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This sweet little Dutch town is only about an hour outside of Amsterdam, but the two cities could not be any more different. While in Amsterdam you may feel rushed and caught up with all the business of the city, you will be able to take things much slower in Delft making it a wonderful day trip from Amsterdam or a great stop on a trip through the Netherlands.
Two of the city’s largest attractions are aptly named New Church (Nieuwe Kerk) and Old Church (Oude Kerk). Take your time in visiting both churches- they are very different from each other! The New Church is home to the second highest church tower in the Netherlands. Climb up almost 400 stairs to see a rewarding view of the city! There is a combined entrance ticket that allows you to enter both the New and Old Church. A fun and free thing to do while in Delft is walking along the many canals of the city. The many bridges crossing over the canals make it a picture-perfect spot. There are many shops and cafes along the canal so as you lose yourself in Delft’s beauty, you will be able to take breaks. If you want to experience Delft from a different point of view, hop on one of the canal tours which will usually cost you between 7 to 10€ depending on the company and if you’re traveling during high tourist season. From the canal, you can see most of the city within an hour along with a memory you’ll never forget. If you prefer a more Dutch-style mode of transportation, you can rent a bike for a few hours and see all of the quaintness of Delft as you zoom by.If you are in Delft between April and October try to be there on a Thursday or Saturday. This is when the city sets up a huge market in the Main Square. You will be able to find everything from pastries and dried fruit to socks and souvenirs. A few food trucks also set up at the market, so you can take a break for lunch during your shopping. If you have a sweet tooth, try the traditional Dutch sweet of stroopwafels. Stroopwafels are thin crispy waffle sandwich cookies with caramel in the middle. These treats are available everywhere in the Netherlands. They travel well making them great souvenirs for friends or take-home treats for yourself.
If you are an art buff and came to the Netherlands to learn about some of history’s greatest artists, then you may know that Delft was once home to famous Dutch artist, Johannes Vermeer. While none of Vermeer’s original paintings are in Delft, you can visit the Vermeer Centrum Delft. This museum is especially interesting if you want to see into the life of Vermeer to better understand his paintings. Entrance tickets for students are €7. However, if you want a real and in-depth Vermeer experience, you may want to look into purchasing a Vermeer Combiticket. This ticket costs only €22 and includes all of the Vermeer sights in Delft including Vermeer Centrum Delft, Museum Prinsenhof Delft, the Old and New Church, the Vermeer cube walk plus a coffee or tea and a pastry at the Café Mechelen in the Vermeer Centrum Delft. The building in which the Museum Prinsenhof is now housed was once of great importance to Dutch history, acting as the court of William of Orange. Now the museum holds a collection of important artifacts that explain the history of the Netherlands and its famous Delft pottery. The Museum Prinsenhof also has rotating exhibits such as Dutch modern art. The Vermeer cube walk is an at-your-own-pace walk through Vermeer’s delft. You are given a map which guides you to different points around the city explain their importance to Vermeer along the way.
You most likely have seen a piece of Delftware pottery. The distinct blue color now dubbed "Delft Blue" painted on a simple white china piece depicting typical Dutch scenes or complex floral designs has now become a global brand making the city of Delft famous. During your visit, you can visit the Royal Delft Factory to see how the pottery is made and understand more of its history. Even if you decide not to go to the Delftware factory, you will be able to purchase a piece for a great souvenir. Most of the stores in the city carry a small selection and the prices of pieces range so you will be able to find something in your budget. If you do find something that suits your taste and budget, most of the larger stores can ship your piece home so you don’t have to worry about breaking it as you travel, or you can surprise someone with a gift sent straight to their home.
Hej! I am an American grad student studying and living in Sweden. Being a grad student, I have perfected the act of budget traveling. I have a fierce passion for cute dogs, film festivals, coffee and traveling. Join me as I work towards my personal goal of visiting all 28 EU countries before I graduate in June 2019! Feel free to pop over to my personal blog, Little Mouse. Big World, to read more about my travels while balancing grad school life.
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