall should look like.Over 4 million people visit it, which is twice as many people as Nuremberg's. They have taken measures to minimize overcrowding even on weekends (last year on our visit there on a weekend it was not overcrowded as has been my experience having lived nearby to it for 8 years), whereas Nuremberg's Christmas Market is described on weekends as being extremely overcrowded. It takes two days to see the entire Christmas Market in Stuttgart. There are programs such as candle making or cookie making that your child could participate in, as well as an ice skating rink. There is also the world's largest Christmas Circus ( www.weltweihnachtscircus.de ) if that would interest you.

15 minutes away by public transportation are two other large (but much smaller) themed Christmas Markets that each attract over a million visitors: Esslingen ( www.esslingen.de ) Medieval & Christmas Market set in the midst of the well-preserved medieval old town which is excellent being one of Germany's largest towns to survive WW-II with minimal damage, this market is lovely in the evening when lit by torches and candles; and Ludwigsburg ( www.ludwigsburg.de ) Baroque Christmas Market set close to Germany's largest perfectly-preserved palace (in www.schloesser-und-gaerten.de ) which has all original buildings and furnishings and your child can dress up in a period costume there the market also best in the evening when the large angels are lit up.

About an hour away by train is our favorite town in Germany, Tuebingen ( www.tuebingen.de ) which is just quintessential Germany with its hilly cobblestone streets, half-timbered houses, castle, interesting non-tourist shops, one of Germany's oldest universities, and next door delightful well-preserved medieval Bebenhausen Monastery (in www.schloesser-und-gaerten.de ). The first week of December is usually ChocolART ( www.chocolart.de ), Germany's largest international chocolate exhibition for a change from Christmas Markets.

Stuttgart has two main art museums, Staatsgalerie with art throughout the ages, and the Stuttgart Art Museum in the glass cube on the Schlossplatz. If your child aspires to be a ballet dancer or an opera singer, then Stuttgart's ballet is world renown, and the opera house the most honored by far in German-speaking Europe.

The Wuerttemberg Museum in the Old Palace is free this year, has a children's floor, and has excellent collections of local artifacts spanning from mankind's first art and musical instruments from 35,000 years ago through the early 1800s when Wuerttemberg became a Kingdom. There are the royal jewels, excellent Celtic items from a prince's tomb, and my favorite, a room in the original medieval cellars that is like a treasure cave with spotlighted golden clocks from the 1500s (enterable from the upper floors via a stairway in the NW tower). The musical instrument museum on Schillerplatz is also free if your child has an interest in that.

All should love the Mercedes Benz Museum which many people including me consider to be the world's best automobile museum. It is simply loved by almost all visitors regardless of age, gender, or whether someone particularly likes cars or not. The Porsche Museum appeals mainly to fans of the brand. Another museum excellent for the whole family is Museum am Loewentor with its collection of local dinosaur and Ice Age fossils, and also a nice collection of all kinds of creatures imbedded in amber.

Wilhelma ( www.wilhelma.de ) is one of the world's top zoos. It is Europe's largest combination zoo/botanical garden. It is set amidst the Moorish architecture of this former palace. Plenty of greenhouses with both plants and animals if the weather isn't cooperating.

For other things to see and do in and around Stuttgart, have a look at my posts in the thread https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g18727… .

Stuttgart is about 70 minutes away from the Frankfurt Airport by direct ICE train. Of course, it also has its own airport.

Edited: 09 October 2018, 18:24
Las Vegas, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg
Level Contributor
15,673 posts
53 reviews
3. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

In #2 I got the second hot link wrong for the Stuttgart Christmas Market. It should be https:/… .

Having lived a few blocks away from the Stuttgart Christmas Market I would visit it daily, never getting tired of it. And since you mentioned food, the local Swabian food is excellent and available on the Christmas Market. However, my favorite food there is in the Finnish part of the market on Karlsplatz, salmon pegged to wooden planks and cooked in front of a wood fire. Just delicious, and you can eat in in a teepee with reindeer hides and a fire to keep warm. On weekdays, it's much cheaper for lunch.

Two very good restaurants with a lovely ambiance are the Schellenturm ( http://www.weinstube-schellenturm.de/ ) which is in Stuttgart's last remaining town wall tower which later served as a prison. And the Kloesterle ( https://www.weinstube-kloesterle.de/ ) in Stuttgart's oldest medieval residence which had earlier served as part of a convent, hence the name. Both are Weinstuben, have very good Swabian food (try the Maultaschen perhaps washed down with a local Trollinger wine) and that ambiance is unbeatable.

Edited: 09 October 2018, 18:59
Singapore
Level Contributor
80 posts
45 reviews
4. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

Thanks a lot @marcopolko. I realised that you are very fond of Stuttgart and always share a lot of tips on Stuttgart. And your tips are the reason why i even consider Stuttgart at first.

@germansw: Logistics wise - think both are almost the same to me.

Strasbourg/Stuttgart is 1.5hr train ride. But i will still have to ride 1.5hr train to FRA to spend 1 night or a day , since my flight departs Frankfurt airport at night

Strasbourg/Munich is a longer 4hr train ride. But i will just have to head to the airport on the S-Bahn on the morning of my Munich flight which departs at noon

Singapore
Level Contributor
80 posts
45 reviews
5. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

@marcopolko. Was checking the chocolart.de website and note the english version is not updated. Can i just confirm that the market is open from 4-9 dec 2018? We happen to be there that weekend - so i think it's a good option for my child to check out the chocolate stalls! What's the best way to go there from Stuttgart to Tuebingen for this event?

Is Ibis Stuttgart Centrum a good location for visiting Stuttgart Christmas Market, Esslingen, Ludwigsburg and Tuebingen?

Las Vegas, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg
Level Contributor
15,673 posts
53 reviews
6. Re: Strasbourg/Stuttgart/FRA or Strasbourg/Munich

ChocolART is indeed Dec 4-9, 2018. It's hours are shown on the German web page and are Tues 13-20; Wed.-Fri. 10-20; Sat 10-22; Sun 11-18. There are frequent trains from Stuttgart to Tuebingen ( www.bahn.com or www.bahn.de ) and the trip takes about an hour. A Metropolticket will be the cheapest way tp travel there and back, and also includes all public transportation within a large area around Stuttgart except for the fast long-distance IC, EC, ICE and TGV trains. No travel before 9AM using this ticket on weekdays.

It's fine staying anywhere near the center of Stuttgart as the local transportation is frequent and efficient and you'll then have plenty of things to see and do nearby including the Christmas Market. The IBIS is probably fine. Note that both Ludwigsburg and Esslingen will require a 3-zone ticket. It's also possible to visit Esslingen on the same day as going to Tuebingen using that Metropolticket, just make sure that the train you're on actually stops there.

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