Cheap flights to Dusseldorf
Modern and medieval, exhilarating and relaxing, Dusseldorf is a city of contradictions that will have you wanting to come back again and again.
Back in the 14th century, the people of the small town of Dorf were famous for inventing the cartwheel. Today the locals of the now much bigger city of Dusseldorf don’t practice gymnastics so much, preferring instead to enjoy the fast life of this city of trade and cultural goings-on.
A modern city in every way, Dusseldorf’s architecture is edgy and avant-garde, swooping at you from all angles. This is a place where sharp-suited workers zip between meetings and international jet setters attend some of the world’s largest trade fairs. If you’re after a pace that is both lively and exhilarating, day or night, then this could be the town for you.
Düsseldorf's carnival season reaches its high point in the days leading up to Ash Wednesday. The women of the city storm the town hall on 12 February, there's a youth parade on 14 February and on Rosenmontag, on 16 February, the traditional procession of decorated floats winds its way through the city.
Will Alsop's multi-coloured Colorium tower and Frank Gehry's shimmering, curving Der Neue Zollhof have helped make Düsseldorf's MedienHafen one of Europe's hottest urban quarters. See it up close on one of the tourist office's weekend guided tours. duesseldorf-tourismus.de
On 11-20 July the usually peaceful Oberkassel meadows on the banks of the Rhine are transformed into the Größte Kirmes am Rhein, a buzzing blend of folk festival, beer tents and one of Germany's biggest funfairs, with a traditional procession on 13 July and a spectacular firework display on 18 July. duesseldorf-tourismus.de
With a little help from Germany's largest Japanese community Düsseldorf heads east on 17 May for its annual Japan Day, with everything from sports and sushi to a large area for manga fans and with a magical firework display to round off the festivities. japantag-duesseldorf-nrw.de
Forget Berlin or Munich, because Düsseldorf's Königsallee is the classiest shopping street in Germany. A stately tree-lined boulevard, it packs an A-to-Z of international designer fashion into its 1km length, from Armani to Zegna by way of Chanel and Germany's own Hugo Boss.
Königsallee is by no means the only place to go for designer fashion in Düsseldorf: the Altstadt and Carlstadt have some excellent small boutiques, while Jades in Heinrich-Heine-Allee is a temple to high glamour, with labels including Emilio Pucci, Just Cavalli and MCQ by Alexander McQueen.
South along the riverbank from the Old Town is the Media Harbour, Düsseldorf's revamped dockland quarter. A great place for brunch, it's also an open-air expo of famous-name modern architecture. Most eye catching of all is the curved, leaning Neuer Zollhof complex by Bilbao Guggenheim designer Frank Gehry.
Escape the bustling city with an hour-long river cruise to Kaiserwerth, Düsseldorf's historic northernmost district, home to a romantic ruined 10th-century castle, idyllic beer gardens and (briefly) to Florence Nightingale, who visited a Lutheran religious community here before rising to international prominence during the Crimean War. w-flotte.de