Last Updated on 2023-09-16
Volendam is a small fishing village on the outskirts of Amsterdam. It’s known for its cheese and fish, particularly herring, but there’s so much more to see and do.
With its picturesque houses, bustling harbor and rich cultural heritage, Volendam is a must-see destination for anyone visiting the Netherlands.
I particularly liked the promenade, full of small shops, bars and restaurants, perfect for spending a beautiful afternoon.
In fact, it was next to the promenade, where the fishermen sell the fish, that I had my first (and last) experience with herring… I didn’t like the taste or the texture!
Take the opportunity to check out what to see and do, as well as the places that make Volendam such a special place to visit.
Volendam Netherlands: history, culture and attractions
Volendam has a long and fascinating history, dating back to the 14th century when it was founded as a fishing village.
For centuries, Volendam was a center for the Dutch herring industry, and its residents lived almost exclusively from the sea.
But over time, the city grew and became a busy port, with boats arriving from all over the region to exchange goods and fish.
Today, Volendam is still an active fishing port, but it has also become a popular tourist destination, largely thanks to its rich cultural heritage and unique atmosphere, as well as another very important industry: cheese.
By the way, it is obligatory to mention cheese making when talking about Volendam!
This is because the city is famous for the production of traditional Dutch cheeses such as Edam and Gouda, and visitors can taste and buy these delicious cheeses in shops and markets throughout the city.
In terms of tourist attractions, the Volendam Museum is a must-visit, and for those who prefer more active pursuits, this village offers plenty of opportunity for outdoor adventure.
So the port is a great place to hire a boat or go on a boat trip, while the nearby countryside is perfect for cycling, walking or horse riding.
Tours to visit Volendam from Amsterdam
If you don’t want to take public transport in Amsterdam to Volendam, you can always join an organized group.
By the way, to optimize your time (and money) I recommend that you choose a tour that has stops in different places, like the ones I suggest below:
- Amsterdam: Excursion to Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam and Marken: leave Amsterdam and visit 4 emblematic places of the Netherlands in a single day;
- Amsterdam: Giethoorn, Volendam and Zaanse Schans tour: this tour includes a canal cruise, cheese tasting in a factory and even trying on traditional costumes if you so wish!
Is one day enough to visit Volendam?
One day is enough to visit Volendam, in my opinion, but there are hotels if you want to spend the night there.
I took a tour from Amsterdam and visited Volendam, Marken and Zaanse Schans before returning and I didn’t think it was too busy.
In fact, Volendam is a day-trip destination per excellence, that is, visitors arrive throughout the day and return home at the end of the day.
Is Volendam worth visiting?
I liked Volendam a lot, so I think it’s worth including this town in your itinerary in the Netherlands.
The promenade and the streets with the traditional houses, as well as the little shops deserve you to spend some time there and believe me, you won’t regret it.
However, I don’t think it’s a destination to stay for several days, except if you want to go hiking. The truth is that the main tourist attractions can be seen in a couple of hours.
How to get to Volendam from Amsterdam
Volendam is located 20 kilometers from Amsterdam, between Edam and Marken but you can get there by bus, line number 316.
Another alternative is to rent a car and make the short trip independently. In this case, I recommend using Discovercar.
Final travel tips
- Volendam is located between Edam and Marken, so if you’re a cheese lover like we suggest you visit Edam, does the name sound familiar to you? Yes, that’s where Edam cheese is made!
- For a more authentic and affordable experience, buy your lunch at the fishermen’s stalls located along the promenade. You can choose fried fish, squid, herring and salmon as they are served on a small plate or in a bun.
- Taste the herring and decide for yourself if you like it or not. Although we didn’t like it, we believe that everyone should have their own culinary experiences.
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