The Dutch windmills are world famous, especially the ones in the countryside. The Netherlands is mainly known as a country under sea level. It is a country with a lot of water, that needs to work hard to keep all that water in check. The mills play an important role in the fight against water. There are still about 1200 mills left, of which 220 are situated in the province of South-Holland.
Just outside of Nieuwkoop you will find the unique mill-course of Aarlanderveen. The only mill-course in the world that still operates to drain the surrounding polder. It’s located about a kilometre from Nieuwkoop, south of Aarlanderveen. It drains the dried up polder on the Westzijde in Aarlanderveen. The water is shipped to the Oude Rijn. Mills 1 to 3 were originally built in 1786, but all of them were destroyed by fire and rebuilt. Mill 4 was built in 1803 to drain a 100 hectare lake that was created through peat extraction. It was a metre lower than the surrounding polder and therefore couldn’t be drained by the first three mills. One of the mills can be visited by appointment.
It takes about an hour by road to get to the 19 mills of Kinderdijk from Nieuwkoop. They are definitely worth a visit. Click here for more information.
A day trip to the Zaansche Schans in North-Holland is also recommended. Located just 45 kilometres from Nieuwkoop lies this tourist mill town, which is visited by tourists from all around the world. It’s both fun and educational and you can travel there from Nieuwkoop no time at all!