Stuttgart is colorful

Yesterday at around 5pm (jebus, sun goes down early these days) we've been strolling around in the city, heading to a café for some heavy double choclate fudge cake and some coffee, we came across these shop windows and I just liked them.

Before that, the BF and I had a very nice walk in the snowy sub-suburban outskirts of Stuttgart. Or, to say it differently, in the haunted forests of nowhere. We came past some teeny-weeny ancient castles hidden in the forests, used by our former Kings as hunting seats. It was a very pleasant day together, and we had much fun in the white winter-wonder land, with all the snow on the trees. And also with the glassy trails on the way back to the city, where the warmth of the café reimbursed us for the frostbites and the starvation we had to endure in the enchanted and endless forests of our beloved former Kings.

A star is born ...

In the city they're quite busy preparing the christmas market, that will open to the public in three days. It's one of the biggest christmas markets in Germany, and it exists for about 350 years. Looking forward to having some mulled wine and sugarroasted almonds...

Curtainly a World Record

Yesterday I went to the New Castle, because I wanted to take some pictures at night. Unfortunately, something's blocking the view, what I didn't know before. Ok, so I got curious and wanted to know what it is. It's the world's largest curtain, and it will go to the Guinness Book of Records. Well, as if someone would be needing that. Maybe that's some compensation for our bad success at the Olympic Games this year.

Anyway, another unusual view of the New Castle...

World Record: Biggest Curtain in the World

Happy Birthday to me

Me: Hi Rian, Happy Birthday to You!
Rian: Oh thank you!
Me: I hope you have a pleasant day!
Rian: Oh well, so far it was quite ... but let's see what the rest of the day will bring.
Me: Have you seen the Buddy Bears Exhibition in Stuttgart?
Rian: Huh? Buddy Bears? What's that?
Me: It's an exhibition in front of the New Castle in Stuttgart. There's a bear-ish artwork for every nation. Quite cute.
Rian: Did you take pictures?
Me: Yes, I took some at night. Let me show you ...

Buddy Bears at Night

Buddy Bears at Night

Buddy Bears at Night

Buddy Bears at Night

Buddy Bears at Night

Buddy Bears at Night

Rian: Beautiful pictures.
Me: Thank you. I took them last weekend. You can click on one to see an entire gallery.
Rian: No thanks, I'm good. Gotta go!

Stuttgart Christmas Market

For more than 300 years we have a Christmas market in Stuttgart. It's one of the biggest and nicest in Europe. The festively illuminated city center - with a medieval flair due to the Old Castle, the towers of the Collegiate Church and the grand Baroque castle facility of the New Castle - forms the wonderful backdrop of the Stuttgart Christmas Festival.

I like the roofs of the little vendor booths, because they're individually decorated. I visited the Christmas Market (or "Weihnachtsmarkt" as we're calling it), and here are some impressions.


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And you can go ice scating in front of the new castle.

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Of course you can get mulled wine ("Glühwein") everywhere. I suppose it sounds odd to some Americans, because I know that you can't have alcoholic drinks on the street. But in Germany there is no problem with that at all.

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Some booths at the Schillerplatz ...

Weihnachtsmarkt06 012At the old castle ...


Weihnachtsmarkt06 015In front of the Stiftskirche (Collegiate Church) ...


Weihnachtsmarkt06 016More Impressions ...


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These sugar canes aren't typical for Christmas here. But I guess it's a homage to the many Americans that live in Stuttgart.


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Weihnachtsmarkt06 057I hope you enjoyed the little visit at our Christmas Market. This won't be the last post about Christmas, because I'm still loving Christmas like a little child.

A Sunday In The Parks

Today when I woke up I saw the beginning of a very beautiful fall day, a blue sky, no clouds, and much sunshine. We had much rain during the last few days and I was thinking that the nice days this year are already over. I didn't want to waste one of the last sunny days by just sitting at home, so I decided to walk "Das Grüne U" (the Green U). Stuttgart has many parks in the middle of the city, and they've been working from 1920 to 1993 to connect some of them by bridges. I've been to some of the parks before, but I wasn't visiting all of them in one day, so this was my plan for today. I like the fact that there are huge areas of green just in the middle of the city.

But before I could get to the beginning of the Green U I had to cross two other parks. I spend the whole day in many different parks. And here are some pictures of the parks and of Stuttgart. I know, this has already been the topic of many other posts, but my blog is more like a diary, and that's what I did today. So, if you're not interested in pictures of parks, you probably want to go to the next blog in your blogroll...

The Green U starts at the New Castle in the center of Stuttgart, it's about a 15 minute walk from my apartment to get there. At the end of my street there's an ancient graveyard. It hasn't been used for 130 years and has nice headstones, most of them are from the time of 1800. It's next to the city campus of my university, and crossing this graveyard is a shortcut to get to the campus, or to the center of the city. But I'm never taking this shortcut when it's dark or on halloween.

Cannstatter Wasen, which is over by tomorrow. You can see the Ferris wheel from up here. The wind was coming from that direction, the smell of popcorn and candy was everywhere.

This is Rosenstein Castle. Note to myself: If I ever construct a house for myself, I want an entrance like that.

And this is a part of the rose garden behind the castle.

And this is the ancient English garden.

It's unbelievable for me that these big meadows are in the center of Stuttgart.

Leibfriedscher Garten
The next park is the garden of former Villa Leibfried that was completely destroyed during WW II. They've restored the garden, and included the ruin. But I didn't take any pictures there.

Next park was Wartberg with its trick fountains. It's a great place, I've never been there before, but it's really cool. There are many trick fountains, and the entire area looks different every other minute. A fountain there, then there, suddenly everywhere ...

More fountains

Now we've arrived at the Killesbergpark, and somebody was waiting for me.

Ok, we've already left the Killesbergpark, this is the way back to my apartment. This isn't in the middle of Stuttgart anymore, this is outside of Stuttgart. I really like nature. Well, I grew up in a small village, I'm a country bumpkin ...

And I like forests, too.

Ok, we're at home again, I hope you're not too tired after 4,5 hours of walking. Please excuse me for a second, I need a shower ...

Hohenheimer Botanischer Garten
When I got out of the shower I got a call from Felix, the photographer of our gay magazine. He asked if I was up to go to the botanical garden of Stuttgart-Hohenheim University together with him. That was funny, he has never done that before, and we've never spent time together (except when we worked together at a project for the magazine). But he's nice, they have many tropical flowers and trees there, and because I wanted someone to talk to I agreed, so there was another park to see, and of course another castle: Hohenheim Castle.

I didn't take many pictures because I felt strange next to a professional photographer, and I guess you had enough pictures today. Anyway, I had a great time. It was a fabulous day, but now I'm really tired. Good night.