Landmark of Bochum - the Pitheardtower of the German Mining Museum

Bochum is a city of the state North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany.


Bochum is part of the Ruhr Area (Ruhrgebiet), the centre of heavy industry in Germany. Its history is linked closely to that of the region. In 1850, Bochum was a small town of about 4500 Inhabitants, its population increased, being 1900 to 100 000 inhabitants and in 1935 had 300 000 inhabitants. During World War II, its center was nearly completely destroyed, which provided the opportunity to rebuild the city after the war in a metropolitan way with wide streets and modern buildings. With the end of the coal boom in the 1960s, a structural transformation began. Bochum got the first university of the Ruhr Area, which was opened in 1965. Today it is one of the largest universities of the country with about 35 000 students and excellent reputation. Also in the 1960s, the Opel car production plant became productive and offered jobs for miners who had lost their jobs in mining. Mining and steel production came to an end in the 1980s.

Today Bochum is a modern city with a job focus in service sector.

Bochum is situated at the borderline between the flat Münsterland in the north and the highlands of Bergisches Land in the south. Therefore, the northern part of Bochum is quite flat, the highest hill is the Tippelsberg. The southern limits of Bochum touch the Ruhr valley with lake Kemnade.

In the 19th century, industrialization began in the valley of Ruhr and moved in the following years northwards. Left was an environment in nearly good order. The valley of Ruhr is a recreation area for the population. The Ruhr is water reservoir for the region, therefore the rules for keeping the water clean are quite restrict. Swimming is forbidden in the Kemnade, swimming in the Ruhr is permitted but not recommended because of strong flow. Pleasure boats are allowed everywhere.

Like most cities in the Ruhr Area the southern quarters are of high standard and are quite expansive while factories will be found mainly in the northern quarters.

View onto the city from top of Tippelsberg

Get in

By plane

The nearest international airport is Düsseldorf, about 50 km from Bochum. From Düsseldorf airport, you can get to Bochum by train S1 towards Dortmund or with some Regional Trains.

Regional airports nearby are Dortmund, Münster or Weeze.

By train


Bochum Main Station is situated at the main line through the Ruhr Area, and is served by InterCity and ICE trains to all parts of Germany. Services include (2009):

There are also daily trains to Magdeburg - Leipzig and to Mannheim - Freiburg - Basel - Chur.

Regional Trains

This is a list of Regional Trais. Most leave hourely.

Commuter Train

By car

Bochum is situated at the intersection of highway A40 (eat/west) and A43 (north/south). Avoid the rush hour.

Get around

Public Transport is arranged by "Bochum-Gelsenkirchener Straßenbahn AG", for short BOGESTRA. It is member of the transport association Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Ruhr VRR, which cares for consistence fares and adequate connections between its members and S-Bahn and regional trains. So with the same ticket, you may use the bus, underground, tram, S-Bahn and regional Express not only within Bochum but also within the rest of the Ruhr Area, depending on the price category (A, B, C or D) you have selected. For details refer VRR.


There are 4 price levels: For travelling within one city you need level A, for a ride to the next neighbour city pricing level B is needed, if you transit 3 Tickets use level C and level D is for rides to any location within the area of VRR.

You can obtain tickets from the customer offices of Bogestra, from the ticket-machines at the subway stations U35, from ticket machines within the trams, from Busdrivers and from designated kiosks.

Do not forget to stamp you ticket before you enter a vehicle. The orange stamp boxes are located at the entrance of the platforms.

Customer Offices

One office is in the subway station at main station and another one you will find in the Bogestra Administration Building at Universitätsstrasse 58.

City Railway, the former tram

The former trams also run underground within the city centre. All lines intersect at Bochum Main Station.

VRR Night-Express

Under the synonym "Night-Express" go additional buses, trams and trains at weekend and on holidays one per hour to the suburbs.

Regional Transport

Regional Trains may be used with tickets of VRR within the VRR area. For a catelogue of regional trains refer item 'Train' above.

Tip: A ride with RB46 offers views onto 'the old Ruhr', a view onto industry and suburbs that look like 50 years before.

By taxi

Going by Taxi is quite expensive. Basic charge is 2,30 € and charge per kilometer is 1,25 € at daytime and 1,35 € at nighttime.


There are some flyrs explaining the highlights of Bochum published by the marketing office. They are named "Blaue Linie" (blue line) and are available at the tourist office at Huestrasse 9 or on the web. A monthly calendar of events is also available there. And refer also the guide Route der Industriekultur (Industrial Heritage Trail), which can be downloaded as a PDF file.


Technic and History


Art in public space

Buildings, production Halls, Monuments

Administration, Residential Buildings, Monuments

City Hall

Castles and Palaces

Industrial Heritage

Between 1850 and 1900 the population of Bochum increased from about 4500 to 100,000 by immigration. It would be absolutely impossible to offer enough living space an infra structure by the commune. In order to avoid slums companies began to erect settlements, supermarkets and hospitals for their employees aside their grounds. Even if the companies knew to combine this with their own benefits, it was also a social act. It prevented ghettos and poverty. The living conditions in those settlements was above the standard of that times. Often build in the style of a garden city they are preferred quarters today. Within Bochum, the best known settlement is "Dahlhauser Heide".

Miner's Settlement Dahlhauser Heide

hint: In the district of Wattenscheid at square "Alter Markt" there are still some houses left from times before industrialisation. They give an impression how most towns at the Ruhr looked like 100 years ago.

Houses of worship

Parks and Lakes

Westpark, Bathing the feet in a former cooling pool

Those who like it should visit the ruin of



Bochum Total


Inside Bermuda3eck

Theatre and Musicals

Bathing and Wellness


not recommended is the area at lake Uemmingen, much dirt by dugs and swans.




Rewirpower-Station and VFL-Bochum are synonymes for excellent football. In 2011 the Rewirpower-Station is location for some matches of the FIFA Women's World Cup. It is situated outside the city at Castroper-Street. Public Transport: Subway 308/318, from Main Station go direction Schürbankstrasse. Leave the train at Rewirpower-Stadion

Cycling and Jogging

Mountain Bike

There is a training ground in Bochum-Weitmar at An der Holtbrügge, admission free.

Inline Skating




The main shopping-streets in Bochum downtown are Kortumstrasse and Huestrasse.


Beside the standard articles like beer-glasses and t-shirts, available at the ticket shop at Huestrasse, a pitlamp is a good tip.



The cuisine of Bochum is the cuisine of The Ruhr. That was a Westphalian cuisine with strong East-Prussian and Rhenish impact. That means good and solid meals with much fat. Eaten was much cabbage, meat of rabbit, goat, pork and sometimes pigeons. IThe cuisine has changed and is still changing. On one hand, people do not have to labour so hard any more, but, on the other hand, people have more money to spend. Also are the immigrants. They brought their own cuisine with them. Today there is Turkish, Polish, sometimes Russian and most of all Mediterranean influence.




The Ruhr people drink beer. Of course, every restaurant has a wine card, but in pubs and during relaxed getting-together, they prefer beer. All beer in Germany and at the Ruhr as well is brewed according to the German purity law: only water, hop and malt. If you visit Bochum, you should taste one (or more) of the local products!


Stay safe

The cities within the Ruhr area are among the safest in Germany. Since the Ruhr is until now not a tourist region, it is not in the focus of pickpockets. But it is a good idea to take the usual precautions. Don't leave you camera unattended, don't flash around a fat wallet. Since many citizens have a migration background, the acceptance of strangers is high and the possibility of encountering racism or other prejudices is low.

Go next

... to other cities of the Ruhr area

to Düsseldorf , Köln




Bergisches Land

or to the Niederlande.

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, January 30, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.