The city of Enschede

Enschede is the vibrant cosmopolitan heart of the eastern Netherlands. The town is full of life and movement; it’s buoyant, enterprising and energetic. It combines village and town life in its own special way and has plenty of room – both literally and figuratively – for a high quality of life for everybody. The town offers superb facilities, a lively center, and fascinating neighborhoods. Get to know Enschede and discover the attractions of a town that has (virtually) everything.


Enschede has a rich history, dating back to the early medieval times when a settlement was founded around the “Oude Market”. The name of the settlement was Anescede, meaning “Near the border”. Around 1300 Enschede was granted city rights. Because the city was largely built out of wood, a fire was a constant risk. Big fires raged in the city in 1517, 1750 and 1862 during the industrialization.  


The city was almost completely destroyed during the last fire but through the destruction, the city grew. Enschede grew into an important center of textile production in The Netherlands. The population of the city increased fivefold between 1870 and 1900. Big families like the Van Heek family formed a powerful oligarchy which left its mark on the city. The textile left its traces in the city, like the modern residential neighborhoods and parks.

The textile industry disappeared in the 60’s and was replaced by the service industry. In the next coming years the university of Twente, Saxion (university of applied sciences) and ARTEZ (university of art) would be founded.

Going out

Besides the history Enschede offers a variety of bars and restaurants. The Oude Markt is the perfect spot for these establishments. Popular places are The Pakkerij, the home of the four biggest student associations, ‘t Bölke, ‘T gat in de markt (translated: “the hole in the market”) and many more. Get the chance to discover these places when you are in Enschede!

Student culture

Enschede has a rich student culture that can be seen throughout the city. Enschede has 7 different student association. The 4 four biggest are DSCC/DJCR Audentis et Virtutis, A.S.V. Taste, C.S.V. Alpha and of course AEGEE-Enschede. These are all located in the same building: The Pakkerij. Here you can find all the bars as well as the offices of all the associations.

You can also find many sport and culture associations. In total Enschede offers 33 sports associations and 16 culture associations. The associations range from rowing, climbing, diving to Photography, dance, and music. There is something to do here for every student!