Monnickendam

Monnickendam is a town in the Zaanstreek-Waterland region in the province of North Holland, Netherlands.

Understand

With about 10.000 inhabitants, Monnickendam is a rather small place, not far from the huge city of Amsterdam. Its history however, is long and rich and today it is a monumental little place. Some 74 buildings have gained national heritage site status, many in the centre.

The town received city rights in 1355, providing it with a number of benefits and the village quickly grew larger. Large fires destroyed most of the city in the late 15th and early 16th century, the last one leaving no more than 80 house intact. Nevertheless, the town was rebuilt and flourished the rest of the 16th century, when the production of cheese and the smoking of fish brought economic wealth, together with the emerging shipyards. Since the current IJsselmeer was still a sea (Zuiderzee) then, and it was connected to Purmerend and Alkmaar through rivers and lakes, Monnickendam could be easily reached by large vessels. Trade developed between the village and the countries around the Baltic Sea. Many of the historic buildings today have their origin in those prosperous times.

Later, dams and dikes that were built to protect the region from the water, brought an end to Monnickendam's connection to outer sea and an area of economic downfall began. From those days on, like other towns in the region, cattle stock and the production of dairy became the town's primary activity. A canal was dug to allow so called "tugboats" to reach Amsterdam.

Get in

The main access road is the N247, which connects the village directly to Amsterdam in the south and passes along Broek in Waterland in between. To the north, that same N247 connects Monnickendam to Edam-Volendam and ultimately, close to Hoorn, to the A7/E22

Bus connections are ample, many of them passing by on their way from Amsterdam to other destinations in the area. Some of them only stop on the side of town, on the Bernardbrug only, but that's still an easy walking distance. Coming from Amsterdam, line 115 runs directly between Monnickendam and Amsterdam, and will bring you right up to the church. Alternatively:

A great way to get to Monnickendam is by bike. There are many cycle routes that will take you there:

Get around

This small town can be explored well on foot, but a bike is a good alternative.

See

Just wandering or biking through town will quickly show the main merits of this place. Make sure not to miss:

Do

Eat

Sleep

Connect

Go next

Nearby destinations include:

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, February 21, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.