Canal du Centre

Canal du Centre

Friday, September 23, 2016

Maastricht, August 28-31

It only took us a little over an hour to get from the lake to Maastricht, and that was with a little tour around parts of the lake we hadn’t seen.
When we visited the city in 2008 we stayed in ’t Bassin, the marina that’s some distance from the city center (and is quite expensive). This time we just tied to the wall separating the city from the river. No services but it’s free!

Oldtimer on the wall

The wall stretches between two bridges. This is taken from the upstream one.

Maastricht is a small and very walkable city with lots of history (where have you heard that before), most recently famous for the Treaty of Maastricht, signed in 1992, that formed the European Union. We spent several days here in 2008 and coming back this time we already pretty much knew our way around. It’s a very attractive shopping town with lots of restaurants and very attractive squares. With school starting again soon, the streets were exceptionally busy.
During the Namur city tour we were shown a church repurposed as a men’s clothing store. Here, on our walk around the city we found two more examples. The Dominican Bookstore, again with the freestanding building inside the original church-

and the Kruisherenhotel, a 15th century convent converted to a hotel.

The rooms are off the converted cloister and the reception and restaurant are located in the nave, again in a freestanding construction. There’s a great video tour of the hotel here

And of course, no visit to a city would be complete without a climb up at least one tower, in this case the steeple of Sint Janskerk, where we’ll end up just below the clock.

And the view around the city.

And no trip to the Netherlands would be complete without some sort of strange street performance, in this case a womans marching drumline. They made quite a racket but were really pretty good! We chipped in a couple of euros to the donation bucket.

Wednesday morning, after a quick stop at the Jansen’s chandlery and fuel barge to part with several hundred euros to keep Mr. DAF happy, it was off up the Juliana Canal for the last (very boring) 38 kilometers and 4 hours to reach Maasbracht. We’d spend one night in the town’s passanten or transient dock, then Thursday morning make the last hour long trip to Stevensweert, where Oldtimer will spend the winter.

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