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Kinderdijk [4] is a village in the Alblasserwaard polder of the Netherlands. It's a popular, yet authentic, tourist destination for its large network of windmills. These received recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997.



Kinderdijk lies in the Alblasserwaard, at the confluence of the Lek and Noord rivers. In Alblasserwaard, problems with water became more and more apparent in the 13th century. Large canals, called "weteringen", were dug to get rid of the excess water in the polders. However, the drained soil started setting, while the level of the river rose due to the river's sand deposits.

After a few centuries, an additional way to keep the polders dry was required. It was decided to build a series of windmills, with a limited capacity to bridge water level differences, but just able to pump water into a reservoir at an intermediate level between the soil in the polder and the river; the reservoir could be pumped out into the river by other windmills whenever the river level was low enough; the river level has both seasonal and tidal variations. Although some of the windmills are still used, the main water works are provided by two diesel pumping stations near one of the entrances of the windmills site.

Get in[edit]

By public transit[edit]

Although Kinderdijk is in a rural area, getting there with public transport is possible on several ways. Buses are operated by Qbuzz. Regular OV-chipkaart is valid, also the Holland Travel Ticket. Alternatively tickets can be bought when entering the bus for around €4,50.- one way (debit/credit card only). Local RET daytickets are not valid on Qbuzz buses.

  • Bus 489 operates 2 times per hour between Rotterdam Metro Station Kralingse Zoom, Rotterdam Park & Ride Beverwaard, Oostendam, Alblasserdam, Kinderdijk and Nieuw-Lekkerland.
  • Bus 316 operates 2 times per hour between Dordrecht Railway Station, Alblasserdam and Kinderdijk. In the early morning and late evening you can take the limited 316 service to Alblasserdam and change there to 489 to Kinderdijk.

The bus stop is Kinderdijk, Molenkade for both routes. That is the third stop in the village Kinderdijk after IHC Smit and Kloos.

  • Amsterdam & The Hague: Take the train to Dordrecht. Take the 316 bus from there.
  • Rotterdam (option 1): take a tram to P+R Beverwaard. Change there to bus 489 to Kinderdijk.
  • Rotterdam (option 2): from Zuidplein metro station, take bus 392 and 491 to Oostendam (up to 8 times per hour). At Oostendam, change to 489 to Kinderdijk.
  • Rotterdam (option 3): from Kralingse Zoom metro station, take bus 489 to Kinderdijk.
  • Utrecht: take Intercity train to Rotterdam Alexander. Change there to a metro to Kralingse Zoom. From there, take bus 489 to Kinderdijk.

By car[edit]

There are many ways to get to Kinderdijk by motorway. If you're coming from Rotterdam, drive south along motorway A16 in the direction to Dordrecht. At the junction, get onto the A15 that goes in eastward direction to Gorinchem. Get off at exit 22 and follow the signs to Kinderdijk.

If you're coming from Amsterdam or Utrecht, drive south along motorway A2. At the junction Everdingen, get onto motorway A27 that goes to Gorinchem in southwestern direction. At the junction Gorinchem, get onto motorway A15 that goes to Rotterdam in westwards direction. Get off at exit 22 and follow the signs to Kinderdijk. The ride is about 100 km from Amsterdam.

Parking is difficult because of limited parking space. The road is busy and narrow. A convenient alternative is parking your car at Park and Ride Beverwaard in Rotterdam and take the 489 bus to Kinderdijk.

By boat[edit]

You can take the Waterbus to Alblasserdam and rent a bicycle from Touristinfo-Alblasserdam for 5 euro, and cycle to Kinderdijk in 15 minutes, a highly recommended route, and very convenient. Combotickets are available on the Waterbus website:

You can also take the Waterbus [5] ferry from Rotterdam (under the Erasmus bridge) or from Dordrecht (on Merwekade). The Waterbus lines (20 + triangular ferry or direct 202) vary a bit per season. See for the latest.

Ticket prices vary depending on the ticket type. However, waterbus offers a special day ticket, valid on both ferries and also grants free entrance to the Museum mill and the Wisboom pumping station. The price of this ticket is €12,95 per person for adults and €9,00 for children (ages 4 to 11) and seniors (65 and older). Children under the age of 4 travel free of charge. Tickets available from the Waterbus staff (cash only).

Get around[edit]

The best way to see the windmills is on foot or by bicycle. Bike rental is available. In the summer season (April 1-October 31), you can make a boat tour (☎ +31 6 222-484-27) in the canal along the windmills. It starts at the parking lot, costs €4 (children €3) and takes about 30 minutes. The first boat leaves at 10AM, while the last boat heads out at 5PM.

See[edit][add listing]

The Mill Network at Kinderdijk-Elshout (☎ +31 6 520-834-86) is the largest concentration of old windmills in the Netherlands. The windmills, being a part of the general landscape, are free to visit. In total, there are 19 windmills that were built in 1740 to drain the Albasserwaard. The mills are not always in operation; this depends on the weather.

One of the windmills, the Museummolen, can be visited inside, and a visit is usually combined with the steam-powered pumping station Wisboomgemaal. The Museummolen and the Wisboomgemaal are opened 09:30-17:30 daily in the summer season, that starts at April 1 and ends at October 31. Outside the summer season, they are only opened 11:00-16:00 on weekends. Tickets are €6 and can be bought at the parking lot, at the Museummolen or at the Wisboomgemaal. The Wisboomgemaal has a visitor's centre, a digital scale model and an introductory film. Some of the facilities here include free restrooms and soda machines.

Panoramic view of Kinderdijk

Do[edit][add listing]

Cycling is a popular activity in Kinderdijk. You can cycling along the windmills, or in the wider area. It is highly recommended to rent a bike from Touristinfo-Alblasserdam and bike over the dyke for 4 km towards the windmill district, truly satisfying! You can find the Tourist Information Alblasserdam at : Zuiderstek 22 2952 AZ ALBLASSERDAM [email protected] Call us : +31 6 24 59 59 93 / +31 78 693 21 14

It is even possible to cycle all the way to here from Rotterdam! By bike you can easily combine a visit to Kinderdijk with other tourist attractions, such as Schoonhoven (Silver City), the fortress town of Nieuwpoort and Stork Village Het Liesvelt. See: Kinderdijk Cycle Route.

  • Green Cow Bike Tours ((meeting point: Markt 35 (tourist information))), Gouda, +31(0)638720789, [1]. daily. Cycle from Gouda to Kinderdijk and back! Join an experienced guide from Green Cow Bike Tours on a tour through the Green Heart of Holland. From Gouda, they accompany you to the beautiful, off-the-beaten track parts of the Netherlands, enjoying Holland at its best: spot birds, explore windmills and visit a cheese farm! €45 including bike. €35.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Kinderdijk is not really a place to go shopping, but you can buy souvenirs from the usual gift shops.

Eat[edit][add listing]

There are a few restaurants at the entrance of the park.

  • Buena Vista, Molenstraat 230 (near the entrance of the park), +31 78 691-2485, [2]. W-Su 12:00-late. This restaurant is housed in a historic building at the main road close to the windmills. It has an old-Dutch luxurious interior that has a traditional appearance. On the menu are meat and fish dishes and Dutch pancakes. €20-30.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

Coffee for an affordable price right at the entrance of the park.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Hotel Kinderdijk, West Kinderdijk 361, Alblasserdam (walk southwest along the main road from the entrance), +31 78 691-2425, [3]. This is a decent hotel with rooms for mid-range prices. There's also a restaurant attached to it where you can have dinner or lunch. Mains are about €17-20. It is possible to make a reservation. €70.  edit

Get out[edit]

You can take the Waterbus to Dordrecht, a historic town with some interesting museums.

This article contains content from Wikipedia's Kinderdijk article. View that page's revision history for the list of authors.

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