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Volendam, a fishing village in the Netherlands.Volendam fishing village in the Netherlands.






Day trips from Amsterdam.

  Visiting Volendam, Delft and Rotterdam  

 VOLENDAM 



Volendam is a fishing village that can be visited from Amsterdam as a day trip. It is quite a popular tourist destination even for the Dutch themselves and has served as a retreat for artists such as Picasso and Renoir. Not surprising indeed, as the coastal town (but it's actually a huge river, not the sea) is quite scenic and touristy and an ideal spot to spend a relaxing day. From Volendam harbour there is a regular boat crossing to Marken, famous for its wooden houses. The trip takes about half an hour.
Note: You can go to Volendam from Amsterdam by bus. Take the bus at the bus station near the Centraal Station in Amsterdam. Allow yourself a whole day for this trip and try out some of the cooked fish and prawns from one of the open stalls around the harbour area. As it is a fishing village you can be sure they are fresh!
A street scene in Volendam.
A street scene in Volendam.
Shops facing Volendam harbour.
Shops facing Volendam harbour.

Boat that plies between Volendam and Marken.
Boat takes you to Marken, a village famous for its wooden houses and traditional costumes.
Tempting tidbits of seafood are on sale at many of Volendam's seafront restaurants.  (Photo by Jessica Ong)
Tempting tidbits of seafood are on sale at many of Volendam's seafront restaurants. (Photo by Jessica Ong)

 DELFT 



Another quaint little town that can be visited from Amsterdam is Delft, which is situated halfway between The Hague and Rotterdam. A leisurely stroll down the little streets behind the city hall will reveal some interesting facets of Dutch life in the 17th century, which has been well-preserved here.
Delft is also closely associated with the House of Orange-Nassau. This started when the assassinated William of Orange was buried in 1584 in the New Church which is just opposite to the city hall on the Markt. Although known as the New Church it nevertheless dates back to the 14th century.
Go to the official tourist information website for Delft here.
Note: It is possible to go to Delft by train from Amsterdam Centraal via Leiden in about an hour.
The market at the square in front of the Delft city hall.
Market Day is Thursday.
The magnificent city hall of Delft.
The magnificent city hall of Delft.
Delft is well-known for its bluish porcelain.
Delft is well-known for its bluish porcelain.

 THE ZAANSE SCHANS 



The Zaanse Schans, 10 miles northwest of Amsterdam, is another of the Netherlands' many attractions for tourists. It is a life-like replica of a typical Zaanse village of the seventeenth and eighteenth century.
The best public transport to go there is by Bus 91 from the Amsterdam Centraal Station which will stop at the St. Michael College next to the Zaans Museum and Zaanse Schans. A train trip is possible but you will need to walk for another 10-15 minutes to arrive there from the Koog-Zaandijk station.
One of the many green, wooden houses at the Zaanse Schans.
One of the many green, wooden houses at the Zaanse Schans.
A craftsman shows groups of visitors the art of clog-making.
A craftsman shows groups of visitors the art of clog-making.
You can sample various types of Dutch cheese at a cheese farm.
You can sample various types of Dutch cheese at a cheese farm there.

 ROTTERDAM 



Rotterdam, nicknamed "Manhattan on the Maas", is the third largest port in the world after Shanghai and Singapore. Needless to say, it is a very modern city and famous for its "cube houses". A boat cruise along the Maas River (Meuse River) will bring out Rotterdam's ultra-modern skyline. Here are four photos that will give an idea of Rotterdam's vibrant architecture that earned it the "city of architecture" title.
Note: It is possible to travel from Amsterdam to Rotterdam in 45 minutes with Fyra's fast-speed train.
The Erasmus Bridge on the Meuse River in Rotterdam.
The Erasmus Bridge on the Meuse River in Rotterdam is in the form of a swan.

The 185m (607ft) high Euromast Tower.
The 185m (607ft) high Euromast Tower. Go here for full details.

The Scheepvaart en Transport College building in Rotterdam.
The eye-catching Scheepvaart en Transport College building.

Another example of modern architecture in Rotterdam - the Cube houses by Dutch architect Piet Blom.  (Photo by Jessica Ong)
Another example of modern architecture in Rotterdam - the Cube houses by Dutch architect Piet Blom. (Photo by Jessica Ong)

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