What To Do In Rotterdam, The Netherlands | Eileen Aldis Travel Channel
What To Do In Rotterdam, The Netherlands
This video is a city guide and city tour of Rotterdam. You'll see my top 5 highlights of one of the most modern cities in Europe.
Above all, Rotterdam is a city with vision. It was very nearly completely destroyed during World War II and chose to see the devastating loss as an opportunity to innovate and build anew. The city was a blank slate for architects and artists. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes of war, this Dutch city has become a city of the future. Rotterdam is a centre for design, art, architecture, and sustainability. Locals joke that you should take a photo of the skyline today because it won't be the same tomorrow.
The Floating Forest is a great symbol of all that Rotterdam cultivates and inspires. It's an art installation of twenty live trees floating in the harbour. Rotterdam has the largest harbour in Europe and you can't talk about the city without reference to the water. The trees are recycled from the city's 'tree bank.' With all the new construction, trees are sometimes cut down in the march of progress. Now, instead of being chopped, they are moved to a tree bank for further use and enjoyment. The trees float in recycled sea buoys that are filled with fresh water to sustain the trees. The artist, Jorge Bakker, hopes the public art will get people talking about the relationship between the city dweller and nature. In this time of climate change and urbanization, this is relevant not only to Rotterdam but the entire world.
The Erasmus Bridge - Erasmusbrug, in Dutch - is the graceful link between northern and southern Rotterdam. Locals adore this steel-cabled suspension bridge and lovingly refer to it as 'the swan.'
Nearby the bridge, and across from the Fenix Food Factory, is Hotel New York. This is the former head office of the Holland America Line - the first shipping and passenger ship connecting the Netherlands and the United States. It was also the first connection between the two continents.
The newest architectural gem of Rotterdam is the Market Hall (Markthal). It's the first covered market in the Netherlands and is a masterful example of innovative multi-use space. Inside you'll find food vendors, shops, restaurants, parking for 1200 cars and over 200 residential apartments. The exterior is plain grey stone so as to draw attention to the interior which is dominated by the massive painting on the ceiling. Covering 11,000 square metres, it's the largest painting in the world and is known as the Sistine Chapel of Rotterdam.
Just across from the Markthal are the world-famous, iconic cube houses. Conceived and designed in the 1970s to solve the dilemma of housing above a pedestrian bridge, these atypical homes show, again, how Rotterdam answers limitation with innovation. The cube houses are meant to represent an abstract forest and are tilted at an angle that gives excellent views of the surrounding area. Ironically, however, because of the slanted walls and ceilings, only a quarter of the interior space is actually usable.
Looking around, it's easy to see why Rotterdam feels futuristic and is leading the way for green living and modern design. Have you visited Rotterdam? I'd love to hear your impressions so please leave a comment down below.
For more information about visiting Rotterdam, check out: rotterdampartners.nl/
Subtitles available in English and Spanish! Click the 'CC' button (bottom right) .
I'm a Canadian travelling around the world with my boyfriend, Marc. I left my home, bought a one way ticket, and don't have a plan. Come along for the adventure! PLEASE SUBSCRIBE for more videos by clicking that gorgeous red 'subscribe' button. Don't forget to hit the little bell beside it to receive notifications of new uploads (three times per week)!
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