A living link to the past

Marken is unique in that its residents have preserved many of the island’s traditions. Ethnographers and anthropologists flocked to the village in the 19th and 20th centuries to study what was considered a relic of traditional culture.

Unique sights and scenery

While you may not encounter too many people still dressed in attire that was all the rage in similar fishing communities back in the 19th century, you will find many of its historic homesteads still standing. Upon arrival you’re greeted by a beautiful view of the green wooden houses alongside the harbour. The houses are built on stilts or poles, or clustered on the hills so provide protection from fluctuating tides. 

What to see and do in Marken

To grasp the old island’s history and people, head to the Marker Museum. The museum consists of six small smokehouses which were once used for smoking eels. Inside, you can experience Marken’s fascinating cultural heritage and even step into a reconstruction of a fisherman’s home.

Paard van Marken is a beautiful lighthouse that dates back to 1839. It was named after its distinctive shape, which is reminiscent of a horse (you’ll have to squint!). The lighthouse is undoubtedly one of the most photogenic spots in Marken. It stands at the end of a long, narrow stretch almost completely surrounded by water.     

And no trip to the island is complete without a quick spin through Sijtje Boes Souvenirs, a renowned gift shop that was once owned and operated by ‘The Uncrowned Queen of Marken’.

How to get to Marken

This charming seaside village is just a hop, skip and a bus ride from Amsterdam. Simply hop on bus 315 at Amsterdam Central Station and arrive in Marken in under an hour.

To make the most of your day exploring, take advantage of the Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket, which offers unlimited travel on buses, trams, trains and metros in the Amsterdam Area for 24 hours for just € 13.50.