City Walk Meppel (from Wevershoek to Everdoek)

(2.0 km)
Managed by: Recreatieschap Drenthe

Meppel is a charming little city in which its rich trade history is still clearly visible. Transportation in Meppel used to occur by water, its many canals playing an important role in this. Several canals have remained preserved, as have its lively, historic inner city, the Tower of Meppel and various old warehouses.

Start your work at Kerkplein, along which the 600-year-old Grote of Mariakerk (“Large or St Mary Church”) can be found. Use the available signposting to walk into Hoofdstraat, Meppel’s most important shopping street. Take a moment to glance upwards at the old façades. A little further along, Touwstraat and Woldstraat used to be Jewish neighbourhoods during the Second World War. A variety of monuments and panels tell the tragic story of the Jewish community.

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Meppel is a charming little city in which its rich trade history is still clearly visible. Transportation in Meppel used to occur by water, its many canals playing an important role in this. Several canals have remained preserved, as have its lively, historic inner city, the Tower of Meppel and various old warehouses.

Start your work at Kerkplein, along which the 600-year-old Grote of Mariakerk (“Large or St Mary Church”) can be found. Use the available signposting to walk into Hoofdstraat, Meppel’s most important shopping street. Take a moment to glance upwards at the old façades. A little further along, Touwstraat and Woldstraat used to be Jewish neighbourhoods during the Second World War. A variety of monuments and panels tell the tragic story of the Jewish community.

You also end up at Keizersgracht, which, due to its large number of weavers (the Dutch word for weaver is wever), was called Wevershoek (“weaver’s corner”). At its industrial peak, there were 700 looms in Meppel. At the time, Meppel was most well-known for its everdoek—a kind of light sailcloth used, among others, by the Dutch East India Company. At the dock of Stoombootkade, you find one of the most well-preserved parts of Meppel’s nautical history. This is where boats used to leave for Amsterdam, among other places. The goods that were taken along on their way back were stored in the area’s many warehouses.

The fact that Meppel was also a printing city with many printing businesses can be seen in the printing museum housed in three old warehouses. Back at Kerkplein, you are certain to have a relaxing time on the terrace of one of Meppel’s many catering establishments.

The route starts at Kerkplein. You can’t park here, but there is paid parking nearby. Restricted parking applies in Meppel’s city centre. You can park for longer durations at one of the car parks. The parking direction system will take you to your desired car park. You can also use the signposting present to start the route from other locations.

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Sights on this route

Starting point: Kerkplein 4
7941 BE Meppel

Hoofdstraat 52
Meppel

Hoofdstraat 52
Meppel

Hoofdstraat 22
7941 AG Meppel

Kruisstraat 15
Meppel

Slotplantsoen
7941 LP Meppel

De Wheem 1
Meppel

Sluisgracht 28
7941BW Meppel

De Vlijt

Sluisgracht 20
7941 BW Meppel

Kleine Oever 11
7941 BK Meppel
End point: Kerkplein 4
7941 BE Meppel

Directions

Starting point: Kerkplein 4
7941 BE Meppel
    • Kerkplein has hosted a market every Thursday for more than 500 years. There used to be a canal, Kerkhofsdiep, crossing the square. The church and its tower are both almost 600 years old. The tower’s loft has an old loom from 1776. Next to the tower is the stadswaag (weighing house). Have you seen everything you want to see at the square? Continue walking towards Hoofdstraat and take a left.
    • Hoofdstraat is Meppel’s most important shopping street. Take a moment to look up at the façades of the houses. They reveal the old age of the buildings; an example being the building at Hoofdstraat 59. Underneath it is a beautiful medieval cellar from the middle of the 15th century. Glass plates in the floor of the shop allow you to look down into the cellar. Keep your eyes directed downwards as you walk. Various Stolpersteine can be found in front of different buildings. They are there to keep the memory of Meppel Jews, who were deported from these houses during the war, alive. The building with the stone staircase at number 22 was Meppel’s town hall until 1974. It now houses Kunsthuis (art house) Secretarie. For more information concerning expositions and exhibitions, go to: www.kunsthuissecretarie.nl. At the end of Hoofdstraat, take a right into Kruisstraat.
    • The 17th-century stepped gable of the house at Kruisstraat 12 is worth having a look at. A little further back, at Kruisstraat 15, you will find the Schulte House. Kruisstraat becomes Touwstraat. After 50 metres, Slotplantsoen is visible on your left.
    • Slotplantsoen is where the memorial monument for the Meppel Jews, deported and murdered during the Second World War, stands. Continue walking until you reach the green information panel and then take a right into Jodensteeg.
    • You are walking towards Woldstraat through one of the Netherland’s narrowest alleys. Many Jewish entrepreneurs had their shops in Jewish neighbourhood around Touwstraat en Woldstraat. The synagogue stood where the building with the information panel now stands. After you have finished reading, continue walking and take a right into Woldstraat at the end of Jodensteeg.
    • There are a few unique shops to visit in Woldstraat. After having walked through Woldstraat for 50 metres, take a left. Cross De Wheem square and take a left into Grote Kerkstraat.
    • De Wheem is one of Meppel’s three squares. It functioned as a marketplace for centuries. Left is the Wheemgebouw (“Wheem building”), the former city inn with weight house. The building to the left of the Wheemgebouw was designed by architect Rietveld. Cross the square at the end of Grote Kerkstraat towards Herberg (inn) ‘t Plein.
    • Herberg ‘t Plein is Meppel’s oldest catering business. Its former innkeeper was granted an alcohol licence in 1772. There is sign on the front of the building with a Star of David with the letter T in it. There are reports that the inn used to be a Jewish tea room. Cross the street here and continue straight onto Prinsengracht.
    • Opposite Gasgracht is where the gas factory used to stand. The Stokerijgebouw (“distillery building”) has been completely renovated. Take a right in front of the Emmabrug bridge onto Keizersgracht.
    • There were around three hundred weavers in Meppel in 1729. Many of them lived along Keizersgracht, which is also referred to as Wevershoek (“weaver’s corner”). At its peak, there were four weaving factories with almost 700 looms in Meppel. At the time, Meppel was most well-known for its everdoek—a kind of light sailcloth used, among others, by the ships of the Dutch East India Company. By the Zuiderbrug bridge, cross Hoofdstraat towards Zuideindigerpad and go straight there.
    • Apartment complex De Looierij (looierij is the Dutch word for tannery) is named after a tannery that used to be here. Tanneries were always by the water, since the tanners needed the water to clean their hides. After crossing the wooden bridge, immediately take a right into Harm Smeengekade.
    • The houses with the red roof tiles at numbers 9 and 11 have been constructed in a style characteristic of Amsterdam. The route now takes you onto the Sluisbrug bridge. This iron, Amsterdam-type riveted bridge dates back to 1927. While on the bridge, take a moment to look out over the water to envision how, in a bygone era, freight ships used to leave from here towards Rotterdam. After the bridge, take an immediate right onto Sluisgracht and continue walking until you reach the crossroad.
    • Sluisgracht was once a busy street with many small shops and businesses. Located along the canal, the De Vlijt mill visibly towers above the houses. Its renovation is expected to be complete towards the end of 2018, after which it will start producing real Meppel mustard. Opposite the water is Bleekerseiland (“bleacher’s island”). This is where housewives used to dry their bleached laundry. Take a right after the water. Now continue walking until you reach the crossroad. To your right is Stoombootkade. Now cross the street towards printing museum Op de Kleine Oever.
    • Stoombootkade is one of the most well-preserved parts of Meppel’s nautical history. This is where boats used to leave for Amsterdam, among other places. Returning goods were stored in the dock’s many warehouses and distributed from there.
  • Meppel used to be a printing city with many printing houses. The first printer settled in Meppel as early as 1695. The printing museum is housed in three old warehouses. Continue straight until you reach the crossroad. Take a right here onto Kerkplein to arrive at the original departure point of the route. Enjoy a well-deserved drink and a bite to eat in one of Meppel’s many catering establishments.
End point: Kerkplein 4
7941 BE Meppel