Darmstadt has a rich cultural heritage, much of which is still on display in the city today. The state theatre hall (the Staatstheater Darmstadt) has been putting on shows since the 18th century, and is still one of the city's main cultural centers.
Darmstadt also has many major museums, including the Hessisches Landesmuseum (the Hessian State Museum), the Porcelain Museum, and the Museum Künstlerkolonie (the Art Nouveau museum). The city is also home to one of the world's premier music museums, the Internationales Musikinstitut Darmstad, which has an internationally recognized archival collection and music school.
It also has a great literary heritage, and is now home to the Deutsche Akademie für Sprache und Dichtung, where Germany's best writers practice their craft. The surrounding countryside also offers great leisure possibilities for expatriates, with its many vineyards, lakes, and forests.
Germany has a free, public education system that the children of expatriates living in Darmstadt will be able to attend. However, as classes in public schools are taught in German, many expatriates living Darmstadt will instead send their children to an international school. Darmstadt is home to Germany's first public international school, the State International School, which is located just outside the city center. It follows an international curriculum from primary school through to the International Baccalaureate - all of which is taught in English.
There are also private international schools located in nearby cities like Frankfurt. The city is also home to three universities, which are all internationally renowned for their specialist subjects. The largest and most notable is the Technical University of Darmstadt, which is one of the best research universities in Germany for computer science and engineering. The others are the Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences and the Protestant University of Applied Sciences Darmstadt.
Germany's road system is extremely well managed and maintained, and is funded not by toll charges but by higher taxes levied on fuel. As a result, expatriates in Darmstadt will find that fuel prices are higher than most other European countries. If you wish to drive whilst living in Darmstadt, you can do so using your foreign license or an international driving permit for up to six months, after which you will need to apply for a German license.
However, Darmstadt also has an excellent public transport network, which is integrated with a similar network in nearby Frankfurt. There are trams that serve stations throughout the city, and some that go to Frankfurt; the city is also connected with the Frankfurt S-Bahn system. The main train station, Darmstadt Hauptbahnhof, has links to cities across Germany.