The Netherlands’ second largest city, Rotterdam is fast becoming a metropolis of cool, following a transformation across the city. It is a city that offers striking architecture, a seafaring history, diverse cultures and an urban city that delights the senses. Located in the south of Holland, Rotterdam’s unique architecture now brings many visitors to cycle around this urbane, cosmopolitan city. Futuristic architecture, inspired local initiatives such as inner-city canal surfing, a proliferation of art, and a surge of drinking, dining and nightlife venues make Rotterdam one of Europe’s most exhilarating cities right now.
- Markthal Rotterdam
- Rotterdam Zoo
- The Cube Houses
- Grote of Sint-Laurenskerk
- Maritime Museum
- Fenix Food Factory
- Rotterdam Boat Tour
The official native language of The Netherlands is Dutch, however as in many other parts of The Netherlands and Scandinavian cities, English is widely spoken and understood.
When to visit
Rotterdam has mild winters and warm summers, offering visitors the perfect weather all year. A visit in summer or spring season is probably the best due to its warmer climate, and bustling streets.
The Netherlands accepted Euro as its official currency in 2002, replacing the Guilder that was used since the 17th century.
Top Things to See and Do
- Markthal Rotterdam – The Markthal is a stunning piece of architecture that was constructed in 2009 and serves as both an office building and a marketplace. The design of the structure is worldwide known.
- Rotterdam Zoo – Also known as the Diergaarde Blijdorp, the Rotterdam Zoo features a Botanical garden and Oceanium and also operates breeding programs to help endangered species such as the Red Panda.
- The cube houses – Rotterdam is home to many fine examples of modern architecture. Pushing the architectural envelope to the max are the city’s famous Cube Houses (Kubuswoningen) designed by Dutch architect Piet Blom. Their unique cube-shaped upper stories can be enjoyed as part of a walking tour of the city.
- Euromast Tower – The Euromast Tower is an observation station that was created in 1960 to provide panoramic views of the Rotterdam Cityscape. The towers stands at 606ft and features a restaurant.
- Erasmus Bridge – This monumental bridge spans the Nieuwe Maas distributary of the Rhine and runs from the confluence of the Noord and Lek rivers. The bridge stretches an immense 802m making it the second largest in the Netherlands.
- Grote of Sint-Laurenskerk – The Church of Saint Laurence is the only remaining piece of medieval architecture that survives in Rotterdam. The interior of the church is quite beautiful with many decorated arches, high vaulted ceilings and a variety of stone reliefs and rich religious decoration.
- Europort – Not as exciting, but Rotterdam is one of the world’s largest ports, and therefore had to include it. Europort is considered one of the busiest ports in the world and a major trade entry point into Europe.
- Maritime Museum – The Maritime Museum is one of the largest of its type in the world with a huge collection of maritime memorabilia. Some of the interesting exhibitions include a controversial painting of the Battle of Trafalgar, a collection of figureheads from various ships, different navy uniforms and flags from sea battles.
- Fenix Food Factory – This food factory provides a unique experience where you can delve into the food world and take part in workshops, tastings and open markets.
- Rotterdam Boat Tour – A boat tour is the perfect way to see the fantastic harbours and ports of Rotterdam. The port is extensive so jump on a boat tour, as a comfortable mode to transport to explore.