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Baden-Württemberg ranks third among the German states in terms of both population and area. The state capital is Stuttgart, other large cities are Karlsruhe, Mannheim, Freiburg im Breisgau, Heidelberg, Ulm and Heilbronn.
Neighboring German states are Bavaria in the east and north-east, Hesse in the north and Rhineland-Palatinate in the north-west. In the west, Baden-Württemberg borders on the French region of Grand Est. The Swiss border in the south is formed by the cantons of Basel-Stadt, Basel-Landschaft, Aargau, Zurich, Schaffhausen and Thurgau. The canton of St. Gallen is only connected via Lake Constance. Baden-Württemberg is also connected to the Austrian state of Vorarlberg via Lake Constance.
The Black Forest is the most important recreational region in Baden-Württemberg and the most popular holiday destination among the German low mountain ranges. It is particularly known for its romantic valleys, gorges, mills and the typical farms as well as the place of origin of the cuckoo clock.
Lake Constance with the Alpine chain in the background is also a well-visited travel destination and also a recreational destination for townspeople; Here you can find evidence of different eras with the pile dwellings in Unteruhldingen and the monastery island of Reichenau, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. At the lake, the flower island of Mainau and the old cities of Konstanz and Meersburg have the highest numbers of visitors.
The Württemberg Allgäu attracts with its landscape and many hiking opportunities, as well as the Swabian-Franconian Forest Nature Park further north. The Swabian Alb is known for its small romantic towns, the heathland, the extensive forests, the caves, castles and palaces. Baden-Württemberg has around 60 spas and health resorts, especially in the Black Forest and Upper Swabia.
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