St. Jan church, Maastricht
Sint Janskerk (St.John Church, in English) is a nice Gothic church built in the 14th century close to the Sint Servaasbasiliek. Originally it was the parish of the canons of the basilica. In 1633 it passed to the Dutch Reformed Church. It has a tall tower with a square shape to the base, while in the superior part it has octagonal one. Inside the church has got a single nave and there you can see the graves of the most important families of the town.
Again here in Maastricht as we have seen in dozens of other towns, the central church looms over a main square and seems to dominate everything around it, in this case the St. Jan's Kerk (St. John's Church). The day we arrived in Mastricht they were preparing for a party of some sort and the area had been cordoned off and you had to pay to enter, then were given a wrist band. WHAT they had planned here we have no idea, all was in Dutch..but it seemed like all the people entering were kids.
St. John's Church is a beautiful Gothic church with a 70 meters high tower. The church dates back to the 13th century. It has a unique pulpit and interesting tombstones and wall paintings. The organ dating back to 1780 is a monumental Binvignator organ. Since 1633 this church has been used as the Protestant Church of Maastricht.
At the Vrijthof you will see besides the well known St Servaas Church a second church directly south of it. It is the so-called St Jans Church. This church was built in the 12th century and has became a protestant church in 1632. You can climb the tower for a small entrance fee.
Imaniac told me that there is a legend that the soft stone of the tower is painted with ox blood for protection. I know they do the same in the north of the country with wooden doors... So why it can't be true...
St. Jan's (St. John's) Church was actually built in 1200 as the local Parrish church because the Saint Servatius church was occupied with pilgrimages and with masses for the church Cannons. Eventually (1633) the church became the protestant church. Local catholics chide that St. Servaas Church is white and represents heaven while St. Jan's church is red representing hell.
Next to Saint Servaas church another church, Saint John's, offers another peculair tourist attraction. Its belltower can be climbed up to a height of 43 meters, from which vantage point ones has a magnificent view over the city and many church steeples and musea, such as the unusual "bullet-shaped" part of the Bonnefantenmuseum across the river.
Next to the St. Servaas stands this strange Gothic church. It was built on a slope as you can see. The tower is more or less a copy of the one of the cathedral in Utrecht. It's painted red, not because it's beautiful (it's not) but to protect the soft marl stone. The church was taken by the protestants in the 17th century and is still used by them. You can climb the tower in the Summer, the view should be spectacular. It'll cost you a small fee.
Right next to the famous St Servaas Church you will find the church of St Jan (St john). You really can't miss it, because it dominates the city. Not only because of it's height, but also it's bright red colour. Legends have it that the tower was painted red with bulls blood. It was built in the 12th century and has been a protestant church from teh 17th century. If you think the tower loosk familiar, you could be right. It's a copy of the Dom Tower in Utrecht.
You can take a look inside or even climb the 43 meters high tower. You will however need to pay a small fee of 1,15 Euros.
The "St Jan" is a gothic church from the 12th century. In 1632 the church was handed to the Protestant community.
entranceprice to go into the tower € 1,15.
picture view on the vrijthof from st jans tower.
the towersteps are sometimes uneven and it stairs are getting smaller on the end.
The gothic tower of St. Jan church is dominating the views around town. Its height is only 68 but as it is standing on a small hill it looks quite impressive. The colour is quite unusual as it is built from red stone!
This church was built in the 14th and 15th century as a baptism chapel for the St. Servaas Basiliek, that is right next to the church. But later on it became an independent church. The red tower of the St. Jan's can be climbed for a small fee. Every now and then the tower needs to be painted red agian, because it keeps on losing it's colours. The tower can only be climbed from Easter untill the Autumn school vacation at the end of October.
This church was build in the 14-15 th. Century as a baptistery for saint Servaas and lateron it became a parish church. Its quite a funny thing, that two churches were build next to each other both having their own parish. Now, in the 17 th century the Protestants laid their hands on the church and since then the church is the most important church for the Protestant part of Maastricht population, which is by the way a minority considering the fact that Maastricht has been under influence of Spanish and French Katholic rulers. The slim 70 meter tower is painted in a red colour. Some people think that the protestants did this to distance themselves from their Catholic neightboar, t.i. as a radical statement, but in fact the tower has always been in this color. The tower can be visited by tourists and offers a nice view over the old town. Inside the church the choir is an interesting feature - it symbolizes the twelve apostles- as is the impressive Binvignat organ, on which frequently concerts are being played.