Unfashionable City Breaks Two – Rotterdam

Waterfront Skyscrapers

“You went for a holiday in a container port?” My team leader at work was bemused even after I explained it to her. Nevertheless, 21st century Rotterdam¹ has much to commend it as a city break and concrete sniffer’s destination.

Central Rotterdam

Central Rotterdam

Not as crowded as Amsterdam, and with  an impressive modern skyline, the Dutch have embraced the future with an enthusiasm that puzzles the British psyche.

Make It Happen

Suzanne Making it Happen en route to our Hotel

Rotterdam is easily accessible via Eurostar, with an efficient security check in that is not as onerous as most airlines. Legroom is generous. You are deposited into the centre of the city, which is stuffed with street art in unexpected places.

Wibbly-wobbly Skyscrapers with added Pigeon just outside the Station

Saluting Balcony with Golden Lions

Saluting Balcony with Golden Lions

Our hotel, tucked away in a mixed commercial district had a saluting balcony and excellent breakfasts, which consisted of pancakes with bacon, scrambled eggs and Stroop. If your sweet tooth is not sated , then pastries, cakes and toast with hundreds and thousands follow (or precede), all washed down with cups of strong coffee.

Golden Lions

Golden Lions

Windmills at Kinderdijk

Windmills at Kinderdijke

Of course, there are windmills, at Kinderdijke; well-preserved ones too. I personally think that the Dutch leave them standing as a bit of a laugh for the tourists. Why? Because to get to them, you have to walk past a really impressive set of three Archimedes screws that keep the polder dry. Maybe, it’s just me.

Archimedes Screw doing the Heavy Lifting Work

Archimedes Screw doing the Heavy Lifting Work

The Dutch are the unrivaled masters of Whimsy and Kitsch. Walk into a park that could be somewhere in Lord Nobby Nobb’s English country mansion, were it not for the huge rubber ducky in the middle of the Lake, or an enameled tin palm tree in a pocket park. Note the protective fence to stop cows nibbling the trunk!

Rubber Ducky near the Zoo

Rubber Ducky near the Zoo

 

Enameled Palm

Enameled Palm

Then of course, there is Butt-plug gnome.

Cool Kid in Dordrecht

Cool Kid in Dordrecht

It only took Suzanne 48 hours to be Skyscrapered out, so we took the waterbus to Dordrecht and spent the day inside it’s medieval trace, watching a robot transcribing the first Dutch translation of The Bible, at the pace a monk would have done if he did it in one solid stretch without eating or sleeping. It was slow, relentless entertainment.

Robot Monk

Robot Monk

The lovely Mrs K’s instincts for a good cake shop, and mine for a quiet ramshackle corner bar did not desert us.

Lowlander Poorter

Lowlander Poorter tastes of liquorice and Vanilla

Dordrecht also has not one, but two Specialist Pirate Memory Game shops. This will only make sense to fans of Little Britain.

Specialist Pirate Memory Game Shop

Specialist Pirate Memory Game Shop

To be continued …

  1. YesthatPhil thinks that this post should have been called Rotterdammerung.

 

1 Comment

Filed under Concrete Sniffing, Off Topic

One response to “Unfashionable City Breaks Two – Rotterdam

  1. Sounds like a nice break! Love the pics!

    Liked by 1 person

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