Alkmaar Travel Guide

  • Alkmaar ; friday market summer season
    Alkmaar ; friday market summer season
    by BrillantWild
  • Mooring on the Bierkade. Alkmaar.
    Mooring on the Bierkade. Alkmaar.
    by BrillantWild
  • Cheese market
    by dutchasiancouple

Alkmaar Highlights

  • Pro
    angiebabe profile photo

    angiebabe says…

     busy and touristed streets with charming buildings and canals, cheese auction photo opportunity with colourful costumes! 

  • Con
    ronaldbarr profile photo

    ronaldbarr says…

     Alkmaar Ring Road! 

  • In a nutshell
    crazygal59 profile photo

    crazygal59 says…

     Well worth the half hour train trip from Amsterdam. 

Alkmaar Things to Do

  • Cheese market

    Originally a chapel for the Holy Ghost, this 14th century building was converted to a weigh house in 1582. Today it houses the Kaasmuseum (Cheese Museum) and is the backdrop for the cheese market on Fridays (10am – noon), April through August.

  • Laurens Kerk (Laurens church)

    This prominent and attractive church in the middle of the town as you head up to the main canal and cheese market past the Town Hall is a 15 th century church which contains the tomb of Count Floris V (ruled 1256-1296) and - the oldest church organ in the Netherlands!

  • Visbank – Fish were sold here until...

    Fish were sold here at the Visbank until 1998. The columns (first wood, later stone) were replaced with cast-iron pillars. The fish were sold on the stone tables, usually after being kept fresh in baskets in the canal behind the stall. The door gave access to the canal, which was also to transport the fish: similar fish stalls in other old towns...

  • Visbank – Trade on street markets.

    As you have read in the first tip of the Visbank, it is situated south of the Waagplein at the corner of Mient and Verdronkenoord. It is very interesting to learn something about the daily markets in the Netherlands -> Until the 19th century, most food and agricultural products were traded on street markets. The larger the town, the more...

  • Visbank – Simple covered fish stalls.

    For tourists Alkmaar is a popular cultural destination. Especially visiting a (daily) market always captures the imagination. In all the old Dutch cities were formerly several market squares or streets on which certain products were sold, for example a butter market, grain market or turf market. Alkmaar is well known for its traditional cheese...

  • Waaggebouw

    Originally a chapel for the Holy Ghost, this 14th century building was converted to a weigh house in 1582. Today it houses the Kaasmuseum (Cheese Museum) and is the backdrop for the cheese market on Fridays (10am – noon), April through August.


Alkmaar Hotels

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Alkmaar Restaurants

  • An unique place.

    Where to have lunch whenever you’re hiking the streets of Alkmaar. The last time I visited the city I was with Paulien and the 3 kids. They all suggested to have lunch at the HEMA, do you want to believe that? For me the HEMA is way to ordinary and especially no option whenever you know that Alkmaar has much better to offer than that. For example...

  • Tender Turkish delights

    This restaurant is located in one of the many small streets in the old Alkmaar city center. The street is called FNIDSEN, what is derived from the word VENICE (Alkmaar has canals too!). Around one corner is the famous wooden house with the canon ball; around the other corner you end up at the famous cheese market square. I enjoined grilled chicken...

  • Delicious Thai food

    The restaurant has been recommended to us by a guy from Grand Hotel Alkmaar. We were a bit skeptic at first, as experienced told us that it is quite difficult to find good Thai restaurant outside Thailand (at least to satisfy our taste buds), but the guy was right. Food was very fresh and tasty. We liked it so much we came back there next day, and...


Alkmaar Nightlife

  • Central bar

    This is a little bar in the main square, the Waagplein, right by the cheese museum (one of four or five in a row). Go inside and it will be immediately obvious how it got its name! Nothing fancy or pretentious here – just decent draught Heineken and friendly service.

  • Go to the theatre!

    There's a large theatre in Alkmaar, just across from the Laurens church. You can also rent meeting rooms and catering there.Check the website for events and programme. Dutch people are fairly relaxed with dress code when going to the theatre. Smart casual is how I'd describe it. But you could wear jeans too, nobody would comment.

  • Laurens church

    A church for a nightlife spot, you wonder? Well, the church is used as a function room and you can rent it to hold parties and events. So we're considering holding one or two events for the 600 or so participants for the conference in 2006.


Alkmaar Transportation

  • Train

    The easiest way to get to Alkmaar is by train. You can get there from Amsterdam Central Station in about 30 minutes, or do as we did and travel straight from Schiphol. For the latter you’ll need to change either at Sloterdijk, and it will take about 50 minutes. The trains are clean, frequent and punctual, and seating is arranged on two levels...

  • By car

    Are you nervous about taking your baby or child on a plane trip? You aren't alone, most parents are nervous about it. We have moved with the kids to Alkmaar by car this holiday and drove some distances by car on when we were there and we learned a few things that hopefully will help you. General: Bring books, old favourite toys and new surprise...

  • Travelling with (young) kids.

    Are you nervous about taking your baby or child on a plane trip? You aren't alone, most parents are nervous about it. We have moved with the kids to Alkmaar by car this holiday and drove some distances by car on when we were there and we learned a few things that hopefully will help you. General: Bring books, old favourite toys and new surprise...


Alkmaar Shopping

See all 10 Shopping in Alkmaar
  • dutch shoes for sale

    there were several shops or stalls that had Dutch clogs for sale - wooden ones and for the first time id seen them, slipper ones ie soft ones done in the shape of wooden clogs! (which i fell for as theyre light and easier to carry esp home to NZ and Oz with my already over burgeoning european collection of travel stuff, and theyre rather...

  • Very nice jewelry

    Schitterend Sieraden has a collection of women, men and child jewelry. The jewelry is special due to the design or the materials (gold, silver, genuine gemstones, freshwaterpearls) used. The jewelry is modern and classic. The jewelry can be worn for special occasions (to a wedding, ball, prom etc) or be worn daily. For the men they have a nice...

  • You have to try this cheese!

    Very friendly staff who pointed out to me that it would be cheaper to buy my cheese cut off the wedge instead of a small prepackaged round. She offered to shrink wrap my cheese which was great as one of the two wedges was a gift. I was also given some coated paper with instructions to wrap the cheese in it once it was opened. Someone else...


Alkmaar Local Customs

  • Talko to someone who knows ...

    I guess we all agree on this on; there is nothing more exciting than going travelling - exploring another country, experiencing a different culture, travelling around in new ways, sampling the local cuisine and chatting to the local people for a different perspective on life.However during our travels we learned that there is one certain thing that...

  • Voltage, frequency and plug ins.

    Maybe it sounds a bit weird, but as an experience traveler I know that you every now and then need this kind of information in advance: electricity in the Netherlands is 230 Volts, alternating at 50 cycles per second. If you travel to the Netherlands with a device that does not accept 230 Volts at 50 Hertz, you will need a voltage converter.There...

  • Grolsch -> Just like home sweet home!...

    Let’s make no secret of it. We both like a nice cold glass of beer. Being at our travel pace is always a challenge to find a beer we like, which reflects our taste of having a beer. At Alkmaar (and this probably counts for our entire home country) it was rather difficult. We found out that there are a few local beers, only known in the particular...


Alkmaar Warnings and Dangers

  • Do drink enough!!!

    For years, we have all been told of the importance of water. The general guideline has been to drink 2 liter of water each day. For a person who is not living an active lifestyle this may be enough, but if you are physically active, you need more water than that. That is especially true if you are hiking in the Alkmaar area due to the fact the...

  • Reading a map!

    Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, the catchy title of the 1992 bestseller by John Gray, succinctly expresses an ancient dilemma. What--if anything--do men's and women's brains do differently?The general statement that men and women respond and behave differently under the same circumstances is true; For example, from the crib, male babies...

  • If you wanna have a better view...

    If you want to have a better view, try to go early so you can choose the best spot to see what's going on at the market square. Besides, it's not easy to find a parking space, too if late.Take a look at the pic, isn't it packed? Now you have an idea, eh? ;-)


Alkmaar What to Pack

  • Travel light!

    * Map and guidebook;* Crackers;* 2 Liter of water;* Fruit / power bars. * Hiking boots;* 1 extra t-shirt;* Shorts with many pockets;* Sunglasses;* Fleece type jacket;* Hat / cap;* Raincoat. * Lip balm;* (Neck) sunblock;* Band-aids. * Camera and lots of SD cards!* Filter;* Extra batteries;* Lens 210 mm. * Binocular;* Compass.

  • Shoes and Brollies.

    Always wear comfy shoes. Make sure they are shoes you have broken in before or you will suffer for sure. The cobbles on the streets make it next to impossible to walk with shoes with a heel. Also make sure your shoes have a good cushion in the sole, otherwise your feet will suffer. Trust me....I know! If your camera takes batteries, buy plenty...

  • Alkmaar Hotels

    11 Hotels in Alkmaar

    26 Reviews and Opinions

Alkmaar Off The Beaten Path

  • Another View.

    Taking a canal trip in this town is a must. It is interesting to see things from a different perspective. Just to see the archetecture in this town is amazing.

  • Water tower

    Here follow some tips about a visit to the water tower in Alkmaar. It won the Watertower Award 2002 for its original restauration by the architects that now hold office there.

  • a window

    Part of the outside wall has been broken away to make a window and let in some light. The diagonal shape on the right is the bottom of the water basin.


Alkmaar Sports & Outdoors

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    by ardnas67 Written Sep 3, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    You can visit the stadion of AZ, the DSB-stadion. Aguide is leading you around for an hour. We also had a very nice and tasty lunch overthere

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    • Family Travel

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Alkmaar Favorites

  • Old town, Alkmaar

    The old town has been protected from the invasion of too many modern buildings, possibly in part because it is surrounded by an attractive moat. The main shopping street, Lange Straat, does have some of the usual names you find everywhere these days (e.g. H & M) but has kept its charm and character. The shops themselves are over-shadowed by several...

  • Canals

    In the centre of Alkmaar are a number of small canals lined with little shops, bars and restaurants. This makes a good spot for photos – look for interesting reflections or capture the gentle pace of life here from one of the bridges. As in other Dutch towns and cities you can do a boat tour on the canal, which takes about an hour and leaves from...

  • Straatorgel

    Walking down a shopping street in the Netherlands can whisk you back in time with more than just the scenery. On this day I ran across a street organ that was almost 100 years old called De Barometer. This grandfather of MP3 players, belted out popular tunes from the past, while its owner kept time to the music with a cooper coin box, entreating...


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