Rotterdam Netherlands

Rotterdam serves as the gateway to our adventure for guests embarking on Voyage One, and an exciting grand finale to our cruise for guests on Voyage Two. We are delighted for this completely modern home port to be a part of our itinerary as we sail the stunning ship that shares its name – Holland America’s ms Rotterdam! The city of Rotterdam is the Netherlands’ second largest and you’ll find it exploding with culture and innovation. Boasting an impressive skyline, Rotterdam is also the most futuristic and technologically advanced city in the country. The bustling metropolis features Europe’s busiest port, cutting-edge museums, awe-inspiring architecture and a diverse, multicultural community. Rotterdam’s many high-rises and bridges make it the only Dutch city with a proper skyline, creating a unique and striking ambiance. We welcome you to explore–and fall in love with–the brilliant city of Rotterdam!


Erasmus Bridge Rotterdam Netherlands

Erasmus Bridge

The graceful Erasmus Bridge, which spans the Niewe Maas, is known by locals as “The Swan” due to its single asymmetrical pylon from which 40 steel cables span out in an impressive feat of engineering. The bridge, built from pale blue steel, links the north and the south of the city, connecting futuristic Kop Van Zuid to historic Delfshaven, one of the few areas where you’ll still see authentic Dutch architecture.

Explore Old-World Delfshaven

Cross the Erasmus Bridge from the cruise terminal and stroll to Delfshaven, which is like stepping into the past. Miraculously, this neighborhood survived the bombs of the Second World War. Today, it’s a tranquil spot crisscrossed with canals, old breweries, traditional brown cafés (more pub than actual café), and old houses festooned with flower-filled window boxes. Pay your respects at the Pelgrimskerk, where the founding fathers prayed before embarking on the ocean crossing to America.
Delfshaven - Rotterdam Netherlands
Kinderdijk Rotterdam Netherlands

Unesco Werelderfgoed Kinderdijk

The UNESCO World Heritage Site Kinderdijk is renowned worldwide for its 19 iconic windmills, which are definitely worth seeing. These crown jewels are situated in the Alblasserwaard’s northwestern edge, near the village of Kinderdijk, and are lined along the Overwaard and Nederwaard boezems. Windmills are regarded as one of the most significant Dutch landmarks, with no other place in the world having as many historical mills in such close proximity to each other.

Get a taste of Gouda

Gouda’s medieval city centre is steeped in history and has a rich cultural heritage. With its stunning façades, canals, courtyards, and a world-renowned cheese market, Gouda is truly a charming and authentic Dutch city. At the Gouda cheese market, try your hand at haggling for a bargain, browse the city’s vibrant streets for some shopping, or relax with a drink on one of the many cozy terraces. Gouda has been a city since 1272, predating even Amsterdam and Rotterdam, which is one of the things that makes this city truly unique.

Get a taste of Gouda
Explore the Beauty of Tulips

Explore the Beauty of Tulips

Rotterdam, Netherlands is home to stunning tulip fields that bloom in vibrant colors every year. Visitors can stroll through the fields and admire the beauty of the delicate blooms or visit the Keukenhof Gardens for a must-see display of over 7 million bulbs planted each year. It’s a unique travel experience that nature lovers will surely enjoy.

Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen

The futuristic depot at this famed art museum has a twist; it’s the world’s first art storage facility open to the public. Most museums only ever exhibit a fraction of their collections, but here, some 152,000 pieces by artists from Rembrandt to Matisse and Dalí are housed in climate-controlled units inside what looks like a giant mirrored bowl. Wander through the facility with a guide or alone, and watch art restorers at work, renovating some of the world’s most legendary pieces.
Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen Rotterdam Netherlands
Markthal Rotterdam Netherlands


The Markthal is one of the city’s most iconic buildings. A shimmering, inverted U-shape housing glass-walled apartments and offices arches over a market, where over 100 stalls, 15 shops, and eight restaurants sell their wares. This is the place to come for cheese, plants and flowers, fresh bread, delicious deli food, coffee, and people-watching.

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June Averages
66º F high / 51º F low


Taxis are available.

Local Time

Current Time
Time Zone

Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM)

Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM) is a minor international airport located 3 NM north northwest of Rotterdam in South Holland. It is the third busiest airport in the Netherlands and serves Rotterdam, the Netherlands’ second largest city, and The Hague, its administrative and royal capital. The airport is approximately 6.3 miles (28 minute drive) to the cruise port.

Airport Website | Location

Directions to Cruise Terminal Rotterdam

Port Facilities & Location

Rotterdam, Netherlands will be our EMBARKATION port for Voyage One and DISEMBARKATION port for Voyage Two.

Ships dock in the heart of Rotterdam, at the Wilhemina Pier, in the Kop Van Zuid neighborhood. In the terminal, you’ll find tourist information and free Wi-Fi. To walk to the city center, cross over the famous Erasmus Bridge. The nearest metro station is Wilheminaplein, between the terminal and the bridge.

Explore Places to Eat and Drink

If you’re looking to find some trendy and exotic food, the best place to visit near the Rotterdam Cruise Port is Foodhallen. This former warehouse has been transformed into a hub of 12 different outlets, offering a wide variety of street food, including spicy bao buns, sushi, pizza, Caribbean seafood, and Spanish tapas. The location is always busy with locals, and there’s an outdoor terrace for those who prefer al-fresco dining.

Another excellent option is Fenix Food Factory, a farmers’ cooperative that serves as both a brewery and wine bar. This market kitchen offers everything from soups and salads to pizzas, cheeses, dips, and frittatas, perfect for those on-the-go.

If you’re a coffee lover, then Rotterdam is the perfect place to be. For true coffee aficionados, Man Met Bril Koffie is the place to go. Here, you can enjoy all-day breakfast, including healthy fruit bowls, pancakes, pastries, and variations of avo on toast, along with the best flat white in town. Plus, there’s even a roastery on site.

Culture & History

Rotterdam was founded in 1270. Thanks to its strategic position close to the North Sea, it’s grown to become Europe’s largest seaport, a position reinforced by the construction of the Nieuwe Waterweg deep water channel to the North Sea at the end of the 19th century.

The city was badly bombed during World War II, with 1,300 bombs obliterating most of it during a single night. Rotterdam has since reinvented itself as a tech hub and center for avant-garde architecture, all-glass towers, graceful bridges, and brightly painted buildings, not to mention a lively cultural and culinary scene. The city also has an impressively diverse population and a large contingent of university students.

Shop 'Til You Drop

There are souvenir shops inside the terminal itself, but to discover the city’s impressively eclectic offerings, you need to venture further out. For fashion, antiques, and interiors, head for Oude Binnenweg and Nieuwe Binnenweg. For everything under one roof, including high-end designers, try the chic department store De Bijenkorf, in the center. The renovated railroad arches of Hofbogen are the place for vinyl and art. You’ll find art galleries and concept stores all over the city, too.

Getting around

Locals get around Rotterdam using public transport or bicycle; this is an easy city to navigate. Walk along busy canals, take a boat tour, hop on a water taxi, or ride the efficient tram network. One of the best ways to get oriented in this buzzing city is to join a guided cycling tour, which stops at points of interest along the way. If you want to head out of town to Kinderdijk to see the famous windmills, take the scenic waterbus. For Delft, home of the iconic blue-and-white pottery, it’s just a 15-minute train ride.

Local Currency & Tipping Etiquette

The currency in The Netherlands is the euro. There are ATMs throughout the city if you want cash, but contactless or credit card is the accepted way to pay in Europe. The Netherlands doesn’t have a big tipping culture, but you can leave 10 percent in restaurants for good service and round up taxi fares to the nearest euro. Tour guides don’t normally expect a tip, but a few euros is always appreciated.
Rotterdam Netherlands - Photo Collage