Dordrecht. Is the oldest city of Holland, which is the area of the two provinces of North and South-Holland combined. That fact alone makes it well worth a visit. Located in the province of Zuid-Holland, its picturesque alleyways, beautiful historical city center and more than 1000 monuments give this city a unique appearance and charming ambience.

Like a local
Experience Dordrecht like a true local ‘Dordtenaar’

Experience Dordrecht like a true local ‘Dordtenaar’

Dordrecht Hofstraat couple walks down the street

Dordrecht was granted its city rights as early as 1220 and is therefore one the oldest cities in the Netherlands. Due to its location in an area abundant with water and rivers such as the Merwede, the Noord and the Oude Maas, it was traditionally an important merchant city with a robust trade in wood, grain and wine. That history, wealth and culture are still evident today. The historical city center is home to about 1000 monuments, many of which are also beautifully utilized as restaurants, museums or theaters.

A perfect example of this is the old water tower, which now houses the beautiful Villa Augustus hotel and restaurant. It’s a really special place to spend the night!

In the historical city center, houses and buildings from the Middle Ages stand side by side in harmony with those from the present day. The merchants' houses and warehouses that sprang up along the harbors in the 17th and 18th centuries still dominate the scenery today. Dordrecht was once the most important staple city of Holland and it still shows!

Canal houses Dordrecht Grotekersbuurt

Dordrecht's rich past is also evident when you walk along the old city-center harbors, monuments and museums. Be sure not to miss the Grote Kerk (Great Church), the widely acclaimed painting collection of the Dordrecht Museum, the beautiful interiors of the former mayor's residence 'Huis van Gijn' and the 13th century Augustine monastery 'Het Hof'. We also suggest you head over to the Groothoofd quay for a magnificent view of the meeting of the rivers.

Dordrecht Maartensgat couple looks at the boats in the harbor

Dordrecht’s historical harbor contains everything that makes the city so special: distinctive buildings and bridges and loads of restaurants and cafés. This makes it the ideal place for a long walk with an occasional stop at a cozy bar or restaurant.

Water experience NL Waterland
Category: Visit website

Take a digital journey through the Netherlands Land of Water

Discover the Netherlands' water-rich cities, the most beautiful natural areas and the water icons that have made history in 360 degrees. Get ready for an unforgettable experience and get to know everything this beautiful land of water has to offer you.

A green visit to Dordrecht

A green visit to Dordrecht

Dordrecht is situated in one of the most beautiful, unique nature reserves in the Netherlands: De Biesbosch National Park. This is a beautiful freshwater delta, with some 8,000 hectares (19,760 acres) of small rivers and streams. You can enjoy Dutch nature at its finest here!

It is perfect for hiking, biking, or canoeing through a unique labyrinth of rivers and creeks. You can rent canoes and paddle boats at the Biesbosch Center to explore this nature reserve near Dordrecht. If you love watching birds, you will revel in the varied species of water birds flying by or attempting to snatch a fish.

Canoeing through the Biesbosch from above

But the beaver is the most special animal of all there. These industrious rodents have already built over 100 lodges in the Biesbosch wetlands.

Nationaal Park de Biesbosch Ecolodge

If you are in Dordrecht or the surrounding area for a longer period of time, then definitely consider an overnight stay in De Biesbosch. Stayokay Dordrecht De Biesbosch for example, is beautifully situated on the edge of the park. Or try the uber cool Wikkelhouse, a tiny house made of recycled cardboard. And if you seek even more peace and quiet, you could opt for the Ecolodge, a floating hotel room in the middle of the Biesbosch.

Hidden gems
The road less traveled in Dordrecht

The road less traveled in Dordrecht

Dordrecht is best discovered on foot. Follow the signposts of the 'Rondje Dordt' walk along the inner-city harbors, monuments, important historical places and attractive shopping streets.

Dordrecht Grotekerksbuurt
One of the oldest cities of the Netherlands has a beautiful, historical center.
Ger de Gram redacteur

Dordrecht has harbors instead of canals. These harbors were created in the 13th century for the flourishing trade. It is not without reason that Dordrecht was founded at a crossroads of rivers, which you can see beautifully from the Groothoofd quay. The monumental Groothoofdspoort gate gives access to the old city center.

Dordrecht Wolvershaven canal with boat from Barone

If you would you like to take a boat trip through the old harbors, we recommend the Waterrondje Dordt. Board the open electric boat Dordtevaar for a tour through the historical inner harbors and sail past houses built in the water and under dark bridges.

Discover more cities as a local

Category: Discover

Eindhoven: Design capital of the Netherlands

Eindhoven is Europe’s design capital and one of the most beautiful hidden gems of the Netherlands. Discover it for yourself.

View on Erasmusbrug from Euromast
Category: Discover

Rotterdam: The premier port of Europe

Rotterdam is a dynamic city with its own unique character. Find out why the city is well worth a visit.

Strollers on the Plein with The Hague skyline in the background
Category: Discover

The Hague: Green city by the sea

Many associate The Hague with the International Court of Justice. But did you know that it’s home to historical monuments, beaches, fabulous museums and a vibrant shopping centre?