Assen is most useful as a transport hub. Many buses to small villages commence their run in Assen.
Many buses traverse the countryside. Assen is a hub in this network. Assen is connected to Stadskanaal by bus.
Groningen Eelde airport is just 18 km away. From there you can take a bus or taxi.
It's an excellent place to cycle around and in. The LF9 and LF14 national cycle routes pass near to Assen.
The city center of Assen is small enough to go on foot.
Assen is the capital of the cycling province of Drenthe. It is a wonderful place to cycle. Hire a bicycle and travel around. Various companies provide tours of the area, some English speaking.
On both Wednesday and Saturday there is a market. In 2008 this market won the award of "gezelligste markt" in the Netherlands. i.e. the most friendly and pleasant in the country.