This former courthouse was built between the end of the 15th century (the half-timber part on the north) and the early 16th Century (the front).
It becomes a focus for many tourists and even for locals who want bus information or other local event information.
In this old building called "dinghuis" you can now find the tourist information center. Here you can get maps of the city, a city walk or any kind of information. One side of the builing was built in the 15yh century and the other side in the 16th century. What strikes me the most about this building is that the clock only has one dial.
The Tourist Information Center is opened every weekday from 9 to 6 and saturdays from 9 to 5. In the summer it is also opened on sundays.
The name of this historic building is Het Dinghuis, which I logically worked out to mean “The Thing House” because the word Ding means thing in German.
But no, I had just run afoul of a “false friend” – the kind I always warn my students about. It turns out that in Dutch there is a verb dingen which means “to administer justice”.
Until recently, that is until 1650, this building was where the law court of Maastricht was located. Now it houses the tourist information office (second photo), which in the Netherlands is always called the VVV.
Because I had gone to the VVV in Groningen not long before, I was prepared to pay a small amount for a city map instead of getting one for free. Actually the city map of Groningen had cost € 1.95 but the one of Maastricht (third photo) only cost € 1.50. I paid this without the slightest complaint, but the lady apologized anyway, saying she could gíve me lots of free maps and booklets from Belgium and Germany, but had to charge for anything about the Netherlands.
Actually I think this is a perfectly reasonable policy. The € 1.50 is really just a token price so people will only take the things they really need.
The Dinghuis is built in 1475 and was used as a courthouse at first. The front of the building is from the 16th century. For a long time the Dinghuis was the highest building of Maastricht.
The attic was used as a prison. In the tower somebody was stationed to alarm the citizens if there was a fire in town. Once he failed, so a part of the city burned down. The clock only has one hand.
Nowadays the VVV - tourist information - is situated in the Dinghuis. The building is open for public from Monday till friday from 9am- 6pm, at saturdays from 9am - 5pm
The Dinghuis is the buidling where the VVV is located. The VVV is the tourist information. Every city has such a place, but in Maasticht it is in a beautiful building. The Dinghuis was built in 1475 and was at the time the highest building of Maastrciht. The attic was used as a prison. At the very top a man was stationed who had to alarm the citizens if there was a fire. However one time he failed to ring the bell and an area in the city burned down to the gound. He was therefor locked in the prison in the attic for three days and only got some water and dry bread.
The clock only has one hand.
The historical building home of the Maastricht’s tourist office was built in 1460 in a Gothic style. The name Dinghuis derived from the Dutch words “geding” (trial) and “huis” (house) - originally served as a courtroom with prison cells in the basement (where nowdays there is the tourist information office). A watchman was stationed at the top of the tower to sound the alarm in case of a fire or any other type of danger. The bell still functions nowdays.
The Dinghuis is a buiding from the 15 th. century and is called Ding (lawsuit)- huis, because it used to be a court. The attick of the building was used as the city prison. For a long time this building was the highest one in Maastricht, and in those days the town-trumpeter had his place in the tower of the building as a fire-watch. Funny detail: when Maastricht was burning - somewhere in the 18 century, the trumpeter forgot to give an alarm - maybe he was a sleep or drunk - and therefore the attick became his new location in the building. The building thus is a good example of the fact that many old Maastricht buildings served for different functions in the past. Nowadays the VVV - tourist information - is situated in the building. The dinghuis is build in Renaissance style and has a lot of fine details, note f.e. that the clock on the building has only one hand. The building is open to public from monday-friday 9 am-6pm, saterday from 9 am - 5 pm
I am so happy I stopped here early in my visit. I already had a free visitor's brochure that included an excellent map of the city and a couple of abbreviated walking tours, but at the Visitor's Center I purchased two brochures that were well worth the cost. The first was a small brochure called "Maastricht Step by Step: Sightseeing Walk Through the Old City Centre," and the second was a larger booklet entitled "Maastricht on your own: Ideas and Tips for Individual Visitors."
This building was build around 1470 and offers a beautiful stone gable and timbered side wall. It used to be the seat of the former Lord Justice. Today it is the office of the tourism information, where maps, tourist brochures and other souvenirs can be purchased as well as reservations for accommodation within Maastricht can be made.
At the top of the Dinghuis is this clock. It is very old and very beautiful too, however if you look carefully you can find a mistake. Do you know what it is?
The gothic building at the end of this busy shopping street is the Dinghuis. It was built in the 15th century and now houses the VVV, as the Dutch call the tourist information office.