As we were heading back towards France we decided to stop off in Utrecht for a night which would shave of an hour the next day. We absolutely adored our time here and I would go as far as saying it was 100% because pride was on. It didn’t start off as fabulous though I must say. We pulled up at a less than desirable location for the nights stop and so wanted to spend as little time there as possible we decided to pull of our bikes and do what we do best and explore. Hauling the bikes off the back I was apprehensive but trusted Joshua’s opinions and the recommendations we’d had about this place. Looking online it was referred to as Amsterdam’s cooler cousin but at that moment I was sure it was all a lie.
As we cycled into the centre we looked to our left and saw this slightly random stage set up. The music boomed over the sound of the traffic, it seemed strange, like the main stage at Creamfields had just crash landed on the outskirts of Utrecht. Rainbow flags adorned the enormous stage and some gyrating sailors on top of the structure, meant only one thing..… Pride. We enjoyed the music as we went by and I am sure I almost convinced Joshua to join in. As we got closer to the centre we saw people of all ages, shapes, sizes and genders supporting this wearing flags and with face paint. The whole town seemed to get involved and we did think how odd because they were walking the opposite direction to the party we had just witnessed. Anyway, we headed towards the main square to look at the Cathedral and pass an hour or two.
This place was a hive of excitement, the bars and cafes that lined the canals were brimming with people. We locked up the bikes and walked along side the canals towards the main square. We headed towards the square. The crowds got denser and the music louder the closer we got. Why would a Cathedral and square be so interesting? As we walked under the arches to enter we saw why. The whole square was rammed. Filled with people dancing and singing as another stage lay at the far side. Pop up bars and eateries were along the back and everyone had a beer in hand. It was amazing! We immediately popped to the nearest shop and bought ourselves some ’cans’ so we blended in with the locals. Listening to old school disco music we laughed and cheers to a fabulous evening which wouldn’t have been the same if it weren’t for this event we stumbled upon. Oh, and the cathedral looked pretty nice too. After walking through the cobbled streets and along the various canals we found a cheap eat with a queue out the door and decided it must be the place to eat. A little greek inspired fast food stall with only a bench outside. We indulged in traditional gyros which seemed so wrong but tasted so right and, who could complain. We visited a quirky bar close by and enjoyed another couple of beverages, after all we weren’t driving tonight, before heading back to the van ready for our early start.