Welcome to the second part of tourist hotspots that are definitely worth a visit in the Netherlands.
Previous blog post I already wrote about my experiences in Giethoorn. One of the most beautiful, but very touristic villages in the Netherlands. Today I will take you further on this journey and I will reveal a second Dutch must see touristic hot spot.
This next village symbolizes the traditional culture of the Netherlands which is world famous. That is the reason why it is at the top of many tourists bucket lists whenever they visit the Netherlands.
The Zaanse Schans is a residential working area from 1850. It is known amongs tourists for its Dutch traditional heritage such as the windmills, the wooden houses, the local product workshops, …
When you first see it, it is as if time has stopped. The area looks a bit like an open-air museum, but it is certainly not. People still live and work there. Even the traditional houses are still inhabited, so it is not strictly for tourism.
The zaanse schans annually attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors. Some years the number of visitors increases even to over a million!
Fun fact: Did you know that in sixties and seventies many traditional wooden buildings, including a few windmills, were brought to the Zaanse schans from the nearby area to be restored?
So why would I still advice you to go there?
When I arrived at the Zaanse Schans. I was immediately fascinated by the whole experience. But then again I am a history freak and I love visiting this kind of things.
The Zaanse Schans is famous for its windmills, but there is a lot more to it. So you can easily spend a whole day there.
Wander through the village and walk past the bakery museum while enjoying the smell of freshly made cake. Admire the beautiful traditional coloured wooden houses. Take a look inside the warehouse where clogs are made. Don’t miss out on the cheese factory and tin foundry. Make a long stroll alongside the impressive windmills. Stop by the local shops and cafés to buy a little souvenir or taste local specialties. If the weather is good, have an outside picnic in this beautiful authentic scenery. Not enough? You can even make a boat trip to the other side of town. There are so many options to make this visit into an unforgettable day trip.
Do not let the many tourists scare you off. The domain is stretched out and you can always find a more quiet and peaceful spot somewhere outside. At the attractions such as the windmills and the workshops, it can be crowded. I advise you to visit these as early as you can.
There were a lot of other tourists it didn’t really bother me. I enjoyed the day an had time to visit everything I wanted to see. Sometimes I had to wait a little while before entering because the mills and workshops are rather small and it is not possible to enter with too many visitors at once.
I really had a great time. For me it was an unforgettable daytrip. I would definitely do it again!
Important tips to keep in mind.
The Zaanse Schans is easy to reach from Amsterdam. Are you looking for a nice location to spend the night between Giethoorn and the Zaanse Schans? Than I recommend the cozy village of Harderwijck.
There is a parking lot at the domain of the Zaanse schans. This is paying. The amount depends on how long you stay.
Most attractions such as many of the mills are paying. You should visit them as early as possible as they can get a bit crowded and you may have to wait in line before entering.
The Zaanse schans is a perfect spot for a day trip with children. It is not only fun and cosy, but also very educational.
If possible, choose a day to visit when the weather is good. It will be so much more fun to discover the domain, instead of going from one attraction to another. And It will also be a bit more crowded at the attractions.
Don’t forget to taste one of the specialties ‘the syrup waffle’. That is my all time favourite!
Extra tip: If you have some time left, don’t forget to go and take a look at this impressive hotel in Zaandam.
Read the first part of this article here: Touristic hotspots worth visiting in the Netherlands. Part 1: Giethoorn.
I hope you enjoyed my two parts blog posts about touristic hot spots in the Netherland and can use my tips to plan your unforgettable day trips to both Giethoorn and the Zaanse schans.
If you have questions or suggestions about this article, please leave a comment below.
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