Deventer is one of the Hanseatic towns you must visit in The Netherlands. Not only because there are many things to do in one day in Deventer, but also because it’s one of those cities in the Eastern province of Overijssel that deserves a visit. It has everything you can wish for. From the most interesting museums to idyllic streets. And from incredible boutiques and shops to nature reserves nearby.
Deventer is not located in Holland, but in the Eastern province of Overijssel. It’s one of the hanseatic league cities you can find in The Netherlands and the municipality of Deventer has a population of around 100,000. While it’s still a relatively normal sized city in The Netherlands, Deventer is filled with many activities and things to do.
In Deventer tourism is coming along nicely, but the city is not filled with tourists at all. And if there are tourist they’re either Dutch or German. You can easily walk through the empty streets in Deventer and you will explore what to do in one day in Deventer in this itinerary. Whether you have 3 or 4 days in The Netherlands, or maybe one week, Deventer is always a fantastic Hanseatic city to visit.
There might be affiliate links in this article, read the full disclaimer here.
Your perfect one day Deventer itinerary: What things to do in Overijssel, The Netherlands
Discover the must sees when you have 24 hours in Deventer in this travel blog. This includes the best sights in Deventer, as well as landmarks in this Hanseatic town. If you have one day to spend in Deventer, that is already great, but if you can spend two days in Deventer, that would even be better. This itinerary for Deventer will bring you the best of this Hanseatic league city.
Best hotels and places to stay in Deventer
Deventer is a small city in The Netherlands, with only a few hotels. I will recommend you hotels in Deventer that are suitable for any budget, but as there is no hostel in Deventer, you won’t be able to find the budget accommodation that you might be used to.
Fletcher Hotel Gilde, check prices at Booking.com now
Grand Boutique Hotel Huis Vermeer, check prices at Booking.com now
Hotel in het huis van Deventer, check prices at Booking.com now
Where to eat breakfast
Deventer is stuffed with great breakfast spots. From cute breakfast cafes in Deventer with vegan options to something completely else. Deventer is one of those places where, whatever your dietary wishes are, everyone can get some tasty food in their belly.
If you’re a fan of eating bread for breakfast, then visiting the Broodbode in Deventer is a very good idea. Here you can eat some of the best freshly baked Dutch bread you will taste during your trip and there are many different toppings you can choose from.
Grote Overstraat 29, 7411 JA Deventer
Another great breakfast cafe in Deventer is ‘t Lokaal. There are many great breakfast options here. From an amazing acaibowl to sandwiches with beet hummus to pancakes. Whether you have a sweet tooth, or not, with a visit to ‘t Lokaal you can never go wrong.
Grote Kerkhof 6, 7411 KT Deventer
If you’re not a big breakfast fan, but absolutely need to have your coffee or tea in the morning then I would recommend you to visit Roemar Koffiebranderij. And when you’re there anyway, don’t forget to try some of their great vegan and/or glutenfree pastries in this cafe in Deventer.
Free self-guided walking tour in Deventer
A perfect way to explore any Dutch city is by foot. The biggest cities in The Netherlands have to be Amsterdam and Rotterdam (by square meters) and even those are still great to explore on foot. But when you’re visiting a small Dutch city, you can easily see the most beautiful parts with a walking tour of around 6 or 7 kilometers.
In this free and self-guided walking tour in Deventer I will bring you to the hidden gems and best neighbourhoods in Deventer. From the cutest street to incredible monuments to admire. And from the Deventer kettle to an interesting story about the Bergkerk. Deventer truly has it all. And I cannot wait for you to discover the beauty of the Eastern Netherlands with this Deventer tour.
Go shopping in Deventer
Another great thing about Deventer is that it’s filled with interesting shops and boutiques that you won’t find anywhere else in The Netherlands. There are many good shopping streets and areas in Deventer, but you will find my favourite shops, boutiques and areas in Deventer below. And trust me when I say that these are a must visit in Deventer.
This is a brush shop. Yes, I know, it sounds interesting and it definitely is. The Borstelwinkel is the oldest shop in Deventer and surroundings and opened in 1860. As any good brush shop, they only offer brushes. You will find more than 150 sorts of brushes here, that are all made from animal hair.
I love to walk into bookstores whenever I visit some place new. If you like that as well, then you’re in for a treat. This bookshop in Deventer is one of The Netherlands’ oldest bookstores and opened its doors in 1893. Funnily enough this bookstore
Chocolate isn’t usually the thing I crave, but when there is a really good chocolatier in the city I visit, then some dark chocolate is coming with me. Sjokolaa is the best chocolate shop in Deventer and I would definitely recommend you to at least enter the shop to see what they have to offer. And then you won’t be able to leave.
When you’re into fashion that is a little different than most places, then Hemelse Hebbedingen will be the store for you. Sometimes you have to really dig in there to find something and othertimes you can find stuff that is your taste everywhere.
De Vrije Vogel
If you want to get some interior inspiration then De Vrije Vogel is the best place to be in Deventer. You will find one amazing item after the other. And although taking big pieces in your suitcase or backpack is pretty difficult, smaller items can definitely fit.
This is another cool clothing store in Deventer. Don’t walk into an H&M in Deventer, instead, head to Hipshop to discover great and interesting clothing items that you won’t find anywhere else.
This authentic drugstore in Deventer is the perfect location if you’re in need of anything for your face or body. With their knowledge they will show you the best products for your skin and body.
Kwastje over Kastje
For extra interior inspiration you must bring a visit to Kwastje over Kastje. Here they will renovate old furniture and make them absolutely perfect for another life.
This is a covered market in Deventer where you can find several shops and it is located in one of the beautiful streets in Deventer: Walstraat.
Other places to visit in Deventer
- Buy the best homemade jams at B&B Walstraat 85
- Find the best Vietnamnese spring rolls near the Wilhelmina fountain every Saturday
- Get the freshest Dutch stroopwafel cookies at Hanneke’s Koek & Stropie every Saturday
Best shopping streets in Deventer
- Kleine Overstraat
- Grote Overstraat
- Lange Bisschopstraat
- Korte Bisschopstraat
Best lunch restaurants in Deventer
If you’re looking for a glutenfree and vegan lunch restaurant or cafes in Deventer, then you have to visit Sync OK. Quesadillas with jackfruit to soups and other deliciousness. When you’re eating at this vegan lunch cafe in Deventer your tastebuds will be thanking you later.
Broederenstraat 29, 7411 LA Deventer
The Netherlands is big in our love for fries. There are even yearly competitions to discover who has the best fries in The Netherlands. And you’re in luck when you are visiting Deventer and want to try typical Dutch food, Frietmeester serves one of best fries in the country. You can thank me later.
Smedenstraat 18, 7411 RC Deventer
Another great place to go for lunch in Deventer is No. 11.
Cool museums to visit in Deventer
There are quite a few interesting museums to visit in Deventer, but here I will give you my best picks.
Museum De Waag
In this museum in Deventer you will be able to see the history of Deventer, as well as constantly changing exhibitions. If you’re interested in learning more about the city of Deventer and want to increase your knowledge of this medieval Dutch city, then you will love this museum. I’m a huge history nerd, so whenever I visit somewhere new I want to know more about the city and how it has evolved. If you’re like me, then you will definitely like this museum.
Brink 56, 7411 BV Deventer
This museum will show you the history of toys and playing children in The Netherlands, with a collection that has around 13.000 objects. Although this museum is very popular with children, obviously, it is also very interesting to see the entire history of playing in The Netherlands, which makes this museum the only in The Netherlands that offers this. There are even toys that date back to even before 1600. If you’re trying to avoid kids, then you won’t like this museum. But if you don’t mind them, I would recommend you to visit.
Brink 47, 7411 BV Deventer
Taste the Deventer koek
Deventer Koek is one of the traditional regional Dutch foods you have to try. Deventer koek is a honey cake and one of the city’s best kept traditions. Fun fact: This recipe actually dates back to 1593! And no one, except for the bakers know the exact recipe. But you don’t want to know this either as it sort of spoils the magic of eating a cake that was also eaten in this Dutch city during the 16th century.
At the Deventer Koekwinkel you can buy the original Deventer koek, as well as go for a coffee or tea and combine it with a cake tasting. Trust me, you will want to do this.
Brink 84, 7411 BX Deventer
See the other side of Deventer
The Ossenwaard nature reserve can be found on the other side of the river the Ijssel. Take the small ferry from the city of Deventer to the other side and go for a walk. If you follow the blue markings you can go on a walk of six kilometres.
The view of Deventer from the other side of the Ijssel is truly spectacular as well. You will be able to see the Hanseatic city from a completely different side here.
You will slowly see the city of Deventer become smaller as you continue walking. And as you admire the beautiful area near Deventer, the water of the river the Ijssel streams further while the ducks are peacefully swimming around.
The small ferry runs seven days a week. From Monday- Friday 08:00 – 23:00, Saturday 09:00- 23:00 and Sunday 10:00 – 23:00. Prices start at 1 euros, so have some small coins with you.
Best dinner restaurants in Deventer
Somehow Deventer seems to be filled with way better restaurants than many other Dutch cities. It might be the fact that this is a small Dutch town and if the food is disgusting the owners will go bankrupt. That’s why it’s not easy to give you only a few recommendations for the best restaurants in Deventer, but I will try anyway.
One of the best Thai restaurants in Deventer and surroundings is Mekong. This is a very small family restaurant in Deventer, but honestly, you will want to eat here. People drive into Deventer just to eat here and I understand why. So if you’re looking for amazing Thai food in Deventer, bring Mekong a visit.
Nieuwstraat 65, Deventer
Just like any remotely big city, Deventer couldn’t miss out on the food hall trend. At Fooddock, which is located in the upcoming harbour area in Deventer, you will find anything from seafood to pasta and from Asian food to pastries. There’s something for everyone here.
Zuiderzeestraat 2, Deventer
The Lemon Tree
One of Deventer’s hottest restaurants is The Lemon Tree. Now, you don’t want to go here if you’ve got a small budget to work with. However, if you’re willing to splurge a little on food in Deventer then this is the best place in Deventer to do so.
Grote Poot 1, Deventer
Other great restaurants in Deventer are Jackies, La Cantina (for cheap and good pizza’s), Roasted (for meat lovers).
What to do in Deventer in the evening
Dance the night away at De Bisschop
If you’re interesting in knowing more about the nightlife in Deventer, then this part will be great for you. De Bisschop is a bar in Deventer where you cannot only drink amazing cocktails and craft beers, but you can also play karaoke as well as other games. This bar is often opened until late, so you can start your evening very calm and save your dance moves for later. Or, just bust some moves as soon as you enter the bar. No matter what you end up doing, you will have a great time.
Brink 17, 7411 BR Deventer
Deventer has quite some locally brewed beers and one of the best places to try some of the Dutch craft beers in Deventer is at the Davo Beers Brewpub. This local brewpub in Deventer is one of the coolest places to go for a drink and can just be found a little outside of the city centre, but only a little. Visit this place and your beer dreams will come true.
Sluisstraat 6, 7411 EG Deventer
See the best upcoming bands in Deventer
At the Burgerweeshuis, the previous orphanage in Deventer, you will discover some of the best upcoming artists in The Netherlands. For some performances you’d have to buy a ticket, but there are also open-mic nights to enjoy in Deventer as well as other free-entry events. Some music will make your Deventer itinerary even better than it already is.
You will find a few Dutch words that are helpful for looking at the agenda below:
Gratis toegang: Free entry
Uitverkocht: Sold out
Where to go for drinks in Deventer
There are many great cafes to go for drinks in Deventer. But some of them are better than the others, so here you will find the best bars in Deventer.
My favourite bars are Cafe De Heks and Buren van Schimmelpenninck.
During spring, summer and the beautiful autumn days you can sit at a terrace on the riverside of the Ijssel on the Deventer side. However, this is only the case when the water is low. You can go to Cafe Terras De Tobbe when the beautiful weather has arrived.
Other fun things to do in Deventer
Try two of the best apple pies in Deventer
Usually a library is one of those places where you read, work and get inspired. But eating apple pie isn’t usually one of the things you can do in a library in The Netherlands. However, Deventer is showing off yet once again. Because you will find the best apple pie in Deventer, The Netherlands, at the library cafe called Oscar. And you will want to taste it.
Another famous apple pie in Deventer, people say it’s the best of the city, can be found at Vrienden van Vroeger. This typical Dutch brown cafe is located in the middle of the city centre. And you will smell the apple pie as soon as you enter the cafe.
Eat ice cream in Deventer
There are several great ice cream shops in Deventer, but there are two local favourites that you have to try. Whether it’s a beautiful spring, summer or autumn day in Deventer, or not, it’s always time for ice cream.
- Gio’s Gelateria & Caffe
- Ijssalon Talamini
Visit a monastery near Deventer
There are many things to do in Deventer and its countryside. One of those things is visiting a monastery called Nieuwe Sion. The monastery belongs to a foundation and isn’t as much in use at it was. The monks have all left, but there is currently still a guest house and retraite for people to find peace. Some young adults live during the weekend in the monastery without television, a tablet and any other distractions.
The monks have left to the island of Schiermonnikoog, but they can still be burried on the cemetery of the monastery. Women weren’t allowed in the guesthouse of the monastery, but could stay in a house a little further.
You can visit the church and the garden of the monastery during the monthly tours.
7431 PJ Diepenveen
Buy the best regional Dutch souvenirs in Deventer
One of those things you must do in Deventer is buying traditional Dutch souvenirs. Deventer is one of those cities that is famous within The Netherlands for having a lot of regional products. And what’s a better way to end a trip to Deventer, The Netherlands, than by stuffing your suitcase with food and drinks?
- Deventer Koek at Deventer Koekwinkel
- Deventer Mosterd (mustard) at De Oude Mosterdfabriek
- Deventer Likeur (liquer) at De Poort van kleef
- Deventer Roem (cheese) at Kaashandel de Brink
Discover another museum near Deventer
If you’re a fan of Modern Realism, then you have to know about Museum MORE. This museum in Gorssel is the largest museum in Europe for Modern Realism. Discover the best paintings, statues and so many other things to do and see in this museum in the province of Gelderland.
Visit another museum in Deventer
Het Kunstenlab is the best experimental art lab for modern art in the Eastern part of The Netherlands. They have temporary exhibitions that will inspire you and that’s exactly what you want.
Havenplein 20, 7411 ME Deventer
Another great place to visit in Deventer is the Etty Hillesum Centrum. Here you will find exhibitions about the local Jewish community in Deventer until the Second World War. The inspiration of the centre is the life and work of Etty Hillesum. The centre is located in a previous synagogue in Deventer.
Roggestraat 3, 7411 EP Deventer
Explore the Hanseatic Museum De Leeuw, located in Hotel De Leeuw, and go back into time. This small museum is one of the free things to do in Deventer and will take you back to centuries old unique kitchen items and a traditional Dutch candy store. And yes, you can buy our Dutch candies here as well. There are more than 200 varieties of traditional Dutch candy to choose from. It is opened from Wednesday to Saturday 11:00-17:00.
Nieuwstraat 25, 7411 LG Deventer
If you are practicing Dutch, or don’t mind using a translation app, then the Geert Groote huis is also very interesting to visit. Geert Groote was Deventer’s most important person and this museum is entirely dedicated to him. Not in a weird, fanfiction way, but in an interesting way the museum shows why he was so important and what his life looked like. When the Geert Groote Huis is opened can be found here.
Lamme van Dieseplein 4, 7411 LX Deventer
The Christmas market you cannot miss in Deventer
One of the best Dutch Christmas markets in The Netherlands is the Dickens Festijn, that takes place in the middle of December. A big part of the city centre is decorated in Victorian style and the people are dressed up as well. It’s very busy, as it attracts around 125,000 visitors in just two days. But trust me when I say that it’s worth a visit.
Visit the city beach of Deventer
If you’re visiting Deventer during summer, then cooling down is something you might want to do. Deventer is located in the Eastern part of The Netherlands, which means that it is a lot warmer there than in the provinces that are near the North Sea or Wadden Sea.
In The Netherlands, when you’re near the sea there’s always a gust of wind. If you’re near a river however, this is not always the case. And during the warm, summer days in Deventer the last thing you want is to walk around the city like a sticky toffee. So, visit the city beach, or as we call it ‘stadsstrand’, of Deventer, go for a swim and cool down. Remember, if you don’t know how to swim, don’t even think of trying it out here.
Discover one of The Netherlands most beautiful national parks
The Sallandse Heuvelrug is a national park in The Netherlands and has been one since 2004. While it’s not the biggest one of the Dutch national parks, it is a very special and sufficient area to explore within the country. You will discover everything from heather fields to hilly surroundings. Go for a walk or take a bike ride and enjoy the Sallandse Heuvelrug National Park.
Explore the largest European open-air book fair in The Netherlands
In August you can buy books. A lot of them. The largest European (open-air) book fair takes place in the town centre of Deventer and along the banks of the river IJssel: 6 kilometers of books. It is called the Deventer Boekenmarkt and is a yearly event that takes place every first Sunday of August from 09:30- 17:30. Whatever book you’re looking for, they most certainly have them here as there are more than 850 stalls to choose from.
Explore more events in Deventer during summer
Deventer op Stelten festival
Deventer is a city that has celebrated culture and arts for a long time. And since twenty year Op Stelten, on stilts, takes place in Deventer. Deventer becomes an open air theatre with over 150 national and international performances at 20 different locations. You will be left in awe after every, single show.
Experience the Estate Nieuw Rande
Just outside of the city of Deventer you will find estate Nieuw Rande. The estate is located inside a nature reserve that stretches from the Ijssel river to the village of Diepenveen. The gardens of the estate are created in an English style, which makes a visit even better. Discover the waterways, walk through the forests and have a look at the many animals that live here.
Buy the freshest products at the Deventer weekly market
There are several markets in Deventer, some bigger than the other and some smaller. But I would definitely recommend you to visit a market when you’re in Deventer.
Beestenmarkt: Tuesday 08:00-13:00
Brink (main square): Saturday 09:00- 17:00, organic market.
Keizerslanden: Wednesday 08:00-13:00
Brink (main square): Friday 08:00- 13:00 and Saturday 08:00-17:00
Colmschatte: Thursday 08:00-13:00.
How to travel to Deventer, The Netherlands, by public transport
From Amsterdam: It’s very easy to go from Deventer city to Amsterdam, or the other way around. But you do have to transfer at least once, sometimes twice. I would recommend you to go on a train journey in The Netherlands that only has one transfer, as it’s a lot easier. To get from Amsterdam Centraal train station to Deventer takes you around 1 hour and 30 minutes one way.
From Rotterdam: To get from Deventer to Rotterdam Centraal, or the other way around, you have to transfer at least once. Either at Amersfoort Centraal train station or at Utrecht Centraal train station. The train trip from Rotterdam Centraal to Deventer takes you around 1 hour and 52 minutes one way.
From Utrecht: It’s very easy to go from Deventer to Utrecht, or the other way around. There’s an hourly train that goes directly to Deventer, or you have to transfer once. To get from Utrecht to Deventer takes you around 50 minutes one way. Get out at Deventer train station and enjoy your trip.
From Zwolle: There are quite a few direct trains that run from Zwolle to Deventer every hour. To get from Deventer to Zwolle by train, or the other way around, takes you around 24 minutes one way.
HELP OTHERS DISCOVER THESE BEAUTIFUL PLACES! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS!
Other articles of this local travel blog and guide to The Netherlands that you’ll love
I hope that this article has shown you why Deventer is such a fantastic city to visit for one day, or even a weekend. This Hansa league city has so much to offer, how beautiful the Deventer landscape is, as well as what its surroundings have to offer. You don’t have to wonder what things there’s to do in Deventer in one day, instead, you have it all combined in this Deventer city blog here. Share this post!!
Receive extra secret tips about The Netherlands now!
If you’re interested in receiving even more travel tips about my beautiful country (which I know you are), subscribe to my email, and I will send you tips about The Netherlands that won’t see the light on this website.
As a born and raised Dutch local, I know my country better than most people. And because of this, you will travel through The Netherlands beyond the crowds 2.0.
And the best part? 5 secret places you have to visit in Rotterdam will be sent your way immediately! For free! There’s nothing you have to do for receiving free tips and guides about The Netherlands. Except for writing down your email. It’s just a little extra from myself because I’m such a kind human (if I may say so myself). You’re welcome, and I will see you on the other side!
P.S. I won’t be spamming you. I hate those email’s as much as you do. You will receive a monthly email with the latest tips of The Netherlands.
- Things To Do In Linschoten, The Netherlands: Explore One Of The Most Beautiful Villages In The Green Heart & Utrecht Region - 13/01/2021
- Amazing Things To Do In Vianen, The Netherlands: Enjoy Visiting One Of The Cities In The Utrecht Region - 09/01/2021
- Magical Things To Do In Maarssen, The Netherlands: Explore A Small Town In The Vecht & Utrecht Region - 28/12/2020