Zeche Zollverein Wheel, © Sabrina Schmidt

Top 5 of #urb­a­nana

My fa­vor­ite places to go in #urb­a­nana

Sadly, my time with #urb­a­nana has come to an end. But I would­n't leave without a prop­er good­bye, so here is my top 5 of #urb­a­nana and its sur­round­ings.

My won­der­ful time with #urb­a­nana is sadly com­ing to an end. However, I didn?t want to leave without a prop­er good­bye and a top five list of my most fa­vor­ite places to go in #urb­a­nana and its sur­round­ings.

1 Flea Mar­kets

Yes, you read that plur­al cor­rectly. I am a flea mar­ket ad­dict and nam­ing just one would be a crime as there are so many awe­some ones. The in­ter­na­tion­als among you will agree that flea mar­kets in dif­fer­ent coun­tries are very spe­cial to ex­plore as you will find all kinds of things sig­ni­fic­ant to the coun­try you?re vis­it­ing ? at a cheap price!

My fa­vor­ite re­cur­ring flea mar­ket is the Groß­markt in Düs­sel­dorf. You?ll find all kinds of an­tiques like gramo­phones and met­al signs and the reg­u­lar bric-a-brac at reas­on­able prices. This one is fol­lowed by the P1 flea mar­ket on the trade fair?s park­ing lot. They have a large vari­ety of street food and oh so many aisles to browse through old and new stuff that you can spend the whole day there.

On Sat­urdays, I pay my ob­lig­at­ory vis­it to the Aachen­er Platz, where I get fresh flowers from the Neth­er­lands and the oc­ca­sion­al Churro. Paired with live jazz mu­sic in the an­tique mar­ket in­side makes for a great Sat­urday morn­ing.

Dur­ing sum­mer, the court­yard flea mar­kets are a fun way to get in touch with the loc­als and see, be­side the ob­vi­ous treas­ures, those beau­ti­ful hid­den court­yards all over the city.

2 Best Hangout Places

In the sum­mer time, I really en­joy go­ing to the Paradiesstrand in Düs­sel­dorf. It is not ex­actly an in­sider?s tip any­more, but nev­er­the­less a great place to re­lax with friends and have a pic­nic and re­fresh your feet in the cold wa­ter of the Rhine. Just be care­ful and do not go swim­ming, as the Rhine?s cur­rents are fatally strong there.

The Ja­pan­ese garden was a gift by the Ja­pan­ese com­munity to the city of Düs­sel­dorf as a sign of solid­ar­ity and is a beau­ti­ful place to have a pic­nic or just re­lax and get lost in a good book in midst of col­or­ful flower ar­range­ments.

The Rhein­boulevard in Co­logne is the per­fect spot to watch ships go by on the Rhine and have a spec­tac­u­lar view to­wards the old town with a Weg­bi­er from the closest Büd­chen in your hand .

3 Strolls for miles

Spring has fi­nally sprung and that?s the per­fect sea­son for a stroll along the Ruhr Auen in Mül­heim an der Ruhr. End­less path­ways lead you along the Ruhr, em­bel­lished with daf­fodils on the ri­ver­bed, the per­fect place to leave your cares be­hind.

The Rheinufer­prom­en­ade is al­ways a good idea for a stroll be­cause there is al­ways something go­ing on. Take a trip from the Me­dia Har­bor all the way to the Ton­halle, across the Ober­kassler Bridge to Ober­kas­sel and back to the Alt­stadt across the Rheinknie bridge. On your way you may come across sev­er­al in­ter­est­ing sights such as the Gehry build­ings, the Rhine tower, KIT per­haps the book­mile and skaters by the bridge or sheep on the oth­er side of the Rhine. You may also just stop and watch the ships go by, have a snack and a drink at the Kasse­mat­ten or take a tour with a boat your­self.

The Neander­th­al is a great area to go for a hike. This his­tory charged place is not just an edu­ca­tion­al sight worth vis­it­ing but also your go-to des­tin­a­tion to wander around forests and vast fields along­side wis­ents and bisons.

Many of the Ruhr area's slag heaps have been re­designed in­to cre­at­ive, in­s­tagram­mable places that are worth check­ing out. One of my fa­vor­ites is the Ti­ger and Turtle Ma­gic Moun­tain as it com­bines a stun­ning scenery in con­nec­tion with its in­dus­tri­al back­drop with the joys of walk­ing a roller­coast­er. How cool is that?

4 Best Party Areas

I am not much of a club­bing per­son, so you might want to con­sult the Sound of #urb­a­nana for a com­pre­hens­ive list of places to go. The one I do like, though, is Odoni­en. It is a quirky place that com­bines the artist's work­shop with an event­loca­tion and cul­tur­al meet­ing place.

When in Es­sen, I go to the (aka Rüt­tenscheider Straße). There are bars and res­taur­ants for miles and good vibes every­where. My fa­vor­ite is the Fitzger­ald Ir­ish Pub as there is al­ways a great at­mo­sphere - they even of­fer karaoke!

The Kur­ze Straße and the Rat­inger Straße in Düs­sel­dorf are my pre­ferred areas. Less touristy and many nice bars and brew­er­ies. Es­pe­cially the brew­ery Kürzer is a great place to go to meet new people and en­joy a good Alt­bi­er.

5 Short Get­away

Det­mold al­ways re­minds me of my child­hood, be­cause this was a fre­quent des­tin­a­tion for school ex­cur­sions and week­end trips with my fam­ily. A week­end in Det­mold and its sur­round­ings would prob­ably be filled with a vis­it to the rock form­a­tion of the Ex­tern­steine, which can partly be climbed as well. They are loc­ated in the Teuto­burg Forest and there are many dif­fer­ent tracks you can take for an ex­ten­ded stroll or a nice hike. A short dis­tance away from there is the Her­mann Monu­ment, which can also be climbed and re­wards you with a spec­tac­u­lar view over the Teuto­burg Forest. After hav­ing a stroll around the old town of Det­mold with all its cobble stone streets and half-timbered houses you don?t want to miss tak­ing a tour in slip­pers through the castle. A must-see is also the open-air mu­seum which will guide you through the Ger­man life­style in the 1550s.

Images and videos

Be inspired: images of your NRW

Hermannsdenkmal, © Sabrina Schmidt
Rheinuferpromenade, © Sabrina Schmidt
Neanderthal, © Sabrina Schmidt
Ruhr Auen, © Sabrina Schmidt
Externsteine Teutoburger Wald, © Sabrina Schmidt
Externsteine, © Sabrina Schmidt
Paradiesstrand, © Sabrina Schmidt
Zeche Zollverein Wheel, © Sabrina Schmidt
Tiger & Turtle Magic Mountain, © Sabrina Schmidt
Düsseldorf Skyline, © Sabrina Schmidt

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