Hotels around Esslingen, Stuttgart
Esslingen am Neckar is a town on the River Neckar, a twenty-minute drive to the southeast of Stuttgart. There is a range of affordable mid-range accommodation and a couple of upper-range hotel options in the busy market town, mostly grouped close to the river. A short S-Bahn ride brings you to Stuttgart city centre with its wide choice of hotels, B&Bs and hostels.
Experience Esslingen am Neckar near Stuttgart
While Esslingen am Neckar has been on the map since around 800, it really came into its own as a trade centre with the building of Neckar Bridge in the 13th Century, opening it an important stop for traders moving between France, Germany and Switzerland. Esslingen am Neckar’s medieval market is still a major draw for visitors, and the Christmas Market offers all the seasonal delights you’d hope for: sausages, wursts and a range of local and regional specialities, with glühwein and mulled cider in medieval goblets, served by stallholders in period costume in an attractively authentic setting.
Stadtkirche St. Dionys
The Protestant Church of Stadtkirche St. Dionys is the most striking feature on Esslingen’s skyline, with two Gothic towers linked by a high walkway. There has been a church on this site since 700, and the present church was built and refined through the 13th and 14th centuries, with the towers providing particular structural challenges. Basement openings had to be bricked up, flying buttresses added, and even a restraining chain employed to save them from collapse.
A set of old wooden stairs carries you from the old town to the Esslinger Burg, a picturesque castle atop a hill and surrounded by vineyards where the regional sekt, or sparkling wine, is produced. The view of historic Esslingen and the Neckar valley is well worth the climb, and the castle courtyard is a particular delight.
Kessler Sekt is a winery close to the churches of the old town, producing fine quality sparkling wines at very reasonable prices. Informative guided tours lead you through the wine-making process, with ample opportunity to sample the wares, before retiring to the winery’s own snack bar. English-speaking tours are available, but do check in advance.