Dortmund and Frankfurt
Just east and north-east of Gelsenkirchen and Cologne are Dortmund, home to another famous football team, and Frankfurt am Main, a financial centre whose skyline has earned it the nickname ‘Mainhattan’. Like Gelsenkirchen, Dortmund was one of the major coal-producing cities of the Ruhr area, and its industrial heritage remains a key element of its modern tourist industry. Frankfurt is often thought of as the headquarters of the European Central Bank, but it’s also a historic, highly cultured and cosmopolitan city surrounded by rolling hills, wine-producing towns and the romantic scenery of the Rhine valley.
No longer a centre for mining and mills, Dortmund now has a thriving technology industry. Its cultural scene runs from the recently-opened Dortmund Concert Hall (home to the Westphalia Philharmonic) to small cabaret venues via theatres, museums and industrial heritage sites.
But to locals there’s one definitive leisure activity: a trip to see Borussia Dortmund play at the thrillingly modern Westfalenstadion, whose north stand houses a team museum. For those who’d rather get active than be a spectator, the surrounding Sauerland region is perfect for winter sports and, come summer, boasts 37 different cycle routes.
Stadium and football team: Westfalenstadion, Borussia Dortmund
Travelling to Dortmund: A ring of autobahns (A1, A2, A40, A 42, A44, A45) surrounds the city. Around 40 InterCityExpress (ICE) trains and 100 InterCity (IC) /EuroCity (EC) trains call at the main station every day. Dortmund airport is 14km away from the city centre and Düsseldorf airport is only 60km away.
From sports arenas to galleries, and from high finance to cider, Frankfurt a.M. is a city of huge variety. As well as its football team, it has active basketball, ice hockey and American football teams that draw thousands of spectators weekly.
Those of a more cultural bent should head to the Alte Oper opera house and concert hall, the museums of architecture and German film or the famous Städel art museum (with well over 100,000 exhibits!).
In the unlikely event you run out of ideas, pop up to the 54th floor of the Main tower and you’re bound to spot something new – be it shopping on Goethestrasse, historic Römerberg square, massive greenhouses at the Palm Gardens…
Stadium and football team: Waldstadion, Eintracht Frankfurt
Travelling to Frankfurt: Frankfurt boasts Europe’s second largest airport and largest passenger railway station, and is a major hub in the continental motorway network.
Now try answering the following questions. You’ll need to take account of the information on this page, and do some further reading at www.germany-tourism.co.uk. Pay particular attention to: