Although not as famous as the canals in Amsterdam a boat ride on the Utrecht old canals is very enjoyable.
Along the route you will get to see and hear the history of the very old building, some of which are from the middle ages. I find it a very good relaxing way to learn the history of the city and its important buildings.
The tour I took lasted about 45 minutes. It costs 7.5 Euro for adults.
The tape is in four different languages (English, Dutch, German and French).
Oude Gracht houses some of the best pubs and restaurants in Utrecht. Its an excellent, relaxing place to sit outside on a warm summers night to enjoy a drink with mates, or a wonderful place for a romantic meal. Best of all is a joyous walk amongst trees to shade yourself from the sun (see photo 3 for an idea of the length of the gracht).
The Canals in Utrecht are just as beautiful as those in Amsterdam, if not more so. They have very little traffic on them as opposed to Amsterdam, and their are little stairways where you can go down to walk right along the canal. This scene is right by a giant old church, and also next to Andersom Coffeeshop. :)
This is the best way to get a good idea of the city centre of Utrecht. It takes you on the canals, 'grachten', around and thru the city centre. The trip takes about 1.5 hours and is very worthwhile. It costs 7 euro's and boats will go every hour.
We rented a canal bike, a pedal boat that holds up to four people. Our kids volunteered to pedal while the old folks sat in back.
It was a very entertaining way to see Utrecht's canals, cruising serenely under brick bridges with names like Maartensbrug, and looking at the artists' studios and residences along the water's edge. When it started to rain (we hadn't known enough to ask for a canopy, and the cashier at the Canal Bike stand hadn't offered), Kelly and I held umbrellas over the kids' heads while they pedaled. It would have made a good photo if any of us had had a free hand! Their legs still got drenched, but that was part of the fun.
50 euros deposit, refundable, plus 5 euros per person, per hour. If it's an overcast day, ask for the canopy.
The Oudegracht is the aorta of Utrecht it runs right through the city and is the busiest and most interesting part too. You can find lots of terraces here, shops and restaurants. I visited on a sunny day and the whole gracht was booming. There was live music at a few locations, artists doing paintings of the city's sights, and people peddling water bikes forward. Also make sure to check out the aboriginal museum which is also located on Oudegracht.
Utrecht's canals have pedestrian walkways on either side. Check out the two main north to south running canals (the Old Canal and the New Canal - though remember that even the new one dates from the 14th century). There are plenty of cafes along the way, if you feel in need of a pit stop
The Oudegracht is the main canal which passes through central Utrecht. Along the canal there are lots of restaurants and also department stores. You can also go on a cruise on the canal. It is very romantic.
There are many student-filled cafes and bars alongside the canals of Utrecht. In particular, these are located alongside the edge of the Oudegracht (old canal) that runs through the heart of the city.
In some areas, the city is built on two levels. At street-level there are shops and houses. But then there are steps down to the canalside, where there are bars and restaurants, and small boats for hire.
while in utrecht make sure to enjoy a meal at a restaurant along one of the many canals. Downtown there is a main stretcht of places, and there is tons of variety. The food is good, and the atmosphere is amazing. There is nothing quite like watching a boat row right past your table while you enjoy a delicious meal.
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