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Kinderdijk is a small village 15 km east of Rotterdam with the largest concentration of old windmills in the world! The 18th century windmills of Kinderdijk are one of the major tourist sites in the Netherlands and are on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. The best things in life are free: The windmills in Kinderdijk are located at a public road and can be visited for free, but if you want to enter the mills, you have to buy a ticket at the vistor centre.
The windmills in Kinderdijk have got a long history, that goes back to around 1740. The windmills were built to keep the inhabitants of the Kinderdijk polder dry. The windmills played an important role as a pump to regulate the water level to protect Kinderdijk from flooding, as the most of the land in Kinderdijk is below sea level. Nowadays the windmills have been replaced by a fully automated water pump stations, but the windmills are still in a pretty good condition. The Kinderdijk windmills are still operational but serve other purposes.
Kinderdijk offers 19 historic windmills, which are located along the dikes and roads which are also used by the local villagers. At night the windmills are beautifully illuminated. Cars are not allowed and to get really close to the mills you have to go for a walk or ride a bike, but this is the best way to take some pictures anyway!
The two museum windmills named 'Blokweer' and 'Nederwaard' are open to the public and you can experience yourself how the Dutch ancestors kept their lowlands dry. Nowadays, the museum mill is not inhabited anymore, but you can still get a good impression of how the life of a miller must have been. All the old pots, pans, wooden shoes and traditional tapestry that were used in the mill are still there. To make the historic setting more realistic, you get to wear an authentic miller's overall and dutch wooden shoes. Pictures, please!
A boat tour through Kinderdijk is a great way to explore the Windmills. During the 30 minutes tour you get very close to the beautiful old mills! Tickets are sold on board and reservations are not required! Please note that the boat tours only depart from April till October!
The easiest, cheapest and most original way to discover the old windmills is by a bike tour across Kinderdijk. At Alblasserdam Tourist Information they have rental bikes at €12,50 per day. From Rotterdam Central Station, get there by Waterbus line 20 to Alblasserdam Kade. The Alblasserdam Tourist Information is located within walking distance from the waterbus stop. You could also bring your rented bike from Rotterdam, as bicycles are allowed on board the Waterbus ferries!
Rebus shipping company offers boat excursions from Rotterdam to Kinderdijk. On a ferryboat you sail nonstop from Boompjes (next to the Erasmus Bridge) to the windmills in Kinderdijk. During this 60 minute boat trip you will see the skyline of Rotterdam and you will get information in English about all sights. After your arrival in Kinderdijk you have an hour to visit the Kinderdijk windmills before the departure back to Rotterdam. ´The boat tour to Kinderdijk takes place from noon till 4pm and costs €16 per passenger. If you prefer to organize your own boat tour from Rotterdam to Kinderdijk you can also take the regular Waterbus service.
|Apr - Oct|
|Monday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Tuesday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Wednesday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Thursday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Friday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Saturday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Sunday||09:00 - 17:30|
|Nov - Mar|
|Monday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Tuesday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Wednesday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Thursday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Friday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Saturday||11:00 - 16:00|
|Sunday||11:00 - 16:00|
Kinderdijk windmills by waterbus
Waterbus 202 takes you non-stop from the Rotterdam Erasmus Bridge jetty to the famous windmills in Kinderdijk in 32 minutes. Waterbus 202 operates from May till September. Departures from 10:40 am, latest return at 4:08 pm. Return ferry tickets to Kinderdijk cost €8. In winter, travel to Kinderdijk with waterbus service 20 (direction Dordrecht) and change in Ridderkerk (De Schans) onto the triangle ferry (direction Krimpen a/d Lek) and disembark in Kinderdijk. This ferry sails in a triangle between three cities, that explains the name. The total trip time from Rotterdam to Kinderdijk by waterbus is about 45 minutes. Departure times may vary due to weather conditions and on public holidays. Avoid disappointment and always check the current time table online at the public transport journey planner ww.9292.nl.
On motorway A15 (direction Den Bosch /Arnhem) take exit 22 Alblasserdam and follow the signs Kinderdijk. You can pay to park your car close to the windmill park for €5,00. During the weekend you can park your car for free at the corporate car park of IHC Holland.
Groups from over 10 persons can also book a horse coach tour to Kinderdijk. From Rotterdam Central Station, get there by Waterbus line 20 to waterbus stop Alblasserdam Kade. From there a horse coach will pick you up and will take you you to the Kinderdijk windmills. The tour takes 150 minutes. A reservation is required on www.gelegenheidskoetsen.nl.
The Tourist Day Ticket is a disposable Transport-Debitcard, which entitles you to one day of unlimited travel by public transport (bus, tram, metro and Waterbus) within greater Rotterdam and The Hague. This cheap ticket is sold at the Tourist Information Offices of Rotterdam (Rotterdam.info), The Hague, Leiden, Ouddorp, Rockanje and Delft, at most railway stations and at many hotels in Rotterdam, The Hague and Scheveningen.
"Beautiful Windmills all around you. There is proper bicycle road all along the area. Do not miss this place. World Heritage."
"Great day trip outside of the city with an amazing amount of windmills (most still working)! Highly recommended to take a bike from Rotterdam to Kinderdijk and then you can return direct to Rotterdam by a direct ferry. "
"Great place to visit. Lovely to stroll around and take pictures. Our boys loved exploring the windmills and our eldest still talks about everything he learnt while visiting. "
"Very impressive & Winter time isn't crowded so you get to experience the windmills more satisfactory. Most employees speak English. For the price of €7.50 per person you get to go inside 2 windmills and see a short film at the visitor center. Parking at site is 5€ but space is limited. Admission is free to walk to the windmills or you can take a ferry(€5each) to the 2 windmills of admission, but walking is much more recommendable. Hope this helps."
"Cold and windy during our Nov visit but glad we went. Be sure to have a guided tour as one can miss a lot in understand how the Dutch struggled to control the sea from the land for centuries. We were lucky in that the manned windmill was put in operation during our visit. It takes over an hour to prep the tower so that the blades catch the wind just right. Too windy and they won't be unlocked."
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