Dusseldorf Old Town Guide: Attractions, Restaurants & Hotels

Updated on October 28, 2023  

dusseldorf-old-town guide

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Looking for a captivating destination steeped in history and culture? Welcome to Düsseldorf Old Town, renowned as the "longest bar in the world" due to its wealth of pubs, restaurants, and bars.

This guide will take you through winding alleyways, historic buildings, major landmarks and more that make this place truly unique. Get ready to journey into the heart of Germany's charm!

History and Significance of Dusseldorf Old Town

Dusseldorf Old Town has a noteworthy past dating back to 900 years ago.

In 1186, the Counts of Berg took control of the region. [1] As centuries passed, this quaint neighborhood maintained its charm through winding alleyways and remarkable historical buildings.

Today, Dusseldorf's old town is more than just an antique part of the city; it stands as a symbol of cultural heritage and architectural beauty.


Each cobblestone street tells stories from eras gone by, making every corner iconic for tourists worldwide.

This picturesque destination serves as an impressive testament to medieval architecture with historical landmarks scattered amidst tourist hotspots.

Must-See Attractions in Dusseldorf Old Town (Altstadt)

Marktplatz Square

As a central square in Dusseldorf's Old Town, Marktplatz Square flaunts its historical significance and architectural gems.

This tourist hotspot houses the Town Hall of Dusseldorf, a testament to centuries-old architectural heritage.


Known for its rich past, the square dates back to the 14th century when it was part of the city's first expansion.

At this historic site, tourists marvel at an imposing equestrian statue of Elector Johann Wilhelm II at its center. The majestic bronze figure stands as a proud emblem of his rule over Dusseldorf during the late 17th century.

A visit to Marktplatz Square offers an enriching experience that reaches far beyond sightseeing; one delves into cultural narratives etched throughout centuries and embodied within stone structures standing tall today.


Schlossturm, a must-see attraction in Düsseldorf's Old Town, stands as the lone survivor of an old castle that once towered over the city. Its towering structure on Burgplatz beckons visitors from afar.

Now serving as SchiffahrtsMuseum, Schlossturm displays a collection of ship models, illustrations and artifacts that narrate 2000 years of maritime history.


This historic building is not just viewed as part of Germany's artistic heritage but also praised as one of its finest maritime museums.

A visit to this museum offers engaging tales about ships and their evolutions across centuries. No trip to Dusseldorf would be truly complete without exploring the historic charm and maritime secrets housed within Schlossturm!

Basilika St. Lambertus

Basilika St. Lambertus is a stunning 13th-century church in Dusseldorf Old Town.

The church's Gothic-style architecture and tall dome make it a must-see attraction for visitors. Located next to the Rhine River, this historic site offers picturesque views that are truly captivating.


You can visit the basilica on weekdays from 10am to 5pm without paying any admission fee.

One interesting fact about this beautiful structure is its leaning tower, which adds to its charm and uniqueness.

Basilika St. Lambertus is perhaps the most well-known of all churches in Dusseldorf.

Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen (K20 and K21)

The Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen is the art collection of the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and consists of two venues, K20 and K21.

K20 showcases a rich array of 20th-century masterpieces, from iconic pieces by Klee and Kandinsky to avant-garde works. Meanwhile, K21 takes you on a contemporary art journey, boasting cutting-edge installations and diverse perspectives.


The architectural brilliance of both buildings is an art form in itself, adding to the experience. Wander through these art galleries to witness a unique dialogue between tradition and innovation, history and the present.

The thought-provoking exhibits promise a deep connection with art and culture, making this museum a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts and curious minds alike.

Carlsplatz Markt

Carlsplatz Markt is a bustling street market located in the heart of Düsseldorf's Old Town. This vibrant market offers visitors a taste of local flavors, with stalls selling fresh food from farmers.

From fruits and vegetables to cheese and fish, Carlsplatz Markt has it all. While the prices can be on the higher side, the quality of the products makes it worth it for many visitors.


For those who want to enjoy their purchases right away, there are also outdoor seating areas where you can savor your delicious finds.

Whether you're a food enthusiast or simply looking for an authentic culinary experience, Carlsplatz Markt promises to satisfy your cravings with its diverse cuisine and specialty offerings such as wine and fish.


Bolkerstrasse, located in Düsseldorf's Old Town, is a must-visit destination for nightlife lovers. 

Known as the "longest bar in the world," Bolkerstrasse boasts an array of pubs, bars, nightclubs, and restaurants that offer entertainment throughout the night.


Visitors can enjoy live music performances, dance clubs with energetic beats, and craft beer or cocktails from various establishments along this vibrant street.

As part of Düsseldorf's lively atmosphere and cultural experiences, Bolkerstrasse provides a buzzing nightlife scene that attracts both locals and tourists alike.


The Rheinuferpromenade, located in Dusseldorf Old Town, offers a picturesque walk along the eastern bank of the Rhine River.

This scenic waterfront promenade is lined with restaurants, bars, and cafeterias where visitors can enjoy dining options and refreshing beverages while taking in the stunning riverside views.


Along the promenade, you'll also find boats that offer boating opportunities for those who want to explore the Rhine from a different perspective.

As you stroll along this historic landmark, you'll discover various cultural hotspots and historical landmarks that add an extra charm to your experience in Dusseldorf Old Town.

Along the promenade, you'll also find boats that offer boating opportunities for those who want to explore the Rhine from a different perspective.

As you stroll along this historic landmark, you'll discover various cultural hotspots and historical landmarks that add an extra charm to your experience in Dusseldorf Old Town.

Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall)

The Altes Rathaus in Dusseldorf is a historic building that has been standing for nearly 450 years.

Designed by Heinrich Tussmann, it is considered one of the oldest structures in the city and is located in Dusseldorf Old Town. [2]

The Old Town Hall is situated on the north side of the central marketplace and is recognized as a symbol of Dusseldorf's history and identity.

As a must-see attraction, this architectural gem attracts both tourists and locals alike, serving as a significant historical site and contributing to the city's cultural heritage.

Hetjens-Museum (German Ceramics Museum)

The Hetjens-Museum, also known as the German Ceramics Museum, is a must-see attraction in Düsseldorf's old town.

Founded by ceramic collector Laurenz Heinrich Hetjens in 1909, this museum houses a remarkable collection of ceramic art spanning 8,000 years from around the world. [3]


From ancient sculptures to modern cups and saucers, you can explore a wide variety of ceramics during your visit.

Whether you're interested in ancient artifacts or contemporary designs, the Hetjens-Museum offers an engaging experience for art enthusiasts and history lovers alike.

Exploring Dusseldorf Old Town (Altstadt)

Dusseldorf Old Town One-day itinerary

Explore the captivating charm and rich history of Dusseldorf Old Town with this one-day itinerary. Begin your day by strolling through the narrow streets, marveling at the impressive architecture that dates back centuries.

Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere as you explore Marktplatz Square and city hall, where you can learn about the city's past.


Continue your journey to Basilika St. Lambertus and Burgplatz, where you'll find the Schlossturm and an equestrian monument.

Don't miss Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen (K20 and K21), Carlsplatz Markt, Bolkerstrasse for a taste of bustling nightlife, Rheinuferpromenade for scenic views of the Rhine River, Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), and Hetjens-Museum (German Ceramics Museum).

Walking Tours of Dusseldorf Old Town

Explore the historic district of Dusseldorf Old Town on foot with one of its many walking tours.

Immerse yourself in the rich history and culture as you stroll through the pedestrian-friendly streets, taking in the impressive architecture and landmarks along the way.

These guided tours offer a unique sightseeing experience, allowing you to witness firsthand the local customs and traditions while indulging in the city's delicious cuisine.


Whether you're interested in heritage buildings or trying traditional local dishes, these walking tours are a must-do for any tourist visiting Dusseldorf Old Town.

Cultural Experiences

Dusseldorf Old Town is renowned for its cultural experiences, offering visitors a vibrant array of festivities and traditions.

The Old Town features many local breweries, making it a hub for celebrating the city's beer culture.

From unique craft beers to traditional brews, there's something to suit every taste.


In addition to the breweries, Dusseldorf's Christmas market held in the Old Town offers an authentic experience filled with festive cheer.

With its charming stalls selling crafts, delicious food, and mulled wine, it's a must-visit during the holiday season.

And let's not forget about the festivals! The Old Town comes alive during July with live performances, thrilling rides, and mouth-watering treats at the annual festival.

Best Restaurants in Dusseldorf Old Town

Uerige Hausbrauerei

Uerige Hausbrauerei is a traditional Düsseldorf brewery that has been operating for almost 2 centuries. Known as the flagship of traditional Düsseldorf breweries, Uerige offers more than just beer.

Their restaurant serves up delicious and authentic German cuisine for visitors to enjoy.If you're looking for a true taste of Germany, this is the place to be.


And if you're interested in learning about the beer-making process, Uerige also offers tours where you can see firsthand how their traditional German beer is brewed.

So whether you're craving some hearty German food or want to experience a traditional brewery, Uerige Hausbrauerei in Dusseldorf Old Town should definitely be on your list of must-visit restaurants.

Los Chicos

Los Chicos is a vibrant steakhouse and seafood restaurant located in Dusseldorf's Old Town.

With a colorful decor and a family-friendly atmosphere, it is the perfect spot for a delicious meal with loved ones.

The restaurant offers a mouthwatering menu that includes Tex-Mex staples like grilled steaks and fresh seafood dishes.


Don't forget to try their famous margaritas, which are sure to add some extra zest to your dining experience.

This top-ranked restaurant is consistently praised for its tasty food and welcoming ambiance in the heart of Dusseldorf's charming Old Town district.

El Lazo

El Lazo is a popular Spanish restaurant located in Dusseldorf's Old Town. It is renowned for its delicious tapas dishes and flavorful paella.

El Lazo offers a variety of dishes, including mouthwatering steak options alongside their tapas specialties.

With its prime location in the heart of the Old Town, El Lazo is definitely worth visiting if you're looking to indulge in authentic Spanish cuisine.

Weinhaus Tante Anna

Weinhaus Tante Anna is a must-visit for lovers of German cuisine. This restaurant is renowned for its delicious schnitzel and sausages, which are prepared using traditional recipes passed down through generations.

The menu features a variety of authentic German dishes that showcase the rich flavors and hearty ingredients found in Bavarian cuisine.

From pork schnitzels to bratwurst and sausage platters, Weinhaus Tante Anna offers a true taste of Germany.

Pair your meal with a glass of German beer and savor the flavors of this beloved restaurant in Dusseldorf Old Town.

Schweine Janes

Schweine Janes is a popular restaurant in Dusseldorf's Old Town that serves traditional German cuisine with a focus on pork dishes.

Locals love this place for its homestyle broiled delights, including mouthwatering pork knuckle and savory pork meatloaf.

Alongside these favorites, Schweine Janes also offers a variety of steaks and other delectable options.

If you're looking to indulge in authentic German food during your visit to Dusseldorf, Schweine Janes should definitely be on your list of must-try restaurants.

Shopping in Dusseldorf Old Town

Unique Shops

Discover the unique shopping experiences in Dusseldorf's Old Town. Get lost in the narrow alleyways that house quirky fashion shops and cutting-edge stores. 

Explore small, individual boutiques that offer a one-of-a-kind shopping experience.


Don't miss out on the local specialties like the Mustard Museum and Shop at Berger Strasse 29, where you can find mustard-themed products and unique gifts.

And indulge your sweet tooth at Gut & Gerne Schokolade chocolaterie and café, located at Burgplatz 3, where you can savor artisanal chocolates.

Immerse yourself in exclusive shopping experiences unlike any other.

Carlsplatz Markt

At the Carlsplatz Markt in Dusseldorf Old Town, you can experience a culinary delight like no other.

This daily farmers market offers an array of local produce and fresh ingredients that are sure to tantalize your taste buds.

From artisanal cheeses and freshly caught fish to gourmet wines and specialty foods, this market has it all.

As you walk through the small but refined atmosphere, you'll be surrounded by food vendors offering their mouth-watering creations.

And if you're looking for a unique gastronomy experience, don't miss the opportunity to dine outdoors at one of the many eateries available.

The Carlsplatz Markt truly is a haven for food lovers seeking the finest quality ingredients and flavors.

Rhine River Cruises from Dusseldorf Old Town

Rhine River cruises from Dusseldorf offer exclusive views of both the old and modern city.

These boat trips on the Rhine River are one of the best ways to get to know Dusseldorf.

As you cruise along, you'll have the opportunity to see Dusseldorf's old town during a city sightseeing tour on the river.


The superb river cruise allows visitors to discover all the iconic sights in Dusseldorf while enjoying a relaxing journey on the water.

If you're looking for a unique and picturesque way to explore this vibrant city, don't miss out on experiencing Rhine River Cruises from Dusseldorf.

Dusseldorf Christmas Markets

From November 23 to December 30, you can immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere and explore the market's picturesque stalls filled with handmade crafts.

Dusseldorf offers eight different themed Christmas Markets, making it stand out from other Christmas markets in Germany. 


Whether you're searching for unique gifts or simply want to indulge in delicious food and drinks, the Dusseldorf Christmas Market has something for everyone.

Don't miss out on this magical experience during your visit to Dusseldorf Old Town.

Conclusion: Why Dusseldorf Old Town Should be on Your Travel Bucket List

Düsseldorf Old Town is an enchanting destination that deserves a prime spot on your travel bucket list.

Whether you're planning a weekend getaway, a brief city break, or an extended exploration, this historic quarter has something to offer every type of traveler.

Families will delight in the family-friendly attractions, including museums and parks, while solo adventurers can immerse themselves in the rich history and vibrant culture of the area.

For a romantic escape, couples can stroll hand in hand along the picturesque Rhine promenade or enjoy a candlelit dinner in one of the many charming restaurants.

This quaint corner of Düsseldorf is a harmonious blend of old-world charm and modern vitality, boasting cobblestone streets, colorful buildings, photo spots, and a lively atmosphere that will captivate your senses. 

From the diverse culinary scene to the bustling beer culture, there's a little something for everyone in the heart of the city.

Key Takeaways

  • Dusseldorf Old Town is renowned for its historical significance and architectural beauty, with winding alleyways and remarkable buildings that have stood for centuries.
  • Must-see attractions in Dusseldorf Old Town include Marktplatz Square, Schlossturm, Basilika St. Lambertus, Burgplatz, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen (K20 and K21), Carlsplatz Markt, Bolkerstrasse (known as the "longest bar in the world"), Rheinuferpromenade, Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), and Hetjens-Museum (German Ceramics Museum).
  • Explore Dusseldorf Old Town with a one - day itinerary that covers all the major attractions or take a walking tour to immerse yourself in the rich history and culture of this charming neighborhood.
  • Experience Dusseldorf's vibrant nightlife scene on Bolkerstrasse or enjoy cultural experiences such as visiting local breweries, exploring festivals or strolling through Christmas markets.


1: Berg's Rule, retrieved from https://sites.google.com/a/macalester.edu/penkovsky_dusseldorf-germany/history/berg-s-rule
2: Altes Rathaus - Düsseldorf - NRW - Germany, retrieved from https://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/wm161FG_Altes_Rathaus_Dsseldorf_NRW_Germany
3: Visit Museum German Ceramics Museum in Düsseldorf - Germany - Homo Faber Guide, retrieved from https://www.homofaber.com/en/visit/galleries-german-ceramics-museum

About the Author

Stephan Drescher, founder of germanytravel.blog, is a German travel expert and insider, providing trusted tips and advice for a perfect trip to Germany. Born & bred German.