Wooden Shoe Workshop Zaanse Schans
Discover the history and production of wooden shoes at windmill village ‘de Zaanse Schans’, just 20 minutes from Amsterdam Centraal station! Learn more about this unique craftsmanship in our authentic workshop in one of Holland’s most historic areas. Saunter past the wooden houses, working windmills, and see our clog makers at work daily: experience the Zaanse Schans! Admission is free and open all year-round.
Things to do at the Zaanse Schans.
The Zaanse Schans is the best all-round Holland experience you can get! Besides the wooden shoe museum and live demonstrations, there is a lot more to see, discover, and enjoy. The next big Dutch thing of course is cheese! You can find Henri Willig’s cheese farm ‘de Catherinahoeve’ here. Taste some of the most delicious Dutch cheeses, enjoy a live cheese making demonstration, and browse the store to get some Dutch cheeses and sweets to take home.
There are various windmills to visit at the Zaanse Schans. The paint mill ‘de Kat’ is certainly worth a visit! You can discover everything about paint and how paint was made. You can see how raw materials are crushed by the enormous mill stones. Enjoy the panoramic view over the Zaan river and the Zaanse Schans from the observation deck. Be careful; don’t get hit by the windmill on windy days!
Windmill ‘de Zoeker’ is an oil mill where you can still see how oil was made centuries ago. ‘Het Jonge Schaap’ is a sawing mill, used to saw timber, which was delivered to the mill via the Zaan river. On some summer days, you might still see some lumber being delivered!
The Zaans Museum and Verkade Museum are the largest museums in this area, offering you a trip back in time! The history of the Zaan region is the centre of attention. There is a lot to learn about the amazing variety of windmills that once stood here in the largest industrial city of Holland. Verkade is one of the most famous biscuit brands in the Netherlands and is unique because of its well-documented history and the famous ‘Verkade girls’ who were the gorgeous ladies that worked in the factory. Discover and experience this great museum and maybe take home your very own Verkade biscuits or chocolate bar!
All this sightseeing might make you hungry, so try some authentic Dutch dishes, such as pancakes or delicious Dutch sandwiches. At the Zaanse Schans you can find restaurant ‘de Walvis’ and pancake restaurant ‘de Kraai’, both offering great lunches. For the late afternoon visitor, ‘de Walvis’ also serves dinner, and you can dine while overlooking the windmill panorama from the summer terrace.
How to get there?
The Zaanse Schans is easily accessible by car, bus, or train. From Amsterdam Centraal station, it’s only a fifteen-minute drive, a fifteen-minute train ride (train to Alkmaar/Uitgeest), or a 45-minute bus ride (bus number 391). A parking fee applies if you visit us by car.
The Zaanse Schans is open all year and admission is free. Attractions, such as the windmills and Zaans museum do have an admission fee. For a complete experience, you can purchase a Zaanse Schans Card at the museum, which includes entrance to one windmill of choice, the museum, and 10% discount in all stores.