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Nijmegen, Het Valkhof

In 777 Charlemagne celebrated Easter on his newly built palatine on the Valkhof hill in the old Roman town of Nijmegen. Its successor, the Valkhof castle, was demolished in 1796 by its owner, the Province of Gelderland. By buying the two chapels the City Council saved them from demolishing. The hill was transformed into a city park and has been classified as a listed monument since 1973.


Visitors Information

An introduction to Nijmegen in English, including a map of the centre of the city with points of interest: www.nijmegen.nl

Het Huis van de Nijmeegse Geschiedenis (House of Nijmegen History)

Mariënburg 26, 6511 PS Nijmegen
Ph: +31(0)24 3293699
www.huisvandenijmeegsegeschiedenis.nl (in Dutch, the concise history is also available via the internet in English:
Open: Tuesday to Saturday 11am – 5pm, shopping-Sundays 12 – 5pm

VVV Rijk van Nijmegen (Tourist office)

Visit the tourist office for extensive information about hotels, attractions, museums, the Regional Office for Tourism Arnhem Nijmegen.
Tip: buy a booklet with directions for a city walk for a few euro’s. In about 2 hours you can discover the most beautiful parts of the old city on foot.

Address: Keizer Karelplein 32h, 6511 NH Nijmegen (in the theatre)
Ph: 0900-1122344
Open: Tuesday to Friday 9.30am – 5.30pm, Saturday 10am – 4pm

Museum het Valkhof

Museum Het Valkhof houses a major collection of Roman antiquities, old masters, and modern art. It is located at the edge of the historic Valkhof Park, which was once the site of a Roman encampment and, many centuries later, the residence of Charlemagne.

Address: Kelfkensbos 59, 6511 TB Nijmegen
Ph: +31(0)24 3608805
Open: Tuesday to Sunday 11am – 5pm

Museum De Stratemakerstoren

The museum is a unique fortress tower built around 1520, with subterranean passages in which cannons were positioned to defend the town gate close by. There are also interesting temporary exhibitions on historic subjects. 

Address: Waalkade 83 – 84 – 6511 XR Nijmegen
Ph.: +31 24 323 86 90
Open: Tuesday to Friday 12am – 5pm, Saturday to Sunday 1 – 5pm
Guided tour in German and English.

Fig. 62: Museum de Statemakerstoren lies below the St Nicholaschapel, Credit: Adri Dietvorst Wikimedia Commons

Fig. 62: Museum de Statemakerstoren lies below the St Nicholaschapel, Credit: Adri Dietvorst Wikimedia Commons


From the train station in Nijmegen, the Valkhof site is only a 15 minute walk away.
It is also possible to take one of the many buses to the site. The bus stop in front of the Valkhof site and Museum het Valkhof is called ‘Kelfkensbos’.

Train and bus tickets

You can buy train tickets from the yellow ticket machines at all stations using a credit card. Most big central stations, like the ones in Amsterdam and Nijmegen, also have a ticket office where cash payments are accepted (at a small surcharge). No tickets can be bought on the train. You can buy single tickets in bus. The fares are high when you buy a ticket on the bus, to encourage people to use an ‘OV-chipkaart’. This is a plastic card the size of a credit card, with a pre-paid amount on it. When scanning the card, the fare is automatically deduced from the card.

To and from the airport – near Nijmegen

Schiphol airport, near Amsterdam, is the most well-known. Travel time by train to Nijmegen is about 1.5 hours. More information about the train service can be found here (in English): www.ns.nl/en

Weeze Airport (Germany). This airport is just on the other side of the border with Germany. There are shuttle busses to Nijmegen every hour, all day and night. Travel time is about 45 min. The shuttle bus has to be booked in advance on www.airport-weeze-shuttle.de

Eindhoven Airport. Please check: www.eindhovenairport.com for more information about the airport. Travel time to Nijmegen is about 1,5 hours by bus and train. A journey planner that includes both busses and trains can be found here: 9292.nl/en.


When you arrive at the centre of Nijmegen by car, you can choose to park your car either in one of the attended multi-storey (indoor) car parks, at one of the outdoor parking lots or ‘on the streets’. On your way to the centre, look for the electronic signs that direct you to the locations of the car parks and indicate whether they are open (‘open’), closed (‘gesloten’), have space available (‘vrij’) or are full (‘vol’).


For information about tourism in and around the city of Nijmegen, go to
www.arnhemnijmegenregion.com. Here you can find information about culture & heritage, sports, events, accommodation and food & drinks.

About us

The Department of Archaeology and Monuments of the City of Nijmegen participates in the project Francia Media to increase awareness of the history of the oldest city in the Netherlands, with the Valkhof site as the centre of this story.

The department of archaeology and historic monuments contributes to the preservation of this historic wealth. Archaeological excavations and supervision take place wherever the ground is disturbed, for instance due to building activities. All archaeological finds are carefully studied and reported. The results can be viewed by the public in the ‘House of Nijmegen History’ and in Museum Het Valkhof. Important historical buildings are also protected by the department, by designating them as a listed monument. Changes to the building, such as a renovation, must in that case meet certain requirements, to ensure the building keeps its historic value.

Anyone driving across the bridge into the centre of Nijmegen will understand why its 160,000 citizens are so proud of their city: The waterfront set against the backdrop of the city centre in the background is a splendid sight. Past and present go hand in hand; historic buildings are interspersed with fine examples of modern architecture.

Written by

Ruth Klein, Department of Archaeology and Monuments of the City of Nijmegen
Hettie Peterse, Department of Archaeology and Monuments of the City of Nijmegen
Mieke Smit, Department of Archaeology and Monuments of the City of Nijmegen
Katja Zee, Department of Archaeology and Monuments of the City of Nijmegen

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