Lifestyle : 2 days Utrecht
It's been a while. Covid got everybody losing their mind. Right when life was going back to "normal" or what you can call the new normal. Currently Antwerp's numbers are up so we're dealing with a new lock down. I'm not too happy about it because I did have some plans for the upcoming weeks. However I do believe it's necessary to keep the numbers down.
I did enjoy the few weeks of freedom that we had here in Belgium. I saw a lot of my friends, which felt super nice, and got to spend more time with our families on both sides. Most of the time we stayed home but we also went to eat a couple of times and did a few activities. I recently did virtual reality game in Antwerp with my forever friends. We had such a blast but I'll tell you more about that in an other post. Robin and I also went with some friends to Utrecht.
Even though Utrecht is only like an hour and a half from where we live the difference between Belgium and Netherlands during Covid is big. It was like a small culture shock when we arrived. Nobody was wearing masks. It isn't mandatory in the Netherlands and we kinda felt like the effects of Covid weren't really noticeable there. Most stores just put up a sign stating that you shouldn't enter when you're sick and had an disinfectant bottle at the entrance. There were a few other stores that were more strict but they were in the minority.
Even though we found it very strange and a bit dangerous we enjoyed ourselves while trying to avoid personal contact with others. This was a bit challenging at times so keep this in mind if you're planning a trip to the Netherlands. Nevertheless we had a full two days of fun and perhaps our stay could help you plan your next one ! xoxo
We stayed at the Anthony Hotel. It's an old monastery that went under a transformation. The interior decorator did a really good job. It was my biggest motivator for choosing this hotel in the first place. Unfortunately our room wasn't ready yet so I couldn't freshen up or change outfits after we sat in the car. We left the car at the hotel parking and left for the town center which is about a 10 minute walk. The hotel has a private parking which costs 20€ a night. If you're staying for a longer period this might get expensive. You can always park on the street.
When we got back around 5 our room still wasn't ready even though the website stated check-in was possible at 15:00. We had a drink to pass the time. Inside the hotel there is a court yard which is super cosy. A great place for a small wedding of event! We got to our room and it was like I imagined. Due to current covid circumstances prices for this hotel were really affordable. So you get a designer room for a great price. I did notice some damage to the wall (from a visitor I imagine). The rest the room was very nice, clean and decorated as expected.
If you are staying more than one night you might eat at the hotel as well. We opted for eating outdoors because Utrecht is filled with culinary hotspots. The hotel offers breakfast, lunch and dinner.
As I said before Utrecht has many culinary hotspots. I've been there a couple of times and each time I discover a new place.
One of my favorite places to lunch is The Streetfoodclub. It's a meeting place between kitsch design and good food. Everyone will find something on the menu that they'll like. I really like to go there with people that eat meat. As a vegetarian in Belgium there aren't a lot of places that have vegetarian of vegan options. Utrecht has many places that offer this option or are completely plant based. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why I love to go there.
For dinner we went to Waku Waku. It's a 100 % plant based menu and its A-mazing. Everything we ordered was great and tasteful. The menu isn't that extensive which makes it easier to choose. I like places that have less on the menu but offer better quality. The service is also very friendly so I'll definitely be coming here again. If you're ever eating dinner in Utrecht this place should be first on your list.
As we arrived around lunch we didn't have breakfast the day of our arrival. For breakfast there are a few options in Utrecht that are worth mentioning. As we tried to get a table outside at Ted's we stumbled upon Anna pancakes. Good thing we did because these pancakes were really good. There were plenty of sweet and savory options to choose from. A plus was that you could make your batter vegan. Which I did and mine tasted great and also looked great (which I always appreciate). PS: for those who aren't into pancakes, they also have non-pancake options.
So you might wonder if we only went to Utrecht for food. Which is true about 80 % of the time. However Utrecht is also great for shopping. You'll find all your favorite stores near the water but if you stray away from them you'll find some real gems!
One thing I also love to do are escape rooms. We've already did one the last time I was there with Robin called 'The Queen'. This was the best escape room I've ever done. If you're a fan of escape rooms, this one should be on your list. This time we did another called 'The taste basement'. Yes you've guessed it, it's in a basement. You will have to use all your senses to get out. Unfortunately we didn't get out in time but we almost got there. It's a tricky one but definitely worth while !