Things to do in
Utrecht

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Our most recommended things to do in Utrecht

Utrecht: City Canal Cruise

1. Utrecht: City Canal Cruise

See the highlights of Utrecht's medieval inner city during a cruise on the Oudegracht canal. Learn about the city's history as you pass centuries-old buildings, canal houses, wharf cellars, and the Dom Tower. Exchange your voucher at the ticket office and collect your audioguide. Then, descend the 14 steps to the waterside to board your boat. Once you are settled, the boat will set off along the Oudegrachtn (Old Canal). Admire the oldest part of the city, which dates back to Roman times. Then, pass the highest church tower in the Netherlands, the Dom Tower. Marvel at other significant historical buildings along the route. After half an hour, arrive at the city's outer moat, a former defensive structure. Learn about the old strongholds and casemates there. Take photos of the beautiful Zocherpark. See the Railway Museum and Hoog Catharijne, the largest mall in the Netherlands, from the water. Return to the Oudegracht canal and watch people enjoying themselves on the wharves. Try and spot the typical wharf cellars. Once back on dry land, you will have a good idea of what you want to visit next.

Utrecht: De Haar Castle and Park Entrance Ticket

2. Utrecht: De Haar Castle and Park Entrance Ticket

Immerse yourself in history at iconic De Haar Castle. Admire its picture book medieval architecture, see its opulent interior, learn about the famous guests who have stayed there, and explore its tranquil grounds. Encounter a medieval fortress with towers and ramparts, moats, gates, and drawbridges. Marvel at the setting as the fairytale-like castle rises majestically from parkland filled with impressive trees, old gardens, and ponds. Take a walk in its tranquil parklands. Visit the Rose Garden or Roman Garden. Discover its ponds and canals, as well as the many bridges, romantic vistas, and impressive avenues ideal for long walks or picnics.

Utrecht: Monster Mystery Exploration Game and Tour

3. Utrecht: Monster Mystery Exploration Game and Tour

Play a real-world quest in Utrecht as a monster hunter who is tasked to find an elusive beast that threatens the city. Solve the clues you receive on your smartphone and save the people of Utrecht. Along the way, you will find new locations and unlock amazing stories. After you buy the quest, you will receive an access code that you can use in the app. The quest will take you from 1 to 2-hours to complete, but there’s no time limit, you can finish it at your own pace. You won’t need a guide, just download the app, go to the starting point and you’re ready to go on a city exploration adventure. As you solve the clues, you'll discover new locations and stories. This game is one of the most unique ways to have fun whilst acquainting yourself with the marvelous city of Utrecht. It's a fantastic game for families and groups of friends. If you are a large group, one person can purchase access for the entire group by selecting the number of people in the group. All group members will be able to play the city game on their smartphone. Alternatively, each person can purchase their own ticket. You can play as a group and solve the clues together as you walk, or you can split into smaller groups/teams and compete against the others. Each person can also play on their own, separate from the group, and meet the group at the end.

Utrecht: Silver Betrayal - City Exploration Game

4. Utrecht: Silver Betrayal - City Exploration Game

Silver Betrayal is one of the best-rated city games of Utrecht. Prepare to solve riddles, answer questions, and unlock hidden augmented and virtual reality elements. In just 1 hour, you'll get a peek into the history of this beautiful 900-year-old city. The story begins with you following a hard-working family man during a typical working day in the 17th century. But what starts out as a normal day, soon takes a turn for the worst. Help find out what's happening and who's responsible before it's too late. Choose to play with 1-3 players or in several smaller groups to compete against each other. You can stick together as a group because you'll walk the same route. You decide when to start and when to take a break. The mix of freedom and adventure makes this city game the perfect outing during your city trip.

Utrecht: De Haar Castle Gardens Entrance Ticket

5. Utrecht: De Haar Castle Gardens Entrance Ticket

Visit the tranquil landscaped parklands of the famous De Haar Castle. Discover its ponds and canals, as well as the many bridges, romantic vistas, and impressive avenues ideal for long walks or picnics. Explore castle grounds which are over 55 hectares in size. Encounter calming areas like the park forest and the former menagerie, ideal for an attractive private walk. Explore features like the maze, the large deer park, the romantic covered bridge, and the picnic meadow. Walk amongst some 7,000 trees, some of which are up to 140 years old. Visit areas like the Roman Garden, with its Ha Ha rampart, or see the Rose Garden, containing over 1,200 roses in 79 different varieties which bloom beautifully every summer.

Utrecht: Private or Public Off-The-Beaten Path Walking Tour

6. Utrecht: Private or Public Off-The-Beaten Path Walking Tour

Join a walking tour of Utrecht and its iconic Dom Tower, churchyards, the medieval city center, and more. Explore some of the most beautiful tree-lined canals of Europe with a local guide from a multiple award-winning tour operator. Meet your guide at Domplein, the city's main square in the heart of the city center. Embark on a walking tour through the old city center with your private party or, a maximum of 5 other travelers if you choose the small-group public walking tour. Learn about the city’s history that started around 2,000 years ago when Utrecht was part of the Limes, the Roman Empire’s northern border. Follow cobbled streets and churchyards, all leading to what has been the city’s main artery for centuries, the 1.5-mile-long old canal or Oudegracht. See the string of cafes and restaurants nearby. Make way to the Gothic Dom Church that with its dominating tower that is Utrecht's pride and joy and the last stop of your tour. Listen to interesting stories about the gothic St. Martin’s Cathedral before saying goodbye to your guide. After the tour, you can climb up the 495 steps or take the lift to the tower's top to experience an amazing bird’s eye view of the city.

Vecht River: Private Tour Sightseeing Cruise

7. Vecht River: Private Tour Sightseeing Cruise

Enjoy a private tour and a sightseeing cruise along the Vecht River. Admire the views of scenic castles, old draw bridges, and 17th-century river estates with their tea domes and colorful gardens along the route. Enjoy a delicious 3-course dinner at an exclusive restaurant, overlooking the river. Start from your hotel or a central location of your choice in Amsterdam. Your private party will be picked up by the guide with a comfortable car and driven to the Vecht river to board on a classical open-topped boat. Toast with a glass of bubbly and enjoy the next two hours cruising by stunning castles, old draw bridges, and 17th-century river estates with their tea domes and vibrant gardens. Listen to tales of life along the river by a local skipper/guide, and get a good impression of the summer life of the wealthy merchants in the Dutch golden age. Enjoy a delicious 3-course dinner of your choice at a classy restaurant with a terrace at the river. After this relaxing private tour, you will be returned to your hotel.

From Amsterdam: Private Day Trip to the Dutch Castles

8. From Amsterdam: Private Day Trip to the Dutch Castles

Get picked up from your accommodation by your professional guide and head first to Muiden Castle. Commissioned by Count Floris V in 1280, this 13th-century castle is one of the oldest in The Netherlands. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Muiden Castle is a quintessential medieval castle accessible only by drawbridge and featured in a number of shows and films set in the Middle Ages. Next up is De Haar Castle, the largest castle in the Netherlands once privately owned by the van Zuylen family. Learn about the fascinating history of the castle while you tour the exhibitions in its interior as well as the park and beautiful gardens surrounding it. Get driven back to your accommodation after the tour.

Utrecht: Centraal Museum Entrance Ticket

9. Utrecht: Centraal Museum Entrance Ticket

Discover art, design, fashion, and city history in the Centraal Museum Utrecht, the oldest municipal museum in the Netherlands. The museum aims to expand your mind by offering different perspectives on the present and the past and through special events and activities. Immerse yourself in fashion as you walk through exhibits that display important garments from the last hundred years. There are famous items on display by world-renowned designers such as Jan Taminiau and Iris van Herpen. Get a real feel for the graphic designer, visual artist, and children’s book author Dick Bruna and see his faithfully reconstructed studio inside the museum. His best-known creation is Miffy (or, in Dutch: nijntje).  Marvel at the skillful use of color and the intriguing themes of the internationally renowned Caravaggisti painters of Utrecht, including Dirck van Baburen, Gerard van Honthorst, and Hendrick ter Brugghen. Visit the contemporary art stages inside and outside the museum displaying contemporary artists and their artwork on topical issues in today’s society. The Expo 10, named ‘Utrecht Lokaal’, is devoted to presenting both exciting new talents and established artists from the city of Utrecht. The design collection includes the renowned (and the world’s largest) Rietveld collection. In addition to the world-famous Red and Blue Chair, you can view a diverse selection of works by this versatile designer and architect. Centraal Museum also has an impressive collection of modern art from 1850 - 1950, with works by famous artists such as Gustave Courbet, along with Utrecht artists including the surrealist Joop Moesman and magic realist Pyke Koch.  Learn more about the city of Utrecht, with its rich history and varied population. There are portraits of Utrecht’s citizenry throughout the ages and also the remnants of a huge medieval barge.

Utrecht: A Secret Crusade City Exploration Phone Game

10. Utrecht: A Secret Crusade City Exploration Phone Game

A Secret Crusade is one of the funnest experiences in Utrecht! You solve riddles, answer questions and unlock hidden augmented- and virtual reality elements. In about 1 hour you'll get a peek into the history of this beautiful 900-year-old city. Discover the most beautiful sights in the most adventurous way. During this game you'll follow the story of Pope Adrianus VI. The only Dutch pope in history, died in 1523 after having reigned for only one year. His death was reported to be the result of a fatal illness. However, things are not always as they seem... The game starts at Kromme Nieuwgracht 49, Utrecht and also ends near this location. Take breaks in between challenges to have some drinks or food. The mix of freedom and adventure makes this city exploration game the perfect outing during your city trip!

Frequently asked questions about Utrecht

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What people are saying about Utrecht

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 101 reviews

Very different and very special experience. Not what usually a tourist can see. The guide was very pleasant and polite. I would rate it 10 stars if possible. It's totally worth it.

The park around the castle is beautiful and very well maintained. The rooms inside the castle give you a different (modern!) perspective of how is life in a castle.

A beautiful day to become a princess like in the storys und to see how it was in this time

Our guide was extremely personable, funny and very knowledgeable.

Our captain was very friendly and gave a good explanation