In the vicinity of Stuttgart, which is the capital and the biggest city of Baden-Württemberg state of Germany, there are a number of large and small settlements resembling fairy tale lands. I went to Stuttgart many times over the past year. Every time, I visited different places in the surrounding, as indicated on the map below. In this article, I would like to tell you about two cities: Ludwigsburg and Tübingen, which I consider to be one of the smallest but pleasant places to visit. I will tell the remaining cities in the following articles.
Ludwigsburg is a small city located in northern Stuttgart, just a 20-minute drive from Stuttgart. I visited the city in the evening hours at the end of October. In October, the weather is cold, as you may see in every city located in the south west of Germany, in the Black Forest shores, and humidity make you feel a much more colder.
Honestly, there is not much thing to do and visit in the city. I saw two eye catcher places. One of them is, the Ludwigsburg Palace known as “Versailles of Swabia” and the other one is the public square of the city. The gardens of the Ludwigsburg Palace are quite big. Even so large, some buildings around, are considered separately to be among the city’s attractions. You have to purchase different tickets to visit the gardens of the palace and the palace itself. The admission fee to visit only the Ludwigsburg Palace Gardens is 25 €. I didn’t purchase this garden ticket because I arrived to the palace almost at the closing time and I could see the garden from the outside. I had to watch the garden of the palace from the outside.
As I saw in the other European cities, there are a church, some cafés scattered around, a municipal building and several shops at the Markplatz. Firstly, I gathered energy by a black coffee with plain pretzels in a café we encountered. It’s a very economical way to suppress your hunger. One of the exits of the square opens a nice shopping avenue. There are musicians on the avenue. Nothing special.
The only shop I liked and worth to buy something on this avenue is a tea shop, TeeGschwendner. It’s the Ludwigsburg branch of a tea shop chain. But, both tea types and the shop itself are very nice. There are many different tea options and if you want to purchase gifts, the gift packs are very lovely.
There are many tea options like evening tea, winter tea, tranquillizer tea and energy tea. Most types of tea are sold in an open bag, you can buy any amount you want. There are many different materials varying from plant flowers to tree trunk (I swear one of these is wood 🙂 ) in the tea mixtures. I felt like inhaling whole forest, when I brewed tea later at home. You can buy some souvenirs from this shop – This shop also exits in other cities–.
Ludwigsburg is just these two places for me. I checked the suggestions if there were any other places to visit, but I couldn’t find many places. Of course, you can do much more than me, if you have more time for activities and eating & drinking. But, if you wish to do just sightseeing, the city not offering much. Finally, when you head north to Baden-Wuerttemberg, you can see some historical schools in the field of health and especially in pharmacy. I will mention about them in the following articles. So, it is not a consequence, Charles Pfizer, who immigrated to America and founded a pharmaceutical company Pfizer, was born in Ludwigsburg.
Now, let’s talk about Tübingen. I have to take a 30-40 minute journey from Stuttgart to the south. I visited this city in February when it was all under snow. Firstly, I want to share this road with you.
After a journey like a winter tale, we arrived to the Tübingen, a typical college town. The city divided into two by the Neckar River. In the old region of the city, there are narrow streets with cobblestone (Altstadt), half-wooden houses as I see many of them in the Alsace territory (the city was occupied by France for a period of time) and also a castle located on a hill overlooking the city.
After climbing on foot towards the hill overlooking the city, we arrived to the 400 years old castle of the city. There is an amazing view of the city from the Hohentübingen castle. Especially, the scene with the roofs covered with snow is breathtaking.
There is an exhibition called Ancient Cultures in the castle hosted by Tübingen University. In the exhibition, 40 thousand years old handmade animal models, many ancient tools and devices, and other artifacts belong to the ancient Egyptian civilization are displayed. The exhibition also includes ancient artifacts from the regions known as Çanakkale, İzmir and Antalya. I strongly recommend to visit this castle and exhibition, which is quite cheap.
I said the Tübingen is a college town. This reputation is back in history. Alois Alzheimer, who conducted the first research of the disease known as Alzheimer’s disease, and Friedrich Miescher, who conducted the first study of synthesizing nucleic acid (DNA and RNA), are some of the people who once lived in this city. The philosopher Hegel and the astronomer Kepler were also scientists who worked for a period in Tübingen.
Finally, let’s talk about Food & Drinks. We were hungry after visiting the city and the castle. We decided to try Neckarmuller after an advice of a local. It is a restaurant located by the Neckar River. The restaurant is quite big. The tables are located both on the riverside and the inside. I suggest to book before to a seat on the riverside tables. Since we didn’t have a reservation -we wanted to take a table by the river- we sat on a riverside table by promising to get up after one hour. The prices are similar to the other cafes and restaurants in the Germany. May be just a little expensive, but this is understandable for a riverside restaurant with that kind of view.
I took grilled Turkey. It comes with baked potato served with garlic cream sauce and salad. We are familiar with this taste, I guess you will like it.
Finally, according to my opinion, you should spend more time in Tübingen, from the two cities mentioned above. If you have a limited time, you can visit both cities just in one day also. In this case, I recommend to go Tübingen first, have a meal after visiting the castle and old town. Then, you can head to Ludwigsburg, see the palace from the outside and take a tour at Markplatz in the evening.
In the next article, I will go a little further north and tell Heidelberg. Heidelberg is a fairy tale German city that will surely more beautiful than these two cities.