About Delft

Delft has a lot to offer! The city is well-known for its ties with the Dutch Royal family (tombs of William of Orange and members of the Royal family) and the famous painter Vermeer.

Delft is also world-renowned for its Delft Blue earthenware and its lovely canals. Delft has a pleasant, well-preserved, lively historical centre, with characteristic canals, ancient merchant houses, old churches and the splendid city hall. Delft is more than 750 years old.

The city owes its name to the word ‘delving’, digging the oldest canal, the Oude Delft. In 1246, Delft received its city franchise from the Dutch Earl Willem II. Delft is nicknamed ‘de Prinsenstad’ (the Prince’s City), because of William of Orange, the first in the Dutch royal line, held court in Delft in the 16th century. In 1842 the Royal Academy for Civil Engineers was founded. The Academy used the building vacated by the artillery school.

The Academy of then is the TUDelft of today, which is also the largest employer in Delft.

It is home to Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), regarded as center of technological research and development in the Netherlands, Delft Blue pottery and the currently reigning House of Orange-Nassau. Historically, Delft played a highly influential role in the Dutch Golden Age. Delft has a special place in the history of microbiology. In terms of science and technology, thanks to the pioneering contributions of Antonie van Leeuwenhoek and Martinus Beijerinck, Delft can be considered to be the true birthplace of microbiology, with its several sub-disciplines such as bacteriology, protozoology, and virology.

Getting to Delft

Delft is very well connected with airports (Amsterdam Schipol and Rotterdam-The Hague) and other Dutch cities by trains, buses and trams.

By plane

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is 45 min away by train with an intercity direct connection. In case you get on a not direct train, you have to change at Leiden Centraal or The Hague Hollands Spoor (which is called Den Haag HS). If you prearrange a taxi to pick you up at Schiphol, expect to pay €100 to Delft.

For a one-way trip by train, the fare is € 9,50. Rotterdam The Hague Airport is only a few kilometres away but has poor public transport connections. RET city bus 33 runs frequently to Rotterdam Centraal Station and takes you there in about 20 min. From there it is a 15-min long train ride. When taking an airport taxi from Rotterdam The Hague Airport, expect to pay about € 35 for the trip.

By train

Delft has two railway stations: Delft (near the city centre and best for the university) and Delft Zuid (Delft’s southern residential area). (Direct) train connections run from:

Den Haag Central Station or Hollands Spoor (10 min.)
Schiphol Airport (45 min, € 9.50)
Amsterdam (1 h.)
Rotterdam (15 m.)


Delft is easily reached by car. Coming from Amsterdam or Schiphol, it is at the end of the A4 motorway; coming from Rotterdam, Delft has three exits off the A13 motorway. The city centre is best reached via the IKEA exit. During the weekend this exit can be busy with IKEA shoppers. Then take the North exit.