If you feel like soaking up history for a day, Edam is the place to visit. Edam is a well preserved town on the former Zuyder Sea, and Edam has a rich history of shipbuilding, timber trade and trading. Have a lovely stroll through the old centre and discover historic tea-houses, city farms, churches, warehouses, squares and canals. Around the Damplein square there are many monuments such as the former Butter market with a beautiful colonnade; and the former Town Hall, a stately building with purple-tinted stone, now used as an exhibition area by the Edam Museum. The Edam Museum is situated on the other side of the square, housed in a former merchant’s house. A walk through Edam is like visiting an open air museum.
Edam lies on Lake IJssel very near to Volendam, both towns forming the municipality of Edam-Volendam. The atmospheric Damsluis canal runs right through the centre of Edam. Along the Nieuwe Haven and the Voorhaven, dating from the 14th century, there are warehouses and houses built in the 17th and 18th century, similar in appearance to the distinguished canal-side houses built in Amsterdam during the same period. On the banks of Lake IJssel, you can visit the marina and bathing beach. Just outside Edam, near the outside harbour, is Fort Edam that formed part of the ring of fortifications around Amsterdam. During the summer season, the fort grounds and surrounding nature area are open to the public at set times. Edam is easy to reach by car or by bus.
During the months of July and August, every Wednesday morning from 10.30 to 12.30, a cheese market is held especially for tourists. In the market square, the famous little round Edam cheeses are displayed for inspection. After the inspection, the cheese porters, in their traditional white costumes and straw hats, take the cheeses on hand barrows to the weighing scales in the Waag weigh house. This traditional event is very popular with children.
Near the weigh house outside the centre of Edam is the Great church or St. Nicholas church, dating from the 15th century. If you can stand heights, on Sundays you can climb the tower via the wooden stairs alongside the church bells.
The Edam Museum is the oldest stone building in Edam with an impressive stepped gable. The museum is furnished as it was in the 17th century and has a cellar that floats on groundwater.
The Great church dates from the 15th century and major extensions and restorations were carried out over time. The stain-glassed windows are among the most striking in the Netherlands and most certainly worth seeing.
The oldest wooden house in Edam is to be found at the corner of Breestraat – Eilandsgracht, still with its original front and quaint shutters.
The Kwakelbrug bridge between Doelland and Lingerzijde is one of the last remaining lift bridges in Edam, with a beautiful view over the water, the former shipbuilding yard, the carillon tower and the tea-houses.
If you wish to see the best places in Edam, you can do the city walk from the Freebee Map in the brochure that you can order from this website by means of an SMS service. Then you can be certain that you have seen all there is to see in Edam.
Art and culture
Edam has plenty to offer in the area of art and culture. The Freebee Map lists all the places to visit for you:
The weigh house has a permanent exhibition about cheese making, and you can also taste the cheeses and buy them;
Fort Edam was built at the beginning of the 20th century as the most northerly point of the ring of fortifications around Amsterdam. Due to its limited accessibility, it has developed into a unique area of considerable cultural-historical natural value. In the area of Fort Edam, there are many pleasant walking routes and cycling routes to enjoy.
In the atmospheric town of Edam, you can have a browse in the many different and original shops. The town does not have an actual shopping centre, but many shopping streets with numerous quaint shops. There are many shops in the centre of the town around the Damplein, on the Spui, the Kleine Kerkstraat and the Lingerzijde, as well as a wide variety of shops at the Jan Nieuwenhuizenplein where the cheese market is held.
Edam is an excellent place for a nice lunch, sumptuous dinner or a pleasant drink at an outdoor café at the harbour. Edam has numerous restaurants and pubs, for both fancy and simple food. During your walk through Edam, you will come across plenty of places to enjoy a delicious meal, snack or drink.
There are also things to do in atmospheric Edam during the evening hours, with its various cafés and pubs where you can while away the time.
The Singelfestival is held annually on the festival grounds at the harbour in Edam – time for two days of cultural partying, with many different bands, theatre and cabaret acts on the programme. To be held in the third weekend in September 2011, this is the event for music lovers and theatre lovers.
For the actual dates, see the events calendar of the Freebee Map.
Plan your route with the Google® Maps planner. (You will be redirected to the Google® Maps website)