A German Christmas market is something of a festive staple with us and suffices to say, it was only a matter of time before we headed over to the city of Stuttgart (in Germany, for the uninitiated) for some much-needed gluhwein, as much bratwurst as we could handle and many-a-caramelised erdnuss.
I’ve been trying to improve on my German but judging by the look of utter confusion on the lady’s face at one of the Christmas markets, when I asked for “Eine erdnuss” (one peanut – which would have totally worked, by the way, as they can in 100g bags), I still have a long way to go with perfecting my German.
We checked into the Jaz Hotel – a pretty centrally located spot which, as luck would have it was right to the library.
Now, why would one want to go to a public library in a city, especially so, a (relatively) new one?
Well, wait till you see this beauty!
I literally came across it online like minutes before we arrived at the hotel and had to go check it out myself.
It’s like something out of a Wes Anderson movie or perhaps even some dystopian fantasy.
Leaving the library, we hot-footed it straight to the Christmas market, where we started off at the very end of it (the end that wasn’t even properly in the Christmas market) making our way slowly over to the market.
While we were checking out the hourly lights show (a bit of a coincidence here and totally unplanned as my first thoughts here were all about food ), it started to drizzle a bit.
Figuring it would just be a bit of light rain (plus I had a coat on), we carried on – until what I can only describe as “Snow-Rain” began to pelt us heavily!
Funnily enough, I remember moaning at Alexa earlier in the day in London when it said the forecast for the day was snow-rain. I was like “Pick one! Is it snow or is it rain? Silly machine…” 😄 Oh, but it had the last laugh as it was both at the same time! 😆
With my feet properly soaked from the freezing snow-rain, and my jacket starting to soak through, we decided tonight was probably not the night for the Christmas markets after all and headed back to the hotel for dinner next door and a good night’s kip!
Thankfully, as the saying goes “Early to bed, early to rise” so the following morning, we got up bright and early and headed out to explore Stuttgart – more specifically, Ludwigsburg Palace.
You can take the subway train here but we had a car (we’d be venturing out of the city too over the coming days) and seeing as parking was pretty abundant at the palace, we decided to drive over to the palace.
The grounds outside are absolutely impressive and even in the cold of winter, are still worth a gander before you head inside.
We, however, ended up getting even more distracted as made our way to the centre of the palace as I honestly had no idea why I hadn’t heard of this palace a lot sooner.
Speaking to someone here, it’s a pretty popular palace in Germany (or at least, in the local area) but I can’t say that it’s one I knew a lot about prior to visiting!
As you already know, I’m a sucker for a good palace so I was far too grateful for the last minute local recommendation that led us to visiting the palace this wintry morning.
After taking a good amount of time to marvel at the outside of the palace, we made our way inside through the beauty that is Ludwigsburg Palace.
As you might know (or maybe not know), there’s a pretty significant link between the German and British Royal family (a lot of the Royal family are actually descendants of German Kings and Queens) and this palace was actually home to a British Queen who married a German King.
Anyway, history aside, let me show you around the palace, starting off with the Queen’s quarters…
…leading through to the grand hall
…which is, easily, one of the most impressive parts of the palace.
After spending longer than we probably should have marvelling (again) at the grand hall, we carried on through the palace, stopping off to take in the beauty of the theatre.
Thinking about it now, that is probably the first time I’ve ever seen a theatre in a palace.
We meandered through even more stunning parts of this baroque castle (I did want to check out the chapel but alas it was closed at the time – you can kinda see it from the top and it’s absolutely gorgeous)…
(*The detail here is just incredible, isn’t it?)
…before making our way over to the throne hall.
Oh, and the throne hall is every bit as grand as it sounds – it is after all where the King held court.
It’s a beautiful work of art – every single detail is just so impressive.
And with that, we decided to call it an afternoon and head back to the city centre for hopefully a quick gander at what we missed at the Christmas market, but more importantly for lunch!