Walking Tour of Delft, Netherlands
Known for centuries for its ubiquitous blue-and-white earthenware, the village of Delft captures the essence of Holland. Its streets and canals make it a smaller and more intimate version of Amsterdam.
My walk begins at the parking area near the Train Station at the town’s southern end. Cross the canal on Zuidwal and ease a bit left to follow the Achterrom Canal northward. The street to the left of the canal (J Gerrettstraat) leads directly into the Markt, Delft’s beautiful Main Square.
As you enter, look to the right (east) to see the amazingly tall Niewe Kerk, built in the late 15th century. You can climb its almost 400 steps for a great view. Be sure to explore the interior of the church. The Tomb of William the Silent is especially splendid.
Opposite the church is the regal Town Hall (Stadhuis) with its red shutters. In between, around the remainder of the perimeter are numerous shops and restaurants, most of the shops displaying Delftware, the town’s claim-to-fame.
Leave the square to the left of the church (on Kerkstraat), then turn left along the Oosteinde Canal as far as Choorstraat. Take a left to visit the Oude Kerk (Old Church), ahead on your right. Its contruction began in the 13th century. Here you can find the graves of van Leeuwenhoek, inventor of the microscope, and Jan Vermeer, the famous Dutch painter.
From here, head south on Oude Delft, which is lined with Renaissance-style houses. At the corner of Neiuwstraat is Sint-Hippolytus Kapel, which was once an arsenal.
Almost any right from Oude Delft will take you to West Vest which ends near the bridge that you crossed to enter town and the walk’s starting point.