Zaandam
Windmills

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Our most recommended Zaandam Windmills

Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam & Marken Spanish Tour

1. Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam & Marken Spanish Tour

Depart Amsterdam by luxury bus on this 8-hour, small group, Spanish-language tour and head north of the city to see the historic windmills of Zaanse Schans on the banks of the river Zaan. Explore the traditional 17th-century houses and a collection of beautifully preserved windmills from the nation’s industrial heritage. Continue on to visit Edam, a beautiful town known worldwide for its cheese. Before the end the day, go to Volendam and Marken, passing many authentic polders, the name given to land reclaimed from the sea. Wander down narrow streets, past colorful houses and visit the harbors full of fishing boats. You will have some free time to shop for souvenirs and sample the local fish specialties. Back in Amsterdam, you will be dropped off at the meeting point.

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From Amsterdam: Zaanse Schans Windmills Half-Day Tour

2. From Amsterdam: Zaanse Schans Windmills Half-Day Tour

Meet your guide and driver at a central meeting point just across from Central Station Amsterdam. A comfortable, air-conditioned single deck bus will take you to today’s destination in just 20 minutes. The windmill village Zaanse Schans is an open air museum that houses a collection of working windmills, wooden houses, barns and shops dating back to the 18th and 19th Century. All these buildings were brought here from 1961 onwards bringing back to life this most prosperous period of the Zaan region. In its golden age the Zaan Region developed into an industrial area on a scale never seen before, with 600 active windmills: wooden factories powered by wind. In these small factories many tasks were being executed with the aid of wind energy: wood sawn by machine, grounding spices, oil for food and paint, flower, cocoa powder and many other things. The prosperity in the 18th and 19th century can be seen in the Zaanse Schans windmill village in several ways. Alongside windmills, barns and other buildings, you will see beautiful houses that were originally built as home to rich windmill owners and merchants. These houses have attractive facades and have been painted in traditional colors such as green, beige and light blue. At arrival in the village, your guide will take you on an orientation tour of the village. You will visit the clog museum annex wooden shoemaker shop and in the cheese farm you will get to taste Dutch farmer cheese. Then it is time to further explore the village on your own. Before you set off to discover the Zaanse Schans on your own, your guide will give you further information on the Zaanse Schans and its unique character, teach you local history and culture, and give you insider’s tips about what to do and where to go.

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Amsterdam: Volendam, Edam, & Zaanse Schans Small-Bus Tour

3. Amsterdam: Volendam, Edam, & Zaanse Schans Small-Bus Tour

Leave Amsterdam for half a day on this guided tour of the rolling Dutch countryside. Sit back and travel comfortably in a minivan with your fairly small group to the rural village of Edam. Take a walk through the quaint streets of Edam. En-route to Volendam, stop to visit an old cheese farm to see how authentic Dutch cheese is made. Indulge in trying some of these huge spheres of delicious cheese. Upon arrival in Volendam, follow your guide on a journey through the fishing village’s winding streets. Hear about how this bustling place was once the harbor for neighboring village Edam. Enjoy some free time to eat lunch. Next, move on to visit the windmill village of Zaanse Schans. Once used to ground spices, dyes, lumber, oil, cocoa powder, and many other items, the mills are still in use today. Some are now living museums where you can learn about the ins and outs of milling. Visit a wooden shoe factory and behold how traditional clogs are created using antique machines. Afterward, go inside a windmill and take a look at all the mechanisms and go out onto the platform for a remarkable view over the surrounding area.  Filled with newfound knowledge and a taste of the traditional Dutch ways of life, relax and reminisce about your trip while on the journey back to Amsterdam.

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From Amsterdam: Villages and Windmills Tour

4. From Amsterdam: Villages and Windmills Tour

The first stop on this 8-hour trip from Amsterdam will be the windmills in Zaanse Schans. Continue to the region of Waterland, and visit the villages of Edam, Volendam and Marken. Your guide will tell you about the history of each place and the churches and traditional houses of the 15th century. Visit a factory where the clogs popular in this part of the country are made. Learn how they produce world-famous Dutch cheeses as well. Spend some of your free time enjoying a meal (not included in the tour price), before returning to Amsterdam at around 5:30 PM.

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Amsterdam: Zaanse Schans 3-Hour Small Group Tour

5. Amsterdam: Zaanse Schans 3-Hour Small Group Tour

Starting from Amsterdam, enjoy a comfortable drive to Zaanse Schans. There, hear your guide tell you about the sights and history of this unique, small village and region. Visit a wooden shoe workshop to see how the traditional wooden clogs are made. Also, enjoy a trip to a local cheese farm to learn how the Dutch Gouda cheeses are made. There, taste all kinds of delicious cheeses. After hearing about the magnificent windmills from your guide, enter one to see how these wind-powered industries operate. Get out on the balcony to experience the power of the wind yourself and to enjoy the lovely view of the countryside. After your guided tour at Zaanse Schans, head back to Amsterdam.

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Zaanse Schans: Authentic Dutch Windmill Entrance Ticket

6. Zaanse Schans: Authentic Dutch Windmill Entrance Ticket

Enjoy an afternoon learning about the inner workings of windmills in the village of Zaanse Schans. To begin, find out how the mill saws a tree into a plank and then learn more about the history of the famous Dutch windmills at an exhibition in the basement of the mill. Next, come inside the world's last-remaining, still-working paint windmill, which is dated back to 1782. If there is enough wind, you can even experience the grinding process and watch how the mill grinds chalk under the large grind stones. In the back of the mill is where the loggers stands, and it is where tropical wood is chopped. Be sure to check out the impressive working wooden interior of this "old" industrial factory.

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Amsterdam: Volendam, Edam and Windmills Live Guided Tour

7. Amsterdam: Volendam, Edam and Windmills Live Guided Tour

Escape the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam on a half-day guided tour of the Dutch countryside, starting with a 20-minute drive to the windmill village of Zaanse Schans. This outdoor conservation area is situated on the banks of the Zaan River and is home to traditional 18th and 19th century architecture, including several functioning windmills. Watch live demonstrations of craftsmen at work, including a clog maker crafting the famous wooden shoes of the Netherlands. There will be some free time to explore the village on your own, before traveling through the distinctive polders (land reclaimed from the water) of the Beemster area. From there continue on to Edam, also commonly referred to as the pearl of the Zuiderzee. Edam’s ancient streets and tranquil canals are lined by beautiful 17th century buildings, including the leaning Carillon tower, the Great Church, and town hall. Most famous in Edam is beyond any doubt the public weighing house, where in summer still every Wednesday the famous Edam Cheese is being sold. After a stroll around this history-rich town, you’ll have the opportunity to see how Edam’s world-famous cheese is made and, of course, to taste it in a closeby cheese farm. Finally, you will stop in the beautiful seaside village of Volendam. This typical fishing village with its bustling harbor has been a major tourist attraction as early as 1875. People come from all over to see the small buildings and houses and take in the locals in their traditional Dutch clothing. This is a great place to pick up souvenirs for those at home or a memento for yourself, and to have photos taken in traditional Dutch costume. Your guide will take you on a short walk through the oldest parts of the city, exploring a labyrinth of twists and turns to sites such as St. Vincent’s Church, the wooden Stolphoevekerk and the Visafslag (Fish Auction).

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Private Tour to the Zaanse Schans Windmills and Giethoorn

8. Private Tour to the Zaanse Schans Windmills and Giethoorn

Start your tour with a convenient, pickup service from your accommodation. After being picked up from Amsterdam in a luxury Mercedes sedan or minivan by a professional driver, travel to one of the most beautiful villages in Holland, Giethoorn. Take a lovely canal cruise through the village, known as the Dutch Venice. The elongated village is located in one of the largest areas of continuous fenland in northern Europe. The village is an excellent starting point to make a canoe trip through the area and there are a number of special museums and art galleries to discover.  After exploring Giethoorn, you will visit the Zaanse Schans. Stroll past the bakery museum and enjoy the smell of fresh bread, or take a look at the warehouse where clogs are made. You should be sure not to miss the cheese factory, pewter foundry, and the various windmills. The Zaanse Schans is a unique part of the Netherlands, full of wooden houses, mills, barns, and workshops. Enjoy a cycling or sailing trip, browse the shops, or treat yourself at the pancake restaurant. After the windmills, you will visit Volendam, a small fishing village with 22000 citizens. Walk along the beautiful harbor and marvel at the typical Volendam shops before enjoying lunch at one of the best seafood restaurants in Holland (at own expense). Depending on the amount of time remaining, you can take a boat trip with the Volendam-Marken express. For over 80-years the Volendam-Marken Express has operated a ferry service between Volendam and Marken. The boats sail all year round and every year thousands of travelers use the ferry to enjoy a relaxed trip on the water and to visit the historic towns and harbors of Volendam and Marken. After a day full of adventure and excitement, your driver will return you back to your accommodation for an evening of well-deserved rest.

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Amsterdam: Giethoorn, Volendam, and Zaanse Schans Tour

9. Amsterdam: Giethoorn, Volendam, and Zaanse Schans Tour

You will begin with to a trip to the enchanting village of Giethoorn in the north of the Netherlands for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Known as the “Venice of North”, the village is notable for its many canals and complete lack of roads. You will explore this fairy tale village, where less than 3,000 people live, throughout a 1-hour guided boat tour. Explore the preserved village on foot, and see how each farmhouse is built on a small man-made island. Wander the narrow footpaths to discover hundreds of bridges, and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the village. Your trip will continue to the village of Volendam, where you can admire brightly painted wooden houses and see locals wearing their colorful regional attire. Your guide will take you on a short walk through the Volendam harbor, which has been one of the most popular tourist attractions in the village since 1875. This is a great place to pick up souvenirs and gifts for those at home or for yourself, and to have photos taken in traditional Dutch costume in one of many photo studios of the village. Your last destination is to explore the most picturesque traditional 17th-century Zaanse Schans village which contains houses and a collection of beautifully preserved windmills from the nation’s industrial heritage. In Zaanse Schans village you can stroll past the charming greenhouses and visit a factory where the clogs popular in this part of the country are made. There’s also nothing more Dutch than cheese, and whilst there you can try some at the Catharina Hoeve Farm where you will also learn about its production.

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Amsterdam: Countryside Bike Tour and Zaanse Schans Windmills

10. Amsterdam: Countryside Bike Tour and Zaanse Schans Windmills

Learn about Dutch culture and history as you discover the area of Zaanse Schans on a half-day bicycle tour from Amsterdam. Meet your guide at Amsterdam Central Station and travel to Zaandam by train to start the bicycle tour. Cycle past industrial windmills and admire the beautiful landscape. Stop at a sawmill to learn how it operates, and visit a paper mill to see how paper was made in the 17th century. Pedal through the stunning wetlands, painted by Monet at the end of the 19th century. Pass the neighborhood of Domineestuin, filled with authentic wooden houses, before arriving in Zaanse Schans. Park your bicycle and enjoy a demonstration of how clogs are made. Take the opportunity to taste delicious Gouda cheese, a local specialty. After a fantastic half-day experience, return by bike to Zaandam and board the train back to Amsterdam Central Station, where your tour will end.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Zaandam

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What people are saying about Zaandam

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 41 reviews

Juliette was a wonderful guide, she answered all our questions, shared insightful information about the sites and kept the day moving as there is a lot to see. We enjoyed each town for its own charm, our driver was great as well.

Excelente Actividad, muy bien llevada y muy interesante con bellos paisajes Personal muy capacitado, entrenado y muy agradable para hacer de este paseo un un dia excepcional Altamente recomendable

Excelente experience to know the "real" Netherlands . Great time with the guide, always telling good, fun, and historical stories about visited places. Friendly driver and nice warmed Van.

Very nice lady as a guide who can give a comprehensive insight into the life of the locals. The tour has flown by, it was super interesting and would do it again anytime!

Very well guided tour, our tour guide woman was very nice, courteous and competent