Believe me! There are amazing things to do in Nijmegen even in one day! It may not be as popular as Giethoorn, the Hague, or other hot spots in the Netherlands as a tourist destination, but Nijmegen will definitely not disappoint.
Nijmegen is a lovely and peaceful city in the province of Gelderland. When visiting the Netherlands for the first time, one day in Nijmegen is definitely recommended as a form of respite from your busy itineraries in Amsterdam, Rotterdam or Utrecht. This historic city is worth checking out for a day or two.
In general, the Netherlands is an enchanting country of flowers, canals, old structures, and friendly people. Simply walking or cycling along its lovely Instagram-perfect streets is quite a touristic adventure already. The same is true in Nijmegen.
A leisurely stroll
Spend an hour just walking along the beautiful city streets, namely Achter de Hoofdwacht, St. Stevenskerkhof, Grote Markt, Kerkboog, Kaannenmarkt, and St. Anthoniusplaats, amongst others. Meet new friends and grab a cold one along the way.
Pass by and check out the picturesque old city hall at the Burchtstraat. This lovely early Renaissanse-style structure was built between 1554 and 1555.
You should also take a selfie in front of the Sint-Jacobskapel or Glashuis chapel that was built in the 15th century. This old chapel has endured the test of time, having served the people of Nijmegen as a glass factory, a school, storage space, cow stable, an orphanage and even a house. Today, it is a popular venue for exhibitions and weddings.
From there, make your way to Waltoren Belvédère, an ancient guard tower or watch tower that was built in the middle of the 15th century and restored in 1888.
Rijksmonument Waltoren Belvedere Nijmegen
It’s time to go shopping. Experience shopping along the oldest shopping street in the Netherlands – the Lange Hezelstraat. You can find all sorts of souvenir items here as you visit the cutest and most popular shops and boutiques in the city. If you don’t intend to buy anything, a stroll along this popular street is also worth your time. Not far away is Stikke Hezelstraat, another well-known shopping street in Nijmegen.
Learn in museums
Your next stop should be Afrika Museum in Berg en Dal, just outside Nijmegen. A visit here will be quite an experience, as you view an array of African art displays and several traditional African artefacts. You will also see and learn more about the traditional African architecture, which in a way will show you that Africa and Europe, and their people, are pretty much the same.
Two other popular museums in the city are Museum Het Valkhof, which highlights modern art, old masters and Roman antiquities, and the Nationaal Bevrijdingsmuseum (National Liberation Museum), which focuses on the Second World War, particularly about international and national events that were critical for the liberation of The Netherlands.
Time to dine and drink
A fine meal and drink is always the best way to end your day. There are really good restaurants in Nijmegen, but two of the best ones you should check out are De Nieuwe Winkel at Gebroeders van Limburgplein, and De Meesterproef with its big, open kitchen, a spacious terrace and a beautiful interior in Waalbandijk.
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