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Ausblick auf Düsseldorfer Rheinufer, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Big met­ro­pol­ises Route


Roadtrip through NRW

With 220 weekly dir­ect flights from the UK, Düs­sel­dorf, less than a 2 hour flight away, is prac­tic­ally your next door neigh­bour in Ger­many. For the non-car driver, it is also the ideal base from which to start your hol­i­day ad­ven­tures - is there not something so ex­cit­ing, so full of an­ti­cip­a­tion as a hol­i­day by train? Easy con­nec­tions from the air­port make this pos­sible. So take your seat, sit back, re­lax and watch the world go by. 
Dis­cov­er the cos­mo­pol­it­an at­mo­sphere of our vi­brant and dis­tinct­ive cit­ies.

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Ansicht auf das Historische Rathaus, © Oliver Franke / Tourismus NRW e.V.

Düs­sel­dorf Air­port to Mün­ster


1:15 hour by train

First stop: the cos­mo­pol­it­an city of Mün­ster ? a youth­ful, laid-back, stu­dent city with a his­tory go­ing back more than 1,200 years. This is where the Thirty Years? War was brought to an end; today Mün­ster is of­ten called Ger­many?s ?Most beau­ti­ful city?. In 2004 it was chosen as the ?World?s Most Live­able City?! Even on a day trip, you?ll get an idea of the high qual­ity of life Mün­ster has to of­fer, with its en­chant­ing Alt­stadt (Old Town), cathed­ral, Prin­zip­al­markt mar­ket­place and the Für­st­bis­chöf­liches Schloss (Prince Bish­op?s Palace). It?s also one of Ger­many?s most bike-friendly cit­ies, if you want to stop off and take a leis­urely cycle around Mün­ster?s centre. 

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Ruhrgebiet Landschaftspark Duisburg beleuchtet, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Mün­ster to Ruhr Area


1:00 hour by train

In­dus­tri­al her­it­age is one of the most dis­tinct­ive as­pects of North Rhine-West­phalia and some of its most im­press­ive sites are less than an hour?s train ride away from Mün­ster. Com­plexes like the Zollver­ein Coal Mine (a World Her­it­age Site) or the Land­schaft­s­park in Duis­burg-Nord in the mighty Ruhr re­gion present a fas­cin­at­ing homage to the area?s in­dus­tri­al past. 
Good to know: The Ruhr Area con­urba­tion has un­der­gone an amaz­ing trans­form­a­tion in re­cent dec­ades. Where once steel was pro­duced and coal formerly mined, you can now find re­hab­il­it­ated green spaces and re­cre­ation areas for walk­ing and cyc­ling. In­dus­tri­al fa­cil­it­ies have been con­ver­ted in­to state of the art ven­ues for art, cul­ture, sports and en­ter­tain­ment. The Ruhr re­gion?s many cit­ies ex­ude a met­ro­pol­it­an flair and vis­it­ors come to en­joy spec­tac­u­lar events and a wide vari­ety of at­trac­tions here. 

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Bonn Panorama Innenstadt, © Michael Sondermann, Bundesstadt Bonn

Ruhr Area to Bonn


1:30 hour by train

From the Ruhr Area, climb once more in­to your train for a quick, 1 ½ hour ride to Bonn. This el­eg­ant, baroque city is known not only as the birth­place of Beeth­oven, but for it?s beau­ti­ful open spaces, pic­tur­esque charm­ing centre and de­li­cious re­gion­al food. Good to know: Bonn may no longer be Ger­many?s cap­it­al city, but it of­fers vis­it­ors a mix of cul­ture and in­ter­na­tion­al flair, a his­tor­ic old town on the banks of the ro­mantic Rhine. The gentle, sur­round­ing land­scapes of­fer easy hik­ing trails if you wish to stop here. The house where Beeth­oven was born (?Beeth­oven­haus?) is now a mu­seum, hous­ing the world?s largest Beeth­oven col­lec­tion of arte­facts and mem­or­ab­il­ia and the an­nu­al Beeth­oven­fest, which takes place in Septem­ber, has earned a de­voted fol­low­ing from mu­sic lov­ers the world over.

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Die Hohenzollernbrücke am Abend, © Oliver Franke / Tourismus NRW e.V.

Bonn to Co­logne


0:30 hour by train

The most pop­u­lous city in North Rhine-West­phalia and the fourth largest in Ger­many, Co­logne should be on every buck­et list; ar­riv­ing here by train in­to the heart of the city centre, which provides a first glimpse of the cathed­ral, is an ex­per­i­ence not to be missed. More than 2000 years ago, Co­logne was already highly de­veloped and known as the Ro­man city of Co­lo­nia Claudia Ara Ag­rip­pinensi­um. After a vis­it to the Cathed­ral, stroll along the ri­verb­anks of the Rhine, to the ?de­li­cious? Schokoladen­mu­seum, wander through the pop­u­lar Schilder­gasse and dis­cov­er de­light­ful hid­den corners. 
Good to know: ?The heart of the world, yes that's Co­logne? is a fam­ous car­ni­val song about the city?s good life; it cap­tures the cent­ral char­ac­ter of this beau­ti­ful Cathed­ral city, which is vis­ited an­nu­ally by mil­lions of people from around the world. 

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Aachener Innenstadt im Sommer, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Co­logne to Aachen


0:35 hour by train

North Rhine-West­phalia?s cit­ies are in­triguing and in­di­vidu­al in their own way; right next door to Co­logne is Aachen ? steeped in an­cient his­tory and not to be missed. Good to know: this pop­u­lar city was the centre of Char­le­magne?s em­pire. Today, there is plenty to see and do, yet Aachen still re­tains its tran­quil at­mo­sphere. Most of its im­press­ive, world-fam­ous at­trac­tions can be reached on foot along the old and wind­ing streets. The city is dom­in­ated by the cathed­ral, which along with its treas­ury be­came the first Ger­man build­ing to be in­cluded on the list of UN­ESCO World Her­it­age Sites in 1978. Aachen is also known for its thermal springs, which are said to be the reas­on Char­le­magne es­tab­lished his im­per­i­al court here. 

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Ausblick auf Düsseldorfer Rheinufer, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Aachen via Düs­sel­dorf to Düs­sel­dorf Air­port


1:00 hour by train to Düs­sel­dorf | 10 minutes by train to the Air­port

With­in an hour you can reach your last stop: Düs­sel­dorf it­self. From shop­ping to ar­chi­tec­ture, from art to the longest bar counter of the world? be curi­ous!

Good to know: The state cap­it­al lies at the very heart of North Rhine-West­phalia: Düs­sel­dorf is a gate­way not just to NRW, but to the en­tire world. Busi­ness people and tour­ists from coun­tries far and wide ar­rive at the in­ter­na­tion­al air­port and dis­perse in all dir­ec­tions. So it is no sur­prise that Düs­sel­dorf has gained a cos­mo­pol­it­an repu­ta­tion, a city where art, fash­ion, life­style and the Rhinelanders? zest for life all come to­geth­er in a per­fect melt­ing pot. The city?s cul­tur­al di­versity can be seen in its cal­en­dar of events: from the tra­di­tion­al Car­ni­val with its speeches and high-step­ping dan­cers to Ja­pan Day.

More Roadtrips through NRW


Rursee von oben, © Dominik Ketz, Tourismus NRW e.V.
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Nature & Wild­life Route

Der Aachener Dom aus der Vogelperspektive., © Tourismus NRW e.V.
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UN­ESCO Route

Bierkranz mit Kölsch, © Ralph Sondermann, Tourismus NRW e.V.
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Beer Route

Ausblick auf Düsseldorfer Rheinufer, © Tourismus NRW e.V.
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Big met­ro­pol­ises Route

Alter Flecken, Freudenberg in Siegen-Wittgenstein, © Tourismus NRW e.V.
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His­tor­ic­al cit­ies Route

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