Living in the Netherlands for a year, I explored this beautiful country quite a bit. One of my favourite places would have to be The Vesting in Naarden. The Vesting might be small in size but it’s big in character. It has a nostalgic nuance without the touristic traffic of Amsterdam. Just walking around and admiring the overall beauty is an activity. Every house personifies a photo-worthy character. From colourful pot plants to rusty benches, small details distinguish each house from its neighbour. It took a bit of self-control and focus to keep walking without taking a photo of every brick and pebble. Some walls were decorated with messages of Dutch Wisdom- easily missed on the first glance, creating the fear of possibly losing out when skipping a street. The Grote Kerk (Church) is placed right in the middle of the Vesting and when you see the details on the inside and the painted ceiling- it makes sense that this artwork gets to be the centre of attention.
The character of the Vesting didn’t fade throughout the seasons, it has the remarkable ability to showcase itself and the finest shades of all the seasons. Leaves coloured with Autumn’s palette decorate the old buildings and antique pathways. Winter snow covers all in white and playfulness with old and young joining in snowball fights and ice skating. Christmas lights compensate for the sparse sunlight during cold winter nights. Spring shows promise and has a lively atmosphere of light-heartedness, while summer flowers colour the historic-looking lamps and magical tree reflections on the still waters matches the smell of cut grass.
In terms of things to do, the Vesting museum was remarkably interesting. You can explore the site from the underground tunnels and admire the view from the wings but also read about the long history behind the Vesting’s purpose and the thought process behind its design. Guided tours are available, but be sure it is going to be in Dutch. If you’re lucky, every now and then they have a canon shooting demonstration, which is not something you see every day. Beautiful day activities can include a walk on the Vesting wings or a cycle around the whole Vesting. Alone or in a group, it has a sense of fulfilment. Beautiful things come in small packages. I hope the photos reflect the big character of this charming place and that you have a small journey scrolling down.