Planning a trip to Germany? There are many fantastic places to explore, though many people often focus on Berlin or Munich. However, the country known for its love of beer and sausage has other unique destinations.
One is Düsseldorf, a city full of culture and exciting attractions. Düsseldorf is known as the fashion capital of Germany. It is located in the northwest corner of the country near its border with the Netherlands.
If you are coming from abroad, chances are you’ll be flying into Düsseldorf International Airport. You can take a taxi or public transport to explore the city from there. The main train station of Düsseldorf can easily connect you to all the city’s neighborhoods and other nearby German cities.
Once you arrive in this western German city, you may be surprised by the amount of art, shopping, culture, and food at your fingertips. Around the city center, you’ll find mind-boggling street art, historical monuments, and a mix of modern architecture and old-world charm.
This city is full of attractions, from the iconic Rhine Tower to Nord Park and Hofgarten. Take a stroll along the Rheinuferpromenade or shop till you drop at Königsallee.
Visitors come from near and far to explore the historical Kaiserpfalz Kaiserswerth along the Rhine River. For a break from the hustle and bustle of city life, venture out to Wildpark Grafenberger Wald or Kö-Bogen for some R&R.
In terms of size, Düsseldorf is a fairly small city. However, it packs a lot of culture and art at the Museum Kunstpalast. Here, you can find over 600 years of art and cultural heritage from world-renowned artists of the past and present.
Continue reading as we go in-depth about the best places to visit in Düsseldorf, Germany, fun things to do while visiting Düsseldorf, and even a hidden gem or two. Now let’s get into it!
- Most significant landmark – Rhine Tower
- Best park – Nord Park
- Best free activity – Rheinuferpromenade
- Best activity for kids – Aquazoo Löbbecke Museum
- Best activity for adults – Düsseldorf Altstadt (Old Town)
- Best food – QOMO Restaurant
- Best nightlife – Media Harbour
- Best all-around accommodation – Steinberger Parkhotel
Fun & Best Things to Do in Düsseldorf, Germany
1. Rhine Tower
Address: Stromstraße 20, 40221 Düsseldorf, Germany
One of the best things to do in Düsseldorf, Germany, is to visit the Rhine Tower. In 1979, famous architect H. Deilmann designed this iconic tower at 20 Strom Street, and it’s one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks.
Standing almost 770 feet tall, it’s the tallest building in Düsseldorf. Visitors can experience breathtaking views of Düsseldorf’s skyline from the top observation deck. So if you love being spoiled by an amazing sunset, this is the place to be.
The viewing platform is open daily and provides views from the Media Harbour to the Cologne Cathedral. You can also grab a snack or enjoy the bar here. However, if you want a real meal, you can enjoy stunning views from QOMO Restaurant on the tower’s top floor. The restaurant is quite an adventure in itself.
Guests to QOMO will enjoy Japanese fusion cuisine while watching the sunset over the city. The revolving restaurant fully rotates on its axis once every 72 minutes, allowing the 360° views of Düsseldorf to be admired from above while enjoying delicious food at Düsseldorf’s highest restaurant.
We recommend purchasing your tickets for the Rhine Tower in advance. It’s a great way to skip the line and maximize your time at one of Düsseldorf’s top attractions.
See Related: Best River Cruises in Europe
2. Nord Park
Address: Kaiserswerther Str. 365, 40474 Düsseldorf, Germany
Nord Park is a great place for hiking, biking, and jogging. The park covers over 54 acres of land in north Düsseldorf near Gadderbaum. Visitors can enjoy several trails, including a long path with plenty of benches and rest stops. There is also a small lake perfect for fishing, rowing, and sailing.
Nord Park is also dog friendly, so bring the family pet along for a peaceful and beautiful stroll anytime. This park is very easy to get to since it has its own stop on the metro and tram. Nord Park is so enormous that it is home to many other Düsseldorf attractions, including the Aquazoo and Japanischer Garten.
Many visitors note the amazing view of the Rhine Tower from Nord Park. If you enjoy this area of Düsseldorf, the Radisson Blu Conference Hotel is a great affordable option located just a few minutes away from the park. It’s also only a 10-minute drive from the Düsseldorf International Airport.
3. Aquazoo Löbbecke Museum
Address: Kaiserswerther Str. 380, 40474 Düsseldorf, Germany
If you’re searching for things to do in Düsseldorf with kids, the Aquazoo is the perfect place. It combines a zoo, natural history museum, and aquarium into one spot. This awesome combination makes for a fun and informative Düsseldorf attraction and is located inside Nord Park.
The museum consists of 25 themed rooms, which are home to over 500 species of animals ranging from sharks to shrimp. Here you’ll learn about the evolution of these magnificent creatures and how some animals went from the sea to living on land. You also won’t want to miss the amphibian protection and breeding station, which has received several awards from the UN for its conservation efforts.
The entire museum circuit is indoors, making this a great activity when the weather isn’t ideal. The museum is open daily to visitors, and admission is free for children under 6. Reduced-price family tickets are available for two adults and children.
4. Japanischer Garten
Address: Kaiserswerther Str. 380, 40474 Düsseldorf, Germany
Düsseldorf’s peaceful Japanese Garden is the perfect spot for a bit of rest and relaxation during your busy days touring the city. If you’ve been blessed with a sunny day, add the Japanese Garden to your list of places to visit. The garden was designed by renowned Japanese landscape artist Iwakii Ishiguro and features several fishponds and water features.
The Japanese Garden, also called the Garden of Reflection, covers nearly 1.5 acres and is filled mostly with pine trees and Japanese maple. According to Japanese mythology, every stone, leaf, and tree offers a deep symbolic meaning. Throughout the park, you’ll find four stone lanterns hand-carved in the Japanese tradition and made of natural stone.
Surrounding the garden’s ponds, you will find several walking paths lined with stones and many points to stop and enjoy nature. Next to the garden, you’ll find the Nordparkcafe, which offers various affordable snacks and drinks to enjoy in the park.
Visiting the Japanischer Garten requires no admission fee, making it one of the best free things to do in Düsseldorf. It’s great to combine with the Aquazoo if you’re visiting Düsseldorf with your family.
See Related: Best Gardens in Europe to Visit
Location: 40213 Düsseldorf, Germany
If you love gardens, then check out the oldest park in Düsseldorf: Hofgarten. Located in the heart of the city, it is perfect for a leisurely stroll or jog.
Here you can find lush green grass, flowerbeds, and plenty of trees, making it the ideal tranquil pause amid the city’s high-rise buildings. You’ll also get a taste of Düsseldorf’s robust art scene with the park’s ever-changing modern sculptures made by local artists.
The park hosts several events throughout the year, such as the springtime Cherry Blossom Festival and several summer concerts. If you love bird-watching, bring your binoculars to spot some of the park’s feathered inhabitants. Peacocks, swans, and parakeets roam around, which makes for great photo opportunities.
After you work up an appetite by walking or cycling around the park, you can feast at nearby eateries. Some local favorites include Phoenix Restaurant & Weinbar, Cafe Louise, and The Bull Steak Expert. If you’d like to stay nearby, the pet-friendly Steinberger Parkhotel sits just on the outskirts of the park and has signed the UNESCO Sustainable Travel Pledge, showing its commitment to protecting the environment and local culture.
6. Schloss Benrath
Address: Benrather Schloßallee 100-108, 40597 Düsseldorf, Germany
There is no shortage of things to do in Düsseldorf, Germany, if you enjoy old mansions and palaces like Schloss Benrath. Built between 1755 and 1770 for the Elector Palatine Charles Theodor and his wife, Countess Palatine Elisabeth Auguste of Sulzbach, the baroque-style palace now serves as a stunning museum and backdrop to fun events like a Christmas market and the Festival of Lights.
There are several areas to explore here, such as the Corps de Logis, which served as the main living quarters. Plenty of old paintings, furniture, and artifacts are on display, giving visitors insight into life during the 18th century. The Museum of Garden Art showcases over 2,500 years of garden history from across Europe.
The expansive residential building boasts 100 rooms as well as gorgeous French and German-styled gardens. The palace is worth a full-day visit and offers guided tours for all ages and interests. Depending on the tour you take, you may explore hidden rooms or canals that show you how people can move through such expansive areas unseen.
Look out for special exhibitions on the palace grounds, such as the historical clock collection, annual flower displays, and more. If you’re craving something sweet, pop into the palace café to enjoy their selection of cakes and sweet treats alongside a cappuccino or hot tea.
See Related: Best Castles in Germany to Visit
Address: Untere, Rheinwerft, 40213 Düsseldorf, Germany
The picturesque Rhine promenade offers stunning views of the River Rhine, with plenty of cafes, bars, and restaurants to explore. It is a great place for morning jogs or evening walks.
On weekends, you can find people picnicking and relaxing by the river or crossing one of Düsseldorf’s elegant bridges between the left bank and right. You’ll also get an amazing view of the Old Town Hall, which was constructed in 1570.
Several guided tours are available and often start from the Old Town or the promenade. If you’re doing a hop-on-hop-off tour in the area, you will certainly be able to stop here. However, you may not want to get back on the bus later since you can stay here all day!
As many as 300 bars, pubs, cafes, and lounges line this famous spot. Kasematten Düsseldorf, a waterfront beer garden, is made up of five restaurants offering amazing German cuisine, refreshing beer, and a lively atmosphere. Looking for some indoor dining instead? Head over to Fischhaus, located just two blocks away from the River Rhine promenade and known for its famous fish soup.
This city center boulevard is considered to be one of the most beautiful streets in Germany and is located east of Altstadt. This avenue has several luxury brands and popular fashion brands, making it a great shopping destination for luxury items. The landscaped canal along this street is a great place to take photographs and admire the surrounding mix of classic and contemporary architecture.
The street has several fine-dining restaurants, cafes, and bars along its length. You can even find some traditional German beer gardens here for a taste of the local culture.
Several art galleries also line this beloved street, including various paintings, photos, and sculptures. Speaking of art, you can take a U-Bahn from Königsallee to the Julia Stoschek Collection, one of the most impressive private contemporary art collections in Düsseldorf.
Königsallee also plays host to several events throughout the year, including a Christmas market, flower markets, and weekly art exhibitions. Look out for the Kö-Bogen building on the boulevard as you explore, which has an interesting glass atrium. It’s shaped like an arch and houses several individual stores.
See Related: Best Places to Get Married in Europe
9. Kaiserpfalz Kaiserswerth
Address: Burgallee, 40489 Düsseldorf, Germany
This historical landmark dates back all the way to 1016 when the castle was first documented. Over the years, it went through several reconstructions and kings, and today you can find the remains of the castle in a park.
The archaeological park is a great place to visit if you are looking for picturesque views of the Rhine River and the surrounding landscape. There are several ruins here that provide insight into life during the early Middle Ages.
The castle has several interesting exhibits to discover, such as the Romanesque-style chapel built in 1220. The main attraction here is Barbarossa’s Hall, which is said to be one of the most beautiful rooms of this era. This room was used by emperors and kings for official ceremonies and negotiations.
Kaiserpfalz Kaiserswerth is a seasonal attraction, usually open daily between Good Friday and October 31. The castle also has a small theater, which is used to screen films related to the history of the area. Other attractions here include a museum garden and a sculpture park.
10. Wildpark Grafenberger Wald
Address: Rennbahnstraße 60, 40629 Düsseldorf, Germany
The Wildpark Grafenberger Wald is one of the best free Düsseldorf tourist attractions for the whole family to enjoy. The park, one of the oldest wildlife parks in Germany, spans over 88 acres and is located on the outskirts of the city center in Grafenberg Forest. The wildlife park is home to over 100 species of native animals, including boars, deer, and mouflon.
Kids will love feeding the park’s residents. You can either bring apples and carrots or buy special feed from the automatic feeders located throughout the park.
It’s an awesome place to view these beautiful animals in their natural habitats. While the deer can become aggressive during mating season, newly installed gates make it possible to view them year-round instead of the park closing for two months as it did previously.
The park is open daily and year-round, with opening hours varying based on the time of year, and admission is free. Since this park has many wild animals roaming around, dogs are not permitted, even if they’re on a leash.
If you enjoy this quiet part of Düsseldorf away from the city center, consider opting for a nearby vacation rental. This bright, luxury apartment features three bedrooms, an expansive outdoor patio, and free underground parking.
See Related: Best Accommodation & Hotels in Dusseldorf, Germany
11. Museum Kunstpalast
Address: Ehrenhof 4-5, 40479 Düsseldorf, Germany
If you’re looking to visit one of Germany’s most impressive art museums, look no further than Museum Kunstpalast. The Museum Kunstpalast is one of the largest art museums in Germany, and it houses more than 600 years of art from different periods and styles and over 100,000 objects.
The collection includes works by renowned artists such as Pablo Picasso, Rembrandt, and Monet. It also has an impressive selection of European pottery from the 16th to 19th centuries. You can also find ancient sculptures from Egypt, Greece, Rome, and the Far East.
The museum features an impressive collection of local ceramic pieces, as well as a library that provides information on German and international art. The art museum particularly stands out for its collection of glasswork. The Glasmusuem Hentrich has over 10,000 glassworks, the most comprehensive collection of its kind in Europe.
There are also several temporary exhibitions throughout the year, so make sure to check the website for updates. The Museum Kunstpalast is open everyday except Monday, with hours varying based on the time of year.
12. Classic Remise Düsseldorf
Address: Harffstraße 110a, 40591 Düsseldorf, Germany
Classic car enthusiasts must add visiting the Classic Remise Düsseldorf to their list of fun Düsseldorf things to do. Here you’ll find a huge collection of classic cars, sale showrooms, retail shops, and workshops. So whether you’re just stopping by to admire these amazing classics or on the hunt for the next car to add to your private collection, a visit to this Düsseldorf attraction is sure to delight.
The center is free to visit and features a range of vehicles, from old classics to million-dollar supercars. Most of the collection is made up of automobiles from the 1950s through the 1980s and is all in impeccable condition. Feel free to walk around to ooh and awe, but you may be tempted to open your wallet, too!
Classic Remise’s restaurant isn’t anything to scoff at, either. Restaurant Mezzomar offers fresh Mediterranean cuisine at an affordable price and with an unbeatable view of the car collection. The restaurant features an extensive menu of pasta and pizza with appetizers, fresh salads, and Italian delicacies as well.
The Classic Remise Düsseldorf is free to visit and is open daily. The center, a converted warehouse, also doubles as an event venue. It’s a bit outside of the city center but is easily accessible on the U-Bahn and by bus.
See Related: Best Museums in Germany
13. Düsseldorf Altstadt (Old Town)
The Old Town of Düsseldorf, known as the Altstadt district, is a must-see for anyone new to the city. It’s best known for its host of chic cocktail bars and pubs. One of the most unusual things about the Old Town is that it’s said that Altstadt is “the world’s longest bar,” being home to over 260 bars within such a small radius.
If you’re a beer lover, you’ll definitely want to do some bar and pub hopping within Altstadt. Many bars in the old town serve altbier, a copper-colored brew that originated in Düsseldorf.
Continue your escapades over at Brewery Schumacher, the oldest brewery in the city. It’s believed that Schumacher was the very first brewery to create altbier.
If a guided tour is more your speed, we recommend this 1.5-hour tour of Altstadt. The local guide will lead you all through the old town as you learn about Düsseldorf’s rich history and beautiful landmarks. Looking for a great bar in Altstadt? Dä Spiegel is an awesome option with friendly staff, affordable prices, and delicious cocktails.
There are several fantastic hotel and rental options ranging from budget-friendly to all-out luxury. I recommend the TM Hotel Düsseldorf. It’s charming and is located right between the old town and Königsallee, with a U-Bahn station right across the street. The Heinrich-Heine-Allee station in Altstadt serves all U-Bahn lines running through Düsseldorf.
14. K20, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen
Address: Grabbepl. 5, 40213 Düsseldorf, Germany
Modern art enthusiasts visiting Düsseldorf must add the K20 art museum to their list of places to visit. The polished black granite facade is an integral part of Düsseldorf’s skyline and remain’s one of the city’s most recognizable buildings.
It features some of the most formative artistic styles popular in the 20th century. Standouts include German Expressionism, Cubism, and Surrealism.
The museum’s permanent collection includes hundreds of curated works of art by everyone from expressionist Paul Klee to Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso. The museum also hosts temporary art installations throughout the year that highlight different artistic styles. Paintings, photographs, sculptures, and drawings can all be found here.
If you want even more contemporary art, head over to the K20’s sister art museum, the K21. The K21 features art from the 1980s to the present day.
The museums are open everyday except Monday. The museums are a 15-minute walk away from each other or just one stop away on the U-Bahn.
See Related: The Ultimate Backpacking Through Europe Itinerary
15. Media Harbour
Media Harbour is a hip neighborhood located just south of Altstadt. The aptly-named neighborhood sits right next to Düsseldorf’s harbor and is known for its ultra-modern architecture and unique buildings. It’s an awesome spot to visit during your Düsseldorf trip, especially for street photography.
Many of the buildings in Media Harbour have been designed by world-renowned architects and are truly an attraction to see themselves. The buildings house companies ranging in sectors like technology, communication, fashion, art, and culture.
In addition to the amazing architecture, Media Harbour is known for its wide array of street art and is a hotspot for nightlife. If hard rock and ska is your thing, head to The Tube Club, where DJs and live bands will have the crowd going all night. If you like dance music, Ufer 8 is the place to be, especially during the summertime.
The Hyatt Regency Düsseldorf is an amazing place to stay if you love the vibes of Media Harbour. The luxurious hotel is located directly on the Rhine and offers guests luxury amenities such as a spa, gourmet dining options, and unbeatable views.
16. Düsseldorf Fair
The largest fair on the Rhine happens every year in July in Düsseldorf on the left bank of the river. The fun fair combines rides, games, and delicious German cuisine (think the best Bratwurst you’ve ever had) for a family-fun event, usually held during the third week of July.
The city hosts this fun fair on the Oberkassel Rheinwiesen fairgrounds, with over 40 acres filled with stalls from local vendors as well as vendors from abroad. Fairs held at this spot can be dated back to over 700 years ago, and today the fair is bigger and better than ever!
The fair features a wide array of rides and games for children (and adults) of all ages. Even if you’re not about the rides and games, don’t skip out on the fair because the food options are just amazing.
Beer tents line the outskirts of the fairgrounds, and you can find various food options throughout the fair. Grilled meats and sausages cooked over an open flame are just some of the delicious options.
See Related: Best Family Vacation Ideas in Germany
17. Düsseldorf Christmas Market
Winter is arguably the most magical time of year to visit Germany because of the country’s amazing Christmas markets. Düsseldorf actually has several Christmas markets located throughout the city.
So don’t miss out on warming up with some glühwein (mulled wine) and local treats. Each Christmas market usually features food stalls, craft stalls, and a small selection of rides. It’s a great place to pick up some souvenirs, too.
For the most extraordinary view of Düsseldorf during Christmas, head to Burgplatz on the Rhine. There is a Ferris wheel with enclosed heated gondolas where you can get a bird’s eye view of the Christmas market below, as well as some pretty iconic photos.
The best Christmas markets in Germany can be found in Heinrich-Heine-Platz, Wilhelm-Marx-Haus, and Marktplatz. Altstadt is also lined with little Christmas market huts and makes a wonderful place to stroll while admiring the Christmas decorations and sipping on some hot wine or chocolate.
What is Düsseldorf, Germany, known for?
Düsseldorf, Germany, is a lively city known for its street art scene, historical old town, and as being the fashion capital of the country. It’s one of the main cities on the River Rhine.
Is Düsseldorf, Germany, worth visiting?
If you love contemporary art, European history, and German beer, Düsseldorf is certainly worth visiting. It also has its share of green spaces and outdoor attractions for those who enjoy being out in nature.
Which German state is Düsseldorf located in?
Düsseldorf is located in Western Germany in the country’s North Rhine-Westphalia state. It is the largest German state in terms of population and fourth largest in terms of area.