The Zaanse Schans remains a special attraction, despite the large numbers of foreign tourists.
The seven windmills have fanciful names: De Kat, de Ooievaar, De Huisman, de Zoeker, de Bonte Hen, Het Jonge Schaap and de Gekroonde Poelenburg.
The harbor of Amsterdam was the largest one in the world in 17th century and along the Zaan river were it’s industrial area. Around 700 windmills were in production with the only source of energy wind. Mills were the factories of yesterday.
De Kat is open for public and visible is how in 17th century paint pigments and chalk were produced.
There is a sawmill from 1869, a small mustard mill and an oil mill which made oil from linseed.
Albert Heijn opened his first grocery shop in 1887 in the Zaanse Schans village. It grew to be the largest chain of supermarkets in The Netherlands, operating worldwid as Ahold.
You could easily spend a half day exploring the Zaanse Schans windmills and is part of our Countryside tours.