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Those beautiful summer days in the Netherlands, when the temperature rises, the birds chirp, you regret that you had not bought that fan earlier, and when staying indoors is a great sin. Gather your friends and go out, because with these summer activities you will get the most out of this good weather!
Please note: Some (or all) of the activities below may not be possible during the current crisis. Always follow the RIVM guidelines and keep one and a half meters distance of other people. Stay indoors if you have a cold or the flu. Save this article for when we can do lots of fun things again!
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17 Activities for a summer day in Rotterdam
1. Rent a sloop on the Kralingse Plas
Surrounded by the Kralingse Bos, this lake is the place where the Rotterdammer goes during a summer day. When the sun shines it is full of people barbecuing, children playing and friends enjoying a drink. Our tip is to rent a boat and float around on the Kralingse Plas. A quick Google search and you will find several places where you can rent a boat!
2. Enjoy the sun at Parqiet
When the sun shines, Parqiet, located in the former coach house in the Park, is the ideal place to enjoy the sun. The front yard of this beautiful building is the park next to the Euromast, where they have placed beach chairs and tables on the grass. Take off your shoes, put on sunglasses and order a nice drink and snack!
Baden Powellaan 20, 3016 GJ Rotterdam
3. Eat an ice cream at the best ice cream parlours in Rotterdam
The perfect way to cool down is of course with a nice ice cream! Are you going for a classic scoop of vanilla? Or do you treat yourself to a more deluxe version?
We always find the ice cream at De IJssalon very tasty. And we are not alone, because the De IJssalon has already won several prizes with their traditional, fresh ice cream. Are you a fan of Ben & Jerry ice cream? Then visit the Ben & Jerry Scoop Shop on the Witte de Withstraat, where you can choose from more than 15 flavors.
Read our article about the best places for a nice ice cream in Rotterdam for more inspiration!
4. Cool off with the Splash tour
If you need to cool down, a logical step is seeking water activities. As a city that has a big river, Rotterdam has plenty of fun options for that! For example, this bus tour may seem normal, but nothing could be further from the truth. During the tour, the bus literally takes a dip in the Maas. The bus sails on and shows you the city from the water. Buy a ticket here to join the bright yellow sailing bus.
5. Have a picnic in the park
Plenty of parks in Rotterdam! For example, choose the Vroesenpark in Rotterdam-Noord, where there is enough space for picnics, barbecues or playing around with football. Other parks that are ideal for this are Het Park, the Kralingse Plas and -Bos and the Zuiderpark. Also keep an eye on the Rotterdam calendar for all the fun festivals that take place in the parks during the summer months!
6. Have a refreshing drink on one of Rotterdam’s nicest terraces
Put on your sunglasses, take off your coat and take a seat on a sunny terrace with a beer, wine or an ice-cold coke. Because luckily, Rotterdam has a lot of beautiful terraces in the center. And that’s for a good reason, because as soon as the sun shines, they are packed! Read our article here with the sunniest terraces in Rotterdam, such as Aloha or the Gele Kanarie.
7. Get a breath of fresh air on the Euromast
Enjoying the view on the Euromast’s terrace is a great way to spend your summer day. Because of the clear sky, you’ll be able to see for miles in the distance! We recommend going during sunset to see how the golden rays of sunlight illuminate the city. Also: don’t forget to bring your camera!
8. Float around in a HotTug
We already talked about renting a boat on the Kralingse Plas, but this is also a great idea for a warm summer day. A HotTug is an electrically powered sailing hot tub that takes you through the canals of Rotterdam. Put on your swimsuit, have a drink, put on some music and enjoy!
For even more activities to cool off, read our article with the best water activities in Rotterdam!
9. Discover Rotterdam with a Segway tour
Imagine: you are visiting Rotterdam for a few days, but it’ way too hot to be active (have you ever cycled on the Erasmus Bridge with 30 degrees?). However, missing out on all the beautiful things Rotterdam has to offer would be a shame! The solution: a Segway tour! With this tour you will go through Rotterdam in 75 minutes and see the most beautiful places that the city has to offer, without a drop of sweat. That is not only fun, but also very smart.
10. Watch a movie at the open-air cinema ‘Pleinbioscoop’
In August, Museumplein transforms into a cozy open-air cinema, where they screen special films during nineteen summer evenings. You simply buy a ticket, grab a chair, find a nice spot with your loved one or friends and you are ready for a beautiful summer evening.
11. Go wakeboarding in Nesselande
For the sports enthusiasts or adventurers among us, there is a very nice water ski cable car in Nesselande where you can wakeboard on the Zeverhuizerplas with the help of a zipline. Fun to do as a day out with a group, but as an experienced wakeboarder or water skier it’s also great, as there are challenging obstacles in the water.
Kosboulevard 35, 3059 XZ Rotterdam
12. Walk across the Erasmus Bridge and view the sunset
A classic in Rotterdam, but for a good reason! The bridge is beautiful from whichever side you look at it. Walk along the river towards the bridge, cross it and walk to the Kop van Zuid. That way you can see the bridge from all sides, you can see the Maaskade, Wilhelminakade, the skyline of Rotterdam and the Kop van Zuid. Beautiful with sunset!
Curious about the other gems in the city where you can watch the sunset? Read the article with beautiful sunset spots in Rotterdam.
13. Visit Hoek van Holland and the beach club Pele Surfshack
Have you already heard of Pele Surf Shack? This is the first plant-based beach club in the Netherlands. Although it is not in the center of our city, it is definitely worth traveling to Hoek van Holland and trying one of their plant-based dishes. And while you’re there, you can make it a fun day at the beach!
Pele Surf Shack is open all summer, seven days a week. Unfortunately they are closed during the winter, but the doors open again in March.
Rechtestraat 24, 3151 HN Hoek van Holland
14. Spend a night at the unique Culture Campsite
Camping in your own city? That’s definitely possible in Rotterdam! At the Culture Campsite in Delfshaven, you sleep in art objects made from already existing material. The 12 objects can accommodate 24 guests who are looking for a unique experience. Just like the ‘rooms’, you will find the toilet and shower in a sustainable art object. The Campsite also offers a jacuzzi and a place for food, namely the Food Club Rotterdam. A truly unique experience, in which visitors, art, architecture and sustainability come together.
Schiehavenweg 12, 3024 ED Rotterdam
15. Visit the botanical garden Trompenburg
This gem of Rotterdam is a botanical garden located in Kralingen. It is beautifully landscaped and filled with trees, shrubs and the most unique flowers. Whether you like flora or just want some peace and quiet, you are welcome to drop by and walk alone or with a guide. You can simply buy a ticket at the entrance.
Honingerdijk 86, 3062 NX
16. Have a drink at the Rotterdam DakAkker
There are a number of beautiful hidden roof terraces in Rotterdam. One of these is the DakAkker. It looks like a green courtyard, but located 20 meters up in the air. It is also the first green roof in the Netherlands where fruit and vegetables are grown and honey bees are kept.
Enjoy a drink, a snack and the view while you visit the restaurant next to it called Op Het Dak.
Schiekade 189, 3013 BR Rotterdam
17. Join the Wednesday Night Skate
One of the nicest and sportiest events in Rotterdam is the Wednesday Night Skate. Every summer, thousands of people put on their (roller) skates and roll through the famous streets of Rotterdam on five Wednesday evenings. The trail is about 12.5 km and everyone can participate, whether you are a beginner or experienced. Also great: participation is free! Before and after, the city is filled with festive activities and there’s a cozy atmosphere all around. Are you participating this year?
We are excited for summer! Will we see you at one of the options above? Share your summer experiences with us by tagging us in your photos with #WeekendsinRotterdam!