"Enjoying the Burgundian Lifestyle" Maastricht by BillNJ

Maastricht Travel Guide: 1,269 reviews and 3,261 photos

The Epitome of Sidewalk Café Culture

One of the consequences of the First Treaty of London in 1839 was that the city of Maastricht in Limburg became part of the Netherlands. While Maastricht is politically part of the Netherlands, its culture is more accurately described as Burgundian. In the middle ages, the Realm of Burgundy stretched from West Switzerland to Flanders. A hallmark of Burgundian culture was an emphasis on living well, and in particular, eating well.

The city of Maastricht does its best to uphold the Burgundian tradition of eating well. The main pleins (squares) of the city are filled with delightful sidewalk cafés. Here, you can eat delicious food while overlooking lovely tree-lined streets, old churches, fountains, ... and lots of parked bikes and motorcycles!

1992 Was a Pivotal Year

In 1992, the nations of Europe signed the Treaty on European Union in Maastricht. For better or worse, the city of Maastricht will forever be linked to this important event in the history of Europe.

During the year of the treaty, it was the Netherlands turn to be chairman of the European Council. Of all of the great cities in the Netherlands, why was Maastricht selected to be the birthplace of the European Union? I don't know for certain -- but, after my visit, I suspect that the city's great restaurants and cafés played a role in the decision.

Every Day In Maastricht Feels Like a Saturday

I spent two days in Maastricht -- on a Tuesday and a Wednesday. With the relaxing atmosphere and streets filled with shoppers and tourists, both days felt like a Saturday. I can only imagine how crowded Maastricht is on an actual Saturday!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Picturesque Pleins (Squares); Sidewalk Cafés; Burgundian Culture
  • Cons:Expensive
  • In a nutshell:Come Enjoy the Burgundian Lifestyle in the South of the Netherlands!
  • Last visit to Maastricht: May 2008
  • Intro Updated Jun 16, 2008
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Reviews (24)

Comments (20)

  • easterntrekker's Profile Photo
    Dec 11, 2010 at 2:34 PM

    We spent a wonderfulday here several years ago. Before my VT days.Thanks for your pages.

  • Martinewezel's Profile Photo
    Dec 20, 2009 at 7:52 AM

    Friends told me about shopping in Maastricht. Nice for a day trip. And then we'll certainly end up in Pieke Potloed! Thanks for your excellent tips, Bill.

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Dec 3, 2009 at 1:27 AM

    Taxi's, the bane of a tourist's life! Its nice to find one that charges you correctly or doesn't take the back roads instead of the highway! I to noticed that shops opened late, for me, half the day has gone!

  • mircaskirca's Profile Photo
    Sep 16, 2009 at 1:48 AM

    The city centre with cobbled streets and all those sidewalk cafés seems to be a pleasant area to wander around! Though I am not really a beer drinker, I would like to try the raspberry flavoured Wieckse :)

  • Maryimelda's Profile Photo
    Jun 5, 2009 at 12:10 AM

    Thanks for a great page Bill, I'll be in Maastricht for the first time in September. Looking forward to it. Thanks for your tips. Kate

  • MalenaN's Profile Photo
    Apr 27, 2009 at 9:33 AM

    It looks great with all the sidewalk cafés! Now as spring has arrived in Sweden they are opening up here as well and they soon get crowded. It has happened to me too that VT-members I was meeting couldn't come (both times I waited 30 minutes).

  • margaretvn's Profile Photo
    Jan 25, 2009 at 12:47 AM

    years since i was in Masstricht! good tips

  • terible22's Profile Photo
    Nov 1, 2008 at 9:11 AM

    Maastricht looks like a wonderful place!

  • johanl's Profile Photo
    Oct 18, 2008 at 7:02 AM

    Some good information on Maastricht. Next time you are around let me know, i only live about 5 miles from Maastricht.(in Belgium)

  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo
    Aug 1, 2008 at 12:41 AM

    Maastricht sounds like a great little city. We'll have to add it to the list next time we hit the Netherlands. Great page.

BillNJ

“Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle. ”

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