Getting to Rotterdam
Rotterdam is easily reached from anywhere in the world either by a short train ride from Schiphol Airport (Amsterdam) or at a more leisurely pace by boat as it boasts the world’s busiest seaport.
At Rotterdam Airport flights are also continually landing from the major cities of neighbouring countries. Inside the city, a network of buses, trams, water taxis and metro maintains excellent connections.
The city is served by its very own airport, which is just 8 km / 5 miles north-west of the city centre. Rotterdam The Hague Airport is relatively small and features regular flights to many European cities such as London, Hamburg and Paris. Transavia and VLM Airlines offers direct flights to Rotterdam Airport. Regular bus transport is on hand and provides a cheap way to travel into the city centre, with a journey time of no more than 20 minutes.
Rotterdam The Hague Airport www.rotterdam-airport.nl or +31-10-446 34 44
Continuing your journey to Rotterdam Central Station is quick and easy:
• By car (via Sixt) or taxi: 10 min.
• By RandstadRail + Airport Shuttle bus 50: 15 min.
• By Airport Shuttle bus 33: 20-25 min.
Tip: Buy the Rotterdam Welcome Card at Rotterdam The Hague Airport. With the Rotterdam Welcome Card you get a OV chip card for unlimited use of public transportation (for 1, 2 or 3 days) and you save over € 250 on the best attractions, museums, restaurants theatres and clubs in Rotterdam.
Amsterdam Schiphol Airport is also relatively close to Rotterdam and Linked by trains in just under one hour or under 30 minutes by the fast train for a small surplus.
From the UK you can reach Rotterdam easily by boat. In Hoek van Holland, the Stena Line from Harwich docks travellers can be at Rotterdam Central Station within half an hour. P&O Northsea Ferries from Hull arrives on the Maasvlakte, where a direct bus to Rotterdam is ready and waiting for foot passengers. Once in Rotterdam, the Fast Ferry brings you to the surrounding ‘Drecht’Cities. A water taxi offers you the opportunity to travel easily within the cityscape seen from the water.
P&O Ferries www.poferries.com of +31 20-200 83 33
Stena Line www.stenaline.co.uk of 0900-8123 (€ 0.10 p/m)
From France, there are up to 7 trains a day connecting Paris to Rotterdam in 3hr. 10 min. From Belgium, the Thalys network covers all the main Belgian cities (offering also a special fare ‘all Belgian stations’), providing easy connections.
The Eurostar is the ultimate high-speed train for daily connections from Lille, Ebbsfleet and London to Brussels-South. From the Channel Tunnel to Brussels, the Eurostar travels at 300 km/h. This journey takes only 21 minutes. Eurostar departs from London St. Pancras International to Brussels-South and vice versa 8 to 10 times a day.
The Fyra of NS Hispeed is the comfortable train that travels over the high-speed rail line. This offers the fastest connection between Amsterdam and Rotterdam via Schiphol Airport. On working days the Fyra boards once every hour and takes you from Amsterdam to Rotterdam in less than 43 minutes. If you are travelling from Schiphol Airport, then you will arrive in Rotterdam within 26 minutes. When travelling with the Fyra, you need an NS ticket plus Fyra ticket supplement. This paper ticket supplement is available via www.nshispeed.nl, NS self-service ticket machines, the NS Service Desk, the NS Hispeed Desk, NS Hispeed Telesales and travel agents. For timetables and more information, go to www.nshispeed.nl.
Local Transportation – Getting around in Rotterdam
Within Rotterdam a network of buses, trams, water taxis and metro maintains excellent connections.
Public transport from Rotterdam Central Railway Station:
Metro: take the metro, get off at the second station, ‘Beurs’, and take the exit ‘Beursplein’
Tram: take tram 8, 20, 21, 23 or 24. Get off on stop ‘Beurs’, at the ABN-AMRO Bank.
For tram and metro an OV-chipcard is needed
RET OV-chipcards (http://www.ret.nl/service-en-verkoop.aspx?sc_lang=en)
Additional information about public and local transport:
bus, metro, tram: http://www.ret.nl/service-en-verkoop.aspx?sc_lang=en
all public transport: www.9292ov.nl
Cycling is an ideal way to explore the city, as it allows you to view many of Rotterdam’s most important attractions in just a short space of time. To rent bikes visit Fietspoint Rotterdam CS located near Central Station. You can also take a guided tour of the city. Rotterdam Bycycle offers various different bicycle excursions for groups.
Rotterdam ByCycle www.rotterdambycycle.nl/en
OV-fiets (bicycle hire in conjunction with NS train travel – only in Dutch) www.ov-fiets.nl
Car rental in the city is of course also possible. Sixt offers car rental in the city centre (located in the Hilton Rotterdam) and in other parts of the city.
Access to Rotterdam and the greater Rotterdam area is continually being improved. Various projects ensure that the traffic is kept moving effectively. The Rotterdam region manages a website on which up-to-the-minute information concerning the accessibility of the city can be found, such as information on traffic congestion, road works and parking, as well as a lot of news and information about public transport. Visit www.bereikbareregiorotterdam.nl to find out the latest information.
Personal chip cards are needed to pay at parking machines. Chip cards can also be purchased at places like tobacco shops and car parks. For people that are unable to use a chip card, there are also many car parks in the centre of Rotterdam that accept coins and banknotes. At various different locations in the centre and at major attractions, payment is also possible with credit cards that display the VISA or MasterCard symbol.
Useful websites about parking in Rotterdam: Stadstoezicht Rotterdam (Rotterdam’s city inspectorate – only in Dutch) and www.bereikbareregiorotterdam.nl (only in Dutch)
Park + Ride
The cheapest and easiest way to park is on Park+Ride location just outside the city centre. On the P+R locations you can park your car for free and continue your journey with public transportation. P&R facilities can be found at the tube stations Alexander, Kralingse Zoom, Capelsebrug, Slinge, Hoogvliet and Noorderhelling.