Cleo Goossens is a freelance photographer based in Eindhoven, The Netherlands. Together with her boyfriend Steven Janson they run a company called Sun of Wolves. Cleo shares with us her inside tips on how to spend 12 hours in the beautiful city of Rotterdam.
We love to travel, it’s always a great opportunity to find some new inspiration. Rotterdam is one of our favourites cities of the Netherlands, and it’s also the city where Steven was born.
Rotterdam is a harbour city in The Netherlands. This city is not like every other Dutch city. During World War 2 the city centre was bombed and there was nothing left of the historic centre. Now the city is famous because of its amazing architecture and is the architectural capital of Holland. Over the last few years a lot of restaurants, stores, coffee bars and other great places have popped up, so there is always plenty to explore. It’s the perfect city to find a lot of inspiration especially by bike, the Dutchs’ favorite way to travel.
Rotterdam also has been named one of the top cities in the world for travellers according to Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2016.
STROOM (Lloydstraat 1) is the perfect place in Rotterdam to start your day. They have the most delicious coffee to wake you up if you’re feeling tired. STROOM Rotterdam is an urban boutique hotel with a brasserie, espresso bar, bakery and store with fresh goods. This place is located in a former electricity factory. It’s a beautiful building with great food, and you can rent your obligatory bicycle here!
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After a good cup of coffee we head over to the Museum Park where there is so much to do and see. We visit de Kunsthal, check out the website for some more information on future exhibitions.
After de Kunsthal we visit another museum in the park, “Het Nieuwe Instituut”, a temporary fashion museum. There’s a huge archive with old clothes you can see, smell and feel for yourself ! A huge recommendation when you have a flair for fashion.
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Witte De With Street
After exploring the museums a little pick me up is required so head to the Witte de. It’s a street full of little shops and bars, very popular with locals. There are also two great museum’s on this street, with two in one building. The first floor is called TENT and upstairs there’s the Witte de With coffee shop.
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Other places to check out on Witte de With street include: Proeflokaal Reijngoud (good food and a lot of different beer, Schiedamse Vest 148), Ter Marsch & Co (for the best burgers in The Netherlands! Witte de Withstraat 70), Hopper (for some good coffee and healthy pies, Schiedamse Vest 146).
This is a fascinating concept store in the centre of Rotterdam, it’s nearby the central station. The store is filled with fashion, design, books, magazines, music and more. Groos (Schiekade 203) wants to be known as the platform for quality products made in Rotterdam. So if you are looking for an original souvenir from Rotterdam this is definitely the place to look.
Grand Cafe Het Witte Huis
Want to check out a typical brown cafe? Then Grand Café is a pretty good choice. Small, cosy, friendly bartenders, good food and a lot of beers. Grand Café (Geldersekade 1C) is popular with locals but don’t be afraid to join them – people from Rotterdam are very hospitable. The café is located within the building Witte Huis which is one of a few buildings that wasn’t bombed in the centre and you can still feel the nostalgic ambience in and outside the bar. Don’t forget to try some Bitterballen over there, it’s a typical Dutch snack, one of our favorites!
Fenix Food Factory
FFF (Veerlaan 19D) is based in Katendrecht. It’s a bit out of the centre but well worth the travel. You can easily get there via public transportation, or take the bike (we prefer the bike). FFF is a daily fresh market filled with local business owners who offer you great fresh products like bread, cheese, coffee and lots more. There’s even a small brewery with a wide selection of self brewed beer. The FFF is a nice place to have a rest, taste delicious food and enjoy the view of the water, you can get a great view from the hotel New York, it’s a wonderful building with a lot of history. You can find the Dutch Photography museum around the corner, that’s also worth a visit. Don’t forget to go to the museum shop where there are lots of great photography books.
Delfshaven District & The Pelgrim
When you feel the need to visit a typical Dutch area you should definitely take a visit to the Delfshaven district. Delfshaven is a beautiful old part of the city, there are canals, old Dutch architecture, old bridges and even a windmill. It’s a huge contrast to the other parts of the city and it’s a romantic place to walk around.
After a walk through Delfshaven we call into a cafe called the Pelgrim (Aelbrechtskolk 12). A brown cafe with home brewed beers, it’s located right at a canal. Grab a a table at the window and enjoy a beautiful view. The home brewed beers are very popular in Rotterdam, liquid gold from Rotterdam is the favourite.
More on Cleo Goossens
Cleo Goossens is a photographer from Eindhoven, The Netherlands. She loves to capture the silence along the way and she is always searching for light. She’s New Dutch Photography Talent 2016 by GUP magazine.
She’s a part of the Sun of Wolves duo together with her boyfriend Steven Janson. He’s a graphic designer and illustrator. They own a lifestyle blog and webshop.