Windmills are one of the first things you think of when you hear the words “Holland” or “the Netherlands.” You’ll be pleased to know that the stereotype is true.
Of course, the Netherlands is more than just windmills, but it’s still a great excuse for a visit, as there’s no shortage of these iconic buildings.
So, if you’re living in the Netherlands and fancy a windmill trip, or if you’re doting on Dutch life and are coming to visit, then don’t forget to check these out! Here are eight great windmills to visit in the Netherlands.
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Kinderdijk isn’t just one windmill, but a whole windmill park. It’s located in South Holland, and if you’re a tourist, there are many tour companies prepared to give you an all-inclusive experience.
The windmills are actually still lived in, so don’t be surprised to see someone’s underwear hanging up outside. 🩲
Kinderdijk is not only one of the Netherlands’ 12 World Heritage sites, but also has a small museum, a cafe, and a shop. You can have a boat tour that takes you alongside the windmills, or you could walk or bike around the area.
2. Zaanse Schans
Zaanse Schans is similar to Kinderdijk in the sense that it’s a windmill park, but Zaanse Schans is by far the most popular of the two.
There are plenty of things to do in the area too, where you can actually go inside many of the windmills. Some of the buildings are also museums and shops.
Take a bike ride around the area, enjoy a walking tour, or explore some of the local stores. It’s also easy to reach Zaanse Schans from Amsterdam.
Travel tip: Avoid peak times in the summer, as it gets very busy with all of the tourists. So if you have the chance, avoid the busy times — when it comes to both times of the day and time of year. 📅
3. Molen de Valk
The mill was originally used for grain, and now it’s a little museum, dominating the view of the lovely university town. It’s great for your Instagram, and it’s a great place to be in general.
4. The windmills of Schiedam
If you’re after impressive windmills, then Schiedam is your place. Schiedam is home to some of the tallest windmills in the whole world — up to eleven floors high!
The original purpose of these huge windmills was to grind grain used to produce Jenever — making the city famous for the product. You can learn all about this inside one of the windmills (De Walvisch), which has been transformed into a museum.
5. Molen de Adriaan
It was later rebuilt and made into a museum that tells you about the Netherlands, windmills, and how these transformed the country.
Not only is the windmill great to check out, but Haarlem itself is beautiful and well worth a visit.
6. De Gooyer
Looking for windmills in Amsterdam? Here you can find De Gooyer, which is one of Amsterdam’s most famous windmills. It was built in the early 16th century, so it’s certainly old.
It’s not in the place where it was first built, as it has been moved around Amsterdam.
Nowadays, you’ll find the windmill turning on the first Saturday of the month, so it’s the perfect time to see it in action while on your Saturday morning walk.
7. De Dikkert
De Dikkert is an old sawmill, which used to be in Zaandam. Now, however, it’s a restored corn mill located in Amstelveen.
Therefore, again, if you’re around the Amsterdam area, it’s the perfect place to visit.
What makes this windmill unique is that it is a restaurant, too — so if you want to be able to say you’ve eaten in an old windmill in Holland, this is your chance!🍴
8. Keukenhof windmill
The windmill in the Keukenhof Gardens is quite a stunning sight, with the burst of colour coming from the tulips.
This windmill was built in 1892 and was originally used as a polder mill. Nowadays, it is in retirement and used as an ornament.
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Hey, we wish we could retire at Keukenhof and be surrounded by bundles of flowers every day. 🤩
Visit for free on the National Mill Day
A perfect time to visit windmills is on National Mill Day, which falls on the second Saturday in May every year. On this day, you can enter hundreds of different windmills for free. 🎟️
Also, it’s the day to witness all the windmills turning, so it’s certainly a unique day in the Netherlands, and the perfect day to see all of the windmills for yourself (if only you get around them all, that is).
So there you have it — eight great windmills to visit in the Netherlands. There are plenty more where these came from, too (we just listed our favourites, and the most popular ones, here).
See, the stereotype is true — the Netherlands really is full of windmills. 😉
Have you ever visited any of these windmills? What other Dutch windmills should we add to the list? Tell us in the comments!
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in February 2019, but was fully updated in August 2023 for your reading pleasure.