I’ve already written why the Netherlands is so memorable for me.
Now I would like to add few words about Arnhem – travel hub halfway between Brussels, Amsterdam and Hamburg.
Arnhem is the capital of Dutch province Gelderland; home to growing number of creative start-ups and excellent artistic University ArtEZ which offer dozens courses on Bachelor or Master level in disciplines like:
– architecture and interior
– creative writing
– education in Art
– fine Art
Locals from Arnhem are proud from architecture and design of their city. First astonishing landmark visible for travelers is the central station itself – super futuristic building reopened in current form in the end of 2015. Shops, offices, houses, cinema and railway station create one consistent object which tempts visitors to stay and explore more Arnhem.
I stayed few days around Arnhem six years ago. I remember sleeping in caravan in the middle of Dutch forest but I didn’t make any pictures on that occasion.
source: XL Creations https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vj9GkWJNxGw
There are large parks, open spaces and farms. Clean, unpolluted air. You can take a biking tour or just use one of free white bikes prepared in Sonsbeek Park for tourists.
Area of Arnhem is bigger than area of administrative capital of The Netherlands, The Hague. Did you know that Arnhem is actually called the Little Hague Of The East?
Gelderland is the largest province in Nederland and Arnhem with over 150 000 citizens is its capital.
Beautiful video displaying the charm of Arnhem:
I would like to show you some cultural heritage from Arnhem.
The following video from Spannendegeschiedenis.nl tells an interesting story behind medieval Doorwerth Castle.
It was destroyed in 1944. Polish historians like to emphasize that polish army helped Nederland to keep independence as a nation in the battle for Arnhem (Operation Market Garden, 17th-26th September 1944) but in fact polish army failed there. It is explained well here with conclusion: “Sadly, Operation Market Garden proved to be ‘a bridge too far’.” Fortunately, Doorwerth Castle was later reconstructed so you are welcome to visit and explore this castle in its full glory.
More optimistic side of history is displayed in main Dutch Open Air Museum, Nederlands Openluchtmuseum,
address: Hoeferlaan 4, Arnhem.
It’s a huge area of 44 hectares where you can spend effectively whole day, learn about daily living and admire historical landscapes of whole Nederland. You can even join skaters in the winter. Have fun! Architect Macanoo presents the museum on YouTube:
source: Mecanoo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tjwgkWgMg0
I’ve experienced massive flood as a seven years old kid. It happened exactly 22 years ago. My neighborhood wasn’t a victim but areas closer to river fell into chaos and destruction.
Then I spent two weekends in sandpit collecting sand for defenders. Only my city collected around 300 – 480 thousands of sandbags. Sadly 114 people died in Czech Republic, Poland and Germany. Damage in Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, Slovakia and Austria was worth 4.5 milliards USD.
I write about this because Dutch are masters in dealing with water. More than half of entire country lays below sea level. Apparently God have created a see but Dutchie have created their own land. Whole country’s existence depends on modern water – engineering solutions. The best place to learn about this is Water Museum in Arnhem.
Address: Zijpendaalseweg 26-28, Arnhem
That’s of course not all what Arnhem has to offer for visitors. We can simplify that Indonesia was a Dutch colony in the past. Nowadays, you can find at least ten Indonesian restaurants in Arnhem and it’s the best cuisine available in the Netherlands (not only in my opinion).
Just type in google browser: “best Indonesian restaurants in Arnhem”.
If you enjoy contact with nature, Arnhemians would recommend also this large zoo.
WHERE TO SLEEP
You shouldn’t limit searching for your hotel only to Arnhem. There are some nice places to sleep for around 100 euro / night but my advice is to find accomodation with direct train connection to Arnhem Centraal using
Nederland is a compact country with excellent net of public transportation. You can choose a perfect place which isn’t necessarily located in Arnhem and easily commute. Quality and price are more important factors than location.
Check also: interview with Dutch rockman who recommend the National Park in Gelderland.
author: Sam O’Black