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Taste the holiday spirit in Rotterdam: 14 fun activities during the Christmas holidays

By Kim Longwood
December 05, 2022

Are you looking for fun activities during the Christmas holidays in Rotterdam? Then you’ve come to the right place.

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

There is nothing cosier than having a nice brunch somewhere. And now that you have a few days off, you can enjoy it during one of the weekdays! Catching up with friends while enjoying something delicious.

From Wednesday to Sunday you will feel fully at home in this cosy 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 more 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?

Discover even more nice gift shops in Rotterdam.


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!

The Skating Rink Rotterdam at the Kralingse Zoom has reopened. Here you and your friends or relatives will have a great time during the Christmas holidays.

The Skating Rink in Rotterdam is even open on Christmas Day and Boxing Day! A super fun activity after Christmas breakfast or before Christmas dinner.

Also nice: various events are organized, such as the Silent Disco Skating and the Christmas Vrijmibo. Take a look at their calendar.


Toepad 95, 3063 NJ Rotterdam


5. Check out the exhibition ‘In the Black Fantastic’ in the Kunsthal

Tabita Rezaire – Ultra Wet – Recapitulation. Photo by Julia den Outer.

Since 19 November 2022, the new exhibition ‘In the Black Fantastic’ can be visited in the Kunsthal.

Step into an immersive experience, at the crossroads between reality and fantasy worlds. ‘In the Black Fantastic’ shows seductive, colourful works by 11 contemporary artists from the African Diaspora.

With boundless imagination and technical virtuosity, they address important topics such as racism and social inequality. The artists are inspired by folklore, myth, science fiction, spiritual traditions and afrofuturism and depict new worlds and possibilities.

The exhibition can be seen in the Kunsthal until 9 April 2023.

Museum day? Check these museums in Rotterdam.


Museumpark, Westzeedijk 341, 3015 AA Rotterdam


6. Intiem film kijken bij Hotel New York

This is a very special thing to do during the Christmas holidays in Rotterdam! From 14 December it is possible to have an unforgettable experience in the stylishly decorated two-person cinema. In collaboration with The(Any)Thing, Hotel New York has transformed one of its rooms into Rotterdam’s first On Demand private film experience.

You have everything you need while watching a movie. The concept offers the possibility to watch the film you want, when you want and with whom you want. This experience also offers you the luxury of determining the settings for temperature, volume and light in the room and you can pause the film at any time.

Read more about this private cinema in Hotel New York.


Koninginnenhoofd 1, 3072 AD Rotterdam


7. Visit Depot Boijmans van Beuningen

Everyone should see the big shiny coffee cup in Museumpark! It is already an icon in our city because of its reflective exterior and special architecture.

Fun fact: Depot Boijmans van Beuningen is the very first art depot in the world that is actually accessible to the public. Walk around and admire between 151,000 art objects and watch the conservation and restoration of art.

In addition, visitors and residents can go to the freely accessible roof garden with restaurant to enjoy the view over Rotterdam.


Museumpark 24, 3015 CX Rotterdam


8. 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 17th and Saturday the 24th 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



The cold is a good reason to visit one of the local cinemas in Rotterdam! In the city you will find nice movie houses such as Lantaren Venster, KINO and Cinerama. The latter is shown above.

Of course there is also the option to go to Pathé and check out the latest blockbusters. But the smaller cinemas always remain just that little bit more atmospheric and certainly fit better with the Christmas holidays. Do you agree?



Haven’t been to the Remastered Experience yet?! Then the Christmas holidays are the ideal time. In this attraction you will be taken on an audiovisual journey for an hour and you will become one with the art.

Walk under a waterfall, go on an adventure with the unearthly creatures of Hieronymus Bosch, learn to travel in time and surround yourself with the paintings of Old Dutch Masters such as Van Gogh and Mondrian. Each time you enter a new world and you don’t know what to expect.

Read more about this unique attraction in the city here. Buy your ticket in advance via this link.


11. Visit Miniworld Rotterdam with (or without) kids

Do you want to do fun activities with kids during the Christmas holidays? Fortunately, there are plenty of fun things to do for kids in Rotterdam.

One fun attraction to go to is Miniworld Rotterdam. It is a covered miniature world of Rotterdam. Here the kids discover the world in miniature, a unique way to get to know the metropolis of Rotterdam better!

Expect more than 650 square metres of Rotterdam polder landscapes, modern and historic architecture and, of course, the Port of Europe. Everything is surprisingly detailed. Really a top place for a family outing in Rotterdam during the Christmas holidays!

TIP: already purchase your tickets for Miniworld Rotterdam!


Weena 745, 3013 AL Rotterdam


12. Winterklimmen bij klimbos Fun Forest

For the first time ever it’s possible to climb during the weekends in December and January at Fun Forest in Rotterdam. In the Kralingse Bos you can climb through the forest on Wednesdays and Fridays during the Christmas holidays.

The climbing forest is even open during Christmas and New Year’s Eve. A first, because in previous years Fun Forest was completely closed during the winter period!

Warm hat under your helmet, cup of chocolate milk and then all join the Christmas dinner at home. Or take your colleagues climbing during the New Year’s drink and continue to drink mulled wine afterwards. And imagine it snowing and you can swing between the white tops of the trees. In short: a unique experience not to be missed!


13. 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


14. Take a day trip

De Passage in Den Haag. Foto door @marionro.cks.

Rotterdam is a great city, but sometimes it is nice to take a break and explore other places. A big plus: you don’t have to travel far to explore other beautiful places.

For example, visit The Hague, the third largest city after Amsterdam and Rotterdam, as well as the administrative and royal capital of the Netherlands.

The city has many beautiful buildings that you can discover during your visit and you can enjoy shopping and delicious food. In The Hague, for example, you have the De Passage, strongly inspired by Parisian galleries, a fine example with its arcades and glass domes.

Travelling to The Hague from Rotterdam is easy, because you can take the metro (line E) or the train to The Hague. Discover more great places near 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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