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Discover Utrecht Holland's oldest city

Utrecht is one of Holland’s oldest and most beautiful cities and it has also been the religious centre of Holland since the 8th century. Located in the heart of the country, its refined centre with its tree-lined canals and world-class museums is reminiscent of the capital, but Utrecht is quieter than Amsterdam and has a relaxed and welcoming feel to it.

Utrecht rose to prominence in Roman times, when a fort was built here close to the banks of the River Rhine. The settlement grew and prospered and by the 12th century Utrecht had become an important trading town.

Getting there

Travel to Utrecht is simple. It's just 40-minutes’ drive from Amsterdam so if you live in northern England or Scotland our Newcastle-Amsterdam crossings are a fantastic way to experience a city break and a cruise in one go.

Alternatively, take one of our Dover-France crossings. Utrecht is just under three hours’ drive from our port in Dunkirk, or three hours 15 minutes’ drive from Calais.

What to see in Utrecht

Utrecht may have a medieval heart, but its soul is lively and dynamic.Many Utrecht tourist attractions are centred around the city's famous Museum Quarter where you will find a strikingly diverse collection of museums.

Many of the city’s most beautiful buildings date from its medieval heyday, including fine churches and the magnificent Gothic cathedral. The unique Oudegracht – Holland’s only split-level canal system – runs through the heart of Utrecht.

The Dom is Utrecht’s magnificent 13th century cathedral, its church tower is the tallest in the Netherlands. Climb to the top if it for magnificent view.

Botanical Gardens features species gathered from all around the world and Griftpark which boasts a maze of paths, outdoor sculptures and even man-made hills.