Utrecht

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Utrecht is a small but important city in the centre of the Netherlands. It is famous for its door bells. In 2005 Utrecht dominated 45% of the worldwide door bell industry. The University of Utrecht even has a special door bell faculty, named the Science Department of Ringing and Door Bells.

The name Utrecht is old Dutch for 'straight ahead', and was forcibly imposed on it by the Dutch Tourist Board in 1593. Moves to restore the original name, Hogswillendam, have been blocked in parliament.

edit City centre

Utrecht has indeed a city centre with a few old, sometimes Medieval buildings. But Japanese tourists in touring cars should be warned that they might get stuck in the city centre, because no cars or touring buses are allowed in the centre. Well, yes, they are allowed, but it's likely they get lost and end up somewhere in a neighbourhood village, like Houten, Bunnik or Amsterdam. It is not well-known that Utrecht in fact only has a single one-way road, which curves through the city center many times crossing itself. However, one is not allowed to turn right or left at any point. Furthermore, it is rumoured that Utrecht's traffic lights never even have been fitted with a green light. The effect is that many foreigners that arrive by car are effectively trapped in the city, especially if they want to reach the station, which has been impossible since 1998. The best way to get in or out then is using a train or a bicycle, but trains always have delays and bicycles always get stolen.

edit University campus "De Uithof"

On the east side of Utrecht you will find the university campus "De Uithof", which is Dutch for "way out in the farmlands". This is the location of utrecht university, which was founded in 356 BC by a professional hulahoop player. No actual courses are taught or scientific research is performed in De Uithof, since it only acts as a cover for putting up godawful ugly buildings. Curiously, these buildings do attract tourists, abducting of whom is the main source of income for the local residents (who claim to be students but are actually pirates-in-training).

edit Kanaleneiland

Utrecht is also the home of the famous Kanaleneiland . This is a magic place where mythological people live, so it's rumoured. It's full of unicorns and knights. Then we also have Hoograven and Overvecht. Which are less mystical, but full of other interesting things. Such as flying toasters and armored cheese, much is yet to be discovered in these places.

edit Sightseeing

For really interesting sightseeing, tourists should go to other cities, like Almere, Appelscha or Nieuwegein. The only interesting thing to do in Utrecht is driving by public bus through the Dom Tower, which will be further explained in the next section.

Unless you are a heterosexual woman or a gay man, Utrecht's 130% female student population is a tourist attraction on its own. Especially people who were educated at TU Delft, and are non of the abovementioned, wil pay large amounts of money or even sell their kidneys in order to gain entrance to some of the student's bars.

It is rumoured that desperate female students even pick up tramps and beggars because all other men are already occupied.

edit How to recognize Utrecht

It is not very difficult to recognize Utrecht, unless you are blind or have another visual handicap. Firstly, you will recognize Utrecht by the signs that have 'Utrecht' on it. These signs are placed on the borders of the city and very difficult to miss (unless you have a handicap we mentioned earlier). Similar signs are placed on the five train stations in the city: Utrecht Centraal, Utrecht Lunetten, Utrecht Overvecht, Utrecht Terwijde, Utrecht zuilen and Utrecht Maliebaan. Although none of the stations carry only the name Utrecht, all these stations are within the city of Utrecht. Secondly the city of Utrecht can be recognized by its famous Dom Tower. In the Middle Ages this tower was connected to the Dom Church but when the first buses drove through the city centre, the city council decided to separate the tower from the church, so that they could place a bus stop in between. They even made a tunnel underneath the Dom tower, so that the buses could drive underneath. This is a tourist attraction that should not be missed.

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