Fun things to do in Delft

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Delft

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    The good, the bad and the ugly

    by iandsmith Written May 22, 2007

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    Wandering without itinerary and keeping your eyes open can lead to many interesting spots, some of which I've included here.
    The first shot was a plaque I found on a wall. No-one I spoke to knew what it represented but eventually it represented a golden bale which is where the money came from to build the original house here, i.e. trading in grain.
    Picture 2 is my favourite sign. Fairly obviously it was hanging over the bookshop in Delft. I loved it.
    Picture 3 shows the front of the local synagogue and picture 4 shows an alley heading towards the station. Not the sort of thing you see on tourist brochures.
    Picture 5 came from down where I shot the ship on the Oostsingel. It was a pool of stagnant water that, somewhat surprisingly, had been chosen by a couple of ducks as their abode. I thought that with a little more foresight it could have been a lovely nature park. Shame really, but not everything's perfect all the time.

    My favourite sign Synagogue Graffiti strikes even here The foetid cesspool
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    The far side

    by iandsmith Updated May 21, 2007

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    I went beyond the boundaries of the maps that had been provided. I felt that maybe the local tourist authorities might have erred a little here as I, for one, found it quite interesting. First I had come to the bridge in the previous page then I couldn't help but notice this wonderful scene from a past almost forgotten.
    The lovingly cared for boat, a feature of so many Flemish paintings and the Gothic exterior of the building behind, these days I believe it is for those who are out of work and seeking employment.

    Splendour of the past
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    • Sailing and Boating
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

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    Pharmacy

    by iandsmith Updated May 20, 2007

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    Within these walls you can see a permanent collection relating to things pharmaceutical and nursing in the Netherlands.
    Displays include the work of Pieter van Foreest, who was Prince William of Orange's personaly physician, and the microscopes of Anthonie van Leeuwenhoek.
    The tours are for groups only, 10 to 25 persons.

    Alley way beside the pharmacy
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    Oude Delft 116

    by iandsmith Updated May 10, 2007

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    On this site there used to be the Heilige Geest (Holy Ghost) Nursing Home which became an orphanage for girls. However, the building was demolished in 1769 and replaced with what you see here, done in French style, but still a girls' home.
    From 1955-2002 it was used by the municipal authorities but, from 2004 on, it has been hired out to the Cultural Heritage House people. At Oude Delft 137 is the Boys' Orphanage and it is still used by the municipal authorities.
    In the garden next to this building is the bust of Dirk Coster (1887-1956) and, on the fence is a plaque dedicated to Anthony Van Leeuwenhoek, incorrectly placed here in the misconceived view that he had lived here.

    A little touch of French in the Delft
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    The good, the bad and the ugly

    by iandsmith Written May 10, 2007

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    One's vision of canals is often much like the first picture. Lovely verdant lawns and rows of trees alongside a reflective body of water.
    Of course, not all water is so pretty. After having seen what is dumped into them (pic 4) and skirted the sides into what seemed like an attractive park I can assure you there are other sides to Delft and just about everywhere I've ever been that aren't so pretty.
    Pics 2 & 3 show a foetid cesspool of muck, the latter amazingly with a duck swimming in it. I must remember not to order Peking Duck while staying in Delft!
    I actually thought it was a bit of a shame because the area had much potential as a nature park similar to the one I used to go through and admire every day but obviously there was a lack of commitment to same.
    It was right next to where I took the passing boat shots in the previous tip.

    A reflective view Cesspool Those bikes again
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    Heilige Geesthuis

    by iandsmith Written May 9, 2007

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    This building of many uses was originally, as the name suggests, a guest house from the 16th century but it later became a "Foundling Hospital".
    It was very long in its former guise, 72 metres in fact. From 1578 to the 19th century it was a carpenters yard for the town carpenter.
    Around the town on various buildings of historical interest you can see signs (pic 2) that give you some brief information on what the building has been.

    Not quite its former self, but interesting Signs around the town
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    World's greatest salesmen

    by iandsmith Written May 9, 2007

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    They walk among you, yet you know not who they are. They impact upon your life, yet they are hidden behind a veil. They are liable to pop up anywhere, when least expected. They are the products of the world's greatest salesmen; those who seek to unleash these monstrosities upon an unsuspecting public. And who are the bureaucrats that allow them to do it?
    I have no answers unfortunately but I do know that Delft has no exclusivity for the species yet they clearly are in evidence.
    The first two are to be found near the Prisenhof while the latter sits beside Oude Delft canal.

    It brings a teardrop to my eye as well Who would have the balls? At least it's eyecatching
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    How to get there

    by iandsmith Written May 8, 2007

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    The best approach to the park is along the Twee Molentjes Kade, definitely a street you won't get confused with any other. This will take you under the motorway and then you can take you pick of trails on the right.
    At some stage you will undoubtedly notice the boat shed and restaurant that is all the go in summer. You can hire canoes or just sit by the small lake and enjoy the ambience.
    Further around there is a larger lake where sailboarding is the main sport though there is also some birdwatching for twitchers (pic 3), understandably at different times to the sailboarding.
    I made a point of going home on a different trail each night and it was like recharging your batteries on the way home instead of fighting your way through traffic.
    Though I cursed when first finding out where my accommodation was, in the end I loved it for being just outside the city.

    Bridge to the boatshed Daffodils, waterways, what's not to like? Even the birds love it Lovely walks Sorry, I just loved that bridge
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    • Kayaking
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    A walk in the park

    by iandsmith Written May 8, 2007

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    On reflection, it was really a ride in the park with little bits of walking. No matter, it was being there that counted and being there every afternoon that ended each day on such a pleasant note that in the end I really looked forward to going back to my accommodation every night, just so I could pass through Delft's delightful, but much underpublicized, park.

    Ducking about Everywhere there's water Even in the backblocks Fungal growth Wooden slat path
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    Finding out

    by iandsmith Written May 8, 2007

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    The Tourist Information Centre in Delft is one of the better ones I've come across. Not only do they have quality maps and information for free, they also have free internet. Wow, did I make use of that!
    However, one other thing that's also scattered around the town are these cubes set at unusual angles. They also have relevant information about the area you're in.

    Unusual but effective
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    No veneer for Vermeer

    by iandsmith Written May 7, 2007

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    A simple, noticeably worn plaque in the northern transept opposite the pulpit of the Oude Kerk (Old Church) marks the spot where Johannes Vermeer, one of the truly great Flemish painters, is believed to be interred.
    It is a poignant place with a copy of one of his works usually sitting on an easel and a wreath or such nearby.
    There is another plaque, newer and with much more detail (pic 3) but it is largely ignored.
    At the main entrance to the Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) there is a board (pic 2) outlining some items of interest about Vermeer. Like how the Markt was where he spent much of his life, a fact that is reflected in some of his landscapes, particularly "A view of Delft".
    Though he was baptised in the New Church, it is his relatives (wife, parents, sister and one grandfather) who are buried here.

    A poignant reminder Some details of the Nieuwe Kerk More ornate, but not in THE place
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    On arrival

    by iandsmith Updated May 6, 2007

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    I must have come from Antwerp. The days were melding into each other but I guessed it must have been a weekday. It looked like peak hour in the afternoon. I enviously eyed off all the bikes as a possibility of reaching my accommodation. My, they do like their cycles in Holland. Still, with my bag that would have bordered on impossibility.
    Time to get my instructions out.
    I wasn't far from the main part of town so I started walking. I had a map, how hard could it be. There was the street. Okay, so one letter was different but that was obviously a typo.
    I zig-zagged down the cobbled streets and soon I came upon that leaning tower. Overlooking all else it amazed me that this piece of architecture hadn't received more publicity world wide.
    Out of the corner of my eye I saw the boat (see introduction). Well, the barge really, and it was full. Full of bikes and other assorted bits and pieces. Delft was going to be different because it was already different.

    Planes trains automobiles and bikes, lots of bikes Puts a new twist on being a street sweeper!
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    Now that's what I call a windmill

    by iandsmith Updated May 6, 2007

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    De Roos is the name of this windmill, or, as I would call it, more than a windmill. It's a successor of a windmill built on a rondelle within the town wall at least as far ago as the 16th century.
    The original wooden mill was replaced by a brick one in 1679, of which the hexagonal substructure of the present mill is probably a part.
    A miller's house was built against the substructure in 1728. Sometime before 1822, the upper half of the mill was replaced by the current one. Several restorations since then have saved the windmill from falling into decay.

    A potted history
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    A day in the country

    by iandsmith Written May 5, 2007

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    It was eye candy. Coming from a country with, in places, the worst drought in recorded history, the fields of the Netherlands were pleasant on the eye.
    Just the rows of trees (pics 2&3) I found interesting.
    Then of course, along came a gorgeous little horse with rider (pic 4) and that was all fine until I saw the sheep. Oh my, was I on another planet. They looked like something made up for a kids' show. Amazing.

    Are they real? They're certainly cute Just rows and rows Horsing around
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    Rural outlook

    by iandsmith Written May 5, 2007

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    I moved on, the road was straight and the canal presented photo opportunites (1,3,4); the last one I found interesting because birds were actually nesting in the canal.
    Then I came upon another converted windmill, this one looked simply delightfu and had 360 degree views.
    It marked the turning point for me where I headed right. I only had 500 metres to go.

    Genuine water views Unusual gate Birds afloat What a nice place to live
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Delft Hotels

See all 21 Hotels in Delft
  • Hotel de Emauspoort

    It is a unusual hotel with a location in the middle of the town, and it has a very nice accomadation...

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  • WestCord Hotel Delft

    Conveniet to find, as it is situated next to the motorway/highway and IKEA. Do go and search the...

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  • Bridges House Hotel

    Oude Delft 74, Delft, Zuid-Holland, 2611C, The Netherlands

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

Latest Delft Hotel Reviews

Hotel de Emauspoort
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Best (5.0 out of 5.0) 1 Review
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Best (5.0 out of 5.0) 1 Review
Campanile Hotel Delft
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