Sun. May 19th, 2024
Utrecht, The Netherlands, September 30, 2017: houses, trees and outdoor cafes reflecting in the Oude Gracht (Old Canal) on a beautiful evening in autumn
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Utrecht is a city in the central part of the Netherlands known for its beautiful canals, iconic landmarks, and rich cultural heritage. It is the fourth largest city in the country and is a perfect destination for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

In this article, we will explore some fun things to do in Utrecht, from visiting historic churches and museums to exploring the city’s unique architecture and design.

Discover the Rich Cultural Heritage of Utrecht

Utrecht is home to several historic churches in the Netherlands, including the iconic Dom Tower, the tallest church tower in the country. The Dom Tower offers stunning views of the city from the top. Guided tours are available for visitors who want to learn more about the tower’s history and construction.

Another must-visit landmark in Utrecht is the Rietveld Schröderhuis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site designed by the famous architect Gerrit Rietveld. The house, which opened to the public in 1986, is an example of the De Stijl design movement, emphasizing simplicity and abstraction.

Explore Utrecht’s Museums and Galleries

Utrecht is home to several museums and galleries which showcase the city’s rich cultural assets. The Centraal Museum is one of the city’s most popular attractions, featuring a wide range of art and design exhibits, including works by Rietveld and other De Stijl artists.

THE 10 BEST Museums in Utrecht (Updated 2023) - Tripadvisor

For those interested in music, the Museum Speelklok is a must-visit destination. The museum houses a collection of self-playing musical instruments, including clocks, pianos, and organs. Visitors can also attend concerts and demonstrations to see and hear the instruments in action.

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Utrecht’s academic culture

Utrecht is home to one of the Netherlands’ oldest and most prestigious universities, Utrecht University. Visitors can explore the university’s historic buildings and attend public lectures and events.

Visit Utrecht University Hall (Utrecht University Hall) in Utrecht | Live  the World

Besides touring the old buildings and attending events at the university, visitors can also get a taste of the lively academic community in Utrecht by checking out the many student groups that are open to everyone. These groups cover a lot of different interests, like politics, philosophy, music, and sports. For instance, visitors can:

  • Go to a debate at the Utrecht Debating Society
  • Enjoy a concert put on by the Student Music Society
  • Join a language exchange program at the Utrecht Language Exchange
  • Watch a movie at the Utrecht Film Society.

Take a walk along the canals of Utrecht.

Utrecht is known for its beautiful canals, which offer a unique way to explore the city. Visitors can take a leisurely walk along the canals, stopping at cafes and shops along the way.

The canals also offer a great way to see the city’s historic buildings and architecture, including the many churches and bridges.

Visit St. Martin’s Cathedral

Utrecht Cathedral and Dom Tower - St. Martin's Cathedral / Dom Church |  Just Holland

St. Martin’s Cathedral, also known as Domkerk, is one of the most significant landmarks in Utrecht. The cathedral is known for its Gothic architecture and beautiful stained glass windows. Visitors can take a guided tour of the cathedral to learn more about its history and significance.

Enjoy a day trip to nearby attractions.

Utrecht is located in the heart of the Netherlands, making it a perfect base for day trips to nearby attractions. One popular destination is the nearby city of Amersfoort, which features beautiful historic buildings and a charming old town.

19 unmissable things to do in Utrecht in 2023 | DutchReview

Utrecht is home to several parks and gardens, including the beautiful Botanic Gardens and the  Keukenhof Gardens, which feature a stunning display of tulips and other flowers in the spring. The gardens feature a wide range of plant species worldwide, making them a perfect destination for nature lovers.

Gamestate Arcades

For those who enjoy gaming, the Gamestate arcade is a fun place to spend an afternoon. With its wide range of games, from classical must-play arcade games to the latest video games, it offers something for all kinds of gamers.

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Gamestate Arcade games – Utrecht University

At Gamestate Utrecht, you’ll find something for everyone – from classic arcade games like Pac-Man and Space Invaders to modern favorites like Mario Kart and Fortnite. But that’s not all – we’re also introducing the latest in virtual reality technology, so you can explore new worlds and battle it out with your friends in a completely immersive environment.

Gamestate is located in the city center, close to the train station, and open to the public daily. Our arcade is an excellent spot for friends, couples, and families to spend a few hours playing games and enjoying themselves.

Railway Station Area

The railway station area in Utrecht has undergone a significant transformation in recent years and is now a hub of activity with shops, cafes, and restaurants.

Utrecht Central Station / Benthem Crouwel Architects | ArchDaily

Visitors can explore the many shops and eateries in the area or simply enjoy a coffee or a meal while watching the world go by.  Some popular shops include HEMA, a Dutch department store, and Albert Heijn, a popular grocery store chain. Visitors can also find several cafes and restaurants, including Starbucks and McDonald’s, and local establishments such as the Belgian Beer Cafe Olivier and the Italian restaurant Da Portare Via.es.

Attend a Musical Performance

Utrecht is known for its vibrant music scene, with several venues hosting concerts and performances throughout the year. TivoliVredenburg is one of the city’s most popular venues, offering a wide range of musical genres, from classical to pop and rock.

December 29, 2022 Archieven - International Chamber music festival Utrecht

The venue has five separate halls, each with a unique atmosphere and acoustics. Other popular music venues in Utrecht include the Ekko, which hosts local and international artists, and the Tivoli De Helling, which specializes in alternative and indie music.

Sample Local Cuisine

Utrecht is home to several local specialties, including the famous Dutch cheese, stroopwafels, and bitterballen. Visitors can sample these delicacies at one of the many cafes and restaurants throughout the city. In addition to these local treats, visitors can find a wide range of international cuisine in Utrecht, including Italian, Chinese, and Middle Eastern.

Utrecht, The Netherlands – Street Foodiez

Some of the most popular local eateries in Utrecht include Cafe Olivier, which offers a wide selection of Belgian beers and pub-style food, and Meneer Smakers, a burger joint that serves up some of the best burgers in the city.

We could list out more of the best restaurants and cafés but, in truth, all of them are amazing and offer a wide range of plates for everyone’s taste. Instead, we recommend that you to check this TripAdvisor list.

Discovering the Charms of Utrecht

Fun things to do in Utrecht are endless. This city has a rich cultural heritage, beautiful canals, and a vibrant atmosphere. Whether you’re interested in history, art, music, or cuisine, there is something for everyone in this beautiful city.

A Different Side of the Netherlands: Utrecht's Underrated Charms

From visiting historic churches and museums to exploring the city’s natural beauty and academic culture, Utrecht offers a wealth of fun things to do for visitors of all ages. With its central location and easy access to nearby attractions, Utrecht is the perfect destination for a day trip or a weekend getaway. So, the next time you’re looking for a fun and unique destination, consider exploring the wonders of Utrecht.

Source: https://gamestate.com/

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By Lala