If you feel the desire for recreation and an idyllic rural environment, discover the countryside with its culture and history and take a look at the smaller municipalities in the vicinity of Dusseldorf. Here you can find great places like petite and historically valuable villages to visit with the whole family.
Meerbusch - One example is Meerbusch, which lies on the western side of the Rhine and is directly linked by motorway to the Dusseldorf Airport and the Trade Fair Dusseldorf. Already in 1001 a castle named Meer was established as a forerunner of the current parish. Meerbusch is on the fringe of Dusseldorf. Here one can live rurally and has, nevertheless, all the advantages of being close to the capital. In Meerbusch you can experience the Rhenish way of life. The village-like town is green, artful and
aesthetic, sometimes fashionable and but also down-to-earth and comfortable.
Mettmann - A real historical sensation is Mettmann, only a few kilometres to the east of Dusseldorf. This snug little town with the epithet Neanderthalstadt owes its name to two grand personalities. On the one hand, Joachim Neander, a poet of very famous anthems. On the other hand the sensational finding of a prehistoric human in 1856 who bears even today the symbolic name Neanderthaler. To learn more about the prehistoric remains, visit the Evolution path, the Neanderthal museum and the glacial animal park.
Dormagen - Dormagen is known for its substantial advantage as an economic location in the triangle of Cologne, Monchengladbach and Dusseldorf. It lures investors from trade and industry with its very good traffic connection. It has much to offer for leisure, education and shopping for its inhabitants so the small municipality is unequivocal also for families. An attractive sight is the district named Zons, which is proof of the early beginnings of the settlement with its many medieval walls and towers. Also the construction of the Romanesque basilica of the cloister of Knechtsteden is worth a visit.
Xanten - Xanten is the only town in Germany that starts with an X. The 800 year-old town is known as a place of pilgrimage. According to legend, a boy was cured when he found the statue of Maria, which he had seen in his dreams in the little village Marienbaum, a small place next to Xanten. Also very considerable is the so-called Klever Tor, a city gate from the 14th century which today accommodates flats. But the most important figure of Xanten is the patron saint of the cathedral, Saint Victor who was executed by Roman legionaries because of his Christian faith. His grave is mecca for believers' pilgrimages since the early Middle Ages. The village thereby got his name "ad Sanctus", formerly known as Santen, nowadays Xanten. We decided to mention it under the headline village rather than towns because of its village-like structure and appearance.
Gruiten - If you like to discover a gem of small, historical village then visit Gruiten. The year 1,000 AD is possibly the date of its origin. In 1975 Gruiten was combined with Haan so that the number of inhabitants grew to approximately 7,500 people. The tradition-conscious inhabitants provide a lot of wonderful and well-preserved half-timbered houses in the original village of Gruiten. The arrangement of the old churches and dwelling houses reveals the structure of typical villages of the Bergisches Land in former times, a pure Western German landscape.