Published: January 29, 2019
Few cities felt the effects of WWII more keenly than Rotterdam. Yet, this bootstrapping city turned that blank canvas into a playground for architects and designers. Nowadays, Rotterdam is an edgy and vibrant medley of diverse cultures, harbour life, and innovative architecture.
Ready to eat? This popular indoor market has you covered! If you’re making a meal from scratch, it’s got the lot— fresh fish, meat, veggies, seasonings and herbs galore. If it’s a bite or a round of beers you’re in the market for, you’ll find gastronomic delights of all kinds guaranteed to make a devotee out of the hungriest of bellies. Visit during weekdays to avoid queues!
Boijmans van Beuningen museum offers more than even the most enthusiastic art lover can take in in 1 day! So, put aside a whole day and have a look at the programme beforehand to make sure you catch famous pieces like Dali’s “The Face of War". Be ready when inspiration strikes!
Soaring majestically above the city, the Erasmus Bridge is the dazzling lady of Rotterdam’s cityscape. This iconic skyscraper is the largest and heaviest cable-stayed bridge in Western Europe and connects the north and south sides of the city. Traverse the bridge on foot or bike, or just admire it from afar and behold the city’s crowning glory.
On a sunny day, this local hangout bustles with energy as residents and tourists alike blend and descend on the waterfront terraces. The area is ideal for strolling or people watching. It’s also perfect for viewing the Het Witte Huis, an Art Nouveau-style high-rise building – Europe’s first – that was inspired by New York City skyscrapers.
Europe’s biggest harbour is an integral part of the city’s history and identity. A tour on a Spido boat is a great way to see all the wonders of the harbour. Or, use the network of paths to explore the port by foot or bike. Info stands packed with facts and figures dot the port. And if you keep your eyes and ears open you’re likely to see some cool wildlife.
This zoo has brought joy to Rotterdammers young and old for over 150 years. Swing by and say hello to the Asiatic lions, African okapis and super cute polar bear cubs. When you’re done with the land animals, check out their aquatic friends. Take an enchanting walk through the clear-glass Oceania tunnel to witness sharks, sea lions, jellyfish and penguins up close
The Euromast watches over the city from 185 metres up. Make your way to the tippity top and visit the restaurant for brunch, dinner or high tea made from sustainable ingredients, at reasonable prices. For a memory you won’t soon forget, base jump or abseil back down to earth! Whether you gawk up from below or look down from above, don’t miss this iconic Dutch edifice.
Better known as De Kuip (“The Tub”), this bowl-like arena is home to Feyenoord, one of Dutch football’s “Big Three”. On match days, the club’s fervent fans create a raucous, red-and-white hot atmosphere thanks to the stadium’s cavernous qualities. No wonder the ground has been chosen to host ten European finals over the years. Hop in and see if you can take the heat!
Beurstraverse is a real treat for shoppers. Half sunken passage, half open-air street, it’s the perfect place to pick up gifts for friends, family – or yourself! Browse through everything from major chains like Zara and H&M, to dinky little boutiques. Whatever you’re looking for, you’ll find something to tickle your fancy. And yes… there’s free parking!
This is the only late-Gothic building to survive the air raids that rained down on Rotterdam during WWII. The church's architecture and design stands out in starklrelief to the modernity that surrounds it. Nowadays, the medieval edifice is a major supporter of local cultural events. Stop in and you might just stumble upon a free concert or performance.