Travel tips for Den Bosch: city walk and my favorite places
I’ve been to many places in the world, but my hometown Den Bosch is still one of my favorites. By the way, locals call it Den Bosch, but foreigner know it maybe better as ‘s-Hertogenbosch. We just hate to pronounce it like that so we call it Den Bosch haha. And during carnival (around february/march) we even have a different name for it: Oeteldonk.
In this blog I will share a city walk through Den Bosch. I also share my favorite places in the city that you can visit during this walk. This city walk is about 6 kilometers long and is both doable for kids and adults.
Citywalk Den Bosch – what to do when you’re in Den Bosch?
1. Golden dragon of Den Bosch
We start the city walk at the Central Train Station of Den Bosch. If you leave the station you immediately see one of my favorite places of the city: the golden dragon at the roundabout. For me this is – together with the cathedral and the statue of Jheronimus Bosch – one of the icons of the city.
2. Start the day with some coffee at Coffeelab
At one of the corners of the roundabout you find a cute coffee place, named Coffeelab. The decoration is nice and the menu has a lot of vegetarian and even vegan options. Coffeelab is open every day (even on mondays – a lot of coffee places and restaurants close on mondays!).
Maybe you also like: my favorite coffee places and work spots in Den Bosch
3. Viewpoint over the Dommel river
If you have had some nice coffee (of course you can skip this) you walk along the Stationsweg, towards the city center. You will encounter a bridge where you have a lovely view over the river named the Dommel. I love the weeping willows that are already on the river bank for ages. If you look to the left you can also see the Tramkade with some graffiti. You will visit this place later during the walk. If you wanna skip the graffiti and street art you can cross the bridge and move on to point 6 in this city walk.
4. Street art at the Tramkade and Havendijk
If you do wanna see the street art and graffiti you don’t cross the bridge, but you go to the left. You walk to the end of this street (Havensingel), until you see the traffic lights. Here you can cross the street to see the street art and graffiti. You already see some colorful pieces on Havendijk. Just walk around a little bit and check out the streets in this area. You will find a lot of street art, both big and small! After wandering around you can walk to Werkwarenhuis. Behind this place you will find gigantic silos (towers) that are decorated. Pretty cool to see! And if you feel like having a coffee now, you can order one at the Portugese coffee bar DaSilva next to it.
5. Cute houses at de Dieze
If you have seen enough street art you walk back to the traffic lights and you cross the street again. This time you cross a small bridge. You follow this street (Buitenhaven) and then go to the right (to Handelskade and then Smalle Haven). In Smalle Haven (and the opposite street is Brede Haven) you can check out some adorable houses. The river that you will follow here is not the Dommel, but the Dieze.
6. Uilenburg: best part of the city
At some point you will see the bridge over the Dommel again at your right side. So if you didn’t check out the street art we will go along from here as well. You’re now in the neighbourhood called Uilenburg. Personally I love this area! There are a lot of cute coffee places and small bars where you can have a good glass of beer/wine. There’s also some cool restaurants to check out. I will share some of my favorites:
– Proeflokaal ‘t Paultje in the Lepelstraat is a great place to try some new beers. They have SO MANY choices!
– If you’re searching for a small, adorable coffee place you can visit Van de Kaart or Drab Coffee. Both are located in the Kruisstraat.
– Some of my favorite places to have lunch or dinner are located in the Snellestraat: Crème Coffee & Pastry, Eetbar DIT and The Shoege.
– And if you feel like Middle-Eastern food you should check out Yalla Yalla Foodbar in the Postelstraat.
So continue your city walk after the Smalle Haven, first through the Lepelstraat and then through the Molenstraat. At your left side you will see the small Dieze river. It’s possible to make a boat trip in Den Bosch; one of the starting points for those trips is here.
7. Concept stores in the Vughterstraat
So walk a bit around in the Uilenburg area, I’m sure you will love the atmosphere. At some point you will reach the Vughterstraat. This street is mainly known for having some (permanent) carnival shops like Hoofs. Keep in mind: carnival is really important in Den Bosch. We celebrate it every year, around february/march. For a couple of days everybody is dressing up, dancing in the streets and drinking a lot of alcohol.
Anyway, back to the city walk. Besides carnival shops you will find a lot of concept stores in the Vughterstraat. Some of my favorite concept stores are Waar, Koekwaus and Daily Poetry. Keep in mind that concept stores look vintage, but they are actually quite expensive. And if you’re a board game lover like me I’m sure you will love De Dobbelsteen. For a coffee in this street I would recommend the urban jungle cafe Oerwoud.
8. Reaching nature reserve Bossche Broek by raft
If you walk all the way through the Vughterstraat at some point you will reach the Wilhelminaplein. Locals call this square also Heetmanplein. So if you are lost at this point, just ask for that place. You will see another bridge at the other side of the square, in the direction towards Vught. At the left side of the bridge you will see some stairs.
Go down and you will reach the raft to cross to the other side: Bossche Broek. This nature reserve is just outside of the city center, but a lovely place to walk. By the way, moving the raft is a lot harder than it looks like, so you need some muscles!
9. Walking in Bossche Broek in Den Bosch
Nature reserve Bossche Broek is a nice place to enjoy nature and walk around, without travelling too far from the city center of Den Bosch. During this city walk you can make the loop as big as you want, but make sure at some point you end up at the intersection of Pettelaarseweg and Zuidwal.
10. Walking through Zuiderpark (with Jheronimus Bosch creatures!)
If you cross the street you will find some interesting sculptures in Zuiderpark: the surreal creatures of Jheronimus Bosch. But we just call him Jeroen Bosch. He’s a famous painter from the 15th century and he made some crazy cool art. One of his most well-known paintings is The Garden of Earthly Delights. The original is in Museo El Prado in Madrid, Spain.
In the city you will find multiple sculptures of these creatures. Once you notice them you will see them everywhere in Den Bosch. A couple of them you will find in Zuiderpark and in the water.
If you feel like having coffee or lunch I can recommend to go to Gossimijne. It’s a lovely place for lunch: they have great salads, soups and grilled sandwiches. You also have a nice view over the Dieze river from here (and check out people who join the boat trips).
11. St. John’s Cathedral, the icon of Den Bosch
If you walk a little bit through Zuiderpark you will walk back to the Zuidwal. From here you can walk to the Parade, via the street Cavaleriestraat. Here you’ll find multiple restaurants and it’s a place where they organise a lot of events. One of our icons is also situated on this square: the St. John’s Cathedral. You can go to the top of the cathedral, but only with a guide on specific times. There are a lot details, so it’s worth it to check it out. Can you for example find the statue of the angel with the phone? But you can also check out the church from the inside of course.
12. Fan of the art of Jeroen Bosch?
From the Parade you walk via the Choorstraat and the Clarastraat to the Hinthamerstraat. If you go right you will soon see the Jheronimus Bosch Art Center. The art you find here are not originals, but the replicas are still pretty cool and it’s nice to know more about this guy and his work. The museum is situated in a beautiful building. And if you go up with the elevator you have a pretty nice view over the city and the kathedral.
13. Escaping the crowds in the busy city center of Den Bosch
Walk a little bit back from the Jheronomus Bosch Art Center to the city center, via the Hinthamerstraat. At some point on your right you will find the Schilderstraat. It’s a cute street and a great place to escape the crowds, especially in the weekend. In this street you can see a big piece of art on your left.
If you follow this road to the left you will end up at Oeteldonks Gemintemuzejum. One of the most important holidays for people from Den Bosch is carnival. During carnival we change the name of Den Bosch into Oeteldonk. In this museum you will find some cool costumes and parade decoration. So if you wanna know more about this cool holiday where people dress up, drink a lot and dancing in the street for days you should check out this museum. The museum is not really big, so you don’t need more than an hour.
14. More surreal sculptures of Jeroen Bosch
In the same area as the museum you will also find the Jeroen Bosch Garden, with some surreal sculptures and paintings on the walls. Pretty weird, but cool!
15. The shopping street of Den Bosch: Hinthamerstraat
So at some point you will end up again on the Hinthamerstraat. This is one of the most well known shopping streets in Den Bosch. If you feel like shopping this is your place to be. Other places where you can shop are the Vughterstraat (for creatieve/concept stores) and the Arena (a shopping mall).
16. End the walk on the Markt (Market), the city center of Den Bosch
The Hinthamerstraat will lead to one of the nicest places in the city: the Markt (Market). You can check out the sculpture of Jeroen Bosch, his former house named De Kleine Winst (it’s the green house), the city hall and the Moriaan. The Moriaan is the oldest house made out of brick stones in the Netherlands. In the Moriaan you can also find the tourist information center for more information.
If you wanna have some coffee or grab a lunch on the Markt I would recommend to go to ‘t Opkikkertje. It’s a word joke: it kinda means like ‘something that’s cheering you up’ or ‘something that makes you feel fresh again’. But a ‘kikker’ is Dutch for frog. And because the frog is one of the symbols of the city you can expect a lot of them in this restaurant. The owner has hundreds of frogs! Pretty cool to check it out. And if you wanna go completely nuts you should order a Bossche Boll from Jan de Groot. They sell the originals here as well.
17. Extra tip for saturdays: best caramel waffles on the Markt
If you’re in Den Bosch on a saturday you should definitely get a caramel waffle (stroopwafel) at the market. It’s not too hard to find the place where they sell it: it’s most of the times right in front of the Hema shop. They’re sooooo good!
Hope you enjoyed this city walk in Den Bosch! If you have more questions about this lovely city, please let me know. I’m happy to help. And if you know some awesome places in Den Bosch of course share them as well via e-mail or in the comments below!