Experience Utrecht like a local, a true ‘Utregter’
The Spoorwegmuseum (Railway Museum) is another place that definitely deserves a visit. Board the special train at Utrecht’s station for a direct trip to the wonderful world of old railway stations, steam locomotives, and all things railway-related.
And, of course, no visit to Utrecht is complete without a climb up the 465 steps of the Dom Tower to drink in the spectacular view from the top.
Make your trip to Utrecht unforgettable by paddling through the canals in a canoe. It’s an amazing and healthy way to marvel at the historical canal houses, vaulted cellars, and charming restaurants that simply ooze ambiance.
You may have to watch your head as you pass under the occasional low bridge, but as long as you remember to duck, that shouldn’t stop you from joining in on the fun. If for no other reason than the coffeehouse and dinner bar Tijm, which has set up a drive-through (or should we say sail-through) in the back where canoeists, rowers and other boaters can order beer, coffee and other tasty treats.
Delicious dining in Utrecht
© Corina van ManenCategory: Visit website
This rising star is a fresh new restaurant, located in perhaps the most beautiful spot in Utrecht: the Oudegracht canal.Read more on goo.gl
© Watertoren Urban Cafe & Kitchen in UtrechtCategory: Visit website
Take your dining experience to a whole new level – literally! – at Rotsoord, the new restaurant hotspot located in a water tower! Then wash down your dinner with a beer or two at Klein Berlijn or Camping Ganspoort.Read more on wturbankitchen.nl
© Allert Aalders via FlickrCategory: Visit website
No visit to Utrecht is complete without a stop at Ledig Erf. Pick a table on the terrace of Louis Hartloopercomplex, order a burger, and enjoy that age-old pastime of people-watching. And before we forget, this is also a great place to watch a movie.Read more on hartlooper.nl
© Le ClochardCategory: Visit website
Le Clochard in a nutshell: fireplace, delicious spareribs and cheese fondue in a comfortable setting near Park Lepelenburg. Order a craft beer to go with your meal and just relax.Read more on goo.gl
© Kimmade UtrechtCategory: Visit website
For a quick sandwich while shopping, stop by Kimmade on Mariastraat for a Vietnamese Banh Mi. Kimmade may be small in size, but it’s big on taste.Read more on kimmade.nl
A green visit to Utrecht
No matter which of Utrecht’s neighborhoods you find yourself in, you can bet that it has a park. Transwijk park, Julianapark, Lepelenburg, Wilhelminapark… they all have their own unique aspects, but one thing they have in common is that they are either big or really big.
Transwijk park, for example, is especially known for the large-scale Liberation Day festival which is held there every year, while Griftpark boasts a large playground and a petting zoo. No matter what park you find yourself in, there are plenty of ways to pass the time. Spread out a blanket and order a pizza or, better yet, treat yourself to a barbecue! As long as you stick to a few rules, local law gives the thumbs up to BBQing in Utrecht’s parks.
And that’s not all. Because Utrecht is in the midst of a huge greening campaign, the city is building more and more bike-only roads and even housefront gardens. The municipality has come up with special subsidies and solutions for the latter. For example, they will pick up your tiles for free if you replace them with green features.
Thanks to all that, Utrecht manages to be one of the greenest cities in the country without losing any of its urban character. Truly a splendid combination.
© Eric KleinbergCategory: Visit website
The starting point here is fantastic dishes with seasonal vegetables. That doesn't mean you can't eat meat there, but it is only a small part of your experience. It makes for a great restaurant for both vegetarians and carnivores.Read more on lejardinutrecht.nl
© Anne HamersCategory: Visit website
Utrecht nowadays has quite a few options for vegetarians and vegans. In this fine overview you will find restaurants and eateries in different price ranges. Pictured here is Broei, located on the cozy Oosterkade.Read more on ontdek-utrecht.nl
Utrecht Landhuis in de stad © Anna SchoutenCategory: Visit website
Meet the deer and peacocks in the animal meadow at Oog in Al Park, then sit back and enjoy a cup of coffee. A historical building in green.Read more on g.page
© Fort aan de klopCategory: Visit website
Located in the up-and-coming neighborhood of Zuilen, Fort aan de Klop is a surprising green enclave in the city. Go for a walk or a bicycle ride along the river Vecht and stop in at this amazing, centuries-old fortification, which is now an excellent place for lunch, dinner, and even overnight stays.Read more on goo.gl
Utrecht De Moestuin © De MoestuinCategory: Visit website
Behind football stadium De Galgenwaard, hidden between crops and greenhouses, you'll find De Moestuin. It is an organic market garden, café with shop and party location in one, but above all it's the ideal green place to have lunch with children.Read more on goo.gl
The road less traveled in Utrecht
De Nijverheid in Werkspoorkwartier is definitely worth your time. Exhibitions, art shows, movies – you’ll be surprised at how much there is to see here and a lot of it is created or organized by young creatives. It’s the spirit of Berlin but with an Utrecht twist. Visit the EXboot, a former houseboat with a somewhat seedy past – once upon a time, it was used as a brothel. Or enjoy the many performers and the cultural terrace. De Nijverheid hosts unique events on an almost daily basis, especially in the summer. Top tip: if you’re not too familiar with Utrecht, it’s a good idea to bring a map.
Hidden Gems in Utrecht
© StadsjochiesCategory: Visit website
A stone’s throw from Amelisweerd, the beautiful country estate on the edge of Utrecht, stands a greenhouse that offers elaborate lunches, drinks, snacks and dinners. Look out the window and see exactly how and where the veggies on your plate are grown. It’s a truly beautiful location.Read more on goo.gl
© Boot 122Category: Visit website
Right in the middle of the creative hotspot that is De Nijverheid lies Boot 122, a small brewpub that serves dozens of different kinds of beers. Fun fact: Boot 122 used to be a houseboat (that’s where the name comes from).Read more on goo.gl
© Hal 22 UtrechtCategory: Visit website
Padel, squash or fitness: the stylish Hal22 is a new sports center in Leidsche Rijn. It’s the perfect place to work up a sweat before cooling down with a drink and a tasty bite to eat. Fun fact: Hal22’s founders include former soccer star Marco van Basten and actor Barry Atsma.Read more on goo.gl
© Ruben DrenthCategory: Visit website
Where can you play table tennis, drink beer, eat tasty food and dance, all at one location? Why at the Ping Pong Club, of course. Located in an authentic old train depot, it may sound like some kind of weird theme park, but the Ping Pong Club is actually an extremely trendy spot that is very popular among young people in their 20s and 30s.Read more on goo.gl
© Juri Hiensch via Utrecht MarketingCategory: Visit website
Want to dance until the morning light? When summer is in full swing, SOIA (short for Strand Oog in Al, or Oog in Al Beach) is a great place to be, with good food and good DJs.Read more on g.page
Discover more cities as a local
The newest city in the Netherlands might just surprise you with all it has to offer. ‘Ally’ is an open-air museum of modern architecture.
Discover Dordrecht, the oldest city in the Netherlands.
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?