Maastricht, by many considered the most beautiful city of the country, is the southernmost city of the Netherlands. It’s the capital of the province of Limburg and famous for what the Dutch call the “Burgundian” way of life. Dutch and international visitors alike flock in, to enjoy the “joie de vivre” and indulge in the many fine dining, arts, culture and shopping opportunities in town. The river Maas runs right through the city offering some scenic views, and the lovely cobblestoned centre, is full of historic buildings and impressive basilicas. Whether you’re here for sightseeing or just to shop till you drop, this is a great place to spend some time.
Maastricht, situated within walking distance of Belgium and cycling distance of Germany, claims to be the oldest city in the Netherlands. It is a particularly popular tourist destination in the Netherlands because of its historical old centre and broad shopping possibilities. The city is home to approximately 120.000 people. The University of Maastricht attracts many national and foreign students to the city. Geographically, the city is split in half by a major river (the Maas), with the majority of commercial activity being concentrated on the Western bank of the river and the train station and the Bonnefanten Museum on the Eastern bank.
With so many foreign visitors and international events, many people of Maastricht speak languages besides their own. Don’t worry if you don’t speak Dutch, many people of Maastricht are happy to converse with you in English, German or sometimes even French. Locals amongst each other speak the typical city dialect: 'Maastrichts', one of the many Limburg dialects, which are widely spoken in the region. Street signs in the city are often in dual language, showing both the Dutch street name and the street name in the Maastricht dialect.
Maastricht boasts a moderate climate and receives more sunshine than any other place in the Netherlands. The hottest months are in the summer period (June to August), although May and September usually also have averages of about 25°C. Maastricht weather is cool in the winter (December to February) and the temperature can drop below 0°C at night.