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Unveiling the Charms of a Dutch Delight

Tucked away in the heart of the Netherlands, in North Brabant, the vibrant city of Breda beckons travelers with a tapestry of history, art, and culture that promises an unforgettable journey. With its picturesque canals, historic architecture, energetic student population, and lively atmosphere, Breda stands as a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by those seeking an authentic Dutch experience. Join us on a captivating exploration of this enchanting city, where each street corner unveils a new chapter in its rich narrative.

A Stroll Through History

Breda has a long and rich history, founded in the 11th century, and has been an important trading center for centuries. Breda was also a major military stronghold, and it was the site of several important battles, including the Siege of Breda in 1625.

Things to Do in Breda

The centerpiece of the city is the imposing Grote Kerk (Great Church), a stunning example of Brabantine Gothic architecture that dominates the skyline. The church's tower offers panoramic views of the city and its surroundings, rewarding visitors with a breathtaking vista that spans both history and modernity.

The beguiling Breda Castle, nestled in the heart of the city, is a testament to Breda's medieval roots. This impressive structure, once a residence of the Nassau family, played a significant role in Dutch history. The castle's picturesque moat and serene gardens provide a serene backdrop for reflecting on the city's past.

Explore the Begijnhof (Beguines' Courtyard). This tranquil courtyard is a hidden gem in Breda. It is home to a small community of Beguines, women who live a simple, religious life.

Art and Culture Abound

Breda is also a city with a strong cultural identity. The city is home to several museums, including the Stedelijk Museum Breda (Breda Municipal Museum), the Museum of Military History, and the Breda Photo Museum. Breda also hosts several annual cultural events, including the Breda Jazz Festival and the Breda Film Festival.

Art enthusiasts will find themselves captivated by Breda's vibrant cultural scene. The Stedelijk Museum Breda showcases a diverse collection of art and artifacts, offering a journey through the city's artistic evolution. From contemporary works to historical pieces, the museum provides a glimpse into the creative spirit that has shaped Breda's identity.

A leisurely walk through the historic city center reveals an array of art galleries, boutiques, and artisan workshops that showcase the city's creative talents. The Blind Walls Gallery, a unique outdoor gallery, turns the city's walls into canvases for stunning murals that tell the stories of Breda's past and present.

Charming Canals and Culinary Delights

Take a walk along the canals. Breda is a city of canals, and there is no better way to see the city than by taking a walk along them.

Breda's meandering canals and waterways add a touch of romance to its ambiance. A leisurely boat ride along the water offers a different perspective of the city, with picturesque bridges and waterfront cafes inviting you to pause and savor the moment. The Spanjaardsgat, a historic water gate, stands as a reminder of Breda's connection to its waterborne past.

Visit the Stadhuis (City Hall). This impressive building was built in the 17th century and is a fine example of Dutch Renaissance architecture.

Learn about the city's military history at the Museum of Military History. This museum houses a collection of military artifacts from the past centuries. Enjoy a concert or a play at the Chassé Theater. This theater hosts a variety of cultural events throughout the year. Visit the Breda Photo Museum. This museum showcases the work of Dutch and international photographers. Go shopping in the city center. Breda has a wide variety of shops, from boutiques to department stores.

No visit to Breda is complete without indulging in its culinary delights. The city's diverse dining scene caters to every palate, from traditional Dutch fare to international cuisine. Savor a meal at one of the city's charming bistros or explore the vibrant food markets that offer fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, and local specialties. Be sure to sample the Breda's Beer, brewed locally and celebrated with pride.

Festivals and Festivities

Throughout the year, Breda comes alive with a calendar of festivals and events that celebrate its vibrant spirit. The Breda Jazz Festival, one of the oldest jazz festivals in the world, fills the city's streets with the soulful sounds of jazz music. The BredaPhoto International Photo Festival showcases thought-provoking photographic works that inspire contemplation and conversation.

Gateway to Exploration

Breda's central location makes it an ideal base for exploring the surrounding region. A short train ride away, the bustling city of Rotterdam and the historic charm of Dordrecht await your exploration. The nearby De Biesbosch National Park offers an escape into pristine natural landscapes, where waterways wind through lush forests and wetlands.

Getting to Breda

Breda is easily accessible by train, car, and bus. The city is located just 15 kilometers from the Belgian border, and it is a popular destination for day trips from Antwerp and Brussels.

Breda, with its captivating blend of history, art, and culture, invites travelers to step into a world where old and new converge in perfect harmony. Whether you're meandering along its canals, admiring its architecture, or immersing yourself in its artistic offerings, Breda promises a journey that delights the senses and enriches the soul. So, set forth on an adventure to this Dutch delight and let Breda's beauty and charm unfold before you, one cobblestone street and picturesque canal at a time.

Tourist Information Office VVV

The following information is from the Breda Tourist Information Office website, an excellent place to find information about Breda. The site has much more information than the summary we present here, well worth visiting!

This is Breda, the city where ‘enjoying life’ seems to be invented. A bustling city in a historic scenery. Breda is the place where the Dutch royal family was founded 600 years ago. Many monuments and greenery remind of this royal period.

But Breda is also the place to admire modern street art, to enjoy the countless restaurants, cafes and terraces and to find peace in the vast nature.

Creative City Walk through Breda - Explore Creative Breda

Walk through historic Breda.


Breda is a modern city in a historic setting. And that is not surprising, given its rich history. The tranquility of the Begijnhof, the impressive Grote Kerk (church), the old Kasteel van Breda (castle) and the unique Blind Walls Gallery. All a stone's throw from each other. Discover the most beautiful sights of the 'Pearl of the South'.

Grote Kerk

Breda's eye-catcher: the 15th century Grote Kerk (Big Church) on the Grote Markt. Catholic in origin, but passed into reformed hands after the iconoclasm. The church is an important legacy of the Nassaus, the ancestors of the Dutch Royal Family.

Nine Nassaus and the first Prince of Orange found their final resting place there. Admire their mausoleums and climb up for some tangible history and fantastic views.

Blind Walls Gallery

Blind Walls Gallery is the museum on the street. A growing collection of more than 80 murals created by international artists. Each painting is based on a Breda story that fits the location. Cycle or walk along the street art and be surprised.


An oasis of peace, in the middle of the city. The Begijnhof (Beguinage) was founded in 1267 and was originally closer to Kasteel van Breda (castle). Because Count Hendrik III of Nassau wanted to expand the castle and the garden, the courtyard was moved in 1534-1535 to the location where it is still located today, the Catharinastraat.

As change for this, Count Hendrik promised that the Begijnhof would henceforth remain under the protection of the Nassaus. The houses of the Begijnhof are located around the large herb garden and the bleaching field.

Kasteel van Breda

The Lords of Breda, descendants of the royal house of Oranje-Nassau, lived in this castle, held court, feasted and exercised their power. Kasteel van Breda (castle) is located in the inner city. In 1198 there was already a castle on the site of the current castle. In the 16th century Hendrik III van Nassau transformed it in the first renaissance palace of Northern Europe.

Unfortunately, many of the original fortifications and the renaissance details are no longer present since the Dutch Royal Military Academy is located here. You can still see two heptagonal towers at the Spanjaardsgat. From the Valkenberg Park you have a beautiful view of the castle. Because the Castle is on military grounds, it is only accessible during guided tours by Gilde de Baronie.

Park Valkenberg

The royal park Valkenberg forms the red (or green) carpet to all the beauty that the city center of Breda has to offer. Until 1812, the Valkenberg served as a castle garden for the Lords of Breda. In the past the park was only accessible to the castle residents and their guests, but nowadays it is the ultimate meeting place for young and old. Look for the sun or the shade of the centuries-old trees.

Kasteel Bouvigne

The estate of Kasteel Bouvigne (castle) dates back to the fifteenth century. It consists of a fairytale castle surrounded by three special gardens in French, English and German style. The orchard has been restored and the estate contains various works of art. This beautiful estate is more than worth a visit.


Between the centuries-old trees of the Mastbos in Breda is a forester's path that takes you along a wealth of nature, history and animals. Stately beech avenues, extensive heaths and beautiful fens make the Mastbos beautiful in every season. Stroll through the varied area and discover the waterfront egrets, the blooming sundew and the fiery red dragonfly in the summer.

Boat trip

Explore Breda by boat and sail along the canals of this historic city. In the meantime, you can enjoy the beautiful view that the city offers. By sailing it becomes clear what has happened on and around the Breda water. Surprising to view Breda from the water.

Wining and Dining


Discover the hidden gems of Breda

Breda has so much to offer. Don't limit yourself to the city centre - which you absolutely shouldn't miss - but also take a look at the cool hotspots in Haveneiland, the unpolished Haagdijken and take a stroll through the Haven neighbourhood. Or enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of Veemarktkwartier, the Mediterranean appearance of Oranje-Zuid and the Burgundian atmosphere of the Ginneken. The neighbourhoods of Breda are all worth exploring.

Het Hart

Breda’s beating heart: de Grote Markt. Hundreds of shops, delicious food and drinks on the lively terraces and, of course, its eyecatcher: our Grote Kerk (church).

A historical part of Breda full of surprising sites to discover. Visit the intimate shopping court ’t Sas, the exquisite Houtmarkt or the indoor shopping plaza Barones.


For our gourmets Oranje-Zuid breathes grandiosity and allure with a Mediterranean touch. Passionate entrepreneurs treat you to a warm and personal welcome and love to invite you to their specialties. Shopping, having a drink, Orange-South is an outstanding area for enjoying life.

Het Veemarktkwartier

Here Bredas trendy craftsmanship can be experienced: small scale businesses with their own significant signatures. Their personal touch translates into its unique and free atmosphere. The streets of the Veemarktkwartier are interesting to wander through and enjoy their uniqueness.

De Haven

Bredas boulevard, De Haven (harbour): excellent for strolling, lounging, floating in a little boat or relaxing on one of the terraces. With its waters and the Havermarkt, Breda provides you with many perfect opportunities to relax. From daytime to nighttime, this is the entertainment district.

De Haagdijken

“Unpolished” is the word to describe The Haagdijken. Their distinguished character forms an obvious link to past centuries and Bredas rich history. Colorful, lively and diverse!  The Singels, Bredas canals, display a fascinating corridor to the city center.

De Boschstraten

“Everyone is taking it easy here”. Being a bycycle alley, this is the message to other traffic, but also the best way to describe the Boschstratens atmosphere. Including one of Bredas oldest streets of the city center, this area is home to our creative entrepreneurs, typical Breda businesses and, of course, our Stedelijk Museum.


Bredas warm welcome. Investigate the Stationskwartier: exquisite and contemporary architecture meets the typical 30’s vibe. Nearby, the Royal Valkenberg Park unrolls the red (or, if you wish, green) carpet to all the beauty Bredas city center has to offer.


From industrial zone to trendy hotspot for living, working and experiencing, this absolutely is a place to visit. The transformation of the Haveneiland is distinctive for the city-in-motion Breda is. Allow yourself to plunge into creativity, industrial history, the passion of local entrepreneurs and discover this area!


Ginneken is Bredas southernmost and most hedonistic district. Here you will experience tranquillity and spaciousness combined with the liveliness of town, just around the corner. Discover a mix of shops, horeca and history. After shopping, take a relaxing break at one of many caterers in this high-end area. Or enjoy nature and space in Ginnekens green surroudings of the Markdal and the Mastbos (pine forest).

Walking and Bicycle tours

Breda Wandelt

Go for a walk in a group with BredaWandelt! Let the city storytellers take you on a journey. The city storytellers are enthusiastic, exuberant and like to deviate from the beaten track. They are happy to share their love for Breda through unique walks and city tours. Everything the Pearl of the South has to offer, that is the goal of walking in a group. In addition, walking with a group ensures a smile, relaxation and stress reduction.

Choose one of the various tours if you want to make walking in a group even more fun. They offer tours about the history of the city, the bizarre stories of celebrities and a tour to experience Breda from a different perspective. Choose a tour that suits you best! In addition to the unique tours, there is also the possibility to book a complete day out with a boat trip, lunch, drinks, dinner and/or overnight stay.


City walks and bike rides

Gilde de Baronie

Tower climb Grote Kerk

Guided tour by Free Guides

A historic city walk, a special Nassau walk, a church path route, a courtyard and house route or a walk through modern Breda. There are all kinds of options for city walks through Breda with Free Guides. The guides point out the smallest details and tell you the most interesting stories interspersed with fun anecdotes.

Bicycle Taxi

The Bicycle Taxi Tour! A city walk but then by bike! We are happy to organize this exclusively for you on request. Currently for a maximum of 2 people at a time. With the electric Rickshaw M-TB02 we offer you the special themes City Tour; backstage; Royal of Urban Nature.

Extend your stay! Not tired of Breda and the surrounding area yet? There is really much more to experience in the culinary field. On day 2, go on a nice path to Zundert. They brew the delicious Zundert beer in the Maria Toevlucht abbey . You can buy beer here in the abbey shop. Or visit the Holy Triangle in Oosterhout, including the St Catharinadal with vineyard and winery in Breda.

Do you like breweries? Then you are in the right place in Brabant. In Breda you can visit various hip industrial or more classic breweries: Frontaal on an industrial location,  Bliksem on the rugged Haveneiland, the classic café De Beyerd with its famous own beer. And St. Joris Brewery  in the beautiful Boterhal on the Grote Markt.

Map of walking routes created by the VVV:

Hotel locations

Amrath Hotel Brabant
Bastion Hotel Breda
Bliss Hotel
Golden Tulip Keyser Breda
Hotel de Klok
Hôtel Première Classe Breda
Hotel Sutor
Leonardo Hotel Breda City Center
Mastbosch Hotel Breda
Nassau Breda
Nouveau van Ham
Novotel Breda
Onderwijshotel De Rooi Pannen Breda
Stadshotel De Klok
The Monastery