Taste the holiday spirit of Christmas - Weekends in Rotterdam Skip to main content
Wij kunnen niks bedenken wat meer past bij een winter must-do lijst dan een bezoekje aan een schaatsbaan! Chocolademelk, Glühwein, een Unox broodje en ingepakt in een dikke jas. Dat is het échte wintergevoel!

Taste the holiday spirit in Rotterdam: 12 fun activities during the Christmas holidays

By Kim Longwood
December 09, 2021

The holiday season is right around the corner and that means one thing… presents! Oh, and a lot of food, drinks and saying cheers. And vacation (or a couple of days off). And spending time with friends and family. Okay, more than one thing.

Actually, this period means a lot of things, including doing fun activities that ooze holiday spirit. Which of these 12 things will you be doing during the Christmas vacation in Rotterdam?


1. Drink hot chocolate at Chocolate Company Café

There is no better place to quickly pop in for a hot cup of chocolate than this chocolate spot in the heart of the city centre: Chocolate Company Café.

Are you gonna sit inside to warm up your icy fingers? Then you should order one of the Luxury Xmas chocolate creations, such as a Christmas tree with coloured sprinkles or a dark tree (vegan). Double up on your chocolate intake, it’s allowed!

Or enjoy a High Choc, where you can enjoy chocolate milk and a chocolate fondue to dip your strawberries and cookies in.

But of course, a cup of boiling hot cocoa is also delicious on the go. You know… to warm up whilst shopping.

Discover more spots for a hot brew, for instance during a high tea in Rotterdam!


Oude Binnenweg 109A, 3012 JB Rotterdam


2. Enjoy a nice brunch at Koffiebar Namasté on Katendrecht

From Wednesday to Sunday you will feel fully at home in this cozy place across the water. Go for coffee, soup, (hopefully) Glühwein or a tasty cake. Are you planning on sticking around for a while? Then you can grab a board game!


Sumatraweg 13b, 3072 ZP Rotterdam


3. Score Christmas presents and New Years Eve clothing at De Bijenkorf

De Bijenkorf is still the favourite department store of many Rotterdammers. The festivity of the building is radiant, especially during the winter months. For example: the exuberant collection of lights and the luxurious shop windows.

The Christmas department is open until Friday the 24th of December, but you are also in the right place for a shopping session after that. Because we want to look good during the shimmer of fireworks and the striking of the clock on December 31st, right?


Coolsingel 105, 3012 AG Rotterdam


4. Cut some ice at Schaatsbaan Rotterdam

Wij kunnen niks bedenken wat meer past bij een winter must-do lijst dan een bezoekje aan een schaatsbaan! Chocolademelk, Glühwein, een Unox broodje en ingepakt in een dikke jas. Dat is het échte wintergevoel!

Do you enjoy riding classic ice skates? Or would you rather slide over the ice on ice hockey skates? Both are possible!

At Schaatsbaan Rotterdam near the Kralingse Zoom you and your friends or family members will have a great time during the Christmas vacation. Events such as the Santa Skate on December the 25th and Silent Disco Skating are being held at this location.


Toepad 95, 3063 NJ Rotterdam


5. Check out the exhibition ‘Calder Now’ in Kunsthal Rotterdam

Ernesto Neto, It happens when the body is anatomy of time, 2000 National Galleries of Scotland Photo: John Mckenzie

The exhibition ‘Calder Now’ can be seen in De Kunsthal from the 21st of November 2021 until the 29th of May 2022. More than twenty sculptures by Alexander Calder are on display.

In addition, there are also works by contemporary artists, including: Olafur Eliasson, Žilvinas Kempinas, Simone Leigh, Ernesto Neto and more.

What can you expect to see at this expo? Well… unusual installations that defy gravity, sculptures that raise optical questions and works of art that appeal to all your senses.

Museum day? Check these museums in Rotterdam.


Museumpark, Westzeedijk 341, 3015 AA Rotterdam


6. Visit Depot Boijmans van Beuningen

Heb je het nieuwe Depot van Boijmans van Beuningen al gezien? Momenteel is het nog in verbouwing, maar het ziet er al prachtig uit. Deze foto is gemaakt tijdens de zonsondergang.

The large shiny coffee cup in Museumpark is finished and it’s open! Believe us, you really want to see this.

Fun fact: Depot Boijmans van Beuningen is the very first art depot in the world that is actually accessible to the public.


Museumpark 24, 3015 CX Rotterdam


7. Harvest some food and drinks at the Christmas market in Rotterdam Noord

De Rotterdamse Oogstmarkt is known by many. It is a weekly returning specialty market on the Noordplein in Rotterdam Noord. On Saturday the 19th and Thursday the 23rd of December, the Oogstmarkt will be decked in Christmas spirit, so it’s the perfect occasion for a shopping trip during the Christmas holidays.

Christmas dinner and New Year’s Eve snacks have never been this tasty!

Be sure to read this article with cosy Christmas markets in Rotterdam.


Museumpark 24, 3015 CX Rotterdam


8. Shop gorgeous second-hand ‘winter waren’ at Weelde

On Saturday the 18th and Sunday the 19th of December Weelde is going wild. But not like you’re used to… this time there will not be loud techno, full beer glasses or dark halls. No, this time the program is as followed: creatives, flea market, food (Kumzits & Chef Jona), bar and Glühwein.

You certainly don’t want to miss the Weelde Winter Warenmarkt.


Marconistraat 39, 3029 AG Rotterdam


9. Swap clothes in Tropicana during CHANGEZ XL – SWAP & REUSE

Photo by Jacqueline Fuijkschot.

BlueCity (also known as the former Tropicana swimming pool next to De Maas) fights against overconsumption. New gifts are nice, but second-hand items or even swapped items are just as great.

On Saturday the 18th of December you are welcome from 12:00 to 17:00 with a handful of clothes and toys to exchange.


Marconistraat 39, 3029 AG Rotterdam


10. Eat oliebollen from oliebollenkraam Richard Visser

The best oliebollenkraam of The Netherlands, with loads of prizes, is located in Rotterdam West. Richard Visser has been awarded the title of the best oliebollenbakker in the country nine times. Not only neighbours, but Rotterdammers from all over the city come to this stall every year to score oliebollen.

Have you never eaten a ‘Richard Visser oliebol’? You should (almost) be ashamed of yourself… go on, make your way to this oliebollenkraam.


Heemraadssingel 1, 3022 CG Rotterdam


11. Dive into nostalgic moments with De Fabeltjeskrant

De Fabeltjeskrant is an iconic piece of Rotterdam history. This winter, the animals we grew up with will be honoured in the form of a film and an exhibition.

From Sunday the 19th of December 2021 onwards, the cinema film ‘De Fabeltjeskrant: de Grote Dierenbos-spelen’ can be seen in LantarenVenster.

The exhibition ‘Fabeltjesland, een reis door 50 jaar Fabeltjeskrant’ can be visited in LP2 in Las Palmas until Thursday the 6th of January 2022.

It is convenient that LantarenVenster and LP2 are opposite each other, so you can easily make it a pleasant and complete day activity. Therefor there is no reason not to add these activities to your Christmas vacation to-do list.


LantarenVenster: Otto Reuchlinweg 996, 3072 MD Rotterdam
LP2 – Las Palmas: Wilhelminakade 326, 3072 AR Rotterdam


12. Enjoy a drink on a heated terrace…

…at the following places in Rotterdam:

DoDo Café Rotterdam


Karel Doormanstraat 34, 3012 GJ Rotterdam


Brasserie Pierre


Pannekoekstraat 38A, 3011 LH Rotterdam


De Huismeester


Meent 115, 3011 JH Rotterdam


Hopefully you have gained enough inspiration from this article to make your Christmas vacation in Rotterdam a smashing success full of fun activities. Have fun and happy holidays.

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