Stuttgart is a lovely, quiet city in southwest Germany known for its stunning architecture, world-class museums, urban vineyards and vibrant cultural scene.
As winter approaches, Stuttgart transforms into a vibrant Christmas market, bathed in twinkling fairy lights and filled with festive scents and sounds.
This article provides a comprehensive guide on experiencing the Stuttgart Christmas Market in 2023, including confirmed dates and opening times, recommendations on what to eat and drink and the best gifts to buy for your loved ones.
This medieval city, adorned with landmarks like the Old Castle, Collegiate Church and New Castle, becomes the grand stage for the Stuttgarter Weihnachtsmarkt.
Featuring a diverse array of festive decorations, the 300 Christmas stalls enchant visitors, adding to Stuttgart’s charm.
With over 300 years of tradition and a rich array of Christmas goods, Stuttgart’s Christmas market is among Europe’s most wonderful.
Stuttgart Christmas Market 2023
The Christmas market in Stuttgart offers a range of exciting experiences for visitors. One of the highlights is the stunning Christmas tree in the centre of the market, which is beautifully decorated with lights and ornaments.
You’ll find a variety of food and drink stalls, serving up everything from classic roasted chestnuts to mulled wine. Full details of what to find at the Christmas stalls are below.
Dates and Location
Stuttgart Christmas Market dates: 29th November to 23rd December 2023.
Location: Schlossplatz, with smaller markets at Schillerplatz and Marktplazt.
Monday to Thursday: 10am to 9pm.
Friday and Saturday: 10am to 10pm.
Sunday: 11am to 9pm.
Christmas Day: Closed.
Admission: Free, no tickets required.
Christmas lights: Yes, Christmas tree switch on date: 29th November 2023.
Ice skating: Yes, at Schillerplatz.
Vegetarian: Yes, plenty of options.
Vegan: Yes, but limited.
Gluten-free: Yes, but limited.
Pet-friendly: Yes, dogs are allowed on a lead but not recommended during busy periods.
Parking: Please take public transport to help limit congestion.
Reason to visit: Stuttgart’s Christmas market is one of Germany’s oldest, largest, and prettiest.
Recommended tour: Highlights of the city centre tour. A great tour for first-time visitors.
Specialities: Spätzle, maultaschen, flammkuchen, schupfnudeln, local Stuggart glühwein.
Where to stay: EmiLu Design Hotel is an ideal hotel option that is only 5 minutes from the Christmas market.
Hotels near Stuttgart Christmas Market
If you want to stay near the Christmas market at Schlossplatz, then I suggest staying at EmiLu Design Hotel. This small hotel is in a great location in the Stuttgart city centre near the Christmas market.
Otherwise, I have a complete guide to hotels near Stuttgart Christmas Market that lists several excellent places to stay.
Location of Stuttgart Christmas Market
City and Christmas Tours
A city tour of Stuttgart is an excellent way to experience the city’s unique culture and history. Stuttgart offers something for everyone with its beautiful old town square, historic buildings and architectural gems.
I recommend taking this city tour of Stuttgart to explore its highlights or maybe consider a food tour to learn about the local culinary culture.
During a city tour, you’ll visit the city’s most iconic landmarks and attractions, such as the beautiful Schlossplatz, the historic Altes Schloss and the famous Fernsehturm TV Tower. I took this tour when I first visited Stuttgart, and it was well worthwhile as an introduction to the city.
If you’re interested in learning about Stuttgart’s food history and culture, you might like this local market hall food tour.
Christmas in Stuttgart
If you’d like to visit more destinations this Christmas, my German Christmas Markets 2023 guide can help with your planning.
Christmas Specialties in Stuttgart
Here is a list of traditional Christmas foods in Stuttgart, Germany, including some vegetarian options:
- Spätzle: A soft egg noodle dish that is a traditional Swabian specialty. It is often served with cheese or in a hearty stew.
- Maultaschen: Large pasta pockets filled with a mixture of minced meat, spinach, and breadcrumbs. Vegetarian options are also available with filling made of vegetables or cheese.
- Flammkuchen: A thin, crispy pizza-like dish that is topped with crème fraiche, onions, and bacon. Vegetarian versions of this dish are available, often with toppings like mushrooms, onions, and cheese.
- Kartoffelsalat: A potato salad that is a staple of the German Christmas meal. Vegetarian versions are often made with mayonnaise, vinegar, and various herbs and spices.
- Rotkohl: Red cabbage, slow-cooked with spices, vinegar, and sugar. This dish is a staple of the German Christmas table and is often served as a side dish.
- Marzipan: A sweet almond paste that is often shaped into fruits, animals, and other festive shapes. It is a traditional German Christmas treat.
- Lebkuchen: is a type of gingerbread typically decorated with icing and nuts. It is a traditional German Christmas cookie.
- Glühwein: A hot, spiced wine that is a staple of Christmas markets in Germany. It is made with red wine, cinnamon, cloves, and sugar.
Overall, traditional Christmas foods in Stuttgart and Germany are hearty and warming, often featuring meat dishes, but with many vegetarian options available as well.
The Christmas markets in Stuttgart have a wide range of traditional street foods that are popular during the holiday season. Here are some of the typical street foods you can find:
- Bratwurst: is a type of German sausage grilled and served with mustard and bread. It is a popular street food in Germany.
- Flammkuchen: A thin, crispy pizza-like dish that is topped with crème fraiche, onions, and bacon. It is a popular street food in Stuttgart and the surrounding region.
- Kartoffelpuffer: Crispy potato pancakes that are often served with applesauce or sour cream. They are a popular street food in Germany during the Christmas season.
- Schupfnudeln: Small, potato-based dumplings that are often served with sauerkraut or in a stew. They are popular street food in Stuttgart and the surrounding region.
- Gebrannte Mandeln: Candied almonds that are roasted and caramelized with sugar and cinnamon. They are a popular sweet street food in Germany during the Christmas season.
- Langos: Hungarian fried bread that is often served with sour cream and cheese. It is a popular street food in Stuttgart’s Christmas market.
Overall, the street food at Stuttgart Christmas Market offers a delicious selection of traditional German and regional specialties that are perfect for snacking while strolling through the festive market.
What to Buy
Schwäbische Ornaments: As you navigate the lively stalls of the Christmas markets, you’re bound to come across traditional Schwäbische Christmas decorations. Each piece, reflecting the rich cultural history of the Swabian region, often showcases intricate craftsmanship. Wooden ornaments painted by hand, delicate glass baubles blown with care, and carefully shaped pewter figures are sure to add a unique touch to your Christmas decor.
Wool Products: Amid the bustling market, you’ll discover a selection of locally made lambswool products. Stuttgart’s lambswool craftspeople produce an array of goods, including soft blankets, cosy scarves and warm mittens.
German Lebkuchen: A traditional Christmas treat, lebkuchen is a type of gingerbread distinctive to Germany. It’s a delicious holiday indulgence made using honey, spices and nuts. Get your hands on an assortment of shapes and sizes, beautifully packaged, for a taste of Stuttgart’s sweet side.
Wooden Toys: Watch your loved ones’ faces light up as they unwrap an old-fashioned wooden toy. Expertly carved and polished by local artisans, these toys provide a charming alternative to today’s digital playthings. They range from simple dolls to complex puzzles, ensuring you can find something special for children of all ages.
Black Forest Clocks: Regarded as a timeless piece of art, the Black Forest cuckoo clock is an enduring symbol of German craftsmanship. Adorned with intricate carvings and featuring the distinctive ‘cuckoo’ call, these clocks serve both as practical timepieces and decorative items for the home.
Glühwein Mugs: Round off your shopping spree by buying a few festive glühwein mugs. These ceramic mugs, typically decorated with Christmas themes and Stuttgart’s cityscape, are great keepsakes. Often filled with the warm, spiced wine that’s a staple at the Christmas market, they’ll evoke fond memories of your festive sojourn in Stuttgart.
The official website of the city’s tourist office is a great resource for planning a trip and keeping informed of the latest Christmas events.
Plan a Sustainable Christmas in Stuttgart
Visitors to Stuttgart, if you’re aiming for a green Christmas, here are some practical ways:
- Opt for Green Energy: Stuttgart provides an array of sustainable hotels that use renewable energy for their electricity.
- Curb Food Waste: Be mindful of how much you’re buying and overordering food.
- Minimise Consumerism: Resist overbuying Christmas presents. Make a list and only buy what you need.
- Adopt Sustainable Diets: Limit meat intake, opting for nutritious, plant-based dishes with a lower carbon impact. There are plenty of plant-based dishes at the Christmas market.
- Choose Eco-friendly Transportation: Use public transport, cycling or walking to get around Stuttgart during the holidays. Consider sharing rides when heading to social gatherings.
By adopting these sustainable practices, you can reduce your environmental impact this Christmas in Stuttgart while enjoying the festive season in a more conscious way.
Stuttgart Christmas Market starts on 29th November and continues until 23rd December 2023.
The Christmas markets in Stuttgart are held at Schlossplatz, with smaller markets at Schillerplatz and Marktplazt.
The Christmas markets are open from Monday to Thursday: 10am to 9pm. Friday and Saturday: 10am to 10pm. Sunday: 11am to 9pm.
If you would like to leave a review of Stuttgart Xmas Market, comment below.
Recommendations are independently chosen based on personal travel experiences and extensive research. This post contains affiliate links to hotels and tours in Stuttgart, Germany. This means I get a small commission from any bookings at no extra cost to you.