What I always do when I am in a to me strange town, I go to the tourist information office to buy a city walk map, so I make sure I visit the most important spots.
Before I left to Maastricht I had a look at Maastricht pages of VT members and all of them had a picture of the information centre at their page, so to me it wasn’t to difficult to locate it.
The tourist information office in Maastricht is located at the “Dinghuis” a gothic courthouse constructed between the end of the 15th century and the beginning of the 16th century.
The front is made from marl and namur stone.
Hello, visitors of my page,...
Hello, visitors of my page, welcome.
Altough Maastricht is not the place where I live at the moment,(I live in a little town near by)
I lived there for 25 years and visit Maastricht almost every day.........
When you are over here, visit the caves, these are man-made, digged out, by hand, in
a sandstone rock formation, and now, after ages it is a huge maze of corridors and tunnels.
It was actually a mine, and the stones were cut out for use as building material for
houses, fortifications and other buildings.
The digging started in the times when the Romans first visited Maastricht and made it one of
For them it was the furthest place up-north were the river Maas could be crossed by foot and in
fact that is where the name comes from: Mosa Trajectum (place where the river Maas could be crossed)
That also says something about the city's age, it is one of the oldest in the Netherlands.
When you visit Maastricht you must try to be here when we have our party the 'Carnaval', or when
we are all eating out at the 'Preuvenement' or during the one week 'Jazz festival'.
These anual parties all take in the big city-square called 'De Vrijthof', wich is
also the hart of the town, with its pubs, restaurants and terraces .
Take a moment, relax, take a seat and a drink there and watch the people walking by . When I'm away from Maastricht I miss the atmosphere the most.
The town is not too big, not too small; just right.
It's a nice old town with nice small streets and alleys, but also very modern
with big streets and buildings. There is a brand new part, just outside the city-center that has
very nice modern-architectual buildings and a new museum.
And it's location is perfect for visiting other big citys in the region:
in Belgium-Liege, and Germany-Aachen, both within only 15 miles (30 km) from Maastricht,
by train, car or bus, there are very good and quick connections between these cities .......
As soon as you leave the city, you are in an area wich also is very lovely, with hills
(the biggest/highest 'mountain' in the Netherlands) and very nice old villages.
It is farm land, with fruit trees (apples, pears, cherries) and of course cows .....
You can also arrive in Maastricht by boat, because as mentioned before, there's
the river 'Maas' streaming right through the middle of the town
Up-stream it goes south to Belgium and France, downstream, north, leads through the
rest of the Netherlands and it ends in the North Sea near Rotterdam
The river is mainly used for professional transportation purposes, but also touristic vessels can
be found here. Maastricht has at least 4 marina's and during the summer you can dock your boat in the
middle of the town.
Maastricht has a kind of burgundian style; inhabitants of Maastricht like to go out,
like eating out, drink their wine beer or other drinks, in one of the many pubs and bars
or on one of the many terraces.
All of this in a very relaxed fashion, also we like a party or two ......
The town has a nice old city center wich is car free.
In the city center there are several squares for several purposes;
Het Vrijthof..... it is used for big cultural events like 'Preuvenement' and it has pubs and
terraces along side it. see picture of Vrijthof !!
Also there are two big old churches, the old spanish gouvernement building (open for visitors), the
brand new theater and finally you can also park your car in the big underground parkingplace.
De Markt..... used for market days (wednesdays and fridays) and this is also is the place where
the city hall is and also bars, restaurants, main central busstation and parkingspace (not on market days)
Onze Lieve Vrouwenplein........ is all terraces, pubs and restaurants. But here you can also find
some Roman artifacts in the basement of Hotel Derlon.
Stop for a moment....
Being in a late rush for sights suddenly by a corner of my eye I cought a sight of this peaceful harbor for our tired souls.... was so facinated by the view and feel of this sacred place.... a door to eternity.... the fragile candle light trembling in a sudden wind.... a vague image of Madonna far away.... you can barely hear a choire of angels singing Alleluia....
Maastricht has always been a...
Maastricht has always been a fortified city.
First founded by the Romans, it claims to be the oldest city of the Netherlands, although some disagree.
Because of it's wealth and prosperity, it often was the victim of rages and attacks.
To keep themselves safe from intruders, the people of Maastricht started to fortify their city.
The natural boundary in the South was the water and they dig canals around the left and the right and filled it with water as well.
Only the Northern part was not protected enough... so they start to make fortifications.
Later on I will say more about the shapes of those fortifications.
And about the extra efforts that were needed to try keep the Spanish out. Here you see a map of how it looked like with the fortifications.
The Maastricht Citywalk Part 1
This citywalk contains some of the highlights of the city and takes about 2,5 hours. The walk connects the sights in a way, that you take the more picturesque streets that connect them. For specific info’s on the several sights read the information under “must see activities” I had to split this text into several parts, so just click under "General Tips" the sections Citywalks part 2, 3 etc. to continue your reading. You start your walk at the Dinghuis. Standing with your face against this building, you take the street is next to it on the left side (Jodenstraat;see picture). This street is one of the eldest streets of the city. You can see a few old houses that have big entrances (used to let coaches pass into the courtyard) with typical stone tablets above it. At nr 22 you find the Historic City printing office, that is still active, so it’s a kin of “living” museum. Go back to the Dinghuis and turn to the left, take the street called Kleine Staat, follow it and you get into the street called Kersenmarkt. You see on your right hand the café called “Mouton Blanc,” Look at the stone tablet on the building. This building used to be the first town hall of Maastricht, and is now a pub. It’s a funny trivia though, because its said that in Limburg nowadays much of politic decision -making finally happens after towncouncil-meetings, t.i. in the pubs! Go to the street on your left hand. Here you have the Maastrichter Smedenstraat and your entering the Stokstraat Kwartier At the end of the street you find the statue of the “Mestreechter Geis” There, you turn to the right and you find the “Stokstraat” In the old days the steet was called “Broodstraat”(Bread street), because all the bakers in town, had their shops here. Later it was called stokstraat (stok=baton) because of the scourge that took place at the prison, that has been situated in this steet in the old days. The street nowadays is one of the most expensive shoppingstreets in the country.