For me, the first time I traveled through Europe was more than a trip of a lifetime. It was a chance to experience different cultures and traditions, encounter interested people, engage in warm conversations, embrace language barriers, and be engulfed in each countries ambience. I was mesmerized by all the quaint and well-preserved villages tourists could explore and adore. These pulchritudinous hamlets allowed visitors to step back in time and experience what life was like centuries ago. Cobblestone streets, floral window boxes, crooked houses, Luftlmalerei painted homes, foreboding castles, a fairy tale atmosphere, and much more, make traveling through Europe not only enchanting but welcoming. Your experiences will beckon you to return.
If you are drawn to fairy tale villages straight out of a storybook, then Giethoorn, Holland is one place you must visit. Bordering on the National Park Weerribben-Wieden in the province of Overijssel, this whimsical village is fondly known as the Venice of the Netherlands or Dutch Venice. Being only 88 km from Amsterdam, it’s the perfect all-day excursion trip.
Giethoorn is filled with the repose, tranquility, and serenity tourists are looking for. Founded around the 13th century, it’s changed very little over the years. Unspoiled with thatched roofs, over 180 footbridges, and dreamy canals, it’s a vacation destination that can be traversed by foot along the quaint paths or by boat through the lacework of adjoining canals. For the most part, there are no vehicles per se in the center of the village. Most enjoy leisurely floating through the waterways in whisper-quiet canoes, kayaks, boats, and punts.
Visitors can take a boat tour or hire a boat to experience the picturesque beauty of the village as they glide through the canals. Reflective on the month or even time of day, you’ll have to be patient as there are many boats on these canals. Plus, visitors need to be respectful of nature and allow the duck to reach their destination as well.
You can stop anywhere along the way to take photos or perhaps have lunch in the many waterfront cafes and restaurants or pick up a souvenir in one of the quaint shops.
A great way to take in the scenic splendor is by walking through this canal-rich village. Choose either the 4.3 km or the 15.3 paths to absorb the attractive landscapes. You’ll be enchanted and want to return during your next trip to Europe.