Ever wondered what life was like in 17th and 18th century Netherlands? The Zaanse Schans, 15km north of Amsterdam, is the kind of museum that shows rather than tells and it’s the perfect place to immerse yourself in all things traditionally Dutch. The conserved area is still inhabited, but set up like an open-air museum where visitors can wander the village, explore the preserved buildings and watch local craftsmen at work.

Green wooden houses, a historic shipyard, traditional grocery store and a pewter factory are among the village’s visitor attractions but the Zaanse Schans is most famous for its windmills, once used for everything from paint-making to paper production. 250 years ago around 600 windmills stood in the area but today, 5, including a sawmill and an oil mill, are open to visitors, who can explore the working mills and marvel at the landscape of colorful wind sails.

Visiting the workshops of local craftsmen is another popular activity, where cheese making and clog-making demonstrations are the key attractions, but there are also pewter casting and mustard making demonstrations. Once you’re finished exploring, pop into the bakery for a taste of the sweet white duivekater bread, buy a bag of sweets from Albert Heijn – the village’s oldest shop, and enjoy cheese tasting at the cheese and dairy farm.

Tours & Tickets

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Zaanse Schans Windmills, Marken and Volendam Half-Day Trip from Amsterdam

4 star rating: Recommended 1116 Reviews

Leave Amsterdam behind for a few hours and discover the surrounding Dutch countryside and its wonderful windmills! Drive through idyllic landscapes ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 5 or 6.5 hours

From USD $50.81

Amsterdam Super Saver 3: City Tour, Zaanse Schans Windmills, Volendam and Marken Day Trip

4 star rating: Recommended 388 Reviews

See the best of Amsterdam and windmills galore on this tour that combines two best-selling tours at one low price. Tour top Amsterdam attractions, then travel ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: Varies

From USD $73.03
$90.81 Save $17.78

Amsterdam Super Saver: Zaanse Schans Windmills, Delft and The Hague Day Trip

4 star rating: Recommended 529 Reviews

Immerse yourself in the charm of the Netherlands with this combination of two best-selling tours at a discounted price. Take a morning tour from Amsterdam to ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 11 hours (approx.)

From USD $91.45

Dutch Windmills and Countryside Day Trip from Amsterdam Including Cheese Tasting in Edam

4.5 star rating: Recommended 34 Reviews

Historic windmills, charming fishing villages, picturesque canals, a delectable lunch and cheese tastings – this day trip from Amsterdam shows you the best of ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $113.04

I amsterdam Card - City Pass for Amsterdam

4.5 star rating: Recommended 348 Reviews

Simplify your trip to Amsterdam with the I Amsterdam City Card, a pass that gives you free admission to museums and public transport throughout the city. Gain ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 48 or 72 hours

From USD $72.40

Amsterdam Super Saver: Zaanse Schans Windmills, Volendam and Marken Half-Day Tour plus Keukenhof Gardens Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 172 Reviews

Enjoy a Super Saver tour that combines the best of the Dutch countryside – windmills, fishing villages and flowering tulips – all in one day! With a local ...  Read more

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 10 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $93.99

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