Things to do in Gouda

Best known for its famous cheese, the city of Gouda has plenty to offer its visitors, even if you aren’t a fan of this delicious dairy product.

Boasting striking architecture, lush green spaces, a pretty network of canals, and lots of opportunities to walk or cycle, there are many things to do in Gouda that will keep you busy during your stay, and as it is only half an hour from the port in Rotterdam you can start exploring in no time.










Cycling in Gouda

About the city

Architecture in Gouda Gouda is home to plenty of stunning buildings that make this a lovely city to explore. Visit the Church of St. John, the longest church in the Netherlands at 123m, which is located in the centre of Gouda. Built in the 15th century, the church still has its original stained glass windows which show scenes such as the Last Supper and the Baptism of Jesus.

Gouda’s town hall, the Gouda Stadhuis, is another stunning building that deserves a visit. With pointed towers, arched windows, and a number of statues, the town hall really stands out in its spot at the centre of the Markt Square. At night, the building is lit up and there are sometimes light shows that make it look even more impressive.

It just doesn’t feel like the Netherlands until you’ve seen a windmill, and the Red Lion Windmill in Gouda will not disappoint! Although it no longer produces flour, the sails still turn and you can get up close and see how it worked in the past.
Gouda City Hall in the Netherlands

Gouda cheese in the Netherlands

Eating and drinking in Gouda

Cheese lovers simply have to visit Gouda between April and August as this is when the Gouda cheese market is held on Markt Square every Thursday morning.

The delicious cheese is brought to the square on traditional horse-drawn wagons, then stacked on wooden frames or thick paper outside the Waag (or weigh house). The Waag was originally where the cheese was weighed, but is now home to the fascinating Cheese and Crafts Museum and the Tourist Information Office.

Once you’re ready for dessert, tuck into a fresh stroopwafel, as this tasty caramel wafer was first created in Gouda. Beer is another Gouda favourite, and in 1470 there were around 200 brewers producing 15 million litres every year. Today, you can still find hundreds of different types of the amber brew within the old bars and bottle shops that flank the centre.


Walking around Gouda

One of the best things to do in Gouda is to walk along the canals and around the buildings to explore it all for yourself. If you fancy doing a self-guided walking tour, pop to the Tourist Office and pick up one of a number of different maps that will show you some of the top routes to follow.

For a relaxing tour of the city, book yourself onto one of the canal boats and float around the waterways to see the sights from a new perspective instead of having a stroll.

If you want to escape the city for a bit, head to Goudse Hout where you can walk around the large grounds and discover wildlife, riding stables, and small lakes. You could also choose to hire a bike and hit the cycling trails if you prefer to explore on two wheels.

Dutch tulips in Gouda

Explore Gouda in the Netherlands

Visit Gouda Museum

Set in a building that dates back to the 14th century, and was previously a medieval guesthouse, just stepping inside Gouda Museum is an experience in itself.

With around 40,000 artefacts to see, including paintings, pottery, and military items, Gouda Museum brings the city’s history to life with its interesting exhibitions. If you want to learn even more about the different pieces, you can book onto a guided tour which will give you lots of fascinating facts and information.

With all of these great things to do in Gouda, you’ll definitely have a fun and memorable trip, so book your crossing to the Netherlands and start planning your Dutch adventure today. For an extra piece of mind upgrade to one of flexi ticket types for some added flexibility. 


Cheese lovers simply have to visit Gouda between April and August as this is when the Gouda cheese market is held on Markt Square every Thursday morning.

Gouda at Christmas Read more

The birthplace of one of the Netherlands‘ most famous cheeses, foodies have something of an affinity with Gouda.

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