The largest city in the Ruhr region with a population of more than half a million people and in the past predominantly defined by its production of steel, coal and beer, has undergone severe structural changes over the years, and there is little doubt its development has been heavily influenced by the city's biggest football club. Here's what you need to see...
Dortmund is located in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and is Germany's eighth-largest city with a population of around 571,000. You can get there quite easily by air, as Dortmund Airport airport is served by several low-cost airlines - mainly from German and European cities - or take a train to the central station (Dortmund Hauptbahnhof) which is the junction of many railway lines in Germany. There's also an intercity coach station next to Hauptbahnhof.
Almost 98 per cent of the city centre was destroyed in the World War II, which is why Dortmund now has a rich mix of architectural styles. One attraction you shouldn't miss is the Dortmunder U, formerly the site of the Union brewery and now home to several museums. Take a stroll along the Westen- and Ostenhellweg to capture some of the urban feeling of the Ruhrgebiet's largest city. The viewing platform from St. Reinoldi's tower also offers a beautiful view over the city rooftops.
You’ll find something for every taste in the centre, but if it's traditional German football grub you're looking for, then make your way to Signal Iduna Park in good time. There you can sample the obligatory Bratwurst (fried sausage) or Currywurst (spicy sausage) at one of the many booths, and there are several beer gardens in close proximity to - and even inside - the nearby Rote Erde stadium. The Borusseum, BVB's very own museum documenting the club's 105-year history, is also well worth a visit.
Home of the city's biggest football club, Borussia Dortmund, and located approximately three miles south of the city centre, the Signal Iduna Park is one of the best-known stadiums in Europe, not to mention Germany's largest arena. It has a capacity of 80,720 (standing and seated) for Bundesliga games, while 65,718 can be admitted for international matches. The venue is renowned for it's legendary atmosphere, but tickets are in high demand, so make sure you enquire well in advance.
Once you've left the ground, you can share your thoughts on the evening's events with fellow Dortmund supporters in one of the famous fan pubs near the Signal Iduna Park. Highlights of the day's other Bundesliga encounters are likely to be on TV, but if you fancy a change from football, you can head into town for a taste of Dortmund's nightlife. There are plenty of bars, restaurants and clubs, both in the city centre and in the nearby Kreuzviertel, one of the more affluent areas of this charming city.