Lakes and bathing areas close to Düsseldorf
Not an official swimming lake and thus not actually approved for swimming. But that hardly bothers the many visitors who hang out here weekend after weekend in the summer. Favorite spot for the gay scene.
›› B1 Richtung Lohausen, B8 bis Düsseldorf-Angermund
Besides the wakeboard facility, there is a beach where you can watch in shady comfort as athletes tumble from their boards, and then take your turn.
›› 40764 Langenfeld, A46 Richtung Wuppertal, A59 Richtung Leverkusen/Köln, Abfahrt Monheim
Sport freaks can let off steam at this water skiing and wakeboarding facility. Plus climbing rope area, beach football, aqua golf, trampoline and much more.
›› 47669 Wachtendonk, Tel. 0 28 39/2 77, www.blaue-lagune.de, A40 Richtung Venlo, Abfahrt Wankum, Richtung Grefrath
This former gravel pit is now an idyllically situated swimming lake. It even has a small island.
›› 41849 Wassenberg, Tel. 0 24 32/20 94 0, www.effelderwaldsee.de, A57 Richtung Krefeld, A46 Richtung Heinsberg, Abfahrt Hückelhoven West
This 50-ha lake is especially popular among Krefeld folks. Snacks, barbecue area and WC facilities are available.
›› 47829 Krefeld, Tel. 0 21 51/47 10 09, A57 Richtung Krefeld, Abfahrt Krefeld-Gartenstadt
While the larger of these two lakes is reserved for sailors, surfers, divers and fishermen, the smaller is available to swimmers. The sand beach is the right environment for sun worshippers. Families retreat to the shade of the large trees on the shore.
›› 41564 Kaarst, Tel. 0 21 82/1 70 50, A57 Richtung Köln, Abfahrt Holzbüttgen
Quarry lake and open-air pool in one. While experienced swimmers prefer the lake with its extremely steep banks, others can use the heated pool next-door. A kiosk, a large terrace and various sport options make the Kruppsee an attractive excursion destination for almost anyone.
›› 47229 Duisburg, Tel. 0 20 65/4 14 33, A57 Richtung Krefeld, Abfahrt Krefeld-Gartenstadt
Also known as the Straberger Baggersee. The broad sandy beach and the gently sloping bank make this lake especially appealing to families. Snack bar, pedal boat rental, beach volleyball, play area, but no non-swimmer area.
›› 41539 Dormagen, Tel. 0 21 82/1 70 50, A57 Richtung Köln/Dormagen, Abfahrt Dormagen
A very popular swimming lake, due to its central location and outstanding water quality. The north beach has a shore with a sunbathing area, beach volleyball fields, mud play area and a beer garden. The south beach also has a nudist area. A long network of paths for strolling or bicycling around the lake.
›› Unterbach, Tel. 8 99 20 39 (Strandbad Nord)
›› Tel. 8 99 20 76 (Strandbad Süd), www.unterbachersee.com
Lakes and bathing areas hinterland
This lake near Bocholt city center has a separate swimming area with non-swimmer zone. Dog-walkers can let their four-legged friends off their leads without concern.
›› 46397 Bocholt, A52 Richtung Ratingen, A3 Richtung Köln, Ausfahrt Hamminkeln
This quarry lake above all offers a refuge for threatened plant as well as animal species, and wide areas are not accessible to visitors as result. In separate areas though, water-lovers get their money’s worth.
›› 46487 Wesel, Tel. 0 281/20 323 20, A52 Richtung Ratingen, A3 Richtung Köln, Abfahrt Wesel
The lush bank is appealing for secluded strolls around Lake Eyller. Or row your sweetheart romantically across the water. Football and volleyball fields and a separate area for dogs.
›› 47647 Kerken, Tel. 0 28 33/60 17 79, www.eyllersee.de, A57 Richtung, Krefeld, A40 Richtung, Venlo, Abfahrt Kerken
Beautiful quarry lake with trees, sandy beach and sunbathing lawn. Besides the natural outdoor pool, there is an interior area with flow channel, 65-m slide, sauna, and fitness room. And who knows, maybe you can catch sight of Nessie somewhere?
›› 47574 Goch, Kranenburger Str. 20, Tel. 0 28 27/920 00, www.gochness.de, A57 Richtung Krefeld, Abfahrt Kleve Richtung Goch-West
Nord- und Südsee Xanten
Sun-worshippers regularly abandon themselves to their vacation dreams on the 900-m long sand beach. The athletic can dabble in water skiing, sailing and surfing.
›› 46509 Xanten, Tel. 0 28 01/71 56 56, www.freizeitzentrumxanten.de, A57 Richtung Krefeld, Abfahrt Alpen, B57
Parks & gardens
Alter Bilker Friedhof
This former cemetery was established in 1805 and now functions as a park. The varied design of this five-ha park makes it special. Extensive sunbathing lawns alternate with groves and parkways with curving paths. In summer, the water playground is a magnet for kids.
›› Bilk, Volmerswertherstr./Sternwartstr., Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
An 18-m high, ball-shaped building is the centerpiece and trademark of this garden. In this impressive structure, you’ll find a cold house containing about 400 plant varieties from the Mediterranean and other warm climate zones. On the outdoor grounds, visitors can marvel at the large wildflower meadow as well as a beehive. Themed gardens invite you to linger and take in the experience.
›› Bilk, Universitätsstr. 1 (Heinrich-Heine-Universität), Gebäude 29.01, Tel. 8 11 24 78, www.botanischergarten.uni-duesseldorf.de
At 14.6 ha, this park is one of the smaller parks in Düsseldorf, but also one of the most beautiful. The industrialist Heye planted the old trees at around the turn of the century; they include about 40 kinds of trees, including lindens, poplars and pines.
›› Holthausen, Am Falder, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
This park, once very elaborately designed, is maintained much more simply today than at its founding in the 19th century. The old population of trees around the pond gives the park a romantic feel and makes it a green oasis in the heavily developed Bilk district.
›› Unterbilk, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
This recreational facility is located on the left bank of the Rhine in the Heerdt district. Even the most stressed-out citizens find plenty of opportunity for play, sports and relaxation. A playground, mini-golf, bocci lanes, barbecue sites as well as a beautifully designed relaxation area. In the multi-purpose building, games can be hired at no charge.
›› Heerdt, Heerdter Landstr. 160, Tel. 5 40 79 70, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/freizeit
Freizeitpark Niederheider Wäldchen
A number of play areas, hiking paths and barbecue sites are spread out over 230, 000 sq m. A children’s farm with a neighboring riding school, located on an historically protected estate, forms the heart of the park.
›› Holthausen, Bonner Str. 121, Tel. 7 90 03 94, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/freizeit
Barbeceue sites, boules, trampolines, a 4,200 sq m themed play area for children, along with Düsseldorf’s first skating and biking park, has an appeal that crosses generations.
›› Flehe, Ulenbergstr. 11, Tel. 15 25 20, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/freizeit
Cemetery built in 1805, one of the most important cemetery sites built in North Rhine-Westphalia. Only 350 graves remain on its four ha, but they include that of garden architect Maximilian Weyhe, who conceived the park.
›› Golzheim, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Located in the middle of the city, this park combines the strict classic French style of the 18th Century with the nearly natural horticulture of Maximilian Weyhe. Large water surfaces, the widespread riding parkways and many sculptures and monuments like the fairy tale fountain and the “Green Boy” have turned the Hofgarten into a favorite destination for strollers.
›› Pempelfort/Stadtmitte, Heinrich-Heine-Allee, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Green oasis amid the densely occupied Bilk district, which serves as a neighborhood meeting spot. Expansive lawns and the large, elongated lake create a beautiful contrast to the surrounding office buildings.
›› Oberbilk, Warschauer Str., Tel. 8 92 90 58, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Nordpark captivates with its variety. Impressive water spectacles and fountains, an interesting population of trees, and artfully planted flower beds make it unique among Düsseldorf’s gardens. The elaborately designed Japanese gardens, with pools, pond, Japanese trees and lanterns, beckon locals as well as tourists.
›› Stockum, Kaiserswerther Str., Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
For a long time, this park on the southern reaches of the Grafenberg Forest had a shady existence. So in 2006, the city undertook comprehensive restoration and revitalization measures. A small park with just 8 ha, it has a very old tree and shrub population. The many rhododendrums, in particular, are unique to Düsseldorf’s gardens.
›› Grafenberg, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Park am Ständehaus
Elaborately renovated in 2002 for the Euroga garden show, this park has two ponds with a total water surface of three hectares. The K21 exhibit, which shows extremely modern art, is located in the estate house.
›› Unterbilk, Ständehausstr., Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Small, historically protected garden with terrace overlooking the Rhine.
›› Pempelfort, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
The Berg harbor was filled up in 1986 after changing economic conditions made it superfluous. The Bilk park was raised on the surface that resulted, to accent the adjacent, architecturally interesting buildings and enhance the Rhine embankment.
›› Unterbilk, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Typical city park with a unique view of the Rhine and with large lawns, offering enough space for sports and relaxation. There are two playgrounds and two dog runs on its 24 ha.
›› Golzheim, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
One of the largest parks in the city with 143,000 sq m of forest, offering abundant opportunities for walking. Children have a good time in their play areas, which include a water and an adventure playground.
›› Eller, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
For a time even used for farming, the castle park was thoroughly renovated as part of Euroga 2002. Designed in a nearly natural style, the park features various historical buildings, including the Mickeln Castle and the Meierhof Manor.
›› Himmelgeist, Am Mickeler Busch, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Düsseldorf’s largest park is likewise its most visited, which no doubt has to do with its variety. The public garden, created in 1895 with artificial ponds and idyllic stands of trees, has a romantic air. The embankment, complete with restaurant, offers a great view of the nearly natural part of the garden. Water lilies bloom in the ponds and a flower and grass meadow stretches to the protective wall of the autobahn. The park’s “In the Gardens” section ultimately forms the connection between two areas and includes 16 themed gardens on 20 ha, including the dahlia and aroma gardens.
›› Oberbilk/Wersten, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Opened as a zoo in 1876, it was converted to a district park with open lawn areas after World War II. With football field and water playground.
›› Düsseltal, Tel. 8 99 48 00, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/park
Every year on Good Friday, the imperial palace opens its gates and grants visitors a look into the idyllically situated castle ruins until the end of October. Its friends’ group organizes guided tours, concerts, readings and more.
›› Kaiserswerth, Burgallee, Tel. 4 06 68, www.kaiserpfalz-kaiserswerth.de
In 1770, the French building and garden architect Nicolas de Pigage completed the summer residence of Elector Carl Theodor. Today visitors to his main living area can experience court life in numerous special tours. Furthermore, the Museum for European Garden Art is in the east wing of the castle. It explains the architecture of the castle park. On the opposite side, you can pay a visit to the Museum of Natural History. The castle park beckons strollers with its orangerie, pleasure garden and hunting garden.
›› Benrath, Benrather Schloßallee, Tel. 8 99 71 40, www.schloss-benrath.de
Aquazoo Löbbecke Museum
A combination of natural history museum and zoo in Nordpark. Besides many aquaria with sharks, seahorses and rays, you can marvel at amphibians and rodents, too. Special attractions are the small tropical greenhouse, the seals and naturally the penguins.
›› Stockum, Kaiserswertherstr. 380, Tel. 8 96 91 50, www.duesseldorf.de/aquazoo
Wildpark im Grafenberger Wald
Fallow deer, moufflon, wild boar, pheasant, and partridge share a wooded area of 40 ha, allowing them to be marveled at and even fed in nearly wild conditions. Domestic predators such as foxes, wildcats and raccoons live in a specially designed enclosure for wild animals. An affiliated forest school, nature trails and a large play area make the Wildpark an exciting destination for children’s excursions.
›› Grafenberger Wald, Rennbahnstr., Tel. 65 19 03, www.duesseldorf.de/stadtgruen/wald/wildpark
A paradise for children. Log cabins, water playgrounds, climbing tower, a workshop, and a fireplace, where cooking takes place, awaken the desire for adventure. Goats, sheep, rabbits and guinea pigs live in the animal area, and you can sponsor them. Trained teachers accompany the children.
›› Eller, Heidelbergerstr. 46, Tel. 22 45 41, www.asp-eller.de
In its landscaping, arguably the most beautiful race course in Germany. Here Winston Churchill raced his horse – and suffered a bitter defeat. The racing season is between April and October.
›› Ludenberg, Rennbahnstr. 20, Tel. 17 72 60, www.duesseldorf-galopp.de
Television tower that’s 240 m high with a viewing platform at 170 m with a cafeteria and a revolving restaurant at 174 m. The tower incorporates within its narrow structure the world’s biggest digital clock. Established Düsseldorf residents like to challenge newcomers to tell the time from the 39 spots of light that run vertically down the tower.
›› Unterbilk, Stromstr. 20, Tel. 86 32 00-0, Öffnungszeiten tägl. 10.00-23.30 Uhr