I’ve wanted to go to Utrecht for a while, ever since I found this Guardian list of top places to visit this year, and Utrecht was one of them.
It seems quite fashionable to visit the 2nd, 3rd or even 4th city in a country now. It’s like you’re saying ‘I’m so cool I don’t even visit the obvious places when I go somewhere’.
Consequently the hip place to go becomes Utrecht rather than Amsterdam, Porto rather than Lisbon, Brisbane rather than Sydney or Melbourne, etc, etc.
Actually, Utrecht wasn’t a bad choice. It has a very relaxed, laid-back feel and comes over as a very liveable city, although you’d have to pick it up and dump it down in the middle of the Mediterranean for me to seriously consider living there. I was lucky with the weather; most of the year it could rival London for rain and grey skies.
Utrecht was the start for the Tour de France bike race this year, and the city is not letting us forget that. I was there just a couple of days before the kick off (pedal off?).
The city is dominated by Dom tower (really you can see it from just about anywhere). This is, apparently, the highest church tower in the country. There are 465 steps if you want to climb to the top. In the 33 degree heat on the day I visited, I didn’t. However I read later that you can see as far as Amsterdam from the tower, so maybe I should have made the effort.
Instead I wandered into the Cloister garden next door.
Wow how lovely does this look? When I first left school the company I worked for had a lot of dealings with suppliers in Utrecht and I can remember as a naive 17 year old of having no idea where it was. This was obviously in the days prior to Google. Alas, I never got the opportunity to visit it but maybe, who knows, one day I may.
The best compliment I can pay the city is that I looked around and thought ‘I could live here’. I fancy the image of myself cycling everywhere, although the reality would be very different I fear.
Looks like it was a beautiful day well spent. Sorry about your tenant drama though.
thanks for your comments 🙂
Oh wow, picutres are lovely. I could see myself living there too. Hope to visit one day, maybe when I finally get around to backpacking all of Europe.
It’s a lovely place and the good weather helped.
Very pretty. Love the photo op spot- colorful!
thank you 🙂
Lovely place and I love the photo op spot- so colorful!
I, also, really want to visit Utrecht. I’ve heard so many good things starting with the fact that a friend told me it’s like Amsterdam without the tourists. And a student city which means lots of places to have fun. Looks very nice from your photos as well. I am sure the cathedral is even more stunning in person.
Yes a less crowded Amsterdam is another way to see it. It is really cute.
Another pretty place to explore
yeah I know there’s so many right?
This looks lovely! Will have to add to my Europe list 🙂
yes you really should
Utrecht seems to be indeed a good alternative to Amsterdam.
To be able to cycle everywhere is a huge advantage in Netherlands!
Yes I love the Netherlands for that reason; it gives me chance to indulge in my fantasy of ‘wow I could cycle everywhere and be so healthy’ .