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Düsseldorf Tips

More coming soon - downloadable PDF guide here (838kb)

What to say about Düsseldorf? One of my favourite cities - definitely the best drinking destination in Europe. Düsseldorf's Altstadt has a reputation as the "longest bar in Europe" - not one bar, but hundreds of them (none of which are individually very long). The place is driven by the love of a beer called "Alt", a sort of cross between bitter and lager (much nicer than it sounds!).

It's not all about the bevvy, mind. The Königsallee (or "Kö")is one of Germany's most famous designer shopping streets, he Rhine flows through the city, giving ample riverside space for walks, parks and riverside summer terrace bars, and the TV Tower sports a nice revolving restaurant, giving views over the altstadt, the modern architecture of the Media Harbour, and even as far as Cologne’s own TV Tower. The "Mediahafen", with it's trio of Frank Gehry buildings, is well worth closer investigation if you've any interest in architecture.

A few of my favourite pubs include:

  • Im Füchschen - brew pub on northern edge of Altstadt (Ratinger Strasse) – great beer, and loads of other places around. Also do a weizenbier called "Silber Füchschen", which is worth a try.
  • Schlüssel - another brew pub, this time on Bolkerstrasse. Plenty of proletarian (i.e. non-restaurant) seating and standing just inside the door to the right, and very good beer.
  • Zum Uerige - Massive brew pub in middle of Altstadt (Flinger Strasse). Superb waiters who replace your empty 2cl glass with a full one within seconds. In the summer they also float around the street outside, making the pub a very difficult place to walk past.
  • Schumacher - most people only discover the restaurant-ish "Im Goldener Kessel" in the Altstadt (diagonally opposite Schlüssel on Bolkerstrasse), but I prefer the earthier brewery outlet on Oststrasse, between the centre and the station. Turn left for stand-up drinking and great service, or right for the full restaurant beer hall.
  • Kabuffke - tiny wee place that sells the heavenly Killepitsch liqueur, right over the precinct from Uerige.
  • Peter's Diebels Treff - narrow wee lokal on Mertensgasse. Lots of alt, wood beams and schnapps.
  • Bei Bill - tucked way down in the south of the Altstadt on Hafenstrasse (opposite the expensive, food oriented Zum Schiffchen) is this great wee locals pub. Well worth a stay, but don't sit under the fruit machine! The landlady has fond memories of the Tartan Army from 2003.
  • Donau Bierstube - a strange bird of a pub on Worringer Platz, handy for the station. Seems to be popular with homesick elderly Balkan customers.
  • Das Gasthaus - right behind the silver Frank Gehry building on Hammer Str, this is a great place for a Füchschen alt near the harbour.
  • Bierhaus Zille - Amazing place on Kurze Strasse. Really narrow but stretches way back. Best left for after 9pm on a Friday or Saturday. If you sit at the front bar it has a scoreboard that shows what song is playing!
  • Spinnstube – tucked away on the southern edge of the Altstadt on Wallstrasse, this tiny local is a real find. The weaving theme extends from sewing to comedy illuminated arachnids hanging off the ceiling, and the carnival music can lead to the formation of an impromptu dance floor amongst the tightly packed furniture. Don’t expect particularly quick service (the old guy running the show does his best), but it is a real alternative to the crowded altstadt.
  • Auberge - Left the best laugh til last! This a German rock pub par excellence! Mullets and denim jackets a plenty, this tiny bar can be a squash, but has waiter service so you don't need to worry about squeezing to the bar. Guaranteed to hear Bon Jovi, and quite possibly, the Final Countdown. When "Wind of Change" came on in here, I thought everyone was going to break down in tears. I actually have a t-shirt from this place (seriously), and best of all, it says "Let's Rock!" on the back.

(Many thanks to Thomas Friedrichs for the help!)


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