Rotterdam is Holland’s most modern city and is known for its laid back, anything goes attitude, diverse culture and vibrant nightlife. The wealth of modern architecture and lack of historic buildings is largely due to the fact the city was heavily bombed during WWII, but Rotterdam has embraced this and moved swiftly into the 21st century. The city began life as a dam in 1270 and is now one of the largest ports in the world. Home to a wealth of trendy bars and eateries, there is also a number of top class museums and art galleries. Those that want a glimpse of time gone by can head down to the historic Delfshaven, where many old fashioned Dutch houses still exist.
An economy car is recommended for Rotterdam, as it is perfect for navigating and makes parking in and around the city centre much easier.
Driving in Rotterdam
Road Driving Side
Urban Speed Limit
Rural Speed Limit
Motorway Speed Limit
Important things to note
Free parking is available outside the town centre. Within the city, however, you must purchase a chip card called a ‘Chip-knip’ if you want to park on the street.
Loaded with euros, they can be purchased from various tobacconists and multi-storey car parks in and around Rotterdam, not to mention sports venues like De Kuip.
Parking garages are dotted around the city and are much more flexible. You can insert your credit card on the way in, then again on the way out and the amount is automatically deducted. They will also accept cash and Chip-Knip. Follow the P-Route signs to find one.
Highlights & Hotspots
For the art enthusiasts, the Boijmans Van Beuningen museum is possibly one of the hippest havens you are likely to see. Showcasing work from the likes of Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Dali and Warhol, the museum takes a modern look at times gone by, with witty descriptions of the artists and paintings on display.
For a scenic view of Rotterdam, take an evening stroll along the impressive, harp shaped Erasmus Bridge. The soaring structure is seen as a work of art and its contemporary beauty a symbol of Rotterdam itself.
The Nieuwe Binnenweg area is a throng of restaurants, coffee shops and pubs and a fantastic place to people watch and soak up the culturally diverse atmosphere. Just nearby is Dizzy Jazz Café, where you can see live music and eat decent food for less than £10.
Fine-dining aficionados who want an atmosphere as lively as their food should go to FG Restaurant. It isn’t cheap but is certainly memorable and you can expect imaginative twists on dishes such as venison, pigeon and skate. At ‘Bagel Bakery and Burger’, you can order a burger-filled bagel!
Rotterdam The Hague Airport offers flights from a selection of major European destinations, including France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom. It is a short, 10-15 minute drive away from the centre of Rotterdam.
To get there, you must go onto the A20 then go onto the A13. After that, go east onto the N209 and you‚Äôre at the airport.