Rotterdam, Roffa or Rotjeknor is the second largest city in the Netherlands and competes fiercely with Amsterdam. Not only its residents are very proud of their city, but also the many industries, clubs and bars and, of course the world famous port from their Rotterdam.
Because Rotterdam was bombed very heavily during the World Wars, there is little left of the original Dutch city. Because of all the bombs, the older buildings made place for new, modern buildings and skyscrapers. And that is precisely why Rotterdam is so popular with the young Millennials and many modern companies.

The old port of Rotterdam.

The old port of Rotterdam.

  Average costs

Stay – You can stay in Rotterdam for not so much money if you don’t mind sharing a room with other travelers. A youth hostel will cost you between 20 and 25 euros per night. Personally, I was very pleased with the King Kong Hostel. I myself would dare say it was the best hostel I’ve ever stayed in while abroad! Although I didn’t love the Stayokay hostels, the Stayokay Rotterdam does have a unique and beautiful location; the cube houses of Rotterdam!
A budget room starts at around €40 per night. So if you are with two, this soon gets as cheap as a hostel.
Do you want to spend your night in a little more luxury? Count on €80 for a double room.
A full list of accommodation in Rotterdam can be found here.

Eat – Rotterdam is a big city and you will find something for everyone’s budget. As everywhere in the Netherlands, you can count on the Hema for a cheap meal. For ham and cheese sandwiches (tosti’s) you pay €2.5, for a small lasagna €3. Other meals cost between €4 and €6.
In a restaurant you’ll pay between eight and fifteen euros for lunch, for dinner between fifteen and twenty.
A soda costs two or three euros.

Transport – Rotterdam is not a small city, but I personally think you can explore it easily without public transport. If you travel with lots of luggage or if you are a little out of the center, it is of course useful.
The price of a ticket depends on the distance you travel. On average it costs between €2 and €4.
A tourist ticket (one day unlimited travel in Rotterdam and The Hague) costs €13.50.
If you stay in the Netherlands for a bit longer, it is not a bad idea to consider an OV chip card. You pay €7.5 for the card and then recharge it with the amount you wish. With this chip card, you’ll pay 50% less than buying paper tickets all the time.

The market hall of Rotterdam lies close to train Station 'Rotterdam Blaak'.

The market hall of Rotterdam lies close to train Station ‘Rotterdam Blaak’.

 Saving money

Hema food – Hema offers cheap food that is quite tasty! Toasted ham and cheese sandwiches for €3, €5 for a stew, lasagna for €3… You can’t beat their prices.

‘Toko’ – Do you prefer something more exotic at a cheap price? Then go to the many Surinamese, Javanese and Chinese eateries. Often the food is quite healthy and tasty at a much lower price than in restaurants.

Combined tickets – In Rotterdam there is a lot to see! Museums, attractions, amusement parks, … You name it. If you do everything and pay the entrance fee for every single thing, you will soon be bankrupt. Plan a little ahead and buy combined tickets! The Euromast can, for example, be combined with a visit to the Rotterdam Zoo, the SS Rotterdam or the maritime museum. You’ll quickly save five to ten euros per ticket.

The outer part of the Maritime Museum in Rotterdam.

The outer part of the Maritime Museum in Rotterdam.


Euromast – The Euromast in Rotterdam is one of the best attractions that the city has to offer! At 185 meters, it is also the tallest structure of the Netherlands and you get a great view of the city and its port. A ticket costs €9.5 (€6.10 for children). Remember to also take the lift (or stairs) to take you onto the rotating platform. In this closed off room, you’ll go even higher up, and you get a 360 ° view of Rotterdam while you can listen to interesting information about the city.

Rotterdam Market Hall – The beautiful market hall of Rotterdam is quite nice from the outside already, but it’s especially nice if you go exploring inside!
Inside the hall there are hundreds of restaurants and food shops. Vegetables and fruits, sweets and desserts, Dutch food or African delights, … Wonderful to just walk around and fill your stomach with delicious new treats.

Old port – Near the market hall you will also find the old port. These waters have some beautiful old boats that were / are in urgent need of repair. At the rear you’ll find the famous cube houses of Rotterdam. Definitely go into the cube house museum (€ 3).

Erasmus Bridge – Anyone who loves a bit of modern architecture will feel at home in Rotterdam. One of this excellent feats of architecture is the Erasmus Bridge. This bridge of 802 meters long is connecting the center of Rotterdam with the port and is a joy to look at. Sometimes the bridge is also called ‘the Swan’.

Boijmans van Beuningen Museum – Culture is never far away in Rotterdam. The largest collection of paintings, sculptures and temporary exhibitions can be found in the Boijmans van Beuningen museum. Get lost among the works by Picasso, Monet, Rembrandt and many others and definitely don’t forget to go to the temporary exhibitions! An entrance ticket costs €15.

Explore the harbor – There are several companies offering tours of the Port of Rotterdam. Learn more about the port as an economic superpower and be astonished by the numbers and goods that are shipped annually.

Witte de Witstraat – Especially nice for the youngsters among us. This street is a bit of a hipster street with quaint shops and pop-up stores. In the evening or at night there is a lit to do here. The many bars and restaurants have lots of people hanging out in- and outside (summer) and therefore there is always a great atmosphere.

SS Rotterdam – the largest ship ever made on Dutch soil is the SS Rotterdam. Today, this 228-meter long ship is permanently docked at the port of Rotterdam, and serves for tours, as a hotel, bar and restaurant.
Are you particularly interested in the different rooms and the operation of the boat? Book a tour! (€16)

Rotterdam Zoo – Who doesn’t like a zoo? Do you still have a few hours left or do you travel with kids? Then go to Rotterdam Zoo. This zoo was named the most beautiful zoo in the Benelux in 2016! Tickets cost €22 at the box office and €20 on-line.
In the King Kong Hostel I bought tickets for a half day; €12.50. With a half day I had more than enough time to explore the zoo.

The port of Rotterdam, seen from the Euromast in Rotterdam.

The port of Rotterdam, seen from the Euromast in Rotterdam.


Walking on the street with alcohol – Consuming alcohol is forbidden in public! Smoking joints may well be legal, “public intoxication” will leave you with a fine of a few hundred euros.

Taking too many public transport – If you can; walk! The distances in Rotterdam are easily done on foot and often it takes longer to travel somewhere by bus or tram because of the busy traffic in the city.

Euromast in bad weather – Being on a building higher than a hundred meters in bad weather is not very pleasant, and you will have done the trip for nothing anyway… The Euromast is closed in bad weather. This makes sense! Because you can’t see very far, the wind is horrible and because of all the metal it is very slippery.

The Boijmans van Beuningen Museum with a temporary exhibit.

The Boijmans van Beuningen Museum with a temporary exhibit.

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