After wandering around the old beautiful city center of Oudewater, we took the bus to Gouda. I haven’t read much about the city before so I was amazed by the big houses: big doesn’t mean really big, but compared with the houses from the North they are more wide and seem to have more space inside. They are saying that almost all the cities look the same in The Netherlands, but outside the fact that the city center is concentrated between canals, the church or town hall placed in the main square and the shopping streets, everything is so different.
Gouda is world known for it’s cheese, the yellow cheese that appears in so many American comedy shows or in each store around the world. Having this in mind I was expecting to be able to visit a cheese museum, but it wasn’t the case – there is something similar right at the tourism info office, but the advertise of the place didn’t attract me that much.
The Gouda museum is located in a beautiful castle-building, where it used to be the hospital for the poor. There is still the old pharmacy inside, so you can observe the instruments they used back then. Outside this, I didn’t liked the museum because all of the objects were placed on shelves, somehow packed. Since there’s a fight between Gouda and Rotterdam regarding the birth place of Erasmus, there is a part in the museum dedicated to him with a movie – which, unfortunately, is only in Dutch.
Walking on the streets outside the main square it is impossible not to observe the metal plates placed into the pavement. On each of them the name of the people deported during WW2 to concentration camps are written. I still cannot understand how come people can be so cruel.
At the end of our visit, I left with a nice impression and with the thought that we will go back. It was on a Saturday, so in the main square the market was taking place – due to this I’ve felt the city crowded. But we had a nice lunch there, we’ve found a place with good beer and friendly people and we’ve strolled around the canals – which gave us picturesque views. And for the first time in my life I saw a pair of Mallard ducks mating in water.