Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Oude Haven
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / mihaiulia | Oude Haven
Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Markthal
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / Gerard Koudenburg | Markthal
Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Stroopwafels
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / agcreations | Stroopwafels
Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Windmills
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / standret | Windmills near Rotterdam
Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Euromast
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / benkrut | Euromast
Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Markthal
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Photo Credit: iStock.com / siraanamwong | Markthal and Binnenrotte Square

Rotterdam

Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Cube Houses Photo credit: iStock.com / BrasilNut1 | Cube Houses

Rotterdam, located on the North Sea, is Europe’s largest shipping port. As such, it was a major target during WWII, when much of its center was destroyed. What you see today is a vibrant, postwar urban city with outstanding architecture that plays off its riverfront setting.

What We Love

The Major Attractions Are Close By: The cruise terminal is adjacent to Holland America’s former headquarters, an ornate, early 20th-century building that survived the war. Now it serves as the Hotel New York, a place to enjoy both indoor and outdoor dining, or to book a comfortable room.

The Footbridge to Another Ship: A pedestrian walkway connects the cruise terminal to the SS Rotterdam, a wonderful museum that showcases creative 1950s interior design. You can tour, drink, eat, and spend the night in an original ocean liner cabin.

Best Known For

The Euromast: Completed in 1960 and extended upward in 1970, this observation tower gives you sweeping views of the surrounding skyscrapers and beyond. Enjoy a meal up in the clouds at the Brasserie.

The Museum Boijmans van Beuningen: It showcases Dutch painters such as Bosch, Breugel, Rembrandt, and Van Eyck as well as non-Dutch European masters.

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Who It's Best For

Architecture Buffs and People Who Love Big Cities: Rotterdam has rapidly developed as a center of eye-popping modern architecture and clever waterfront urban planning.

Don't Say We Didn't Warn You

Rotterdam is not Amsterdam: Some people might look at stark Rotterdam next to historic, canal-crossed Amsterdam and wonder, “Why go there?” The best answer is that Amsterdam represents The Netherlands’ historic past, and Rotterdam represents its modern, urban present.

Theodore W. Scull

Theodore W. Scull is a New York-based contributor to ShermansCruise who has written several books on crossings.

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Itineraries Including Rotterdam
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