Delft is a little city in The Netherlands that is full with traditions, culture, remarkable architecture and beautiful canals. Delft is also the city where the famous Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer was born. Visiting this beautiful city can be quite daunting if you’re aiming to see as much of the popular tourist attractions as possible. We made a list of our top 10 favourite tourists attractions in Delft.
Located in the middle of the old city centre of Delft, the Market square is a great starting point for wandering around in this picturesque town. The Delft architectural Town Hall and the New Church are eye-catchers. There are also a lot of cafes and restaurant located on the Market square where you can enjoy a refreshing beverage or full meal.
2. Experience Johannes Vermeer
The Vermeer Centrum Delft offers visitors a discovery tour through the life and works of the Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675). The painter was born in this city, where he lived and worked his entire life. If you’re up to it you could also discover Vermeer on foot. Just ask at the tourist information. VVV Tourist Information in Delft is located on the main market square, next to the New Church.
3. The Old Canal
One of the perfect way to discover the historical city of Delft is by boat. You can explore and see the picturesque buildings of Delft during this tour over the old canal. A must do.
The Old Church in Delft was founded in 1246. This is probably the oldest standing structure that still exists in the city. Visiting this landmark is a must for most of the tourists as it offers a view on the rich history and art.
5. The Prince’s Court and Prinsenhof Museum
The Prinsenhof (“The Court of the Prince”) is an urban palace built in the Middle Ages as a monastery. William of Orange was shot here in 1584. Visitors can still see the bullet holes in the wall. The building now houses the municipal museum which was established in 1911. Today, the building displays a collection of Dutch Golden Age paintings. A must see is you love art.
6. The Botanical Garden
The Botanical Garden of Delft University of Technology is a green paradise boasting a wide variety of plants, trees, herbs and spices. The 2.5 hectare Botanical Garden is located on Poortlandplein 6, a fifteen-minute walk from Delft’s city centre. Hidden behind monumental university buildings, Delft Botanical Garden is open to welcome you throughout the year.
7. Paint your own Delft Blue pottery
Delft is home to the world-famous Delft Blue pottery. The Delft Blue pottery has been produced in the city of Delft since the 17th century. There are many souvenir shops around the central market square where you can buy Delft Blue. You can also paint your own Delft blue tile during a workshop at Delftpottery De Delftse Pauw. If you are interested you can ask at the tourist information more about De Delftse Pauw or you can check their website.
8. Oostpoort – Eastern-Gate
The Eastern Gate (Oostpoort) in Delft, an example of Brick Gothic northern European architecture, was built around 1400. Around 1510 the towers were enhanced with an additional octagonal floor and high spires. This is the only city gate remaining in Delft; the others were demolished in the 19th century. It currently serves as an art gallery and private residence. You can enjoy a casual city walk passing to this historical gate. The gate is open to the public 7 days a week.
9. Local Swimming
If you love swimming you can go to a local swimming pool. Being immersed in water is a great stress reducer and allows you to relax, escape reality and switch off from the rest of the world. Just check at the tourist information office about the possibilities.
10. DOK Library
The DOK is a public library. It’s located in the middle of the busiest part of Delft with open squares and cafes as its neighbours. Opening hours are Monday to Saturday. It’s a place where you can relax, read of book, check your e-mails (WiFi is free) or just drink a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy the view of this amazing building.
Last but not least
A visit to Delft starts with a visit to the VVV Delft, the tourist information office for Delft. Here you can get expert advice about your city trip. The VVV Delft staff can give you advice and tips about tourist attractions. Check the website VVV for more information.
NB: all photo’s are made by Reizen op Sneakers.