Boasting a rich industrial heritage as the center of Germany’s coal and steel in-dustries, Dortmund is an attractive city on the edge of the Ruhr. It celebrates its history in a range of outstanding museums while being home to leafy green parks and forested areas that make it a pleasant city to explore on foot.
At the heart of Dortmund’s Old Town is the Alter Markt, which is clustered with boutiques, art galleries and cafes watched over by the Neo-Renaissance Old Civic Hall. The 13th-century St. Reinold’s Church dominates the city skyline and of-fers sweeping views of Dortmund from its tower while the 14th-century church of Petrikirche is of particular note for its gilded altar.
Discover Dortmund’s industrial past at the Zollern Colliery, a former coal mine that’s renowned for its red-brick architecture and striking Machine Hall. It offers a fascinating insight into the conditions once faced by workers in the coal indus-try, as well as exhibiting vintage machinery and coal-mining artifacts.
One old industrial landmark that’s been transformed into an artistic hub is the Dortmund U, a former factory where the works of regional artists, photogra-phers and filmmakers are displayed. Also of note is the former tram workshop at the DEPOT where cultural activities, markets and theatrical performances are now showcased.
Escape into the green oasis of Westfalenpark, which is home to the German Ro-sarium where more than 2,500 varieties of roses are on display, as well as an ice-skating rink and the Westfalenstadion, one of the largest football stadiums in Eu-rope. Alternatively, enjoy a stroll through Dortmund’s Botanical Gardens that are located in nearby Rombergpark.
After exploring the sights of Dortmund, head south to the Hohensyburg, an an-cient castle complex that perches on a wooded crag overlooking the Ruhr valley. Its ruins include two large keeps and the remnants of the castle wall while being within easy access of the Hengsteysee lake.