Rotterdam Hidden Gems

Rotterdam is a vibrant city that’s sure to surprise and entice you in equal measure. Full of must-see attractions and world-famous architecture, there’s also a whole other side to the Dutch city that’s worth exploring. Here’s your guide to the best of secret spots in Rotterdam, the futuristic city of the Netherlands!

  • A wooden path that’s worth the walk: Luchtsingel

This bridge, canal, singel, however you wish to call it gives a unique perspective on the city, and is connected to great spots such as BAR and Biergarten. De Luchtsingel  was designed by ZUS, and connects the Schieblock building to a (former train) station Hofplein/Hofbogen).

  • Green, green and more green: Valhalla for city gardening

STEK is not your average plant shop. They offer a dizzying amount of gardening supplies; plants, seeds, tools, books, they have it all! Try a workshop or ask for some friendly advice on gardening and designing a garden.

  • Orphaned sculptures under a highway

If there was ever a great example of a hidden gem, this is the place. Under a busy knot of highways, Kleinpolderplein, a few sculptures are patiently waiting to be discovered. The strange location doesn’t take away from these amazing sculptures, it might even add to the experience.

  • The best photo op in town

This particular spot is for those selfie-loving photo-fanatics amongst us. I myself will never shy away from an amazing photo opportunity like this one. Under Rotterdam’s motto of Make It Happen seven artist will create pieces of interactive street art in the city center of Rotterdam. Everyone is invited to take pictures whilst interacting with these pieces, and share them using #makeithappen!

  • Food & vintage finds

The Binnenrotte market is a staple in Rotterdam and always bustling with people from all walks of life. It’s a great place to stroll through and browse, which can take quite some time as the market is big, especially on a Saturday.

  • Sticky, sweet goodness

This Turkish bakery is a true historic gem. The Kaya family has had their shop since 1982 and have kept it in the family since. A while ago they added a seating area, which allows you to have a cup of çay or coffee while enjoying a lovely Turkish treat.

  • Secluded relaxation in a hidden park

Enter through the gates of Park Schoonoord to find yourself in a gorgeous little oasis with grass, trees, birdhouses and a pond. The existence of this park is not known to many, which is part of its secretive charm. The park is located near the Euromast and used to be a garden of one of the nearby villas. Lucky for us the park was opened to the public in 1970, by the Mees family who owned it.

  • Man without a heart 

Through living in Rotterdam I have learned that this city is open about its history and wears its feelings on its sleeve, this sculpture is a beautiful example of that. During WWII Nazi Germany attacked the Netherlands, and Rotterdam in specific as it’s active industry was a target. This ended up destroying the entire city center, or heart, of Rotterdam.

  • Poetry for when the sun goes down

Underneath train station Rotterdam Noord, there is a little secret only visible to the real night owls amongst us. At night a piece of poetry appears, written by Ester Namoi Perquin (city poet of Rotterdam in 2011 & 2012).

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