Stuttgart’s neighbouring town of Ludwigsburg is worth a visit if you’re in the area. The grand Baroque palace from the early 18th century would be reason enough, but during the Advent season, the city celebrates with a themed Christmas market. A puppet theatre, musical clocks and antique Christmas tree ornaments set the tone, and vendors feed the guests with traditional foods, including freshly baked gingerbread.
At the end of November, red wooden huts and white tents pitch camp on Stuttgart’s Karlsplatz and transform the square into a Finnish Christmas village. Reindeer meat, smoked salmon trout, mushroom salad and lattyja are washed down with Finnish beer, vodka and Glögi. Traditional design, arts, crafts and clothes give variety to the Christmas shopping experience.
Fans of half-timbered houses, historical market squares and quaint villages will rejoice. The Schorndorf Christmas Village, 30 kilometres (18.6 miles) east of Stuttgart has all that, and during the Advent season, the Christmas market and old town alleys are ablaze with light. With only 40 huts, a visit is an intimate experience, but you’ll find some great souvenirs and gifts and can sample delicious Christmassy food from all over the world.