Germany

Things to do in Dortmund

Located in the north west of Germany, Dortmund is only a short drive from Rotterdam (Europoort) or Zeebrugge when you take the ferry from Hull. This city was once an industrial hub, but is now better known for its premier league football team, art museums, and beer production.

Dortmund’s industrial past has left the city scattered with impressive examples of Art Nouveau architecture in the form of old mines and steelworks from the post-war era. Although Dortmund has become a more high-tech manufacturing city now, it is still a massive exporter of beer and currently holds the title for having the highest concentration of breweries in Germany – not bad for the country’s eighth largest city!

People who are into football will have no doubt heard of Dortmund’s legendary team, Borussia Dortmund, who are one of the most successful clubs in German football history. The city is incredibly proud of their great football acclaim, and is in fact home to the German Football Museum, one of the top tourist hotspots in Dortmund.

There is plenty to do in Dortmund if you’re not interested in football too! This wonderful city is home to a creative centre which features a mile of art and culture in the form of museums, theatres, and art galleries. There are also plenty of old churches and other pieces of interesting architecture to be seen when you wander around the city.

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Hull Port

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Rotterdam (Europoort) Port

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Rodenberg Castle in Dortmund, Germany

Things to do in Dortmund

Discover the City’s Culture

Dortmund has a fantastic artistic and cultural scene thanks to being in the area of the Ruhr, which was 2010’s European Capital of Culture. The most well-known landmark of this celebration in the city is the Dortmunder U, a high-rise brick building which used to be a brewery and has since been transformed into a centre of culture and creativity. It is hard to miss this impressive building when visiting Dortmund, especially thanks to the 9-foot tall U which stands on its roof.

The Dortmunder U hosts the Ostwall Museum, exhibition rooms, and a restaurant. The Ostwall Museum is a modern and contemporary art gallery, making it the perfect place to visit if you are interested in the arts. The Museum of Art and Cultural History can also be found in the city’s creative quarter, and is host an impressive collection of paintings, sculpture, furniture, and more. You will also no doubt enjoy admiring the building which houses the museum, a former municipal bank which is rendered in a striking Art Deco style.

Dortmunder U Centre of Culture

Signal Iduna Park football stadium

Football in Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund, Dortmund’s famous football team, are the country’s second most successful team who regularly play in the Bundesliga, Germany’s premier football league. One of the best things to do if you’re interested in the sport is visit the Signal Iduna Park, the team’s home ground and the second largest club stadium in Europe. The stadium has an incredible 81,359 capacity, and if you’re not lucky enough to witness a match here then you’ll definitely have to go on a tour of this impressive structure.

Dortmund is also home to the German Football Museum, or DFB-Museum. A visit to this museum is a must for anyone who’s into football. Here you can view exhibitions featuring the World Cup and European Championship trophies as well as lots more football memorabilia from years gone by. There is also a small indoor pitch so you can have a bit of a kick around too when you’re done looking at the exhibitions, if you fancy it.

Industrial Heritage

The city is absolutely packed full of sites and exhibitions which echo its industrial past. One of the best places to visit to find out more about Dortmund’s history is Zeche Zollern, an anchor point on the European Route of Industrial Heritage. A former coal mine and factory turned exhibition, here you can discover the social and cultural history of the Ruhr industrial region and explore the old buildings like the machine hall. The main entrance is particularly impressive, featuring attractive Art Nouveau elements.

Other top places to visit are the Brewery Museum and the Hansa Coking Plant. In the Brewery Museum you can explore the old Brewhouse and learn all about the brewing process, as well as learning about the history of brewing beer in Dortmund, which dates back to the 13th Century. The Hansa Coking Plant is a remarkable industrial monument, where you can have a guided tour and marvel at the huge pieces of machinery that have been left behind.

Zeche Zollern collier museum

Rose garden Westfalenpark in Dortmund

Parks and Green Spaces

Despite its number of industrial spaces and buildings, Dortmund is also home to a surprising amount of beautiful parks, perfect to escape to for a break from exploring the city. The Botanical Garden is one of the biggest in the world, and is a calm and peaceful spot to wander around. Its 65 hectares feature four greenhouses, an herb garden, perennials, and some of the oldest and tallest trees in the North Rhine-Westphalia region of Germany. 

The Westenfalenpark is another beautiful green space to relax in. Spanning 70 hectares, this park has plenty of attractions to keep you busy. The Deutsches Rosarium which has 3,000 different rose varieties, which is perfect for a summer visit. Other fun attractions are the chair lift which runs on Sundays, the miniature railway, and a flamingo enclosure with a pond which you can hire a rowboat on – perfect activities for entertaining the entire family.

There is such a fantastic variety of different things to do in Dortmund, making this a great place to visit on your next holiday. Don’t miss out – book your trip today!

Once an industrial hub, Dortmund is now better known for its premier league football team, art museums, and beer production

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