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Is the historic old town of Hattingen with its old half-timbered houses a worthwhile excursion destination in North Rhine-Westphalia? Find out with this information and impressions from the former Hanseatic city. My highlights are not just about the pure sights. There are also impressions of buildings or cafés that I particularly liked and three tips outside of the old town.

Here is a brief overview of the sights in the historic old town:

1. The Customs House
2. The bell tower
3. The old town hall
4. The Iron House
5. The Haldenplatz
6. A walk along the city walls
7. The three city gates
8. St. George’s Church with its beautiful church square

My TIP: The tourist information is located next to the iron house at Haldenplatz 3. A small box is attached to the outside, from which you can take a free city map.

Information boards with very good, brief information are also attached to the sights. Each board shows you the way to the next highlight in the old town. So you can go on a tour of the city without a guide.

Otherwise, one-hour guided tours of the city are offered on Saturdays at 3:00 p.m. for EUR 7.00 per person. However, due to the current high level of corona infections in NRW, these are not being carried out at the moment.

Now to the sights and highlights in the historic old town of Hattingen:


1. The Customs House


Customs house Hattingen


The customs house is the smallest half-timbered house in Hattingen. Although it bears the name Customs House, no customs were ever collected here. The building was not built until the city fortifications had already been demolished. Its small size is due to the fact that it was built on the remains of a former defense tower. I particularly like the small alleyway that leads to the customs house.


Way to the customs house in Hattingen



2. The bell tower

The bell tower is the only part of St. John’s Church that survived a bomb attack in 1945. The Hattinger Stadtweinhaus used to be located here, which had to make way for the church.


Bell tower in the historic old town in Hattingen


Bell tower in the historic old town in Hattingen:
Purchase contracts, annuity purchases and ‘treatments’ used to be concluded in the Stadtweinhaus. These only became legally effective when they were sealed with a quarter of wine. Hence the well-known saying: “We have to have a drink to that!”

Behind the bell tower there is a small arcaded square among the historic houses – very nice!


Arcade behind the bell tower



3. The old town hall

The building was initially a market hall for the sale of meat and was later converted into the administrative headquarters.


Old Town Hall in Hattingen


Of particular interest are the facade and the prison cells that can still be seen today, located to the right and left of the arched passage.


Old prison cells in the old town hall of Hattingen



4. The Iron House

Irons were never made in what is probably the best-known half-timbered house in Hattingen, but it got its name from the special construction. Nowadays it houses the Museum of the Heimatverein.

The iron house in Hattingen



5. The Haldenplatz

The small Haldenplatz is framed by merchant houses from the early 17th and 18th century. The first bank in Westphalia was set up in 1838 in Haldenplatz 8 (apparently today number 6) – the Hattinger Sparkasse. This building is now a residential building, which you will quickly recognize from the many verses and quotes on the outside walls.


The Haldenplatz in the historic old town of Hattingen



6. A walk along the city walls

The best place to start a walk along the city wall is on Martin-Luther-Straße next to the bus station.
First you can look at the three ‘iron men’ in front of the city wall. These sculptures are intended as a reminder that Hattingen used to be a steel location.


Iron men at the city wall in Hattingen


From here you also have a good view of the black and white artwork ‘La Porta Aperte’ at the former Bruchtor.


La Porta Aperte in Hattingen


I particularly liked the walk through the small alley ‘Am Graben’ along the old city wall. The small path leads you past small half-timbered houses, some of which have very beautiful courtyards, and are often overgrown by flowering trees.


A walk along the city wall in Hattingen


Along the Hattingen city wall


7. The city gates of Hattingen

During our visit to the old town we looked at three of the five city gates. On the one hand, the work of art ‘La Porta Aperte’ at the former Bruchtor, which, as already described, is located opposite the three ‘iron men’. If you follow the city wall, you will come to the Steinhagentor next. A newly created access to the old town in 2003.


The Steinhagen Gate in Hattingen


A little further along the city wall you come to the Holschentor. The Holschentor used to be a side gate and was only open in the summer months. You won’t find a real gate here these days, but there are various explanations for the name Holschentor.


The Holschentor in Hattingen


What I like best is the story that the farmers from the surrounding area had to take off their clogs at the gate so as not to pollute the town. Countless ‘Holschen’ stood at this gate, especially on market days.


8. St. George’s Church

My tip: The best way to get to St. George’s Church is via the street ‘Steinhagen’. Here you have a wonderful view of the church tower, framed by the beautiful half-timbered houses – a wonderful photo opportunity.


St. George's Church in Hattingen


St. George’s Church is my absolute highlight in Hattingen. I didn’t really like the church itself that much, but rather the entire church square. Through the small church street you will come to the church square, past houses with countless flower pots in front of the doors.


Kirchstraße in Hattingen


Here you can see the beautiful ‘Vollmond’ café from afar.


Cafe Vollmond in Hattingen


I can’t tell you if it’s really good because it was closed due to Corona. But the wonderfully designed seating area in front of the café and the entire ambience simply invite you to visit – it’s really a shame that it wasn’t open.


Cafe Vollmond, Hattingen


A few meters further is the ‘Refugium’ café, which also looks very inviting:


Cafe Refugium, Hattingen


The marble statue ‘Hattingia’ and the old Latin school are also located on the church square.


Hattingia statue


Former Latin school, Hattingen


I especially like the old tombstones that are set up around the church.


Rear view of St. George's Church, Hattingen


3 sights outside of the old town of Hattingen

Those were my highlights in the historic old town of Hattingen. Here are my three tips outside of the old town:

Tip 1: The new town hall is a beautiful building. Since I hadn’t seen the ‘old’ town hall before, I actually thought I was standing in front of it and not in front of the ‘new’ town hall. So predicate ‘worth seeing’.


New town hall Hattingen


Tip 2 and 3: You can easily combine a trip to the historic old town of Hattingen with a visit to Blankenstein Castle or the Heinrichshütte LWL Industrial Museum.


Industrial Museum Hattingen


Since we only had limited time for our stay in Hattingen, we saved these two sights for our next visit to this beautiful city.


My conclusion for a visit to the old town of Hattingen:

– a beautiful historic old town with fantastic half-timbered houses
– a good signage of the sights
– nice shops in the city center
– attractive gastronomy
– Numerous parking options in the old town, e.g. the Kaufland multi-storey car park, Reshop Carré multi-storey car park or Altstadt multi-storey car park
– Good connection to public transport, as both the bus station and the S-Bahn station ‘Hattingen Mitte’ are right next to the old town
– the historic town center is very small, so a combination of the excursion with a visit to Blankenstein Castle or the Heinrichshütte is a good idea – or in non-Corona times with a nice shopping tour

As always, this was an unsponsored post about a worthwhile excursion destination in NRW.

I wish you a wonderful day in Hattingen,

your Diana


Hotels and holiday apartments in Hattingen and the surrounding area

If you feel like visiting the beautiful little town of Hattingen and would like to spend a relaxing weekend here, I have put together a selection of the most beautiful hotels in Hattingen and the surrounding area (affiliate links, which do not involve any additional costs for you):

Haus am Stadttor, Apartment in Hattingen.
Haus am Stadttor

3 apartments, each with one bedroom and space for 2 to 4 people in the historic old town of Hattingen.

*Apartments *1 bedroom *2-4 people *Pets not allowed *Parking on the street *In the historic old town of Hattingen

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Landhaus Grum, Hotel in Hattingen.
Landhaus Grum

Unusual accommodation options in residential barrels with private bathrooms. They are not far from the Ruhr.

*Living barrels *1 bedroom *2 people *Terrace *Pets not allowed *Breakfast is not offered *No internet *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 1.5 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Wegermann's Bio Landhaus, Hotel in Hattingen.
Wegermann’s Bio Landhaus in the Wodantal

Cozy hotel in a half-timbered house.

*Hotel *Single and double rooms *Terrace *No internet *Pets are not allowed *Private parking spaces on site *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 4 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Beautiful Apartment in Hattingen.
Beautiful Apartment in a historic Villa

Spacious apartment in a historic villa in Hattingen. Blankenstein Castle is only about 400 m away on foot. It is approx. 4 km to the historic old town.

*Apartment *3 bedrooms *6 people *Pets not allowed *Public parking lots approx. 100 m *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 4 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Apartment Villa Kronenberg in Bochum.
Apartment Villa Kronenberg

Apartment for two people in a beautiful former vicarage where the landlady and her family live.

*Apartment *1 bedroom *2 people *Terrace *Pets not allowed *Private parking at the accommodation *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 5 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

art Hotel Tucholsky in Bochum.
art Hotel Tucholsky

Stylish hotel in downtown Bochum. The hotel has an art deco cafe, Tucholsky, and there is a tapas bar in the hotel’s basement.

*Hotel *Single room, double room, some with an additional bunk bed *1-4 people *Elevator *Pets on request *Parking in the car park next to the hotel *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 11 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Manor House Laer in Bochum.
Manor House Laer

Living in a manor with historically furnished rooms. Since no breakfast is offered, the rooms and suites have a small kitchen so that you can prepare your own breakfast.

*Aparthotel *Single and double rooms, suites *1-3 people *Pets not permitted *Private parking spaces at the accommodation *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 12 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen

Guesthouse Rohleder, hotel in Velbert.
Guesthouse Rohleder

Nice little hotel with 7 rooms in a historical building in the center of Velbert.

*Hotel *Single and double rooms *1-3 people *Pets on request *Private parking spaces at the hotel *Historical old town of Hattingen: approx. 14 km

View and book at: booking Hattingen


You can also have a look at beautiful holiday accommodations for the following travel destinations:

Noordwijk, the most beautiful hotels and apartments on Charming Family EscapesKatwijk aan Zee - Fantastic holiday apartments for familiesVerona - Fantastic Hotels & Apartments7 fantastic holiday accommodations for families in Brilon for your holiday in the SauerlandPeloponnese - Fantastic hotels and apartmentsHolidays on the Baltic Sea - 20 fantastic hotels and apartments for families in Wismar














… and much more!


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Hattingen - a trip to the historic old town



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