What was it like to be a soldier in a city under siege all those centuries ago? How were soldiers defending a bastion able to communicate with each other in the 18th century? What do the Three Musketeers and d’Artagnan have to do with Maastricht? All these questions are answered during a visit to Fort St. Pieter.
An enthusiastic guide will show you the well, the embrasures with multiple shooting directions, and the cannon gallery while telling you wonderful stories, anecdotes and facts. One such spectacular event was the siege of Maastricht in 1673, when Louis XIV of France took the 'Iron city’ at lightning speed by positioning cannons on the northern slope of the St. Pietersberg hill.
Fort St. Pieter is one of the most striking features of the defensive works of Maastricht. It dates from 1701-1702. The fort was completely restored in 2007, and the field of fire was cleared once again. You can now walk through the long corridors and even get right onto the top of the fort, where you will be rewarded with a magnificent view over Maastricht, the Meuse valley and the Jeker valley. It will be clear to you why the fort was built on this site and what the options and hazards were for the defenders and attackers. You can also see how the cannons worked and the ingenious layout of the fort.
STRATEGIC POSITION OF MAASTRICHT
Maastricht had a strong appeal to foreign rulers thanks to its strategic position alongside the Meuse. The city was attacked and besieged on many occasions. For several centuries, save for a few interruptions, almost constant work was carried out on building and maintaining city walls, moats, forts, and other defensive works. This resulted in a labyrinth of cleverly laid-out underground passageways, in which many soldiers were accommodated for the purposes of defending the city.
Standard tours are also offered in English for our international visitors in the North Caves and Fort St Pieter (every day all year round) and in the Zonneberg Caves starting 2016 (weekends only).
We also offer a variety of tailored activities and programmes in all our locations, for both adults and children. Take a look under Activities and Kids for a complete overview.