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17 Best Tours in Rotterdam, Netherlands

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Are you visiting or planning to visit Rotterdam? Which are the best places to visit while there? Book one of these best tours in Rotterdam to see more of the city from a local perspective.

This city is known to be the second most vibrant city in the Netherlands after Amsterdam. Talk of innovative museums and galleries, burgeoning food scenes, audacious architecture with beautiful buildings, and the home to Europe’s largest port.

There is no reason why Rotterdam shouldn’t be your next stop. All these features are too good to be in one city. If you are traveling to Amsterdam, it makes for a great weekend trip.

But before that, we want to give you a picture of what you expect. Tours are a great way to see more for less. By combining 1-2 tours, you’ll be sure you won’t miss anything in Rotterdam. We have compiled the best Rotterdam tours to make your visit memorable.

These are the best Rotterdam tours to maximize your sightseeing experience in this amazing city. You’ll see the city efficiently and save some money along the way.

Best Tours in Rotterdam, Netherlands

Rotterdam Harbor Tour

Scenic View of Rotterdam's Maritime District with Historic Boats and the Witte Huis
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Rotterdam Harbor is the loading and offloading center for all ships from all over the world to Europe. It is the largest port on the continent and was recorded as the busiest between 1963 and 1968.

This tour will take you to experience the most innovative port that covers an outstandingly massive area of 10,500 ha. The industrial area takes 5300 hectares, while the water and infrastructure areas cover the other half.

What will catch your eye is the design and construction of the port. The only ports that can reach this level of expertise and beauty are the ports of Singapore and Jebel Ali in Dubai. Plus, the view of the city’s skyline and the giant buildings from the port is breathtaking.

You will visit the docks, hypermodern shipping, and shipyards and see the thousands of containers ready to be transported across the continent. The tour ends with a trip to the steamship “Rotterdam,” the luxurious cruise ship from Holland America Shipping Company. 

See Related: Hotels in The Hague

Euromast Lookout Tower

Euromast and Rotterdam Skyline
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The tour takes you to one of the tallest buildings in Rotterdam. You get an outstanding 360-degree view of the whole city at a height of 185 meters.

The history of Euromast dates back to 1960, when it was completed using a design by architect Maaskant. Since then, millions of tourists have converged here to get a spectacular view of Rotterdam.

What can you see from this point? Well, you can view the Belgian city of Antwerp, which is 80 kilometers away on a clear day. The tour has a ticket to the restaurant 100 meters high, where you can have a lovely brunch or an evening “high tea.”

If you have kids around, there are many fun activities. The kids can go for a space adventure tour and Euromast kids club on Sundays at the restaurant on the ground floor.

What’s more? You can cable glide or abseil from the top of the tower. If you are daring enough, abseiling is ideal for you. You “walk down” the tower in a vertical line but with a safe climbing harness. The “cowards” might cable glide, but you must face the 100km/hour speed down. 

Rotterdam Bike Tour

Tourists on a Rotterdam Bike Tour
idtours Rotterdam / GetYourGuide

By now, you should have known that the Dutch like riding bicycles. So you might be required to have good bike riding skills before booking a trip with the Rotterdam bike tour.

The riding tour allows you to see the town in its fullness. You will discover fantastic architecture and historical icons. These are the most bicycle-friendly street monuments from the olden days, like Kop van Zuid and Markthal. The next ride leads you to the wooden pedestrian bridge – the Luchtsingel.

The tour has a short break in the artisan market, where you can buy a few artifacts as souvenirs from the city.

If possible, the guide can take you to explore the hidden streets and markets – the famous food market. All these can be done in under 3 hours since you get a skilled guide who understands the city well. 

See Related: Amsterdam vs Brussels

Rotterdam Zoo Diergaarde Blijdorp Direct Entrance

Polar Bear in Rotterdam Zoo

This is the oldest zoo in Europe and has existed for over 160 years. It’s one place you should visit with your family if you want to see wild animals in their near-natural habitat.

The ticket allows you to enter directly without waiting for long entrance queues. And trust me, the lines can be very long. So if you can take the ticket, do it early by booking online.

The zoo is not only meant for wild land – animals. It also hosts a wide array of sea animals in the largest aquarium in the Netherlands. Not to mention the tropical rainforest, the indoor butterfly haven with numerous types of butterflies, and a playground for the kids. 

Rotterdam Tours: The Whole City in Half a Day Private Tour

Canal scene with traditional Dutch architecture, sailboats, and windmill in Delftshaven, Rotterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Make your time here count! Your private tour guide is conversant with Rotterdam and promises to take you around the most iconic and popular places in not more than 5 hours. His way of recounting the stories of his experience as a private tour guide brings the whole experience to life. You don’t want to miss this.

Some famous places you’ll visit are Delftse Port (the old city entrance to Rotterdam), Het Park, Euromast, Market Hall, and Luchtsingel. You can take beautiful photos here. The guide also knows the perfect place to have a bite of the Netherlands’ cookie – stroopwafels. Trust me; these cookies are so good that they will not satisfy you.

The tour includes a public transportation ticket to all the places you will visit, an entrance ticket to the cube house, and Laurence Church. You also get lunch, which is the local street food, coffee or tea, bottled water, and alcoholic beverages.

Your guide is reliable enough to pick you up from your hotel room at the specified time. And guess what? You can bring your dog with you.

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Cultural Walking Rotterdam Tours

Spiraling sculpture in Kruisplein Rotterdam, blending urban art and architecture
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

If you’re seeking culture in Rotterdam, there are numerous places you can visit. However, there are too many that you need someone to show you around. And that person would be Tania, a private tour guide. This walking tour will show you how Rotterdam has a deep culture and how it has mingled with modern technology.

As a private guide, she has a lot of insights into the city’s architectural history, which is to your advantage as you learn from a native. As an art historian, Lina knows the perfect places to visit that are rich in Holland’s culture. These would be the Rotterdam Central Station and the most prominent national monumental area – the Lijnbaan.

She will take you to the city’s landmarks, including the Erasmus Bridge and Timmerhuis. The last point is the local market, where you can taste the sweet snacks from the food stalls. 

Rotterdam, Delft, and The Hague

Breathtaking Aerial View of Rotterdam Skyline and Cityscape - Erasmus Bridge, Modern Skyscrapers, and Historical Buildings
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The tour takes you by train to the Netherlands’ oldest city, Delft, and the world’s center of Justice, The Hague. What caught your attention was that Royal Delft was the last remaining manufacturer of Delftware. You will get a glimpse of the ancient life of Holland by traveling in the old canals and visiting courts of law and churches.

Besides, there are many museums to visit that have historical artifacts. The Hague is the center of Government offices in the country. If possible, the tour will have a stop here for you to walk into the ICC and enjoy the feeling of justice.

What’s more, Delft is the best place to get a romantic hideaway or a boutique hotel. The hotels are also not expensive and flexible depending on your pockets. The service you get in return is incomparable to the amount you have paid. 

Rotterdam Tours: 1-Hour Sightseeing Splash Tour

Vehicle for the Rotterdam Sightseeing Splash Tour
Tours & Tickets / GetYourGuide

Splash Tours is one of the unique tours in Rotterdam, and you will love the one-hour experience. Your ride is the unique amphibious bus that hovers above the water and has tires to ride on roads.

This means that you get two sightseeing on one tour. Why? You will first see Rotterdam’s top sights in the urban city as you drive around the town. You’ll then head to the water to cruise the Maas River. Here, you will get a spectacular sight of the city’s skyline.

A few things you should know before you book a tour with splash tours include;

  • The buses are not accessible to wheelchairs
  • There is also no space for storing baby strollers
  • It’s not suitable for pregnant women
  • There’s an English and Dutch guide with a multilingual audio guide

Trip to Keukenhof Garden and Flower Fields from Rotterdam

Tulips in Keukenhof Garden
MabelAmber / Pixabay

The tulip is the national symbol of Holland. It’s, therefore, a good idea to stop by the famous Tulip Park in the Netherlands. This tour is ready to do just that.

It’s a full-day trip from Rotterdam, where you will see the vast carpets of tulip flowers surrounding Lake Lisse. When done, you will visit Keukenhof, one of the country’s most extensive flower gardens, which is well worth a day trip from Rotterdam. A private tour like this is a great option since the tulip garden is only open during the spring and gets extremely busy during the peak season.

The departure points for this tour are Spido BV, Willemsplein 85, 3016 DR Rotterdam, Netherlands, and Conradstraat, 3013 AP Rotterdam. The travel is by air-conditioned and comfortable coaches.

You are treated to live commentary of the tulip growing region on the bus while enjoying the panoramic view of the surroundings. Here are some of the other best tulip fields in the Netherlands.

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Skip the Line Tour Aboard SS ‘Rotterdam’

Aerial view of Rotterdam Harbor
Royal Spido BV / GetYourGuide

If you are a sea person and love huge passenger cruises, this tour got you covered. What would it feel like to board one of the Netherlands’ most significant cruise ships from the olden days?

Imagine stepping into the Captain’s cabin. You get the feel of sailing through the Atlantic Ocean with thousands of passengers who want to reach home safely. It’s a feeling of honor that comes with tremendous responsibility on your shoulders.

You will descend to the belly of the ship and have a look at the crew areas and the gigantic machines that propelled this great liner in the ancient days.

What’s more? There is a panoramic view of the Rotterdam skyline from the stern decks. Nothing is exciting like getting the firsthand experience of life onboard the greatest ship from the past.

See Related: Things to Do in Amsterdam 

City Sightseeing Rotterdam Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

Alt-Text: Aerial view of the Maas River in Rotterdam with Willemsbrug bridge, dynamic clouds, and urban skyline.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Apart from bike riding, the other way to get a perfect view of the Netherlands’ second-largest city is sightseeing with a hop-on hop-off double-decker bus tour.

This tour is valid for 24-48 hours, depending on the places you want to visit. What’s included in the tour is free Wi-Fi to browse when on the bus, an onboard audio commentary, and free headphones. The coaches are well-fitted with heating and air conditioning, which are meant to give you complete comfort.

However, the tours do not provide food and drinks or hotel pickups. That’s why they have several stops at restaurants and eateries before you continue with the journey.

Some of the tour stops include Euromast, Erasmus Bridge, Markthall, and Central Station. These are the main destinations that represent Rotterdam as a whole.

See Related: Best Tours in Amsterdam

1-hour Rotterdam River cruise

Euromast Tower overlooking Delftshaven with leisure boat, trees, and moody clouds.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Duration: 1 hour

Looking for a unique way to see Rotterdam? Then, jump onboard the Rotterdam River cruise and sail along the Maas River for 1 hour to see all the highlights of Rotterdam. During your cruise, you will experience beautiful views of the city’s impressive skyline and the various ports.

An enthusiastic guide will tell you about all the ins and outs of the sailing route during your trip as you sail past the famous ss Rotterdam, Kop van Zuid, Hotel New York, the White House, the Willems Bridge, the Euromast, and more.

Find a place inside the cozy salon or sit on the sun deck. Onboard, there is a bar where drinks and snacks are available. Book your Rotterdam River cruise to see the city the right way.

See Related: Rijksmuseum Travel Guide: What to Know When Visiting

Family walking tour in Rotterdam with a guide

Canal Scene with Historic Windmill in Delftshaven, Rotterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Duration: 2 hours

Experience the most rewarding adventure with your family on this exclusive family-friendly walking tour in Rotterdam. Your family-friendly local professional guide will ensure the kids have as much fun sightseeing as the adults.

The tour has a leisurely pace and includes a stroll around the city center, highlighting the famous cultural and architectural sites. You and the whole family will enjoy learning about Rotterdam’s fascinating sites and facts. Euromast Tower got its name because it is located in the center of the European market area and near the Europoort harbor.

The stories shared by the guide are guaranteed to provide a few giggles as you wind down the off-beaten paths of the city. Rotterdam is called such because it has a river named the Rotte, and many years ago, the inhabitants placed a dam on it. Book this tour to learn more facts and have fun doing it.

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Feyenoord Stadium Tour

Feyenoord Stadium Aerial View
uslatar / Adobe Stock

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

Take a 90-minute tour around the home stadium of one of Europe’s most celebrated clubs! Learn the club’s history at the Feyenoord Museum, sit in the head coach’s seat, walk through the De Kuip tunnel onto the pitch,

Feyenoord Stadium is located near downtown Rotterdam, just a few minutes from the city center. The stadium is easily accessible via public transportation, with many buses and trams passing by the area regularly.

Private Markthal tour and Het Witte Huis rooftop visit

Markthal, Rotterdam Aerial View

Duration: 1 hour

Take a private 1-hour tour to Markthal that’s fun for the young and older. Along the way, you’ll also see the Old Harbor, Cube Houses, and end at Het Witte Huis.

Walk through the Old Harbour, see the famous Cube Houses, and enjoy views over the Maas Bridges and Binnenrotte. Later, enjoy a tasting with your enthusiastic guide, who will show you ‘off-limits’ places and tell you everything about Rotterdam’s most prominent food hall. You will see, smell, and taste the Market Hall at its best. The tour includes a ‘Meet & Taste’ with an entrepreneur on the market floor.

Finally, follow your guide to the roof of Het Witte Huis, the oldest skyscraper in Europe, where you will have a phenomenal view of the city. Listen to your guide explain each building you are looking at on the horizon and get tips on where to take the best pictures of your family!

See Related: Difference Between Holland and The Netherlands

Private Rotterdam Architecture Tour

Innovative Rotterdam Cube Houses from Internal Courtyard
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Duration: 2.5 hours

Explore the architectural icons of Rotterdam on a 2.5-hour walking tour. This private Rotterdam tour will include stops at many impressive buildings, including Markthal, Erasmus Bridge, the Cube Houses, and many other highlights with your city tour guide.

Hear surprising facts and stories about Rotterdam’s architecture with your local guide, including the creations and influence of architect Rem Koolhaas.

Learn about the multifunctional Market Hall, admire the unique skyline of Rotterdam from the Erasmus Bridge, and discover future buildings such as POST Rotterdam and the Zalmhaven Tower.

Highlights of Rotterdam private bicycle tour

Private Highlight 
 Rotterdam Bike Tour
image by Viator

Duration: 3 hours

Discover Rotterdam in your private group! During this relaxed bike tour, you will see all the sights Rotterdam provides, including the city’s hidden places.

You will be amazed at the skyscrapers, the nicknames of statues and buildings, the architecture, and the history and contemporary developments of this non-stop, innovative metropolis.

Get useful tips about good restaurants, trendy nightlife, and trendy shopping streets for the rest of your stay in Rotterdam or to come back again. After this tour, you’ll have all the information you need to explore it yourself.

See Related: Where to Stay in Amsterdam

Art and Culture of Rotterdam with a Local

Tranquil urban park in Rotterdam with fountain, pond, and historical architecture.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

A local provides this experience so you can learn about the different cultural aspects and artistic endeavors that make this city special. You will also love the community atmosphere when you stroll around town.

While walking the streets of Rotterdam and looking at the amazing, unique street art or getting to know more about the city’s galleries and museums, you will hear about street art artists and contemporary artists and their close connection to Rotterdam.

The local guide will share my city’s art and cultural world, where you will see, hear, and experience how colorful and multifaceted Rotterdam is.

Santa Claus sculpture by Paul McCarthy in Rotterdam, Netherlands - contemporary art installation
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Rotterdam is an exciting place to visit. There are so many activities to do in the city. You might even end up not tackling half of them. But with a good tour concierge, you may be surprised at how much you can accomplish.

While there is a big challenge in getting tour guides in Rotterdam, we have eased the search for you. I hope this Rotterdam tour guide makes visiting this beautiful city worthwhile.

See Related: Food Tours in Amsterdam

FAQs

What is there to do in Rotterdam?

Rotterdam is full of activities to participate in! You may visit the remarkable cube houses, enjoy the Maas bridges and Binnenrotte views, sample delicacies at the Market Hall, and explore Rotterdam’s architectural icons.

What are the best Rotterdam tours for sightseeing?

There are a lot of great Rotterdam tours that are good for sightseeing. The best city tours typically include visits to the famous cube houses, views over the Maasbridges and Binnenrotte, and tastings at the Market Hall. You can also explore Rotterdam’s architecture on a private walking or bike tour with a local guide.

What are the best full-day tours in Rotterdam?

There are many great full-day tours in Rotterdam, but some of our favorites include the Rotterdam City Tour, the Delfshaven tour, and the Kinderdijk windmills tour. These tours offer an excellent overview of the city and its history and some beautiful sights to see.

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