Last update on 11/11/2016
I lived two years and eight months in Düsseldorf, Germany. That was a very pleasant experience and I would like to share my best tips on what to do if you are heading there for a few days or for many years or if you live there and get visitors. What to do in Düsseldorf ? Where to eat ? What to see ? I compiled on a Google maps my favorites places and activities in Düsseldorf. You will find places that are not necessarily mentioned in traditional guides but places that Düsseldorfer go to off the beaten path.
Düsseldorf is more than the Rhein and the Könnigsalle
Even if the Rheinpromenade and the Königsalle are two of the main points of interest in Düsseldorf, you can do much more than this. The central part of the city is made of eight areas: Stadtmitte, Nordstrasse, Derendorf, Pempelfort, Bilk, Friedrichstadt, Flingern North and South and Oberkassel. Each part of the city has its own identity and offers different experiences. I am going to guide you through the areas that are worth visiting.
Flingern is located on the east side of Düsseldorf. It could be called the hipster side of the city. You can find some very good restaurants and café, an arty atmosphere and a couple of design boutiques. One of the most popular tradition in Germany is to go for Kaffe und Kuchen (coffee and cake) on the weekend. For this, I have a good address: café Hüftgold. The cakes are home made and delicious. The atmosphere is cozy. I love it.
Beautiful Oberkassel on the other side of the Rhein
Oberkassel is located on the other side of the Rhein. This is where I lived. This district is considered as the rich and posh area of Düsseldorf which is actually true. It was very pleasant living there. This area is beautiful, calm and you find everything you need and even more. You can enjoy very nice walks on this side of the Rhein as well as a beautiful view on Düsseldorf. You can see on my map, the restaurants and cafe I recommend for you. There is something I highly recommend to do is to have brunch there and then renting bikes and bike to the North to a small village called Kaiserwerth. It is 11km away. Once you’re there, enjoy a beer and a flammküche at the Biergarten and take the ferry to go on the other side of the Rhein and drive back to Oberkassel. I draw the bike ride and where to rent the bikes on the map.
Young Bilk and Friedrichstadt
I also recommend you to go to Bilk and Friedrichstadt. A lot of students and young adults live there. Bilk is located in the southeast of Düsseldorf city center. The atmosphere is cool and you can find couples of nice places to chill and eat. I especially enjoy Bilker Kirche. It is a place around a church with a delicious Korean restaurant called Papa Young and a cool bar, Seifen Horst. I recommend you to first go to Medienhafen, the harbor/design district with the strange houses and the TV tour and then walk to this area to have a drink, a lunch or dinner. Another good tip is to go to Boui boui bilk. This place organizes various types of events such as flea markets, fashion design weekends, street foods festivals, etc. Just check out the program. I liked to go to the flea market. I found my analog camera there in perfect condition. There is live music inside, street food outside. Entrance is 3€ but that’s worth it.
In Friedrichstadt go to Fürstenplatz. To be honest I don’t really know this area but I’ve heard really good feedback on this place. There are nice cafés, restaurants, and bars. This district is located between Bilk and the train station.
Nordstrasse is a very central district. Near the old city (Altstadt), the Rhein and Ostrasse (Japanese district). Nordstrasse is good for shopping, and you can find a very nice and good Vietnamese restaurant called Quintoo. I liked the decoration and especially the food. Very tasty and at a fair price. If you want an ice cream, a hot chocolate or a crumble go to the Crumble café. Their ice cream and crumbles are really good and the atmosphere of the cafe is cozy.
You can also explore Derendorf and Pemplefort if you have time but I don’t think it should be your priority. That said, there is the best Indian restaurant I’ve never been. It is called Rajdarbaar. I never could pronounce the name correctly. The food is just heaven. The taste and quality have been approved by a friend of mine who lived in India. The service is great and very kind. Just go there, you’ll see.
Where to have the real German experience ?
In Düsseldorf, it is traditional to drink the Alt bier and go to a brewery to eat a schnitzel, a typical German dish. You will see that the waiters serve you beers without that you ask them and keep bringing you more beers. They make a note on the coasters for each beer you drink and you pay when you’re done. The Alt beer is a tasty dark beer. I really like the taste and the small, simple glasses in which you drink it.
If you want to have the traditional German experience I recommend you to go to the Ratinger Strasse in the old city. You will find typical German breweries. Go to the Füchsen brewery. That’s probably the most typical German brewery you can find in town, Don’t be afraid of the tough waiters dressed in blue. It is part of the show. I personally prefer the Uel brewery, in the same street. The schnitzel is the best. It is also less crowded.
If you want to have a beer as we do in Düsseldorf meaning drinking glasses of 0,25 liter one after the other, go to the Kürzer, my favorite German bar. The atmosphere is young and cool.
All my tips on a Google map
Find all my tips mentioned above and more on my Google map. You can access it even when you are not online. I am looking forward to your feedback.
How was my first impression of Düsseldorf ? Should you live there ?
My first time in Düsseldorf was during summer 2013. I got there for my job interview and I was alone. I arrived the evening before. My first impression was very good. The city looked dynamic, I was very attracted by the atmosphere. People in the streets, having a drink outside, dining on terraces. I loved it. The first thing I did after checking-in at the hotel was going to the Rhein. The evening was warm and the summer was at its pick. When I arrived at the Rhein, I remember the feeling I had. I felt good immediately. The sunset on the Rhein, the people having a walk, sitting on benches. I felt very comfortable. I spend the evening there, having a beer and dreaming of my next adventure in this city. If you are about to live there or if you hesitate, I can tell you that living in Düsseldorf is a worthwhile experience. I am leaving soon but I don’t regret anything. This city is perfect if you want to have a comfortable everyday life. It is not stressful and it is easy to live there. Of course, if you are more the type of person who likes big capital cities, you might find Düsseldorf too calm.
Give me your feedback, suggestions and ask me questions if you like. I will update this map as often as I can. If you want me to create a specific map, just let me know :).
Enjoy your stay in Düsselorf.