Zaandam, Zaanse Schans – Netherlands

We took the train north to see the Windmills in Zaandam Zaanse Schans. It is an easy train ride, direct and took about 20 mins to arrive in this cute small town.

The walk to the tourist site took us about 15 mins leisurely walking from the train station and an underpass that takes you to the other side of the highway.  I did notice that what looked like a bike rental company when you come out of the underpass if you wanted to rent a bike and tour the whole town. The homes are cute and there are several shops along the way. We crossed a large bridge that opens to allow for larger boats to pass through.  Very easy straight forward walk. We also stopped at the grocery store and picked up some quick items for lunch and snacks along our way. There were restaurant options of course, and we did notice a Michelin Rated one near the tourist centre but this is one of the small ways that we save a little money and eat some healthier lighter meals when on vacation!

We were there during off-season, so not all of the little buildings were open for us to tour through, but that didn’t stop us from seeing lots!  Sam was surprised how many people were visiting the town considering it was also cold, and wet! In fact, I was surprised when we saw a few tour buses pull up!  The windmills were bigger than I was expecting, and also smaller in some ways. A couple of them had a thatched with sod roof, which was cool to see. It was interesting to see them not only functioning, but actually operating businesses still. One cut wood, one ground spices and one ground flour. You can tour the windmills for a small fee.   

View from the bridge!

We had some delicious hot chocolate there to warm up!  I can’t emphasize enough how good the hot chocolate was, maybe it was the yummy chocolate or cause it was made with milk, or maybe it was because we were just cold and it warmed us well!

I am glad we went to this town to see some of the heritage that is the Netherlands.  Windmills like this are rare finds, and I am so glad to have now collected these memories.