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The city of Essen was founded in the 9th century and grew into an industrial town predominantly due to the Krupp Family Steelworks. Until the second half of the 20th century, Essen was one of the most important centres for coal production and steelwork in Germany.
The Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex, one of the shining monuments to Essen's industrial history, is considered the most beautiful coalmine in the world and is now recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The pit, constructed according to the principles of the Bauhaus School, is used today by various cultural and artistic institutions. For example, the Design-Zentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen and the Ruhr Museum are both found here. In addition, you can visit the 269 rooms of the Villa Hügel, which once served as home to the Krupp family, and has now been transformed into a museum of art history and concert venue.
On your city trip to Essen you should also not miss out on the Folkwang Museum which covers the long history of photography and houses a collection of pictures from many different eras. The Aalto Theatre is the city's opera house and worthy of a visit not just for its performances, but also because of its impressive architecture.
Take a trip to the Essener Münster, a Gothic cathedral built from lime sandstone. Here you will find magnificent exhibits such as the Golden Madonna of Essen which is over a thousand years old and the oldest free-standing Madonna figure north of the Alps.
A more modern religious building is the New Synagogue (known today as the Old Synagogue), constructed in 1913 and used as a place of prayer by the Jewish community in Essen before the war. Today it still counts as one of the most impressive examples of Jewish culture and architecture from pre-war Germany.
If you have planned a full week trip, you should also take a detour to the Kettwig and Werden districts found to the south of the city. Here the traditional and iconic local character survives to the present day. Here you will find buildings like the Werden Abbey, already over a thousand years old, and the Kirche St. Ludgerus, a church raised to the rank of papal basilica two decades ago.
Even though Essen is without a doubt an old industrial city, in the past few years it has been notably rejuvenated thanks to its blooming modern culture.
Located in Stadtkern, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Grillo-Theater, Philharmonie Essen, and Essen Cathedral. Old Synagogue and Aalto-Musiktheater are also within 10 minutes.
Located in Obermeiderich, this hostel is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Landscape Park and 2.9 mi (4.7 km) from DITIB Merkez Mosque. Mercatorhalle Duisburg and Theater Duisburg are also within 6 mi (10 km).
Located in Ruettenscheid, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Folkwang Museum and Messe Essen. Aalto-Musiktheater and Grillo-Theater are also within 2 mi (3 km).
Situated in a regional park, this hotel is steps from Tierpark und Fossilium Bochum and Bismarck Tower. Zeiss Planetarium Bochum and RuhrCongress Bochum are also within 10 minutes.
Situated in the entertainment district, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Konig Pilsener Arena and Metronom Theater. AQUApark Oberhausen and Kaisergarten Park and Zoo are also within 1 mi (2 km).
Located in Stadtkern, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Essen Cathedral, Old Synagogue, and Grillo-Theater. Philharmonie Essen and Colosseum Theater are also within 15 minutes.
Located in Ostviertel, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Old Synagogue and Essen Cathedral. Grillo-Theater and University of Duisburg-Essen are also within 15 minutes.
Located in Westviertel, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Philharmonie Essen, Grillo-Theater, and Essen Cathedral. Colosseum Theater and Old Synagogue are also within 15 minutes.