Historic Dutch town
Whoever says Gouda not only thinks immediately of cheese, pipes, treacle waffles and earthenware, but also of stained glass windows, a picturesque town hall and romantic canals. Gouda is a real old Dutch town with a virtually intact town centre.
Wandering around the city allows you to savour all there is to see at your leisure: facades, canals, the market, the Sint Janskerk, and the numerous other monuments. And that’s not forgetting the countless alleyways, bridges, city gardens and secret waterways. Measuring 123m, the Sint Janskerk is the largest church in Holland. It is world-famous for its 72 Gouda Windows, a collection of sixteenth century stained glass windows. The unique gothic town hall stands proudly on its own at the centre of the market. Museumgouda exhibits 16th century altar pieces, 19th century paintings, Gouda delftware, and contemporary art hangs at the Museum Gouda.
For three hundred years local farmers in traditional costume have gathered at the Market (currently each Thursday from end June – end August, between 10.00am and 12.30pm), to have their cheese weighed in the age old way and prices bartered for. Traditional cheese making methods are demonstrated at the Gouda Cheese Market, as well as traditional clog and pipe-making skills, delftware painting and book music production. A visit to the Cheese Weighhouse will soon show why Gouda is so proud of its past. Various traditional Gouda trades are regularly demonstrated in the Weighhouse, such as cheese, pipe and Gouda earthenware (ceramics) production, and the painting of Gouda delftware.