The weather has finally taken a turn for the better and after all the rainy, grey days it’s finally sunny and wonderfully warm! In this kind of weather, even the biggest of couch potatoes have a newly found desire to be outdoors and soak up the sun. However, it’s prime exam time, and the thought of doing nothing besides having a picnic with your friends fills you with a sense of joy and revision anxiety, all at the same time. So what should you do? The JoCo team comes to the rescue and recommends you the best places to study while still being in the fresh air!
This wonderful spot hallway between the city centre and the Uithof is a haven for those wanting to escape the nerve-racking closed spaces of the library. There’s a huge grass-covered area where you can lay down on your favourite blanket with some snacks and focus on your studies. Also, there’s a great ice cream stand nearby in case you get hungry 😉 Caution: if the weather is extra nice, the park can get overcrowded with students playing football and young families!
Botanische Tuinen (The Botanic Garden)
If you have many classes on the Uithof campus, spending another minute there might feel like punishment. That shouldn’t be the case when you think of the Botanic Garden filled with rare species and plenty of quiet corners to get away from everyone. If you’re a student or an employee at Utrecht University, entry is completely free of charge and you can stay till 4.30 pm to make the most of your afternoon. And since the garden officially belongs to university, you have eduroam WiFi that you can use to do research online!
Located near Rijnsweerd-Noord, this natural park is a short cycle away from the centre of Utrecht. It’s a nice little variation from your everyday learning spots since, instead of neatly trimmed lawns and designated picnic areas, you can find wildflower meadows, a water lily pond and a varied flora and fauna here. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet, this is an excellent spot for some alone-time. Just be careful to remain focused on your studies: the numerous hiking trails and the local botanical garden will lure you into leaving your books and discovering nature instead!
Griftpark is the favourite of many students. Located North of the centre near the Tuirndorp West complex (where plenty of students live), it is easily accessible by bike or by bus, or even on foot! This modern park is the right choice if you’re still undecided about the course of your day: you can read while you sunbathe, play basketball, skate or simply admire different forms of urban wildlife, all in one place! If you start feeling hungry, there’s a stylish restaurant with a fascinating summer terrace right at the heart of the park. Don’t worry, there are also hidden spots in the garden where you can focus on your studies; it’s nice to know that you can take a break and do so many activities though!
Anywhere along the Singel
Yes, Utrecht is indeed famous for its charming canals and its surroundings, but there’s no other canal like the Stadsbuitengracht. This lovely body of water surrounds the old city centre and is accompanied by green areas all along. You can find cute parks like Park Lepelenburg or Park Sonnenborgh along the canal, but even without designated park areas there are plenty of benches for some revision in the sun. And if you get fed up with studies, you can just stroll along the water for a few minutes, take a couple of deep breaths and settle down at some other point near the canal.
Hopefully, this list helps you choose a place of study so that you don’t have to lock yourself in your room for the whole exam period. And if you’re done with revision, it’s time to get together with your friends and enjoy the weather together while barbequing or picnicking at one of these great locations! Share YOUR favourite outdoor spots with us in a comment!