Eindhoven, Netherlands

By | November 25, 2022

Eindhoven is the main city of North Brabant and a center for contemporary art and design. At one time, the city was “raised” by the Philips company, which founded its headquarters here. Not so long ago, the corporation moved to the capital, and Eindhoven had no choice but to rely on modernity: after the Second World War, there was almost nothing “cozy – narrow – paved” left in the city. But today Eindhoven is residential buildings with multi-colored asymmetrical windows, supermarkets under streamlined glass domes made of triangular panels, street waste compactors that accept waste cards, and bus stops with roofs planted with flowers.

In September, Eindhoven holds a “Tour of Light” to commemorate liberation during World War II. Every evening, thousands of LEDs, electric and gas lamps light up in the city, stretching out on a 22 km long road.

How to get to Eindhoven

Eindhoven International Airport is located 5 km from the city and receives flights from many European destinations, including low-cost airlines. For example, you can fly here with a Ryanair plane with a transfer in Bordeaux, Budapest, Krakow, Milan, Stockholm or Warsaw. In addition, getting to Eindhoven is also easy from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport: from there, a direct train goes to the city every half an hour (journey time is about an hour and a half).

  • Cachedhealth: Information about shopping and eating in Netherlands.

A bit of history

The first written mention of the city occurs in the 13th century; however, at that time it was hardly even a city, but rather a village of one and a half hundred houses with a castle. The further development of Eindhoven was its location on the road from French Liege to Holland. The fortifications around the city were strengthened several times, and although in the middle of the 16th century the city was destroyed by a great fire by three-quarters, William of Orange contributed to its restoration and further growth. In the 19th century, textile and tobacco factories were already flourishing here, and in the 80s. Phillips was formed in Eindhoven, which pushed the city’s economy to an unprecedented take-off.

During World War II, Eindhoven was heavily bombed, so not much of the Old Town remains. Therefore, today’s sights of Eindhoven are associated with modernity, and not with antiquity.

Entertainment and attractions of Eindhoven

The Van Abbe Museum is not only the main one in Eindhoven, but also one of the leading contemporary art museums in the Netherlands and throughout Europe. It was founded in 1936 and named after its creator, a contemporary art connoisseur, collector and cigar manufacturer. By 2010, the museum’s collection already included more than 2,700 exhibits, including about 700 paintings, 1,000 drawings, and another 1,000 sculptures, installations, and video recordings. Today’s collection of works by Russian artist, designer, photographer and architect El Lissitzky at Van Abbe is the largest in the world. But the masterpieces of Picasso, Kandinsky, Mondrian and other notorious masters are also kept here.

The old museum building was designed by Alexander Kropholler and is a symmetrical red stone building in a more or less traditional style. The works of mainly Dutch and Belgian authors are stored here. But as the collection grew, the museum needed a new building, which was erected by Abel Cahen in 2003. This is an ultra-modern building with a 27-meter tower. Here you can admire the conceptual creations of American and German artists, as well as new talented authors from Central and Eastern Europe.

There is only one truly historic church in Eindhoven. That’s what it’s called – Oude Toren, “Old Tower”. Actually, the tower is all that remains of the Gothic church of the 14th-15th centuries. In addition to it, there are at least three other remarkable neo-Gothic churches in the city: Paterskerk, which is very close, Sint-Katarinakerk and Sint-Joriskerk. But they were all built at the end of the 19th century.

Another modern symbol of Eindhoven is the Evolyon building, erected by Philips in 1966. It was originally intended for the Museum of Science and Technology and in itself looks very futuristic and still resembles a giant flying saucer with a diameter of 77 m, which stands on twelve legs. Immediately after the opening, the museum gained wild popularity with its interactive exhibitions, but soon, due to fierce competition, it ceased to pay off and was closed. Since 1998, the building has housed a conference hall.

5 things to do in Eindhoven:

  1. Take a look at the nanosupermarket on wheels to get acquainted with the ideas of young designers. The supermarket is more like a mini-exhibition inside the bus.
  2. Drive a modern bulletproof city bus. The bus is made of aluminum and fiberglass, looks like a train and rushes along a dedicated lane at almost the same speed.
  3. Take pictures of funny street signs that visually warn of fines for drinking drinks and the reverse process in the wrong places.
  4. See the newest symbol of the city – a smiling light bulb named Lempke – in street graffiti and other pop art objects.
  5. Sit on the steps under the statue of Fritz Philips.

Another building that cannot be overlooked is the “Admirant” in the very center of the city, the highest skyscraper in Eindhoven. Its height is 105 m, and the facade is distinguished by unevenly distributed windows, so that the building looks like an old punched card. The newest shopping area is equipped inside, which extends to the neighboring Blob building. It is also worth attention: it is something like an irregularly shaped glass ribbed bubble.

Not far from the first two is another remarkable city building: this is the Tower of Light – Lihttoren. It was here, on the upper floors, that Philips tested their light bulbs for durability. The light burned here seven days a week and around the clock, for which the building got its name. And the neighboring building is called the “White Lady” – Witte Dame. It was built in 1931 in a style called “new objectivity”. Today, the building houses a public library and a design academy.

Between Eindhoven, Veldhoven and Meerhoven, the world’s first suspension bicycle roundabout is located on top of the highways. In essence, this is not so much a denouement as a metal suspension bridge. The bridge was opened at the end of 2011 and is popularly called the “Khoven rings”.

Another architectural landmark of Eindhoven is the Westedatoren at the corner of Westdjik and Smalle Haven. Its height is 90 m, but it is not so much remarkable as the shape of an extremely sharp triangle in cross section – something like the New York “Iron”.

Museums in Eindhoven

Curious city museum – historical, located in the open air. Here you can see a reconstructed Iron Age village, a farm from about a thousand years ago and a model of medieval Eindhoven. The Kempenland Museum is also interesting: it occupies the Steentgeskerk building, which in itself is an object of national heritage. This is an old church built with tiny stones. The museum’s collection contains a wide selection of decorative and applied items from the region.

It will also be interesting to visit the MU art space, which is in the building of the Witte tower, directly opposite the public library. Here are expositions of mixed styles of visual art, design, pop art. And in the Ton Smith Museum, you can see the working studio of this famous animator and artist, who once created thousands of illustrations for the American The New Yorker and The Saturday Evening Post. Finally, true fans of electricity can look at the first Philips factory in 1891, which is right in the center of the city. A small museum has been opened with it, where you can find out in detail how electric light bulbs were produced at the end of the 19th century.

Eindhoven events

Eindhoven seethes and boils; it is perhaps the busiest city in the Dutch south. So the events in it take place all year round and are very diverse. The most famous is Dutch Design Week in October, where around 1,500 designers showcase their work at more than 300 events around the city. Another landmark event is the International Forum of Light in Art and Architecture, GLOW. During the festival, dozens of installations and performances are organized in the city at the end of autumn.

In September, Eindhoven holds a “Tour of Light” to commemorate liberation during World War II. Every evening, thousands of LEDs, electric and gas lamps light up in the city, stretching out on a 22 km long road. The lights fold into colorful illuminations with a variety of patterns. This tradition began immediately after the war, then it was forgotten, but revived again in 1984. Light bulbs are lit from 19:30 to 23:00 during the week starting September 18th.

Eindhoven, Netherlands