Come and discover the city: there’s lots to see and to experience! Enjoy theatre, festivals, concerts, modern art and historical museums. You could shop till you drop or spend a vibrant night out in the bars and restaurants or on the terraces around the beautiful Pancratius Square. Fan of hiking or biking? In Heerlen green rolling hills, woods and moorlands are always nearby.
Heerlen has many fashion shops, boutiques, international fashion chains and department stores in the city centre. There are weekly markets held on Tuesday, from 8.30 till 15.00 hours and on Saturday from 9.00 till 17.00 hours. You will find fruits, vegetables, flowers, household goods, clothing and fabrics. An antique market with second hand stuff and bric-a-brac is held regularly on Saturdays from May to October, in the heart of the city. Please check our calendar of events and look out for ‘Curiosamarkt’.
Alongside of the A76 motorway, there is a massive concentration of furniture shops and stores, called the ‘ Woonboulevard’, one of Europe’s largest furniture shopping boulevards. It has dozens of furniture and specialist shops and the largest IKEA in the Benelux. You can park your car next to the shops for free. You could also take the train to station Heerlen Woonboulevard that’s right next the shops. That station is on the line Heerlen-Maastricht. Look on www.ns.nl for timetables or other information about train connections.
Shops are allowed to be open every Sunday, from 10.00 AM till 18.00 PM. It is up to the shop owners themselves if their shops are actually open or not. For more information we refer to the shops and department stores. You might find more information on:
Shop opening times
Most shops and department stores are opened on Mondays: from 13.00-18.00 hours. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays: 10.00-18.00 hours; Thursdays 10.00-21.00 hours and on Saturdays: 10.00–17.00 hours. The furniture boulevard has different opening times. Please check its website.
Lovers of modern art should not miss Schunck (the former Glasspalace), a ‘newseum’ in the city centre. Next to collections of modern art there are temporary expositions of avant-garde or urban art. Above all the Glass Palace building itself is an awesome monument. It is designed by Peutz in the 1930s and worth the visit. Closeby there is an intimate concert hall, called ‘de Nieuwe Nor’ that offers gigs almost every weekend. Or visit the beautiful medieval church of Pancratius. At the Theater Heerlen, one of the largest theatres in the Netherlands, and also designed by Peutz, you can visit theatre shows, musicals, concerts or drama.
Cultura Nova festival offers stunning theatrical shows in the open air and other unexpected venues. The festival has become famous for its internationally renowned shows or spectacle. There are always lots of smaller musical or art events on the side, also for children. It is yearly held, usually at the end of August. It starts with a grand show that is for free. Don’t miss it if you happen to be nearby Heerlen during that time!
During the International Breakdance Event, Heerlen changes into Hiphop City, bustling with breakdancers from all over the world. On many locations in the city, b-boys and b-girls show their jaw-dropping skills during dance battles. Next to that, there are many other events, please check our calender to see what is on.
If you have children, take them to the Castle of Hoensbroek. It is a wonderful, small medieval castle with a moat, a bridge, an inner court, a tower with a spiral staircase that leads to a dungeon, and many beautifully decorated rooms that give an impression of living the life of the count of Hoensbroek.
More contemporarily, Heerlen used to be a city of colliers before the coal mines were closed in the early 1970s. You can discover this part of our past in the Nederlands Mijnmuseum, a museum located on a former mine. Former colliers could give you a tour around and tell you what work and life was like in those days.
All the way back to the Roman Empire, Heerlen was a small settlement known as Coriovallum. We thank the remains of Roman thermal baths and many other objects for that. You can see them in the Thermenmuseum.
Hiking and biking
Heerlen has rolling hills, woods, moors and old castles, watermills and farms. You can walk or cycle for hours, for instance on the Brunssummerheide. You could easily end up on the German side of this vast moorland and visit a quiet village there. Beside the many bicycle lanes, there are special bicycle routes and shortcuts that lead through parks and natural areas in our city.