With less than 2000 inhabitants I would call Veere a town, a very small one at that. It's a gorgeous place in Zeeland, one of the 12 provinces of the Netherlands.
According to the Dutch Wikipedia article (or read the Zeeuws one if you can ;-)) it started in the 13th century as 'Kampvere', got flooded, got a Scottish daughter in law, then got rich because the Scots delivered their wool in Veere, and grew and grew into a harbour town until more history happened and Veere became a poor fisher town again.
A perfect opportunity for a photographer
Nowadays parts of the the town are assigned a protected state, which means the facades of buildings are not allowed to be altered. Lucky for us, because this means you can visit the town like it was centuries ago, the only signs time passed by the modern cars in the streets.
While walking through the town (which can be done in 20 minutes if you're not taking pictures) I tried to capture as many pictures as I could without those 'tellers of time' (cars) in it, and I succeeded quite well. Except for the first two pictures which I included in order to give you a complete impression of the place after all. Did I have to try hard? No, because Veere has a strict car policy, so you'll actually be able to walk the town without too many disturbances.
A first sight
After you park you car just outside the centre of the town you'll walk past a gorgeous harbour full of boats. From the looks of it at least ten percent of the inhabitants own a boat - or are these just visitors?
[The first of only two pictures with cars in it.]
The waters of the little harbour are crossed by an old-fashioned suspension bridge, giving you a see-through in the direction of the 'typically Dutch' facades.
[My second and last picture with a car in in it.
A more detailed sight
Walking over the bridge you go left and walk towards an impressive building with 'stepped gable'. The building now contains a restaurant while keeping their promotional outings to a minimum in order to not disturb the view from the streets.
From there we turned right again. You'll end up on the dike of Veere, trees behind the dike, benches on it so it's easy to just sit and enjoy the view.
[I can totally see this woman walk here every day so she can look over the waters. I know I would if I were her!]
We're getting even closer
Walking more 'inwards' the little town you'll be able to walk through a few narrow and sometimes overgrown alleys which feel like you're going back in time centuries.
[If I see this I could immediately come up with a scene from a movie, how about you?]
[Another movie-worthy alley. Spot the dove on the wall to the right, and spot the old-fashioned street lantern complementing the overall feel of the village!]
[Lots of analog pictures in the window, who knows what stories all these people hide in their photo frame?]
The 'center' of the village and the history it holds
Finally we walked through the real 'center' of the town. There's quite a big church (called 'Grote Kerk', or 'Big Church' ;-)) that I didn't know how to capture with the lens I brought, and surrounding that church are 'workers houses' probably inhabited by those who added value to the church in the past.
The house below is within the walls of the church - who would have lived here in the past? The pastor?
[Probably my favourite pictures of the series thanks to the soft end-of-the-afternoon light that was filtered through grey clouds]
[Typical chimney, I don't often see them like this anymore on houses.]
A very Dutch experience
It's interesting to be Dutch, to live in The Netherlands, and to sort of 'stumble upon' a town that is so typical for your country you're totally falling in love with it yourself. Walking through Veere made me realize how pretty The Netherlands can be and what people from other countries come looking for when they come here.
I believe the disappointment of (some) tourists in Amsterdam often has to do with the image they have from paintings now being spoiled by the nauseating amount of souvenir shops and stroopwafel sellers. Smaller towns like Veere should never become as overflowed with tourists because they simply can't handle even 1% of the tourists coming to Amsterdam. But for the more advanced explorer or for the Dutch person wanting to get to know his/her country I can very much recommend visiting Veere.
I know I'm excited to see how many of these unspoiled towns I can find and visit the coming months :-)