The city of Kampen is on the side of the river IJssel. On the other side of the IJssel, lies IJsselmuiden, which is the second largest town in the municipality of Kampen.
Kampen received city rights in 1236. It joined the Hanseatic League around 1440 and used to be an important port. The population of the city as of 2007 was 49,345. Kampen has one of the old town centres in best condition of the Netherlands.
Hendrick Avercamp (January 27, 1585, - May 15, 1634, nicknamed "de Stomme van Kampen" (The Mute of Kampen)), is a painter best known for his small winter landscapes. Thea Beckman showed him as a character in some books. In Kampen, a street (Avercampstraat) and a café are named after him.