Golden era

The trip starts at a meeting point nearby Central Station, from where a comfortable, air-conditioned bus departs on the 20-minute journey to the traditional Dutch village Zaanse Schans – also known as the 'windmill village. Zaanse Schans is an open-air museum with a collection of working windmills, wooden houses, barns and shops dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. All buildings were transported here in the second half of the last century, bringing this most prosperous period of the Zaan region back to life. In its golden age, the Zaan region developed into an industrial area on a scale never seen before, with 600 active windmills. These small factories had numerous functions, including sawing wood, grounding spices, pressing oil for food and paint, and making flour and cocoa powder. Beautiful houses with pretty facades painted in green, beige and light blue, which were originally built as homes for wealthy windmill owners and merchants, bear witness to the era's prosperity.

The tour

The guided tour includes a visit to the museum for wooden clogs with its workshop and to the cheese farm (all entrance fees are included), plus time to go off and explore the village on your own. The guide talks about the local history and culture and provides insider tips about what to do and where to go.