Maastricht is the southernmost city of the Netherlands and is the capital of the province Limburg. By train, it takes around approximately 3 hours to arrive at Maastricht from Amsterdam and by car it takes around 2.5 hours. Compared to the northern part of the Netherlands such as Amsterdam and Groningen, Maastricht has a completely different ambiance. In addition to a relatively warmer temperature than the north, Maastricht also has a hilly landscape, relax lifestyle (such as the Burgundian food), and home to many religious hotspots. The later is linked to the Catholicism in Maastricht, since the south of The Netherlands is dominantly Catholic in religion while the north is mostly Protestants. There are many religious monasteries, chapels, and churches in Maastricht. In addition, many festivities, which are mostly religious in origin such as Carnaval and Easter, are being celebrated in Maastricht. In case you plan to visit Maastricht Netherlands, you will discover many interesting facts about it. Maastricht Netherlands borders Belgium and Germany and has a place where these three countries meet. In history, the euro was born in Maastricht in 1992 when the European Union (EU) countries sign an agreement to use a single currency (euro) throughout EU. This is called the Treaty of Maastricht or officially known as the Treaty of the European Union.
In this blog, I will discuss the one day itinerary for an interesting Maastricht experience. The map below begins with walking from the central station going to various places of Maastricht, and ends up taking a boat tour back to the main city.
Maastricht Netherlands one day itinerary
1. The Helpoort (Hell Gate) Maastricht
From the central station, you can walk towards the Helpoort, which literally means the Hell Gate. The
Helpoort is the oldest city gate in The Netherlands and the only remaining one in Maastricht. This gate was built in 1229, as part of the city wall of Maastricht, under the rule of Duke Henry I of Brabant. Helpoort was part of the fortification of Maastricht for 200 years, and were then used for different purposes during the 2nd half of 15th century. It became a meeting area, a storehouse for powder and armoury, and a residential place. Touring Helpoort is free and if going by groups, you can give donation. To book for a group tour, you can visit the site of Vestingmuseum Maastricht.
2. Basilica of St. Servatius
The Basilica of St. Servatius (Basiliek de Sint Servaas) is a Roman Catholic church located in the historical city centre of Maastricht. This church is considered as the oldest standing church in The Netherlands. According to stories, the church is erected on the grave of Saint Servatius. This church obtained the title of minor Basilica in 1985 and is open to the public for a fee.
3. Boekhandel Dominicaen
The Boekhandel Dominicaen in Maastricht Netherlands is a church established in 1261, which turned into a book shop-restaurants. As a highlight of Maastricht, many tourists as well as locals visit this place to shop for books, drink a cup coffee, or read book at the moving reading table. The ambience of this old church in a present setting makes the Maastricht visit unique.
4.St. Servatius (Sint Servaas) bridge Maastricht Netherlands
St. Servatius bridge is the oldest bridge in the Netherlands. It was built before 1289 AD. A part of the pillar of the Roman bridge in the eastern side of the river is still standing, while the rest of the Roman bridge was replaced by St Servatius Bridge. This bridge went through a lot of redesigning, renovation, and rebuilding after it was been bombed and denoted during World War 2 (1940 and 1944).
5. Mount Saint Pieter
If you are interested to see the most famous “mountain” (sort of) in The Netherlands, it is time to visit Mount Saint Peter. This 8km walking route is good for hiking and gives you the best view of Limburg’s green landscape. You will find the amous marl caves, the ENCI Quarry and the historical Fort Saint Pieter at the top most of the mountain. The view is absolutely stunning for visitors of this southern part of Limburg.
6. Fort Sint Pieter
Fort Sint Pieter, which is built in 1700, is located in the highest point of Mount Saint Pieter, giving an impressive and beautiful view of Maastricht, the river Meuse, and the surrounding countryside. The Fort itself is in huge part still in its original structure while some parts have been already stored. Fort Sint Pieter, which is the foundation of Maastricht, is made of underground tunnels that directly connects Meuse River with St. Pietersberg hill. There is a tour given in Fort Sint Pieter and you will discover its history combined with anecdotes and fun stories given by the tour guide. To book you tickets, you can check out the link in this site.
Ever wonder how it feels to be standing in a place that connects three countries, such as the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany at the same time? The Drielandenpunten or the Three-border region in Vaals is a specific place in Maastricht that marks the point where the Netherlands, Germany, and Belgium meet! Isn’t it cool to be in 3 countries at the same time?
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