Zaans Schanse: windmills & cycling in the Dutch countryside

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After a heavy night of dancing till the sun rose, and with much procrastination in bed we ventured out on one of our favourite days out. The plan was always to go to Zaans Schanse to see the windmills, and I’m glad Lax dragged me out of bed and in under one hour we were in front of the magnificent view of the Dutch countryside. The weather was glorious, it was the hottest day since we got to Amsterdam.

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The beginning of the village

There are plenty of guided tours that take you to the windmills, however you will be paying at least 50 euros per person. So instead, do what we did, take the train from Amsterdam central, buy a 7.20 euros return ticket to Zaans Schanse (15 minute journey) and walk through a beautiful dutch village for 15 minutes and reach the windmills and save your money. It is very easy to navigate your way around and it is also sign posted.

‘If in doubt, follow the crowd’ (my motto, whenever you’re lost)

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Beautiful views wherever you look

As soon as we got there we found a little bike rental hut and we enquired about hiring a bike as we were yet to cycle in Holland. It was 4pm when we got there and we only had one hour to cycle, so we quickly agreed and paid the lovely owner 5 euros (the cheapest price we had found so far)  link here! and we were off taking in the scenery and trying to VLOG as I cycled left handed in a floral wrap dress. It was tricky but I eventually got the hang of it. I felt like a child again, grinning from ear to ear and breathing in the chocolate scented air. Yes! the air in Zaanse Schans smells like chocolate because they have a windmill that produces chocolate, so as you walk towards the windmills, you are greeted with the lovely scent of chocolate which is very different from the manure scent you tend to get in the English countryside.

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Cycling break with some beautiful hydrangeas
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The cutest little rental bike

After our one hour bike ride we took a well earned rest with some creamy vanilla ice cream from the souvenir shop. You don’t have to pay to tour the windmills but if you do want to go inside then you will have to pay, and there is also a museum but we chose not to go, instead we just took in the scenery and walked around the village. There are a few souvenir shops and places to eat and drink, I would say you could spend around 3 hours really getting to know the place.

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Zaanse Schans was truly breathtaking and totally worth the trip, this and The Anne Frank house were my highlights of Amsterdam.

Have you been to Amsterdam? If so, what is your favourite thing to do there?

Rossini @chicsenseblog

Next post: Outfits in and around Amsterdam

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