© Theo de Witte

You don't even have to close your eyes to feel like you've gone back a few centuries. Stepped gables, canals and strongholds; the city centre of the fortified town of Dokkum still exudes a historical atmosphere. Streets lined with cosy cafes, restaurants and shops in old buildings make this beautiful city and its natural surroundings definitely worth a visit.

  • Dokkum is the perfect city for a leisurely shopping spree.
  • Enjoy a Beerenburg, the most famous drink in Friesland.
  • Discover 140 national monuments in the historic inner city.

Shopping in Dokkum

Dokkum is one of the best cities in Friesland for a shopping spree. Visit the welcoming boutiques, exclusive clothes stores and special interior design stores in the historic center. Conclude your afternoon with a ‘Dokkumer koffie’: coffee with a splash of Beerenburg and whipped cream. Beerenburg is the most famous drink in Friesland and originated in Dokkum. So a visit to Dokkum cannot be complete without having tried this herb bitter.

Boniface and Dokkum

In 754, Boniface was murdered in Dokkum. This saint had a huge impact on European Christianity and is firmly tied to the Frisian city. His spirit still roams the streets of Friesland's oldest city thanks to the statue, chapel, church and healing source. The Boniface Chapel, built in the Roman style, is located in the vast procession park. This area of the city is marked by Boniface. The partially enclosed chapel is also used for cultural events on a regular basis, however.

11 Fountains

Dutch artist Birthe Leemeijer’s ‘The Ice Fountain’ is based on a photo taken during the legendary winter of 1963, when even the North Sea began to freeze over. A photo by Eric Koch showed how a sculpture of ice had formed in the receding waters of the sea. This image is reimagined and rebuilt for Leemeijer’s fountain: a concrete sculpture which will freeze and thaw depending on the weather and the amount of green energy generated by the artwork’s inbuilt solar panels. The shape of the fountain also refers to the history of Dokkum, which was once an important seaport. Situated at the Market in Dokkum, ‘The Ice Fountain’ will be surrounded by oak trees. The work was designed for the 11Fountains project, in which a fountain was created for each of Friesland’s 11 cities as part of Leeuwarden-Friesland’s European Capital of Culture 2018 celebrations.

Editor's tip

In 1596, Dokkum was the first headquarters of the Frisian Admiralty. An event that is still celebrated every year. In the first weekend of September, travel to Dokkum for four days of maritime, culinary and cultural delights.

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