Utrecht is the beating heart of the NetherlandsIt is an intimate city of narrow streets and sleepy canals. The picturesque cobble-stoned streets lined with boutiques and cafes and medieval architecture along two-tiered canal ways create a recipe of charming delight. Even though it’s the fourth largest city in the Netherlands, Utrecht manages to maintain its quaintness.

Having spent a lot of time in the Dutch capital, we (me and my husband) decided to take a day trip to the neighboring city to discover some hidden gems of Utrecht. Utrecht is like a mini version of Amsterdam. It has all the charm of Amsterdam with its similar streets and canals just on a smaller scale. We only had one night in Utrecht but we’re certain we’ll return. It struck a chord with us and left us hungry for more.

Utrecht bicycles
Iconic Holland Bicycles

Beautiful Dutch houses and flowing canals are what you’ll find in Utrecht’s well preserved old town. The streets hum with chatter as the locals sip coffee and catch up with friends, while the canals, even right down to water level, are surrounded with beautiful wine bars, sports clubs and cafes. Taking a boat trip is a fantastic way to see this city in detail. Also dining next to the canal is one of the treats of a summer visit. But Utrecht’s winters are mild too, so there’s plenty to do all year. The real pleasure is simply being there.

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Mesmerizing view

The Netherlands are the world’s main producer of tulip plants. Windmills and colorful fields filled with tulips, that is how Holland looks on a postcard. The flower bulb fields along the coast of The Hague and Leiden up to Alkmaar are a great way to enjoy these beautiful flowers. The Keukenhof, the world’s biggest flower exhibition, is famed for its many tulips and is just a 15 minute drive away from Leiden and 30 minutes from Amsterdam. We surely plan to visit one of the places in Spring.

While in Utrecht, we came across lot of flower shops into the bloom. Whether you’re looking for a bouquet to brighten your home or just want to take some Instagram shots to wow your friends with, it’s a quintessential pilgrimage to wander.

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Streets full of Flower shops
Tulips
Beautiful blooming Tulips

Much of the charm of the city lies in walking or cycling around its quaint streets and alleys and a visit to the iconic Dom Tower is a must. The Dom Tower is Utrecht’s pride and joy – a special monument with a unique story.  At 112 metres, it remains the highest church tower in the Netherlands. This tower has been the central feature of the city for centuries. Visitors can take a tour up the tower, which offers a lot of history on the building and the city, and culminates in breathtaking views at the top. 

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The iconic Dom Tower
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different view of the Dom Tower

Music Festivals:

Utrecht hosts a ton of cool festivals throughout the year but things really start to get going when the weather gets warmer. Utrecht has one of the largest student populations in the Netherlands making it renowned as a student city. The nightlife in Utrecht is well developed with an abundance of bars and clubs, particularly those emphasizing EDM, a genre that Holland has been leading the pack in.

Our main aim to visit Utrecht was to attend one of our favourite concert by one of our favourite DJ, Armin Van Buuren. Being ardent follower of his Trance music we make sure we listen to his radio show. ASOT800 was marked as the successful completion of 800th episode of ASOT (A State of  Trance) radio show in Jaarbeurs, Utrecht. The birthdays of the A State of Trance show are always celebrated in style 🙂

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Amazing ASOT 800 Mainstage
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I live for that erenrgy – ASOT 800, Jaarbeurs

How to reach:

Less than thirty minutes from Amsterdam by train, Utrecht is centrally located in the Netherlands with nowhere longer than three hours away on the Dutch rail. A ton of vibrant and quaint destinations nearby like Leiden, Delft, and The Hague make for a superb day trip from Utrecht. 

Utrecht leaves you with a sense of quiet, understated delight. 

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Where to Stay:

One of your biggest travel expenses and time-consuming tasks is booking accommodation, and we all want to save time and hopefully some money when searching for deals online.

Whilst there are plenty of websites these days to help you search for accommodation, some are more trustworthy than others, and some are easier to navigate than others.

Booking.com:

I’m sure you are already familiar with Booking.com, they are my all time favourite with lot of different types of accommodation you can book on their website:

In my opinion, not only are they the best hotel booking site, but the best accommodation website.

And if the above options aren’t enough for your style or budget, you can even book Lodges, chalets, luxury tents, campsites and more.

AirBnb

It is an online marketplace and hospitality service, enabling people to list or rent short-term lodging including vacation rentals, apartment rentals, homestays, hostel beds, or hotel rooms. 

Unforgettable trips start with Airbnb.

Sign up now and earn a discount coupon for your first booking.

How to reach:

Book cheap flights with Skyscanner or Kiwi.com:

Skyscanner and Kiwi.com are our favourites when it comes to flight bookings or car rental bookings. We do not hesitate even once to book our flights via Skyscanneror Kiwi.com. So what are you waiting for?

 

Book your flight or car rentals for anywhere in the world!

Explore more in Netherlands –

Amsterdam: The city of canals

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation if you make purchase using these links. However, it will cost you exactly same or sometimes less. This money goes towards maintaining the website.

3 thoughts on “Utrecht : The Quaint and The Modern

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