Before this month, the only time I’d spent in Gouda was when there were train delays between Den Haag and Utrecht. Gouda is right in the middle and, given all the house hunting we were doing, I was bound to get stranded there at least once! I’d gotten to know the train station fairly well and bought more than my fair share of candy from the Kiosk, but otherwise knew nothing about the city.
A few weeks ago Barbara and I met up for a sunny afternoon in the City of Cheese for a wander and some cake. Turns out Gouda is gorgeous! We loved snooping around the lovely streets and peeking into churches and secret gardens, playing tourists for the day. Nothing like a bit of warm sunshine on your face to get you in the mood for an adventure.
The market square is everything you could possibly want from a typically Dutch markt.
Everywhere you look, there is something seriously old and monumental to take your breath away.
We pretty much squealed when we saw that teeny tiny canal. Gouda really is like a fairytale city. (To be fair, the sun helped a lot!)
We stumbled upon an old orphanage turned library turned café and simply couldn’t resist – especially when we saw the cakes on display. Zoet & Zalig (Spieringstraat 1) is a lovely little place for coffee or lunch, and you really could not ask for a more charming atmosphere.
In case you somehow forget how old the building is as you’re sipping on your coffee (or chowing down on some cake), this view onto the courtyard should jog your memory!
Even though I stand by what I said about cakes in the Netherlands, it would have been rude not to try a slice or two …
We went for a chocolate nut cake and a vanilla strawberry tart. Both were very good, with the strawberry tart being a serious standout! So creamy and tangy and just delicious.
If you live anywhere nearby, I highly recommend a little day trip to Gouda. The city enchanted both of us and I can’t wait to return! Perhaps even with Syd, who will be arriving next week? (I can’t wait!!!!)