Boat Tour of Maastricht and the Underground Tunnels

The highlight of a side trip to Maastricht was a boat tour down the canals to the underground tunnels…

Maastricht Boat Tour Under grey skies, we toured along the river, passing through the pastoral scenery of Holland. going down the river past the Ridder Brewery in MaastrichtEventually we arrived at the ‘caves’. In actuality they are tunnels — man-made as opposed to natural. Beneath the city, the earth is made of marl, a stone soft enough to be cut with a knife, but hardens into a solid building material when exposed to light. There is extensive graffiti carved into the entrance of the ‘caves’. Graffiti Carved into the Soft Marl wallsin the Maastricht Cave Tour Even Napoleon was not immune to leaving his mark on the walls of the caves.Napoleon was here The extensive use of marl as a building material resulted in over 200 km of tunnels that riddle the region. A Light in the Tunnels Underneath Maastricht in Holland Because of Maastricht’s strategic position it was often under siege, and the population hid in these tunnels long enough for shops and services to develop. There is an underground church… The Underground Church in the Maastricht Cave Toura bakery, a bar… The Underground Bar in the Tunnels under Maastrichta Hotel Café Restaurant… The Underground Hotel in the Maastricht Cave Tourand interesting artwork. A Carving in the Maastricht Cave Tour Back above the earth and in the city, we stopped for a great meal – me especially, a salad to remember: three huge hunks of Chevre wrapped with smoked salmon on a leafy mixed green salad with walnuts, starfruit and more!  The salads in Belgium and Holland have been to die for… The beer is Weickse Rosé, almost like a rosé wine, but with a beery edge. Al didn’t like it and suspected grenadine had been added to the beer. fabulous Salmon & Chevre Cheese Salad in Maastricht, HollandAl had fish stew with Palm beer. He wasn’t that keen on the beer and pronounced it thin and basic. Al's Dinner in Maastricht, Holland I’m not sure if this was the cafe we ate at, or if we just took the photo because we liked the name! Gulpener Bier Cafe in Maastricht, Holland We went back to Hasselt for the night. Our evening beer must have been nondescript, as I can’t find it in my notes anywhere. Not sure if I was crazy about the pepper on the cheese either… beer & cheese without sunlight Part of our 2012 trip around Belgium, mostly following the Beer Route.

More on Holland (The Netherlands).

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