"Tilburg, a vanishing city" Top 5 Page for this destination Tilburg by OlafS

Tilburg Travel Guide: 171 reviews and 452 photos

I'm leaving this town for another one

<I>I'm not going to rewrite this page. Not yet. I'm not even going to read the bit below. Leave it as it is. What's all this about you may ask? Well, by the time you read this Tilburg no longer is my hometown. Both my wife and me recently decided that we wanted to get out of this city. And so we found ourselves a house just across the border, in Belgium. Right now I don't know what part Tilburg will be playing in my life after we move over. My work is there, we'll probably do some shopping there, and I will still catch my train there. But the love that I once felt for this city, that love is no more.</I>

Tilburg is at the center of my universe. It may not be a pretty city (it's not), but it's OK to live there for the time being. It could have been an attractive city if all the nice old buildings hadn't been demolished in the 1950's, '60's and '70's. There are some nice spots left, but unfortunately the local politicians have "democratically" decided that Tilburg is to be a modern city. That leaves little room for respect for the city's history, does it? For a tourist there's probably very little reason to come here. Well, not quite. With beautiful cities like Breda and Den Bosch and the Efteling amusement park nearby, Tilburg at least is at a very strategic position. But if you're willing to do some effort, you just may find Tilburg a great place to stay and discover as well. Don't judge this city by its center though.

In the picture is a square called De Heuvel ("the hill"), which is one of the worst treated parts of Tilburg's center. The statue is of King Willem II. A few years ago it was turned the wrong way round and placed on top of some ugly aquarium-like glass box. Behind it a centuries old linden tree used to stand. "Til" in Tilburg's name means "linden", so the name Tilburg actually means something like "settlement around the linden tree", although such trees were a traditional element on village squares in Brabant. A few years ago this tree was removed by the local politicians. They said it was sick. True, but nothing really serious as these trees revive themselves. Then they said it was dead. A lie, it was very much alive with a young branch growing inside the hollow trunk. The real reason why this historic tree was to go, despite disagreement by the vast majority of the population, was that those politicians wanted to cut all ties with history. Tilburg was to become a modern city as I already said. No more Brabant, Tilburg was to become "Holland"; a shallow, tasteless city obsessed about attracting foreign firms and investments, growing as big as it can at the expensive of the surrounding villages and having as many citizens in order to give the mayor and his pack of greedy hyena's a big raise. That's what it's all about! Ironically, the mayor responsible for all this recently died, and on the occasion was compared to "a tree deeply rooted in Brabant's soil"! How pathetic. At least that "tree" was allowed to live until it was his time. And a street will probably be named after him. Oh yes, his memory will be allowed to live on. Unlike that of things that actually do matter.

On the location of the much loved innocent linden an underground bicycle parking was made, to humiliate history just a little bit more. You can see it from far away by its nice modern aluminum "artwork". What idiot came up with those? And if that's not bad enough; behind the church in the near future some high rise apartment buildings will be build. To attract more rich people from the western part of the country. Higher salaries for the mayor and his friends, you know? The Soviet Union's not dead; it just moved westwards! And the politicians just keep wondering why the Tilburgers aren't proud of their city. Simple: because that city was stolen from them and purposely destroyed! Tilburg, visit it now before nothing is left!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Strategically positioned between more interesting places
  • Cons:A politicians' and project-developers' paradise
  • In a nutshell:You decide.
  • Last visit to Tilburg: Feb 2003
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (26)

Comments (39)

  • Jul 12, 2006 at 7:00 AM

    I totally disagree. There are lots of places where you can eat really well. E-mailme and I can give you a list right out of my hand.

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Oct 30, 2005 at 12:56 PM

    Olaf, great pages on Tilburg. I'm going there soon and they have been most helpful. Nice one. fergy.

  • May 15, 2004 at 1:02 AM

    Your page is great. Also like Annathrax, I have a good friend from there, and I will probably go to Tilburg some day... I would then like to visit the real school where Vincent Van Gogh studied.

  • adinda's Profile Photo
    Dec 8, 2003 at 3:11 AM

    Tilburg is inderdaad een trieste stad; ik heb er een paar jaar gewerkt maar voor mij heeft het ook weinig uitstraling. Wel een goede pagina trouwens!

  • sihi's Profile Photo
    Oct 10, 2003 at 2:18 AM

    Nice page....

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Aug 20, 2003 at 1:57 AM

    Nice view into your city!

  • kenHuocj's Profile Photo
    Aug 1, 2003 at 2:22 AM

    kast week of may is the time to vist Tilburg ? ;-))) enjoyed your digs at politicians and their money backers ;-)

  • KennetRose's Profile Photo
    Mar 27, 2003 at 7:20 AM

    I love these home town pages best of all on VT, not necessarily beautiful places but presented with love and affection; real places free from commercial tourist packaging. Well done!

  • Mar 3, 2003 at 4:39 AM

    Excellant page////simply superb///

  • herzog63's Profile Photo
    Feb 18, 2003 at 11:55 AM

    I would love to get lost in the old neighborhoods!! Tilburg seems like a nice place to visit!


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