During its existence maastricht has had several townwalls. The first medieval townwall was buid in the 13. th. century. As Maastricht expanded it had to build new walls, as it did in the 14 th. en 16 th.century. The walls are still visible. Large parts of the second townwall f.e. are still intact and can be explored. Many of the historic towngates are also in tact. The walls and gates and certain hisoric buildings next to these walls can be found at differrent locations in the city. These locations are the "Onze lieve vrouwenwal," - (there you'll find also the "Helpoort") - Lang Grachtje, Waterpoortje, Stenen Wal, Pater Vinktoren, and de bastion "Vijf Koppen" Most walls are accessible. There are stairs that lead up to the walls; you can find them f.e. near the Helpoort.
This is the only towngate that's still left in Maastricht. The gate is a part of the first townwall, build in the 13 th. century. This particular towngate is the oldest one in the Netherlands and has been used for 2 cenuries as a defensive work against the French armies, that were trying to invade the city. You can still see that the gate has forfilled this function. Around and above the gate thera are loop-holes and in front of the gate you can still see a dozen canon, standing there proudly to scare off the enemy.
Later on, after these wars, the gate has had several other functions: it has been a residence, a storage for tools and gunpowder etc.
Nowadays this towngate is open for public. There are hosts who will answer all your questions.
Feilzusterklooster, a small convent builded in the 14th century - rebuilded in the 17th century after a huge fire
This gate is truly old. In fact it's the oldest city gate in the Netherlands. Inside is a small museum. Parts of the walls around the gate are reconstructions.
This O.L.V.-wall is the wall that leads you to the Helpoort. From here you have a nice view over the river Maas. In front of the wall a lot of canons are placed. Very impressive!!
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