Stuttgart's urban engine

Luxury-automobile museums show off one side to this hardworking city, but you should leave plenty of time for strolling and delectable regional dining, too.

Home to the HQs of Porsche and Mercedes Benz, Stuttgart has an industrious reputation but the city also shines for its brilliantly curated museums, one of Germany’s finest art galleries and surrounding vineyards that suggest a jollier side. Power-lunch fine dining establishments sit alongside downhome wine taverns in this medium-sized metropolis – and many a Stuttgarter seems equally at home in both.

Attractions in Stuttgart

Culture in Stuttgart

Art lovers will make a pilgrimage to Stuttgart for the Staatsgalerie (‘State Gallery’) alone. The story of art is represented brilliantly at one of the country’s most impressive collections, with sublime works by Holbein, Rubens, Rembrandt and Manet. In an acclaimed postmodern building next door, the Neue Staatsgalerie (‘New State Gallery’) is another of the best things to see in Stuttgart, displaying pieces by 20th century giants Braque, Dali and Picasso.

You don’t have to be a car fan to enjoy the museums from rival luxury automakers Mercedes Benz and Porsche (although motor-heads will be in heaven at either). Among the top things to do in Stuttgart, both tell a fascinating tale of the past century and more through transport while showing off exquisite examples of automotive engineering. The Mercedes Benz museum includes a tantalising section on future car technology, while at Porsche you can listen to recordings of the marque’s revving engines and take a factory tour.

The what-it-says-on-the-tin Schweinemuseum (‘Pig Museum’) speaks to the German love – as many a restaurant menu in the country attests – of all things piggy. Proclaiming itself the biggest porcine collection on the planet, the museum has been a kitsch hit since 2010 and is undoubtedly one of the most memorable things to do in Stuttgart. With piggy banks and pig toys galore here, kids will love it.

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