Rotterdam City Centre Areas
Rotterdam’s Central District is the gateway to the city and home to many international companies and multinationals. The area buzzes with a constant stream of people coming and going, which can make you think of New York. A hive of activity. Rotterdam Central railway station is the Central District’s new landmark.
West-Kruiskade is a long shopping street in the centre of Rotterdam with shops representing every corner of the world, from Chinese to Surinamese shops selling everything under the sun and from Dutch butcher’s to Turkish baker’s shops. Its many multicultural restaurants and snack bars make it the ideal place to find an exotic bite to eat. The area is often referred to as China Town because of its many Asian residents and companies.
Modern and classic go together in the Mauritskwartier whether you are talking fashion, architecture or culture. Its elegant, high-end fashion shops and charming little restaurants give this area a bit of Parisian chic, but modern high-rise Rotterdam is never very far away.
In 1954, the Lijnbaan road was Europe’s first pedestrian-only shopping street. Now, 60 years on, it is still at the heart of Rotterdam shopping, together with the Beurstraverse and Koopgoot area. The neighbourhood also has lots of restaurants, cafés and bars.
The overriding image of the Laurenskwartier is of the Medieval church of Saint Lawrence at one end and the ultra-modern Markthal building at the other. With plans for a public park on the Binnenrotte road, the Laurenskwartier looks set to become a modern hip place to go out. This can only be helped by the area’s trendy fashion and design shops, hip bars and restaurants.
Rotterdam’s waterfront is famed for its small harbours. The Oude Haven harbour is by far and away the most popular of these. For 25 years, it has been the perfect place for a bite to eat and a drink by the water with a view out onto the many old-fashioned ships.
Kop van Zuid & Katendrecht
The Kop van Zuid district was once a busy peninsula in the port. Nowadays, following a complete makeover, the area has an international feel and is a place where people go out to have fun. Culture and cuisine are the dominant two forces in today’s Kop van Zuid. The restaurants in nearby Deliplein square in the Katendrecht neighbourhood are also recommended.
Rotterdam’s maritime history is everywhere to be seen in the romantic Scheepvaartkwartier. The area is today mostly known for its restaurants, cafés and bars. One favourite location is a converted 1894 warehouse complex, the Westelijk Handelsterrein site.
The Museumkwartier is a dynamic area where lots of museums, art institutions and galleries are based. The very streets here have a cultural feel about them as if creative innovation is never far away. This is especially true of the Witte de Withstraat road which is also a popular destination for people going out and is busy into the early hours of the morning.
Years ago, ships set sail for the Far East from the Lloydkwartier. Nowadays, it is mostly a place for apartments and business premises, with magnificent views over the nearby river Maas. The mix of modern high-rise developments and renovated warehouses makes the Lloydkwartier feel like one of the most ‘modern’ areas of Rotterdam.
It has gone down in the history books as the place from where the Pilgrim Fathers set off for America and the birthplace of the Dutch seafaring hero, Piet Hein. This historic part of Rotterdam, with its old canals and buildings, is now a favourite tourist haunt.