The BEST of Den Bosch – 1 Day Trip (2023)

Den Bosch, officially known as s’Hertogenbosch is the capital of the province North-Brabant. We have created this 1 day trip itinerary for you that delivers the best Burgundian experience.

Den Bosch Uilenburg Cafe from the top

Where to stay: Den Bosch can be pricey in terms of accommodation so make sure to book in time. An affordable option could be to stay in The Den. The Uylenhof Hotel is also an amazing option since you get to stay in one of the oldest neighbourhoods of Den Bosch.

When to come: Since the Netherlands can get pretty rainy and windy, which can take away from the charm of a city like Den Bosch, we recommend coming between May and September.

How to get there: If you are already in the Netherlands, then it is easiest to take the train using NS. If you are coming from outside, landing at Eindhoven Airport or Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is what you want to do.

How long to stay: Den Bosch is a small city with a population of 150.000, so 1 day is enough to explore everything. Of course, you can choose to make this your hub from which you explore the rest of Noorth Brabant or the Netherlands.

Discover the Dragon Fountain
Drakenfontain in Den Bosch

If you arrive to Den Bosch by train, the first thing you will see as you step out of the Central Station is the dragon fountain. This fountain was created in 1903 after the provincial governor P.J. Bosch van Drakestein passed away in 1894 and left the city 10.000 Dutch Guilders. His wish was for the city to build a fountain in memory of his deceased wife and twin daughters. Because of his name (‘draak’ means ‘dragon’ in Dutch), the city build the fountain you see today with the gold plated dragon siting on top.

Try the famous Bossche Bol
Bossche Bol at Jan de Groot

The most famous Dutch dessert is of course the ‘Stroopwafel’ (syrup wafer). However, the second most famous Dutch dessert might just be the Bossche Bol, which comes from Den Bosch. The original Bossche Bol are sold by the baker Jan de Groot, which you will pass by on the right side going straight from the Dragon Fountain. It is a fist-sized profiterole that is filled with cream and covered in chocolate. No, there is no way to eat this in a clean way, so don’t even try, the messiness is just part of the real Dutch experience.

Walk through Uilenburg
Uylenhof Hotel in Uilenburg

After crossing the bridge and turning right, you will be almost in Uilenburg, which is the oldest neighborhood of the city. Cobblestoned streets that are surrounded by small brick buildings and historic canals not only make for great pictures but also deliver on the typical Dutch city feeling that you are probably seeking when visiting the Netherlands. You will find lots of nice cafés and restaurants here. Alongside Uilenburg, the streets Korte Putstraat and Parade will also offer some amazing spots for food and drinks.

Take a boat trip through the canals
Binnendieze Canals in Den Bosch

You should definitely take a boat trip on the Binnendieze, which was historically the city’s sewer. Boat tour’s can be booked from April to October and you should definitely make sure to book in advanced as this is a popular activity and tickets sell out fast. With your ticket, you will be able to go behind houses and discover the city from a completely different perspective. Tickets cost €10 per person and can be booked here.

Experience the Burgundian Lifestyle
Bossche Brouwers Beer during summer

S’Hertogenbosch is a contraction of the Dutch ‘des Hertogen bosch’ and means ‘the Duke’s forest’. It were Burgundian Dukes who in the 15th century came to the province of Noorth Brabant and left a mark in the form of the ‘Burgundian’ lifestyle that is so heavily associated with this region until today. Part of the ‘Burgundian’ lifestyle is to enjoy life with good food, good drink and good company. So go ahead, choose one of the many Dutch terrassen, order some local beer, and some Dutch bitterballen and experience the Burgundian way of living.

Explore the Den Bosch Market Square
City Hall at Market Square in Den Bosch

The market square is the soul of every city. If it’s Wednesday or Saturday you are in luck, because this is when the weekly market is held. You will be able to buy freshly roasted nuts (say yes to the complimentary salt and indulge in the nuts immediately when they are still warm!), organic produce, Dutch cheeses, lots of baked goods, freshly made stroopwafels and lots more. On Friday’s the smaller farmer’s market takes place here.

Marvel at the oldest Dutch brick building
s'Hertogenbosch tourism office

It is somehow strange that this historically significant building only houses the Tourist office today. Located at the corner of the Market square, you will find the oldest brick building of the Netherlands. Build in the beginning of the 12th century it has gone from being a Lutheranian community center in the 16th century to being a theatre in the 18th century. In the basement of De Moriaan you will find Plein 79, one of Den Bosch’s hippest cafés with daily live entertainment.

Explore the City Hall
City Hall in s'hertogenbosch

Once you enter the Market square you will see a beautiful rectangular building. This is the City Hall of Den Bosch that was build in the 13th century and exemplifies the beauty of Baroque Dutch classicism architecture. You should definitely go inside since it houses a beautiful council chamber decorated with rich tapestry with decorations that are made out of real golden leather. The entrance into the city hall is free.

Have lunch at Bagels & Beans
Bagels & Beans Bagels and Smoothies with Coffee

Of course, you also want to stroll through the historic streets, do a little bit of shopping or just admire how cute the small streets and surrounding houses look like. After you get tired, it is time to pick a nice café to sit down and have lunch somewhere. We can highly recommend ‘Bagels & Beans’. It is a bagel chain that offers tasty and affordable bagels and fresh smoothies. We can recommend the classic ‘goat cheese and honey’ bagel if you have a sweet tooth or the ‘paddo burger’ with parmesan and mushrooms, followed by mushroom coffee.

Sint-Jan Cathedral and Church Tower
Sint-Jans and Cathedral

St. John’s Cathedral or St. Janskathedraal is one of the most famous attractions in Den Bosch. Build in 1220, the Catholic church became Protestant during the Calvinist protests in 1629. In 1810 Napoleon returned the church to the Catholics again. In the summer lots of events are happening in front of the Gothic tower. During our visit a philharmonic orchestra was playing a concert here. You can visit the Cathedral outside of mass hours (on Saturdays it closes at 5pm!) and also climb the church tower to get a nice panoramic view of the city.

Visit Jheronimus Bosch Art Centre
Jheronimus Bosch Statue

Jheronimus Bosch (1450-1516) was a famous medieval painter. He painted and sculpted fantastic figures and landscapes that you can discover in and around the region of Den Bosch until today. On the market square in the city, you will see a bronze sculpture depicting him. If you are interested in learning more about the Dutch artist, you can visit the Jheronimus Bosch Art Centre. Since the museum is housed in a former church, you can skip climbing the church tower and instead climb the museum tower here to get the city panorama. Tickets are €10 per person.

Discover the hip Tramkade
Tramkade in Den Bosch

Tramkade is a neighbourhood that is known for its street art, its urban cafés and alternative shops and venues. You will find floating tiny houses, a crane turned into a hotel room, creative start up offices and trendy pop-up cafés and restaurants all in Tramkade. This area is definitely where you should end your evening. We recommend you start at the local Brewery Bossche Brouwers aan de Vaart and then head over to Barkade for some arcade games, amazing cocktail and Asian-inspired snacks/dinner. Take a stroll alongside the river to head back to your hotel (or the train station).

If you are planning to stay in Den Bosch for longer, you should definitely consider visiting the neighboring cities such as Eindhoven, Rotterdam, Groningen, Utrecht or Venlo. The good thing about the Netherlands being so small is that everything is just a stone throw away offering lots of opportunities to travel and explore the surrounding cities.

Make sure to check out our perfect Amsterdam itinerary as well!