Day trips: Arnhem

5th April 2006, Comments 0 comments

Just an hour by train from Amsterdam, the city of Arnhem in the east of the Netherlands offers scenic beauty, high fashion and 'the bridge too far'.

St Eusebius and its tower

You'll be struck by the beauty of Arnhem's countryside: rolling, forested hills give way to open river landscapes and apple orchards. Sonsbeek Park, 15 minutes walk from Central Station, is a great way to 'go green'. Do a circuit walk of the park in around 45 minutes, then have a bite to eat at the Brasserie Aquarium at Sonsbeek Park - good food, good service, a beautiful view and a water playground for the kids.

Fashionistas should point their Jimmy Choos straight for the city centre - Arnhem's incubated some of Holland's best designers thanks to the efforts of its Hogeschool voor de Kunsten ArtEX. In 2005, the Arnhem Fashion Biennial drew some 100,000 visitors.

Instead of waiting for the next event (summer 2007), why not rove the Bakkerstraat, Weverstraat and Hemelrijke Passage for some unique fashion finds. Then relax at the Korenmarkt, heart of Arnhem's nightlife, or at the Dudok café (Koningstraat 4) at the foot of the magnificent Eusebius Church.

Visitors haven't always been welcomed in Arnhem - in September 1944, the city played unwilling host to one of the bloodiest battles of the WWII - the Battle for Arnhem (also known as Operation Market Garden - "Market" being the airborne operation, and ”Garden" the ground troop activities).

Thousands of Allied paratroopers parachuted behind enemy lines with the mission of securing Arnhem Bridge. However, Arnhem proved to be a bridge too far, immortalised in the film of the same name.  Learn more about the Battle for Arnhem at the Airborne Museum in Oosterbeek, a short bus ride from Arnhem Central Station.

Arnhem Bridge in World War II

You can also cross the John Frost Brug, the bridge built on the site of the original "Bridge Too Far" destroyed during the war. It is named for Major-General John Dutton "Johnny" Frost (December 31, 1912 - May 21, 1993), a British airborne officer who played a prominent role in Operation Market Garden.

St. Eusebius church, built in the 15th century, dominates the north end of the market square. You have a great view of the city from its magnificent tower, which is now owned by the municipality.

The church was badly damaged during the fighting in 1944 and most of the tower was destroyed. The latter was rebuilt to a modern design and opened in 1964. It is well worth a visit.

Getting there

Arnhem has a major railway station, which is serviced by several intercity lines and the ICE to Düsseldorf and on to Frankfurt. The intercity lines provide direct connections to Utrecht, Nijmegen and Zutphen. It is also easily accessible by car.

For more information about Arnhem, visit

• (English)
• (English)
• (Dutch Rail)

[Copyright Expatica 2006]

Subject: Day trips + Arnhem

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