Cities like Amsterdam and Rotterdam are popular tourist destinations in the Netherlands, but unless you are interested in design or technology you might not be familiar with the city of Eindhoven. The city is located in the south of the Netherlands and dates back to 1232. The industrial revolution of the 19th century brought significant growth to Eindhoven. Philips, which started as a light bulb manufacturing company and became one of the world’s largest conglomerates, was founded in Eindhoven in 1891.
Sadly, the city suffered significant damage during WWII, so many of the buildings seen today are newer and more modern compared to in other parts of the Netherlands. Eindhoven is one of the largest cities in the Netherlands, and is home to many technology companies and design firms, along with a large number of people attending specialty colleges. It’s also a fun city to visit for these reasons and more.
Capital for Dutch Design
Eindhoven is regarded as the capital for Dutch design, so there are interesting hot spots and events like Dutch Design Week in the city. Museums and design studios are popular stops for travelers visiting Eindhoven. The Van Abbemuseum showcases modern and contemporary art, while the Philips Museum provides a look at Philips’ humble beginnings right in the old factory where Philips made its first incandescent bulb.
With lots of students and a constant stream of tech employees visiting Eindhoven on business trips, the city has a vibrant nightlife scene. Eindhoven even holds claim to the longest pub street in the country. Stratumseind has over 50 bars, clubs, and pubs, and on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, places tend to stay open until 4 a.m. The Market Square is more laid back, and is great for grabbing a bite to eat, or order a drink and sit out on the terrace. Even in the winter, you’ll see some people outside – some cafes even offer blankets to help keep you warm during the brisk Dutch winter.
Bicycling in Eindhoven
Cycling in the Netherlands is one of the most common ways to get around, but it’s also a great way to explore various cities like Eindhoven. Rent a bike and don’t miss the Van Gogh Bicycle Path in Roosegaarde at nighttime, which features stones that light up to resemble Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night. The Rondje Eindhoven bike path focuses on the highlights of the city, while the Hovenring is the world’s first floating roundabout where you can cycle around (or walk) safely above all the traffic.
If you’re a sports fan, especially soccer, you’ll want to look into catching a game while in town. PSV Eindhoven is the local team, and they play at Philips Stadion right in the city center of Eindhoven. They’ve been playing there since the Philips Sports Foundation was founded back in 1913.
Dining in Eindhoven
The food scene is growing in Eindhoven and you’ll find a variety of interesting eats and fast food. Don’t miss the new DOWN TOWN Gourmet Market that offers a number of interesting local vendors offering everything from pub food and Dutch snacks to Vietnamese Pho, Spanish pinxos, and Afghan street food. The city is also home to several Michelin-starred restaurants for those looking for a higher-end dining experience while visiting Eindhoven.
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