LivingTravelTourist information of Rotterdam, extraordinary port city

Tourist information of Rotterdam, extraordinary port city

As a tourist destination, Rotterdam often goes unnoticed by international tourists. As the second most populous city in the Netherlands, it invites unwarranted comparisons with Amsterdam, but tourists hoping to find another Amsterdam will be disappointed: Rotterdam’s history and people have endowed it with a unique character.

One of the first observations visitors make is that Rotterdam hardly looks like a typical Dutch city, and it is not: the city center was razed by airstrikes in WWII, and today’s urban landscape, with few exceptions, dates back to the Age of War, when Rotterdam established the unique architectural sensibility that has become its trademark. Architecture lovers will marvel at the bold experimentalism of the Kubus Apartments , a series of sloping cube-shaped apartments in the city’s Old Port (a model apartment is open to visitors); the canonical Huis Sonnevelt , the favorite project of two Dutch architects of the “Nieuwe Bouwen” movement of the 1930s (see Arts and Culture below) ; and countless other examples of new postwar architecture.

Rotterdam is also the pinnacle of Dutch multiculturalism: half of its residents have at least one father who was born outside of the Netherlands. This translates into a cosmopolitan city where you can see the footprint of various ethnic groups, from the Antillean and Cape Verdean communities to the Chinatown of Rotterdam. Delve into the multicultural mix with a trip to the Wereldmuseum (Museum of the World; see below ).

Not far from the sleek new central station, you will also find one of the country’s best attractions for children: the modern and spacious Rotterdam Zoo.

Rotterdam as a port city

Of all its attributes, Rotterdam is perhaps the most famous as one of the busiest ports in the world, a distinction that it shares with several Asian cities but which is unique on the European continent. Visitors should not miss a stop at the Havenmuseum (Harbor Museum), a free open-air museum that, except for the museum pavilion, never closes its doors; Here, visitors can marvel at the historic ships from the period 1850 to 1970, moored in the oldest port of Rotterdam.

Naval hobbyists will also want to visit the Maritime Museum, where several concurrent exhibits touch on different facets of maritime history; Museumschip Buffel (Museum Ship The Buffalo), a boarded restored marine vessel, is a visitor favorite.

The Rotterdam Museum, although not a maritime museum per se, can hardly avoid the reference to the maritime importance of the city; Amid its old masters, period rooms, and other artifacts, the Dubbele Palmboom museum location in the Delfshaven maritime district often features the port in its exhibits.

Art and culture in Rotterdam

Rotterdam has some of the best museums and exhibition spaces in the nation, and in Europe, and art fans will find familiar masterpieces and the latest from the contemporary art world in the center of the compact city, much of it located in or around Museumpark.

  • No art lover should miss out on the fantastic Boijmans van Beuningen Museum, a mouthful of a museum whose hoard of Dutch and European art encompasses an impressive chunk of art history – from the Old Masters to the seminal modern art movements of the 19th centuries. and XX. , and to this day. The exhibits are often animated by the museum’s penchant for innovation and often a quirky sense of humor.
  • Another Museumpark favorite is the Kunsthal (Art Hall), an exhibition space that eschews a permanent collection in favor of some 25 spectacular exhibits each year, from retrospectives of world-renowned artists (recent years have seen Edvard Munch, Edward Hopper and Alberto Giacometti) to explorations of current events and popular culture.
  • More specialized museums and exhibition centers also abound in Rotterdam. The national museum of architecture, Nederlands Architectuurinstitut (NAi), is in charge of documenting and promoting the rich architectural history of the Netherlands. In addition to its three exhibition spaces, the institute also encompasses the Huis Sonnevelt, a 1930s icon of the Dutch “Nieuwe Bouwen” (functionalist) movement; Le Corbusier admirers will note the palpable influence of the Swiss architect. The Chabot Museum offers visitors the unique opportunity to explore in depth the life and work of the painter / sculptor Henk Chabot, a pioneer of Dutch Expressionism.
  • Notable museums outside the Museumpark area include the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, which has stimulated minds and artistic sensibilities for more than 20 years with its provocative exhibitions; and the Wereldmuseum (World Museum), which introduces visitors to the traditions and trends of the world’s visual arts.

Where to eat in Rotterdam

Rotterdam’s restaurant scene is inspired by the multicultural currents that pervade the city; Diners can choose from cuisines from across the Americas, Europe and Asia, the latter at its highest in Rotterdam’s Chinatown, directly south of Central Station.

  • Izkaya: While the name refers to a Japanese concept, an izakaya (with the additional ‘a’) is a bar that serves small plates with its drinks, unlike Spanish tapas bars, the menu in Rotterdam’s Izkaya follows the example of all Asia. Dinners can choose from shareable small or medium plates that draw on the flavors of Japan, China, Thailand and even India through one of the restaurant’s most hyped features: touchscreen menus built into each table. Diners can also use the screen to discover what’s in town, play an electronic round of Battleship with their table mates, or even take a look at the kitchen via webcam.
  • Parkheuvel: This two Michelin star restaurant is one of the best restaurants in Rotterdam and the Netherlands; Chef Erik van Loo offers refined continental cuisine with the occasional Dutch accent: oysters from the Zeeland province, marinades infused with Dutch spirits, even the skillful incorporation of traditional pannekoeken , drawing rave reviews from diners and critics.
  • Lebkov – This convenient coffee shop is just meters from Rotterdam Central Station, serving fresh three-story sandwiches, soups, salads, snacks, and some of the best coffee in town in its lively checkered dining room.

Get to Rotterdam

Take the train from Amsterdam or fly directly to Rotterdam – both are convenient options thanks to an efficient rail network and an airport serving several low-cost airlines.

  • Take the train from Amsterdam to Rotterdam
  • How to get from Rotterdam airport to the city center

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