© Cynthia De Luna

Windmills

“Unique in its kind,” announced Napoleon when he arrived at the Zaanse Schans. 600 windmills made up the world’s first industrial area. Today, the 250-year-old windmill park is a fascinating open-air museum. The five biggest windmills in the world are located in the centre of Schiedam. The windmills of Schiedam are over 130 feet (40 m) high and played a major role in gin production. When it comes to beauty, the 19 polder draining windmills of the Kinderdijk win first prize. Kinderdijk is a UNESCO site and a masterpiece of water management in a typical Dutch landscape. Keep your camera ready, because there are more than a thousand windmills in the Netherlands that you can capture on film.

The best windmills in Holland

Discover the nineteen splendid windmills that have been declared UNESCO world heritage.

Dutch Traditions The Zaanse Schans

Experience the traditional way of living in Holland during the 17th and 18th centuries and explore authentic Dutch houses and windmills.

Dutch Traditions The Windmills of Schiedam

The largest windmills in the world.

Dutch Traditions Molen de Adriaan

The rebuilt Molen de Adriaan windmill sits on the scenic Spaarne River in Haarlem.

Dutch Traditions Molen de Valk

The Molen de Valk is a windmill built in 1785 and is one of the most recognizable sites in the city of Leiden.

© Koen Smilde
Dutch Traditions Brouwerij 't IJ

Fresh-brewed Dutch beer at the foot of the Molen de Gooyer in Amsterdam at the Brouwerij 't IJ.

Visit National Windmill Day

Visit millers and help turn the sails of hundreds of Dutch mills.
Event National Mill Day
  • 9 May through 10 May
  • Kinderdijk

Learn more about windmills

Dutch Traditions Functions of windmills

Historically, windmills in Holland served many purposes, draining the wetlands being first.

Dutch Traditions Dutch windmills

Windmills are characteristic of the Dutch landscape.

Discover more Dutch icons