Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands

In En-Route, Europe, Netherlands, Our Journeys, Trip-Types, World Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

Following the lights

The historical city of Utrecht comes alight 365 evenings a year.

Trajectum Lumen is an intriguing light trail that takes you on a historical journey through the city centre when night falls upon us.

You can take the walking tour yourself free of charge and weave your way through the town on an excursion passing traditional sights, over bridges, under tunnels all the while keeping your eyes lit up.

Download the map

Just grab a map from here or the tourist office or you can download the lumapp app to your smartphone

No rules

There is a planned-out route to take, but depending on where you are in the city you can start at whichever point you wish.

The light display began in Spring 2010 and images have increased over time, so you may even catch more that you expected.

The arrow points the way, Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands
Follow the lights, Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands

The light art trail is around a 1 ½ hours stroll, it appears every evening from when the street lights are lit until midnight, just head off with your map and pick up the light drop trail on the ground.

A helpful guide

If you're thinking of heading of to the land of tulips and cheese, then grab this DK Eyewitness guide to help with your planning.

I find them extremely informative, easy to follow and the pictures and maps tempt you into discovering more.


Some of the displays are very easy to spot and some come and go, so your timing must be right and others just remain elusive.

No.1, it didn’t start too well as we didn’t spot it, obviously, our eyes hadn’t quite adjusted to tracking these down or it wasn’t lit up (I’m going for the latter).

No.2, ohh that pesky scaffolding

No.3, this is more like it

A tunnel and not just any tunnel.

Initially it may not look to appealing but give it ago, it leads you down to the wharves.

No.4, look out for the bridges along Oudegracht, which runs through the heart of the city.

No.5, not only is the Neoclassical old city hall illuminated, but images are projected on to the cobbles below.

No.6, Saint Willibrord’s Church

I think this was one of my favourites

Saintly illuminations, Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands

No.7, Janskerk.

The Janskerk display is illuminated every 10 mins, you may need to be patient.

No.8, Drift Vaults – moving swiftly on…

No.9, The Canal.  Moving lights and mirrors bring this waterway to life.

No. 10, a variety of illuminations light up Saint Peter Church

No.11, now in Pausdam, two historic buildings have displays one with a barn owl the other with a dove.

No.12, more scaffolding

No.13, a light depicts where the original fortress walls would have lied beneath the pavement in Domplein.

No.14, the unmistakable Dom Tower by night

The Dom Belltower, Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands

No15, last but no means least is the illuminations at Buurkerk, two light sculptures project the illusion of stained glass windows.

Bright lights by Buurkerk, Trajectum Lumen, Utrecht, Netherlands

Not always to plan

I think sometimes you need to be imaginative, as the display may have changed or not quite you had envisaged.

Your route

Tip Your self-guided illuminated trail leads you through Vredenburg, Neude-Neudeflat, Ganzenmarkt-Cityhal, Minrebroederstraat-St. Willibrordkerk, Janskerkhof-Janskerk, Drift, Kromme Nieuwegracht, Pieterskerkhof-Pieterskerk, Pausdam, Domplein, Nieuwegracht and Buurkerkhof.Text

Have You?

Seen the entire collection? Or like us, were you thwarted? It's a great way to discover the city after dark.

Inspired to visit Utrecht

Does the Trajectum Lumen tempt you?

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