Abcoude is a municipality of the province Utrecht and covering an area of 32,11 km² whereof 1,75 km² are covered by water. Abcoude is really close to Amsterdam. In 2006 the community reached up to 8670 inhabitants.
In 1941 the municipalities Abcoude-Proosdij en Aasdom and Abcoude-Baambrugge were merged to form the present township Abcoude. Nowadays it consists of the villages Abcoude, Baambrugge, the hamlets Stokkelaarsbrug and Donkervliet.
The municipality lies only 13 km southeast of the centre of Amsterdam, on the confluence of the Angstel River, Gein River and Holendrecht River. You can reach Abcoude from the West by taking the car and driving down the A2 or from the East by taking the railway.
Abcoude was first mentioned in 1085 in a charter of Koenraad, bishop of Utrecht, as "Abecenwalde". The Abcoude castle, mentioned in 1274 and situated at the frontiers of the county of Holland and the bishopric of Utrecht, was destroyed by the famous knight Gijsbrecht van Amstel and rebuilt later on. Up to the 15th century the Abcoude area was home for the knight dynasty Van Abcoude. In 1672 most of the town was burned down by the French.
The municipal arms is composed out of the Coat of Arms (CoA) of the former municipalities and was officially granted by Royal Resolution on 3 Aug 1948 by Queen Juliana. The arms of Abcoude-Baambrugge was composed of a shield with three columns on red and was related to the former Lords of Abcoude from the van Zuilen-family.
The CoA of Abcoude-Proosdij en Aasdom did consist of a shield with two crossed keys in silver on blue. That image was probably derived from the St. Peter chapter, of which this municipality was part of. The key may also refer to the presence of a rechthuis (meaning court) where law was spoken, as the key was a symbol of power or trust.
Tourist attractions in the Abcoude area
The polder areas are flown through by small twisting streams, which offer cyclists a good opportunity to ride their bikes along the levees and enjoy the wonderful Dutch countryside! In the municipality you can visit the bird sanctuary Botshol, old pictorial houses and the village church. Beside that the Fort Abcoude is worth to be seen, which is a part of the Defence Line of Amsterdam. These protection facilities have been proclaimed as World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.