Dusseldorf may be best known for being one of Germany’s largest financial hubs, but it also has a passion for fashion and the arts. The city is the capital of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and is home to five Fortune 500 companies. Amongst the annual goings-on in this German powerhouse of a city, there are festivals along the river Rhine and music events that are dedicated to experimental and electronica bands such as Kraftwerk.
Here is everything you need to know when embarking on a Dusseldorf city break.
By far the easiest way to arrive in Dusseldorf is to fly into Düsseldorf International Airport. Not only does it receive direct flights from many UK airlines, it also offers quick and simple links to the city’s main train station. EasyJet, British Airways and German Wings all operate direct flights from London Heathrow, with BA also providing non-stop options from London City Airport. Those looking to travel from more regional airports will be able to fly direct with either Flybe or German Wings.
Once you arrive, it is simple to transfer to Düsseldorf Central Station and then onto your hotel. A 12-minute ride on either the S7 or S11 train will take you there and then you can transfer to the metro in order to reach your accommodation.
Where To Stay
A&O Düsseldorf Hauptbahnhof
If you are on a tight budget during your stay in Dusseldorf, the A&O Hotel is a great choice. Its central location means that you won’t have to travel far from the station to reach it and you won't have to travel much further to reach the main shopping street. If that wasn’t appealing enough, the modern rooms start from as little as €9 a night and that includes Wi-Fi internet access. Finally, between your sightseeing exploits, you can play a game of billiards or table football and even watch TV in the lounge area.
If you are looking for more of a mid-range option then look no further than the Hotel Residenz. Again, the hotel provides very central accommodation and the price of around €60 a night includes Wi-Fi and a hearty breakfast. The staff are very friendly, speaking German and English, and the soundproofed rooms mean you won’t have any problems with the busy streets below.
If you would prefer something a little more unique and luxurious then the Villa Viktoria should definitely be your first choice. This is the only all-suite hotel in Dusseldorf and each of the 40 rooms is furnished differently, offers their own charm. If the weather is good, you can escape to the glorious garden out the back or savour your breakfast under the historic pillared roof. With modern conveniences available and staff that will look after you as well as the Red Cross did their patients in the building after World War II, you will feel right at home in no time. Prices start at €119 a night.
The Dusseldorf metro network combines buses, underground trains and overground trams to provide you with a simple way of navigating the city. Like in many German cities, your ticket will cover you for travel via any of these different means and there are a variety of ticket options available. From short-term ‘Kurzstrecke’ tickets that will take you anywhere up to four stops away to group tickets that allow up to five people to travel anywhere within the city for the entire day, you’ll be able to find the best option for what you need.
Alternatively, many of the attractions and areas of interest are located quite close to each other, so it is possible to walk to most places. This also means you get to see more of the city in the process.
Where To Eat
If you want to try some hearty German food during your stay (and you should do at least once), Zum Schlüssel is an excellent choice. This traditional brew house/restaurant offers a brewery that you can tour, excellent local beers and menu options that will refuel even the most explorative sightseers. Choices include homemade soups, traditional Rhineland fare, and a special section dedicated to food that goes perfectly with the beer brewed on site.
Anyone craving something more familiar will have their cravings well and truly satisfied with a trip to this fantastic burger joint. You may be thinking that the restaurant is just a local version of McDonalds or Burger King, but it is more delicious and more upscale than either of these. The mouth-watering menu features something for everyone with over 60 different variations on the humble hamburger. Space Burger’s options include the Flash Gordon (gorgonzola, apple slices and ice wine sauce on a patty that is marinated in white wine) and El Morte Del Pollo (chicken breast topped with avocado, sweet corn, taco chips, cheese, homemade guacamole, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles and salsa).
Ristorante La Luce Due
This Mediterranean delight is run by two Italian brothers and offers vibrant, delicious food that just begs to be savoured. The atmosphere is as refined as the food and you are sure to be raving about this little gem just as much as the people of Dusseldorf do. The menu features a large selection of pizza and pasta dishes, all complemented by fantastic meat and fish options. Reservations may be needed at peak times of the year.
Top 3 Things To Do
Start With The Art
As we alluded to at the beginning of the post, Dusseldorf is a place known as much for its love of art as it is for its industrial past. There are many places where you can see some examples of this, with one of the best being the Museum of Art. The exhibits here vary extensively, from works dating back as far as the 3rd century BC to more modern pieces created by Warhol and Dali. Sculpture, performance and graphic art all get their own chance to shine too, in a place where every art lover can lose themselves for a few hours at least. Other places to indulge your cultured side include the three buildings that make up the North Rhine-Westphalia Art Collection; K20, K21 and Schmela Haus.
Splash The Cash On The Königsallee
Translated to mean the Kings Avenue, and affectionately shortened to ‘Kö’ by the locals, the Königsallee is the best place to do some shopping during your Dusseldorf city break. Either side of the city’s old moat, you will find an inviting array of boutiques, cafes, restaurants and galleries. The route is home to outlets from brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch, Prada and Hugo Boss and stretches for almost a mile. At the end, you can pause for a moment and admire the impressive fountain that depicts Triton tackling a sea monster.
Rise In The Rheinturm Tower
As well as the historical Old Town, Dusseldorf has also seen a modern rejuvenation of the area down by the port. This part of the city is known as the Neue Zollhof and is where you will find a range of interesting office buildings that look like they may topple at any moment, along with the Rheinturm Tower. At 240 metres tall, the viewing platform at the top offers outstanding views of the metropolis below and there is also a restaurant. When darkness falls, a light sculpture on the shaft tells the time and makes the tower the world’s largest digital clock.
If you would like to book your very own Dusseldorf city break, our friendly team can help create the perfect holiday. Call us with the details and we will tailor-make your trip.