Baden-Baden is the best known of all Black Forest towns, at least to foreign visitors. Its hot springs have attracted visitors from Celtic times to the present and are the source of the town’s fame, although the casino and excellent wines are also major contributing factors to its wealth.
Baden-Baden has more millionaires per capita than any other German city. There is a stylish quality about this town, from the high-class shopping streets to the manicured lawns of the public parks. It is an expensive town – hotel rooms above i300 per night are easy to find – but can also easily be enjoyed without spending a cent.
Humans settled in Baden-Baden at least 10,000 years ago, but the area’s written history started around 70 AD after the Romans evicted the Celts and took to the waters themselves.
Baden-Baden served as a residence of the dukes of Baden until the French destroyed the city during 1689 and the dukes moved to Rastatt. Although the city is a mixture of architectural styles from all periods, the Neo-Classical and Gründerzeit villas from the 19th century are particularly attractive.
Baden-Baden has been a magnet for artists, especially during the Romantic period of the 19th century. Several writers such as Dostoevsky, Goethe, Mark Twain, and musicians such as Johannes Brahms, Clara Schumann, and Franz Liszt were frequent guests.
It is easy to enjoy Baden-Baden by just strolling through the magnificent parks and streets. None of the museums or galleries is an absolute must-see – water and gambling remain the main sources of revenue and the stylish ambiance comes for free.
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