Utrecht!

Utrecht is a fascinating city and definitely worth a visit if you’ve tired of the tourist gridlock and smoky haze of Amsterdam.  Located just 20 miles to the south and a 30 minute train ride, Utrecht can be visited for the day.  But, if you dig a slower pace stay for a bit longer.

Dom tower

Dom Tower from below. Utrecht, Netherlands
Dom Tower from below. Utrecht, Netherlands

domtower

Finished in 1382, Dom Tower is the symbol of Utrecht.  At one time, this Gothic style tower was actually connected to the Cathedral of Saint Martin, but after part of it collapsed in 1674, the tower stands alone.  Not only can you walk under the tower itself, but you can also explore the top and get a great view of the city. Every other hour the tower’s 50 bells serenade the city with its beautiful harmonies.

Utrecht Archive

Housed in the former Benedictine abbey of St. Paul the Utrecht Archive is the perfect place to discover the rich history of the city and province of Utrecht.  And for my budget travelers….its free!  Through historical sources, unique images, film, and documents you can learn about the city’s growth over the last 2000 years.

utrechtarchief

City Center

Walk through the winding streets that have changed very little since the medieval times, and get a sense of how much time has passed in this old city.  The canals have an unique wharf-basement structures that create a two-level street along the canals.  The street level and then a lower level where you can find restaurants and cafes.

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Utrecht City Center
Utrecht City Center
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