A full day in the countryside of Holland means a full day below sealevel.  Over the centuries there have been many floods here, changing the contours of this province. Since the last flood in 1916, many new projects started to improve safety. Let’s hope the dikes will withstand the Northsea today because there is no Hans Brinker with silver skates to help us.

Cheese and wooden shoes

I will pick you up from your hotel and we will explore the countryside north of Amsterdam. In this part of the province Holland, you can see how the people have been fighting the water for almost 1000 years. You will see dikes, polders and dams everywhere. First stop is the former island of Marken, in the former SoutherSea, nowadays a fresh water lake. The first inhabitants lived on artificial hills, to protect themselves from the water. Next stop is the town of Volendam. We will make a walk through this traditional Dutch fisherman’s village. In an old cheese farm they show us how they still make their own cheese, how wooden shoes were made and of course you can taste some local cheeses. For a preview, watch our video here.

Windmills and reclaimed land

Now its time to show you my favorite village! One of the best preserved village in the entire area is De Rijp, with its beautifully restored 17th century houses, all bear witness to the style and glory of the past steeped in a long tradition of whaling fleets and herring fishing. The Beemster polder is an absolute miracle. The draining of this lake in 1612 is a shining example of how the Dutch “created” large areas of their country. In Schermerhorn we will visit a waterpumping windmill from 1632! This windmill is closed from November untill end of March. Then we visit the windmills at Zaanse Schans.


a statue of a boy with his finger in the dike with boats at the background
The statue of Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates in Spaarndam. The story  is famous in America but in Holland most people have never heard of that little guy.

from € 580

Book this tour


7 – 7,5 hrs depending on traffic


De Rijp 0,5 mile, Volendam 0,5 – 1 mile, Marken 1 – 1,5 miles. Zaanse Schans 1 mile (Nov-March)


Amsterdam-Marken 40 mins, Marken – Volendam 20 mins, Volendam – De Rijp 30 mins, De Rijp – windmills Beemster 15 mins, windmills – Amsterdam 45 mins


This is done throught the year. The windmills at Schermerhorn are closed from November to March. Then we visit the windmills at Zaanse Schans.