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Visit Rotterdam

Take a trip away to Rotterdam and explore one of Holland's most architecturally varied and culturally diverse cities

It's simple, take Stena Line's Superferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland, from there Rotterdam is only 1/2 hour away.


Rotterdam City has a very modern skyline due to being bombed in the second world war.
Rotterdam welcomes you!

First settled in 1270, Rotterdam blossomed into a Golden Age beauty only for three quarters of the city to be flattened by the Luftwaffe during World War II. Adopting a typically Dutch pragmatic attitude, the Rotterdamers brushed themselves off and rebuilt their city as a hotbed of modern architecture and design.


Today, the Netherlands' second city is a veritable playground for global "starchitects": iconic structures litter the city, including Piet Blom's 1970s cube houses, Ben van Berkel's Erasmus Bridge, Renzo Piano's KPN Tower and Rem Koolhaas' De Rotterdam. As The New York Times declared, "Rotterdam is increasingly to architecture what Paris is to fashion, or Los Angeles to entertainment," making it all the more fitting that the high-rise city has gained the nickname "Manhattan on the Maas [river]".


Nonetheless, Rotterdam remains very much a working city, retaining its long-held role as a major international commercial centre and Europe's largest port. It's also rich in cultural attractions, from outstanding museums to a renowned clubbing scene.

Modern buildings in the heart of Rotterdam.
Book your trip to Rotterdam

T take a ferry to Holland with Stena Line today and enjoy Rotterdam's cosmopolitan arts scene, its historic wonders and its engaging nightlife.

 

You'll be sure to have a fabulous cultural experience while enjoying the some of the best nightlife in Holland at the same time.

The "School of Shipping and Transportation" by Neutelings Riedijk architects has set a striking building on the river. The 70 m high tower was opened in 2005
Architecture

Rotterdam has exceptional architecture throughout the city, ranging from the medieval Laurenskerk church and 1930s Sonneveld House to state of the art structures like the Erasmus Bridge and the World Trade Centre.

Woman walking down the street dandily with shopping bags swinging after a shopping trip to Rotterdam.
Shopping

Rotterdam is home to numerous avant-garde Dutch designers, from the lingerie specialist Marlies Dekkers to cutting-edge women's wear designer Wendela van Dijk.

There's also an abundance of antique shops in the old parts of Rotterdam and a collection of sustainable shops in 'The Green Passage' (De Groene Passage).

Person with a cup coffee with stripey top and a wooden table.
Make like a local

Walk the Lijnbaan and Koopgoot (Shopping Gutter) looking for bargains before heading east to Meent for more trendy boutiques and some appeltaart (apple cake) at Café Dudock.

Then hop on a bike to pedal around Oude Haven (Old Harbour), across the Erasmus Bridge and to the tip of the Wilhelmina pier for a drink at the New York Hotel.

Five top spots for taking Rotterdam photographs

1. Visit the Netherlands premier Photography Museum before shooting your own masterpieces for inspiration. The Las Palmas building is the only remaining 1950s building in the harbour and offers fantastic views of Erasmus Bridge. 

2. Drop in to the barbershop in the basement of the New York Hotel, the former HQ of the Holland-America Line. Have your picture taken while enjoying a haircut or shave & a cup of joe in an original 1930s barber chair.

3. It's impossible to miss the horseshoe arch above Markthal, Rotterdam's indoor market. Inspired by Valencia's Mercado Central, it's a striking spot for a photograph.

4. For the best panoramic views of Rotterdam, make your way to the viewing platform on the Euromast. For more unusual night-time shots, book one of the two suites at the top of the mast.

5. An old passenger terminal houses Café Rotterdam which provides great photography opportunities, as does its terrace with views across the water and Rotterdam skyline.

Five interesting facts about Rotterdam

1. Europoort, Rotterdam's port, was the world's busiest port from 1962 to 2004. It was superseded by Shanghai but still remains Europe's largest port.

2. The Lijnbaan, Europe's first pedestrian shopping zone opened in Rotterdam in 1953 and was subsequently copied across the Continent.

3. There are only seven original windmills remaining in Rotterdam, of which only two (De Ster & De Lelie, the Star and Lily) are regularly open to visitors.

4. Rotterdam's harbour & surrounding towns are protected from North Sea  flooding by The Maeslant storm surge barrier. It's one of the largest moving objects on earth, comprising of two 22m high & 210m long steel gates powered by two 237m long trusses.

5. The name Rotterdam dates to circa 900AD, when early settlers camped by a river they called the Rotta, reflecting its muddiness. A dam was built on the river in the 1260sand it then became known as Rotterdam.