IJsselstein is a city and municipality of 34,000 people (2019) in Utrecht. It thanks its name to the Hollandse IJssel, which flows right past the city.
Formed around the castle of IJsselstein, the city got its city rights in 1310. The same year, the city got granted its main church, the Nicolaaskerk. The city got walled in around 1390. The walled city was doubled in size after it was sacked and destroyed several times before 1466. The city got in direct control of the Dutch Royal Family in 1551, and enjoyed the privileges thereof until the Batavian Revolution brought an end to it. This loss of autonomy and privileges in turn caused economic downturn for the city. Most of the products produced in IJsselstein, which the city got its main income from, were also banned under Napoleon, which didn't make its situation any better. The city itself wouldn't grow much more between 1800 and the Second World War, after which it became a city of commuters to Utrecht, which ended up giving the city its modern-day looks.
IJsselstein has an old town centre surrounded by the Stadsgracht, a moat-like city canal.
IJsselstein shares its exit (9) on the A2 highway with nearby Nieuwegein, and the exit is also named after Nieuwegein. The exit is found about five kilometres south from Oudenrijn Interchange, where the A2 and A12 highways meet. These are also the main highways you would use when travelling to the city; the A2 connects from Amsterdam and Utrecht in the north and 's-Hertogenbosch from the south. The A12 connects to The Hague and Gouda in the west. The latter of which is the point where the A20 coming from Rotterdam merges into the A12. The A12 connects to Arnhem in the east, and after crossing the border into Germany, it continues as Autobahn 3 to Oberhausen and Düsseldorf.
By public transit
IJsselstein does not have a train station of its own, but instead relies on Utrecht for a connection to the train network. From the central station of Utrecht, switch to tramline 21, which will connect to IJsselstein. The line circles the city itself before coming to the halt for the city centre, 1 . Alternatively, you could use 2 instead, which is located 600 metres (660 yd) from the city centre's entry point.
- 1 Gerbrandytoren (Zendmast Lopik), Hogebiezendijk 21. Broadcasting tower for radio and television, which, with its 372 metres (407 yd) height, is the tallest building in all of the Netherlands. During Christmas, the support cables of the tower are decorated with lights, effectively making it the largest Christmas 'tree' of the entire world.
- 2 IJsselstein Castle, Kronenburgplantsoen 9. The main reason the city itself exists, nothing much aside from the castle grounds and one of its towers remain today, but the site is nonetheless worth a visit.
- 3 Museum IJsselstein, Walkade 2-4, ☏ . W-Su 13:00-17:00; M Tu closed.
- IJsselstein has a protected city centre, featuring some wonderful historical features.
The old town centre has a shopping district and pedestrian street along Benschopperstraat and Utrechtsestraat. A HEMA department store is on Utrechtsestraat. Some additional shops are on side streets.
In addition to shops, the old town centre also has a number of eateries.
- 1 Hotel Epping, Utrechtsestraat 44, ☏ , fax: , email@example.com. A four-star hotel located within the old town centre. €80.
- 2 B&B Het Oude Gemaal, Hogebiezen 19, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. €87.50.