After a day trip to Tilburg?
A day trip to Tilburg might just be the small adventure you are looking for. Here are seven reasons why!
When thinking of going on an exciting day trip, Tilburg may not be the first Dutch city to come to mind. It’s a creative city with lots of heart and character, Tilburg also has a good mix of traditional and modern architecture going on. Walking through its streets is an adventure, because you never know what you’ll find behind the next corner. Here are seven things that might pleasantly surprise you while exploring the city and why you should plan a day trip to Tilburg.
Oh, before we get started and you still need to get to know Tilburg, here are six things to know about Tilburg:
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#1 One of the culture capitals of the Netherlands: Great museums and events
Tilburg is home to some great museums. The Natuurmuseum Brabant is the city’s natural history museum, which contains some pretty awesome animal specimens. Museum De Pont is the contemporary art museum in Tilburg, named after Jan de Pont, who donated a portion of his assets to create the museum. The TextielMuseum, or Textile Museum, is a museum for industrial and designer textiles. Located inside a restored factory, the museum has a massive glass entrance which is hard to miss.
Other than that, Tilburg also hosts a ton of events every month. With over 700 events per year, Tilburg is one of the most eventful (pun intended) cities in the Netherlands. Some of the most popular festivals in Tilburg are the Roadburn festival, the Hap Stap festival, and the biggest hip hop festival in the Netherlands – Woo Hah!
#2 Tilburg is the best place to buy some unique items: Shopping!
When walking through the streets of Tilburg you can’t help but notice all the unique shops that are scattered around the city. So if you’re tired of all the global brands that everyone seems to be buying their stuff from these days, Tilburg is a great place to do some serious shopping. And if you’re not sure what it is exactly what you are looking for, 013 Straatjes can help you with locating some of the funkiest shops in Tilburg. From boutique clothing stores, to handmade household items – a day trip to Tilburg can help you become the hipster you’ve always aspired to be!
Not to mention that every year Tilburg is the host of ‘De Mei Markt’ a.k.a the biggest night market of the Netherlands. That means that for a whole week you can give into your shopping cravings and buy some pretty unique goods that your snobby neighbor surely does not own. So making that day trip into a week trip might just be worth it.
#3 No day trip is complete without a good meal: Eating and drinking in Tilburg
Of course, no day trip is complete without some good food. And thankfully Tilburg has a ton of that! Besides the amazing food that it offers, Tilburg is (of course!) full of some pretty amazing themed cafes and restaurants. Want a film house theme? You got it! Want an abandoned factory theme? You got it! Want a train wagon theme? You also got it!
De Wagon is one of the most unique restaurants in Tilburg. You literally can have your meal in a renovated old train wagon! You can either have your meal inside the train wagon just like a passenger, or you can eat outside on the terrace when the weather is nice and sunny. The food is delicious, and you can also sit at the bar if you feel like just having some booze.
Another place where you can have a great meal in Tilburg is RAW. This unique spot has a very interesting vintage themed interior. From old filming cameras, to old radios – this place has the best antiques. The vintage atmosphere, in combination with some pretty delicious food and drinks makes it the perfect place for a meal during your day trip to Tilburg.
If you’re looking for a place to visit specifically in the evening, then EVE is the place for you! Situated in a cracking new location with a great interior, Eve is the perfect spot for a meal or just a relaxing drink at the end of a long day.
Another spot where the food is truly lekker is De Houtloods. And you actually get to watch as your food is being prepared right in front of you!
And if by any chance you’re just looking for some typical Dutch restaurants or global food chains, you can always have a seat in the city center and enjoy some beer with worstenbroodje. And if you’re brave enough, you can do a quick sprint through the water fountains to cool yourself down.
#4 One of the greenest cities in the Netherlands: Nature!
Did you know that Tilburg is one of the greenest cities in the Netherlands? Even though it might not be your typical Dutch canal city, Tilburg makes up for it by providing its citizens with loads of fresh air and nature. And if you’re looking for a better way to connect with mother nature, the countryside around Tilburg is extraordinarily serene. Nature in Tilburg is beautiful, soothing, and tranquil.
One of the best parks to visit is Oude Warande. As soon as you step into the woods, the fresh air will hit you like a truck of zen! The paths in the parks are shaped in the form of a star and in the middle of it is a small clearing with a cafe. So if by any chance you’re done with exploring the museums or took ‘shop ’til you drop’ too literally, head into the countryside for a picnic or a lazy stroll. You might even end up seeing a fox, or at least pet a few doggies. Oh, and small tip! Bring some anti-mosquito insect repellent.
As surprising as it may be, there are also sand dunes in Tilburg. This mini desert in the middle of the province of Noord-Brabant formed around 10,000 years ago. These 30 square kilometers of shifting sands carry the name of National Park Loonse en Drunense Duinen are surprisingly an area filled with various plants and animals. The dunes are open to the public through walking tours on a daily basis. And if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, there are GPS tours, bridle paths and mountain bike trails.
Tilburg is also home to the largest wildlife zoo in the Benelux – Safaripark Beekse Bergen. This safari-themed park allows visitor to experience the zoo by boat, bus or with your own car. And if you’re brave enough, you can also go by foot. This African wildlife experience is available all year around. So if you’re in Tilburg, drop by Safaripark Beekse Bergen to see the African Big Five – the elephant, rhinoceros, lion, leopard and buffalo. (just watch out you don’t get out of the car though 😉 )
#5 Enjoy great music in Tilburg
Tilburg not only has great museums to spend hours in, nature to get lost in, shopping and eating till you can’t anymore, why not enjoy an evening at a concert hall in Tilburg? They have a lot of exciting things happening every other day. One of the most notable locations would be Poppodium 013. If you’re interested in exploring the vibrant and burgeoning music scene in Tilburg, you’ll definitely not be a stranger at this place. International talent like Poets of the Fall, Machine Head, and Alice Cooper have all visited. Will you be too?
Notable concert halls don’t stop there! Also check out Factorium, Theaters Tilburg, Paradox, and De Nieuwe Vorst – venues that always have something fun and exciting happening! As I said, music in Tilburg is burgeoning.
#6 Doloris: the maze that will stay with you forever
A trip to Doloris and the experiences you will have in there cannot be put into words. It is an otherworldly maze you have to go through while being blind-folded. When your blind-folded, your other senses are heightened. The maze Doloris uses this to give you an experience that will stay with you for a very long time. Needless to say, you have to stay open-minded and calm. It is definitely not for the fainthearted. But if this is not your cup of tea, they even have an amazing rooftop bar and restaurant where you can enjoy a view over the city of Tilburg while sipping on cocktails!
#7 Visit one of the top four libraries in the world: The LocHal
One of my favourite ways to spend time is to go to a library because it’s one of the last few public spaces where you can spend hours on end without being expected to spend money. The LocHal in Tilburg is one such library, and it has just been named as the second-best library in the world by the IFLA Best Public Library of the World Awards.
It is a repurposed old locomotive hall which is now a popular gathering place for students, young professionals, and families alike. It is a damn shame that it did not win, but ranks and numbers are not everything! This library is very close to Tilburg Central Station.
And if all of this wasn’t enough to make up your mind, once again check out this video on ‘6 Things you Need to Know about Tilburg’!
So there you have it – seven reasons why a day trip to Tilburg is a great idea! Is there anything else that you should definitely do in Tilburg? Let us know by writing a comment below!
Need even more tips on a day trip to Tilburg? Visit our friends at Ticket to Tilburg to know the latest of what’s happening.
*Written in 2018 by Veronika Licheva and updated in 2019 by Kavana Desai for your pleasure.