Two weeks ago we hopped aboard a train and made our way west to Cuijk, a teeny tiny town in the Netherlands, which just might be the cutest little village there ever was.
It was my first time in the Netherlands and a super short trip, but that didn't lessen the charm of the visit or the lasting good impression. If anything, it makes me want to see more of our western neighbor. We arrived late Monday night and left on Tuesday afternoon - so it was literally half a day's trip. While D went to the office for a meeting, I packed up my camera and hit the cute cobblestoned roads for a few hours of sightseeing.
Cuijk is a very old place with pre-historic origin and has about 25,000 inhabitants. While there isn't SO much to do there, it is a nice place to stroll through on a Tuesday morning. I started the day by walking to the Molen Jan van Cuijk because let's be honest, a trip to the Netherlands wouldn't be complete without seeing a windmill (and clogs, and tulips). Ok, stereotypes aside, I saw the windmill which is about 1km from the city center so a nice 10 minute walk. Then I headed back along the Meuse river which I learned rises in France and flows north through Belgium and the Netherlands before draining into the North Sea.
It was a very peaceful walk, interrupted only by the fellow early-risers who greeted me along the way. Total strangers saying hello on the sidewalk - it could have easily been small-town-somewhere in Georgia, the hospitality was that good.
The main church of Cuijk is the H Marinuskerk (St. Martin Parish) which is a sight in itself. The church was damaged by the Germans during the war but was recently renovated from 2009-2011. Near the church is a cemetery and interesting labyrinth of gardens that features various contemporary sculptures and beautiful flowers.
Also in this area is a Photo Archive (which is only open on Wed-Thurs) and the Museum Ceuclum which our hotel owner said should not be missed - but unfortunately it opened too late for me to visit. The museum is located in the old tower of St. Martins and has a permanent exhibition based on the history of Cuijk. Next time!
- Getting there is super easy by train. We took an intercity (IC) there from Erfurt and the same back to Berlin via Düsseldorf - both trips took about 6 hours so load up your podcasts and be prepared to settle in for the journey.
- Getting around is also easily doable by way of your own two feet. It's small and flat, and easy-peasy to walk.
- Cuijk is a sleepy town with not much open at night and late openings in the morning. Even the cafes were closed until around 10am - so snag some breakfast at your hotel or be prepared to wait until lunch.
- We stayed at the Hotel Taurus. The rooms were modest and standard, but very clean with comfy beds!