Much like other cities in the Randstad, such as Amsterdam or the Hague, Rotterdam is exceptionally well connected with the rest of the Netherlands, which makes it perfect for day trips, short excursions or layovers. Furthermore, it’s actually possible to experience many of the city’s main sights within 24 hours whilst still leaving room for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Although there are plenty of incredible breakfast spots around Rotterdam, including Lilith Coffee and Bertmans, the city’s state-of-the-art Markthal opens its doors after 10am. This gigantic food court features more than 30 stalls where local culinary experts sell their goods. There’s hundreds of snacks and meals on offer, and Markthal also has around a dozen restaurants.
Markthal is centrally located and is within easy walking distance of several other famous sights, including Laurenskerk, one of few medieval buildings in the city. It’s also close to modernist masterpieces, the Cube Houses, which feature an onsite museum called Kijk-Kubus.
Rotterdam’s Museumpark is surrounded by five major museums, each of which are definitely worth visiting. Whilst all of these institutes feature fascinating collections, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen and Kunsthal Rotterdam are among the more popular destinations. The former’s collection gravitates around classic, modern and historical artwork, whereas the latter institute doesn’t actually possess an archive at all, but instead hosts more than 20 contemporary or avant-garde exhibitions per year.
Museumpark is also just a short drive from the Euromast, a 185-meter-high observation tower that looms over central Rotterdam. The view from inside is utterly spectacular, and the tower also houses a high-end restaurant, as well as several luxurious hotel suites.
A few years ago, a group of local culinary entrepreneurs banded together and opened a modern food court inside a former warehouse in Rotterdam’s harbour. This awesome hangout is called the Fenix Food Factory, and it features 12 individual businesses that make fresh and delicious food on site.
There are also several popular booze-orientated establishments inside Fenix Food Factory, including local brewers de Kaapse Brouwers and the first cider store in the Netherlands, Cider Cider.
Rotterdam is renowned in the Netherlands for its nightlife and has some of the most popular clubs, bars and venues in the entire country. For innovative modern art and music, make sure to check out Worm on Boomgaardsstraat. There are some pretty impressive watering holes along Witte De Withstraat, including Café De Witte Aap, which stays open until at least 4am most nights and is ranked among the best in the world by WorldsBestBars.com.