Essen travel guide

Essen Tourism | Essen Guide

You're Going to Love Essen

Boasting superb museums like the Folkwang and UNESCO-listed industrial complexes, Essen has lesser known delights to discover as well, including some gorgeous religious sculptures from the Dark Ages.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Essen

1. The Folkwang Museum

This superb art museum is one of the treasures of the Ruhr Valley and is home to works by Van Gogh, Renoir, and Manet, among many others.

2. A UNESCO-Listed Industrial Heritage

The Zollverein Coal Mining Complex is one of the most impressive in the world, and the guided tour is not to be missed.

3. Beautiful Religious Art and Architecture

Essen may be industrial, but it has a stock of stunning churches to visit. The highlight is Essen Minster, where you can see a golden sculpture of the Madonna, made in 980 and the oldest of its kind in the world.

4. Find Out about the Achievements of German Design

The Red Dot Museum showcases the best in design (and gives out awards to the year's best creations), and it's a fascinating place to visit if you have an interest in interiors and furnishings.

5. Fantastic Events for Motorsports Fans

Every December, Essen hosts one of the world's biggest fairs for motorsports lovers. If you are a fan of BMW or other German-manufactured vehicles, there's no better place to be.

Where to Eat in Essen

Dining out in Essen has a cosmopolitan feel, and there's plenty of choice. Standouts include Casino Zollverein (in the industrial complex) and the timber-framed Hülsmannshof. Meals will cost around EUR15 for entrees, and about EUR30 per head in total.

When to visit Essen

Essen in February
Estimated hotel price
C$ 61
1 night at 3-star hotel
Essen in February
Estimated hotel price
C$ 61
1 night at 3-star hotel

Christmas brings the motor show and festive markets, while late summer brings events like Rü Oktoberfest, while attractions like the Folkwang Museum are appealing at any time of year.

Data provided by weatherbase
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Essen


Düsseldorf Airport (DUS) is the nearest airport. From there, take the train to Essen Hauptbahnhof (EUR10, 20 minutes).


Essen's Hauptbahnhof (Hbf) has excellent rail connections with other German cities, including Munich, Berlin, and Cologne.


The A2 runs from Berlin to Essen via Dortmund, while the A3 runs from Frankfurt. From Düsseldorf Airport, take the A52 straight into central Essen.


VRR runs buses from major cities in the Ruhr (including Düsseldorf Airport), while Eurolines offers long distance services to Berlin and foreign cities like Paris.

Airports near Essen

Airlines serving Essen

Good (1,090 reviews)
United Airlines
Good (2,331 reviews)
American Airlines
Good (3,780 reviews)
Good (264 reviews)
Air France
Good (271 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (950 reviews)
British Airways
Good (767 reviews)
Excellent (2,561 reviews)
Excellent (304 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (850 reviews)
Good (549 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (477 reviews)
Austrian Airlines
Good (159 reviews)
Excellent (587 reviews)
Good (333 reviews)
Good (1,030 reviews)
Scandinavian Airlines
Good (271 reviews)
Good (357 reviews)
Etihad Airways
Good (176 reviews)
Good (216 reviews)
Show more

Where to stay in Essen

Accommodation highlights include the Hotel Essen Motel One and the City Hotel Essen, while the Atlantic Congress Hotel Essen is a highly rated hotel near the Essen exhibition center.

Popular neighbourhoods in Essen

Rüttenscheid - known as Essen's creative hub, Rüttenscheid is the place to find great bars like Menehune Cocktailbar, boutiques like Stakks, and a host of wonderful Asian eateries.

Kettwiger Straße - this pedestrianized street in Essen city center is the main shopping area, featuring apparel stores like Peek & Cloppenburg as well as the enormous Lichtburg cinema and the city cathedral.

Bredeney - Essen's most laid-back neighborhood, Bredeney is prosperous and elegant, and an excellent place for families to stay.

Most popular hotel in Essen by neighborhood

Where to stay in popular areas of Essen

Most booked hotels in Essen

Hotel Am Sportpark
Excellent (8.9, Excellent reviews)
C$ 93+
The Niu Cobbles
Excellent (8.5, Excellent reviews)
C$ 79+
Ghotel Hotel & Living Essen
Excellent (8.5, Excellent reviews)
C$ 87+
Mercure Hotel Plaza Essen
Excellent (8.4, Excellent reviews)
C$ 69+
Ferrotel Duisburg
Excellent (8.4, Excellent reviews)
C$ 86+
Jugendherberge Düsseldorf
Excellent (8.3, Excellent reviews)
C$ 58+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Essen

Public Transportation

EVAG runs a bus, tram, and light rail system across the city. Basic tickets cost EUR1.50 and day tickets cost EUR5.50.


Expect to pay around EUR5 for the meter drop, then EUR3 per mile when traveling by taxi in Essen.


Essen's car rental options include Europcar, Sixt, and Hertz, and you should find rates as low as EUR15 per day.

The Cost of Living in Essen

Shopping Streets

Kettwiger Straße is the main city center shopping street, but the Limbecker Platz shopping mall is even larger, with a vast number of German and international brands.

Groceries and Other

Supermarkets in Essen include Lidl and REWE, where you can expect to pay about EUR2.50 for a gallon of milk.

Cheap meal
C$ 16.06
A pair of jeans
C$ 111.05
Single public transport ticket
C$ 3.63
C$ 3.71