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Choice is one of the most important aspects of normal life that tends to be missing when expats relocate to a new country with a foreign language. A luxury of utilising several sources suddenly shifts from being an easy and often taken-for-granted habit that came naturally, to becoming a challenge.

That especially holds true when it comes to books and films. Yes, streaming movies or ordering books online are great options. But even though the availability of English language books may be more scarce and the choice much more limited, several options can be found.

Nothing beats browsing prior to purchasing and fortunately it is possible to check out English language books in a few stores in the Ruhr Metropolis. Mayersche and Thalia bookstores are located in Mülheim, Essen, Dortmund, Gelsenkirchen, Recklinghausen, Duisburg, Wesel and Witten, to name but a few.

One especially cosy Mayersche store can be discovered on Rüttenscheider Strasse in Essen, your publisher’s favourite street in the Ruhr. Online sales of the two companies have been merged.

Expats who prefer to loan a book can search for their local library, where English and other foreign language books can be available, especially in larger cities.

By Vincent Green, Jul 6 2021

Written text on paper


We stand in a foreign culture finding ourselves pointing, gesticulating and hoping to be understood. Many Germans speak at least some English. However, some expats relocating to the Ruhr Metropolis may wish to carry a few basic but helpful words with them for use in awkward moments.

Water in sink


Tap water in the Ruhr Metropolis possesses such a high quality that it can be drunk from the tap regularly. Local water is treated and cleaned through an extensive process on its way to the consumer. By then it is highly drinkable and virtually tasteless.

The Events Overview

From stunning light shows to funfairs, Christmas markets to marathons, jazz to reggae music gigs and long standing festivals, living in the Ruhr offers many great reasons to celebrate. Virtually any excuse creates an opportunity for street activities where a kaleidoscope of events take place every year. Photo Ruhr Tourismus / Eckhard Spengler.