The Complete Guide

ROTTERDAM: Nightlife & Nightclubs

An Intro to Rotterdam, Netherland

Rotterdam is the second largest city, behind Amsterdam and a municipality of the Netherlands. It is located in the province of South Holland, at the mouth of the Nieuwe Maas channel leading into the Rhine-Meuse-Scheldt delta at the North Sea. Its history goes back to 1270 when a dam was constructed in the Rotte, after which people settled around it for safety. In 1340, Rotterdam was granted city rights by the Count of Holland.It has a population of 633,471 and is known for its Erasmus University, it’s riverside setting, lively cultural life, and maritime heritage.

Rotterdam at Night
Rotterdam at Night

The story of Rotterdam, the destruction and reconstruction, and the drive to innovate that locals still use today to shape their city all make Rotterdam a fascinating place to visit. Everything seems possible here, and there is so much left to explore. The completely new inner city was laid out after its devastation by bombing during World War II,the city was restructured with a spacious and functional architecture oriented toward the river and a series of experiments at complete city planning that has attracted both professional and touristic admiration.

Want to visit Rotterdam for the first time? Curious to discover the city, but clueless to what it has to offer? This brief introduction offers an initial impression of Rotterdam and what you can see, do and experience in this vibrant city, here we are going to take a deep look into some of the best options of Rotterdam which will make your experience surely unforgettable.

and that’s for what the city is famous for.

The Nightlife of Rotterdam

Rotterdam was nominated the world’s best festival city a couple of years ago, and with good reason. The cityhosts countless different festivals,even not just in sultry summer, but also in the icy winter months as well. Rotterdam’s festival organizers also demonstrate daring and a drive to innovate in the programs they design.Whether you are in the mood to dance to the beats of the DJ or to drink a beer at the bar, Rotterdam offers you plenty of choices to suit your mood. You can find glamorous cocktail bars, classic pubs, hip and happening dance clubs, intimate concert venues and more in your Rotterdam journey. 

The Nightlife of Rotterdam
The Nightlife of Rotterdam

We have come up with some of the best and finest options for nightlife available in the city so you don’t find yourself in the hassle of looking for:

Water Based Transportation

Water Based Transportation
Water Based Transportation

If you are looking for an approach another great way to get around the city, consider using one of the various water taxis or water buses at Rotterdam. There are a number of different options available depending on your destination and starting point.  These water taxies are being operated by HNY and shuttles between the Hotel New York and the Leuvenhaven subway station, and the Veerhaven. This service is offered 7 days a week from 9 am till midnight. There is also the ferry called the Aqualiner that offers quick service to various points around the city, or the Waterbus ferry.

Shopping seven days a week in Rotterdam

Shopping seven days a week in Rotterdam
Shopping seven days a week in Rotterdam

The shopping streets in Rotterdam city center are always busy, hence, you can shop until you drop seven days a week. The main shopping areas are Lijnbaan, Hoogstraat, and Meent and last but not least the Market Hall. Or you can go shopping at a big indoor mall like the Zuidplein Mall and the Alexandrium Mall just outside the center. All big international brands have huge stores and you will stay dry on a rainy day.

Events and festivals in Rotterdam

Events and festivals in Rotterdam
Events and festivals in Rotterdam

When you are planning your journey to Rotterdam, have a look at The Rotterdam’s festival calendar and get to know which events and festivals are scheduled there. Throughout the year there are lots of events in Rotterdam, but most big and demanding festivals like the summer carnival and the world port days take place in summer.

Best Bars in Rotterdam

Rotterdam has great nightlife as you would expect in such a modern city. Near to the center, you will find Stadhuisplein has many bars and clubs located nearby and the “student area” where you can get a great night out without breaking the bank.Fortunately, this southern Dutch gem is full of world-class bars, pubs, and breweries that are guaranteed to keep your spirits high, here we have gathered a list of some best Bars of The Rotterdam which are good enough to cater your booze desire :

De Witte Aap

De Witte Aap
De Witte Aap

This excellent and cozy bar has plenty to offer night owls. Unlike most bars in Rotterdam (or bars in the Netherlands for that matter), De Witte Aap stays open past 3am every night of the week and keeps things rolling even later over the weekend. Aside from its late-night business hours, the bar boasts an extensive drinks menu, featuring many Belgian and Dutch craft beers, plus a decent selection of wine and bubbly spirits. Guests at De Witte Aap can also expect on-point music selection, friendly service and one of the largest heated terraces in the city.

Locus Publicus

Locus Publicus
Locus Publicus

A traditional Dutch beer café with a typically down-to-earth atmosphere, Locus Publicus stocks over 200 ales, lagers and stouts, which are mainly brewed in the Netherlands and Belgium. Outfitted with dark-wood furnishings and old-time knick-knacks, the café feels homely, to say the least, and looks as though it hasnot changed much since the turn of the century. There is plenty of space for prolonged beer-drinking sessions inside its cozy lounge and even more seating available outside on Locus Publicus’s terrace.

De Kaapse Brouwers Taproom

De Kaapse Brouwers Taproom
De Kaapse Brouwers Taproom

Located amid the many other culinary hotspots found inside Fenix Food Factory, De Kaapse Brouwers is an independent craft brewery that makes beers inspired by old-fashioned and modern recipes alike. The brewery features an in-situ taproom, where beer lovers can sample its wares at their own leisure or sign up for special tasting sessions. Thankfully for anyone who suffers from beer munchies, De Kaapse Brouwers serves several small dishes alongside its beer menu, including particularly appetizing cheese platters.

Wonderbar

Wonderbar
Wonderbar

Attached to avant-garde cultural venue WORM, this weird and wonderful pub looks as if it was put together from old furniture, creating an awesome DIY aesthetic that matches perfectly with its overall vibe. One of the most animated pubs in Rotterdam, Wonderbar regularly hosts live events involving experimental performances helmed by local or international artists. In regards to refreshments, Wonderbar stocks many regional and foreign brews, plus a number of imported soft drinks, including Club Mate and Fritz Cola.

Spikizi 

Spikizi
Spikizi

Spikizi is a brand-new cocktail bar just off the Witte de Withstraat in the center of Rotterdam. It is a tiny, very cozy place full of nice people, nice plants and nice cocktails! You will be astonished to know that, Spikizi refers to way back in the days when bars were prohibited in the region and people were forced to drink alcohol in secret, they did so in secret bars where the owners asked the customers to please speakeasy so they wouldnot get caught.Nowadays you can happily talk as much as you want, and enjoy great music at Spikizi, usually mellow tunes like hip hop and R&B from the nineties.  Their cocktail menu is really extensive, and you will be extremely happy that they serve a ‘sour’ with a drink of choice, like the amaretto sour, the all-time favorite cocktail at Spikizi.

Bokaal

Bokaal
Bokaal

Just a few blocks away from the Markthal, Bokaal is located on the corner of a cozy square called the Nieuwemarkt, a square full of small boutiques, bars, and restaurants.They have a variety of beers to serve, brands ranging from heavy Belgian beers to lighter beers from Dutch soil. Try the Tripel Karmeliet but don’t blame if you wake up a bit dizzy next morning. Next to decent beers they have designed a menu with snacks that all go well with the beers served. Bokaal has an excellent indoor bar which is often more than necessary in Rotterdam but if the weather allows you can spend your evening on the terrace outside as well.

Proeflokaal Reijngoud

Proeflokaal Reijngoud
Proeflokaal Reijngoud

One of the most frequented, favorite and renowned name for beer is Proeflokaal Reijngoud situated at the Witte de Withstraat. This is the best street in the city for cafés and restaurants and a popular place for locals to kick off their weekend.

Reijngoud has a large variety of beers, over a hundred different type of beer bottles and 16 types of draught beer! Many of them have been brewed by local brewers and each original in their own way. They serve food as well, such as steak, satay, and ribs. So if you have worked up an appetite you don’t have to move to a different place. They have a relaxed atmosphere and some friendly staff, it is a great venue to sit at the sunny terrace with your friends or loved one, drink some special beers and have some food before exploring the city nightlife. Definitely the place for beer enthusiasts!

1NUL8

1NUL8
1NUL8

Brasserie/wine bar 1NUL8 Rotterdam is named after the number 108 of this property at Meent. Meent 108 is the former location of Café Bed, which has now moved to Coolsingel in Rotterdam. Wine bar 1NUL8 is presently one of the best nightlife hotspots of Rotterdam, which is due to the central and unique location at the trendy shopping street Meent in Rotterdam.The dinner menu of wine bar 108 in Rotterdam is typical for an eatery with Mediterranean cuisine.

De Witte Aap

De Witte Aap
De Witte Aap

De Witte Aap has plenty of options to offer the night owls. Unlike most bars in Rotterdam, De Witte Aap stays open past 3am every night of the week and keeps things rolling even later over the weekend. Aside from its late-night business hours, the bar boasts an extensive drinks menu, featuring many Belgian and Dutch craft beers, plus a decent selection of wine and bubbly spirits. Guests at De Witte Aap can also expect on-point music selection, friendly service and one of the largest heated terraces in the city.

Best Bar Restaurant in Rotterdam

Rotterdam is best known as a pioneer for its modernity but the City has also grown into a center for mouth-watering international cuisine. Over the years, Rotterdam has been gradually transforming into a happening place for your taste buds, with culinary newcomers joining its growing gastronomic scene of tasty street food, tantalizing ethnic bites, up to Michelin-star dining and molecular discoveries monthly.

As Rotterdam has devoted its past to pioneering modernity, the city is now becoming a great place for new culinary developments and a haven for those on the hunt for trendy yet flavorsome dining.In the evening you can go out for dinner in one of the restaurants in Rotterdam, anywhere in the city. Rotterdam offers a wide range of international food, which varies from restaurants with a Michelin star to easy, have a look at some best options available in the City.

Restaurant de Jong

Restaurant de Jong
Restaurant de Jong

Amongst the most beautifully decorated restaurants in the city, the “Restaurant de Jong” is situated under the Rotterdam train line with an unexpectedly spartan environment. Founded by young restaurateur Jim de Jong, a proud supporter of the Slow Food Movement, De Jong is committed to using of the most ethically cultivated ingredients around, with an abundance of its herbs and vegetables grown on site in the restaurant’s own private garden. Serving a surprise prix fixe menu, at the discretion of the chef, the meal is guaranteed to be consistently delicious and unexpected.

Just 

Just
Just

The cuisine is simply good food with a twist or a dash from the Dutch Antilles. Surprisingly, there is no menu, which is actually quite liberating. The chef decides what will tickle your palate best. You can choose between meat, fish, vegetarian or a mix of all.  Walking into “Just” feels like joining a party; the vibe is laid back, easy going with big smiles, and whatever has stressed you out is immediately forgotten. 

The interior is hip without trying too hard and the open plan with a view of the kitchen feels homely instead of being part of a restaurant. You are presented with a cocktail menu and a very diversified but unpretentious wine list. Regardless if you are a whiskey lover or not, the Whiskey Sour is sunshine in a glass, made the Caribbean way. All cocktails are a glass of goodness though.Just doesn’t do disappointment, Just is the perfect name: just mouth-watering, just what you needed and just right.

Café De Beurs

Café De Beurs
Café De Beurs

The urban vibe is in the air at Café De Beurs. The confident atmosphere makes every guest feel enthusiastic and comfortable. Restaurant De Beurs is located in the heart of Rotterdam and it is decorated with robust tables, enamel ceiling lights, and cool chandeliers: Café De Beurs is the right place for street food and offers a wide choice of the barbecue-inspired international street food menu. Our favorite is the Philly Cheese Steak, a real classic in America competing with the hamburger and hot dog, but still a rarity in the Netherlands. In summer you can enjoy the sun at the lovely outdoor terrace while viewing people strolling by in the shopping street. In winter, De Beurs is the perfect place to relax at the huge Chesterfield Sofa. Café De Beurs in Rotterdam is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week.

Café Van Zanten

Café Van Zanten
Café Van Zanten

This cafe is located in the heart of the nightlife district of Rotterdam, called Meent. You can enjoy the event devotedly especially when the weather is nice, you can relax at the outdoor bar and the sunny terrace of at Café van Zanten  situated at the market square Binnenrotte. Café van Zanten is the right venue in Rotterdam for a beer and some snacks. Café van Zanten has also a good choice of wines.

Nhow

Nhow
Nhow

Located on the seventh floor of Nhow Amsterdam Rai Hotel, this sky-high bar and restaurant offer almost unrivaled views across Rotterdam. A great spot for casual get-togethers with friends, Nhow has an extensive drinks menu that includes everything from standard Dutch pilsners to fancy cocktails laced with imported liquor. The bar’s kitchen caters to meat-eaters, vegetarians, and vegans equally by serving a flexitarian menu that can be altered to fit guests’ dietary needs or preferences.

Euromast

Euromast
Euromast

This famous observation tower in Rotterdam is the tallest building in the city, and also home to one of its most popular restaurants.  The restaurant features a ‘surprise’ prix fixe option of 3, 4, or 5 courses along with their standard ‘a la carte and all prepared from seasonal ingredients. Euromast offers one of the most exciting dining experiences to be found in the Netherlands.

Parkheuvel

Parkheuvel
Parkheuvel

Recipient of numerous awards for quality, including 2 Michelin Stars, this luxurious French restaurant features 180-degree views from a surrounding façade of the glass of the beautiful Meuse River and Het Park. Famous for their exquisite presentation and service, and assiduity in matching the numerous coursesand wines to perfection, this is the creme-de-la-creme of Rotterdam dining.

Café Pol

Cafe Pol
Cafe Pol

One of the oldest café at Meent is Café Pol, this is a no-nonsense pub with easy listening music and a perfect place to have an unusual conversation with young people. This pub is comparatively small, so in summer and even in winter, most people just hang out on the outdoor terrace. Café Pol also serves lunch and a simple bistro style dinner.

Amarone

Amarone
Amarone

Amarone was awarded a Michelin Star after only a year of business and has gone on to secure its reputation with an unwavering commitment to fine dining. With a gorgeous modern interior, beautiful presentation, and an expansive menu combining elements of French, Spanish, and Mediterranean cuisine, Amarone has also been consistently praised for its excellent value, a quality not often attributed to recipients of a Michelin Star.

Rosso

Rosso
Rosso

This chic, romantic establishment on Van Vollenhovenstraat specializes in Mediterranean and French cuisine. With lounge-style seating and an emphasis on warm, vermilion colors in its decor, Rosso exudes a vibe at once classy, modern, and relaxed. It features a menu of about 3 or 4 dozen small dishes, from which you can either, make your own selection, or entrust to the discretion of the chef. With a fun atmosphere featuring occasional live-music performances, Rosso is the perfect place for a dining experience to remember along with the best drink in accordance with your booze desire.

Best Nightclub in Rotterdam

Rotterdam has always played a significant part within the Dutch club scene for generations and features many excellent venues that organize parties, concerts, and events throughout the week. These clubs include some of the most respected establishments in the Netherlands as well as newer hangouts that focus on underground music.

Keeping in view the architecture, the people, their cultures and customs -actually the City’s nightlife is filled with variable contrasts. Glamorous cocktail bars and classic pubs, hip and happening dance clubs and intimate concert venues are the best preference to enjoy City’s unmatched nightlife scenes.  Depending on what you like to do when you hit the town and what mood you are in, Rotterdam can offer you wildly different nights out planes, please have a look at it, It’s all up to you :

BAR

BAR
BAR

A one-of-a-kind venue with plenty of heart, BAR serves as a hangout, club and restaurant rolled into one, with space for relaxing, dancing and dining. It is easily one of the best spots for electronic music in Rotterdam and hosts trendy yet laid-back club nights every weekend, featuring local and international talent. BAR regularly collaborates with other movers and shakers working in the Dutch club scene and often hosts special events during music festivals in Rotterdam.

Rotown

Rotown
Rotown

A bulwark of Rotterdam’s alternative music scene, Rotown ranks among the longest-running venues in the city and opened its doors over three decades ago. Known for organizing shows and parties geared towards Rotterdam’s younger generation, Rotown hosts events throughout the week, ranging from monthly open-mic sessions to club nights dedicated to music from the 2000s, 1990s, and 1980s. Even when it isn’t hosting events, Rotown still welcomes visitors and features a popular on-site bar with restaurant.

Annabel

Annabel
Annabel

There was a time when Rotterdam did not have a proper music hall. People from Rotterdam were forced to travel outside the city to see musicians and concerts. Fortunately for us, those dark days are long gone. Annabel opened its doors a few years ago in the backyard of Bar and Biergarten. Since then those three together are known as the golden triangle – A perfect spot for anyone who likes music, drinks and fun times. Annabel has wonderful music and light installation which are ideal for the wildest shows. Almost every night during the weekend musicians from across the world perform and treat the public on a crazy night. Music styles range from electronic music to rock, so something for everybody.

Club Vie

Club Vie
Club Vie

Club Vie edges onto the northern side of Willembrug in Rotterdam and features two separate rooms that are designed to accommodate large scale parties. The club’s interior looks amazing and includes several awesome, overhead light installations. Club Vie’s weekly program generally focuses on house, techno, , and RnB.

NORA

NORA
NORA

As NORA feature three separate floors, it is possible for the club to throw several different parties during one night. The club organizes a popular weekly event called ‘Jimmy’ that takes place every Saturday as well as other nights that mainly revolve around hip-hop, Latin music, and EDM.

BIRD Rotterdam

BIRD Rotterdam
BIRD Rotterdam

This popular cultural center features several projects including a restaurant and night club. BIRD launched in 2011 and has since gained a large following due to its inclusive approach towards music, entertainment, and gastronomy. While funk, soul, and jazz play a large part on the venue’s program, it is not uncommon for BIRD to showcase talent from other more electronically-orientated genres such as hip-hop or Techno.

Maassilo

Maassilo
Maassilo

Once a grain silo looms over the southern banks of the river Maas and wouldnot look out of place in Blade Runner or any other example of dystopian fiction. Although Maassilo appears strangely futuristic, it is actually over 100 years old and was once recognized as the largest grain storage facility in Europe. Since then the buildings have been converted into an expansive cultural center that houses four separate club venues to entertain its visitors.

Villa Thalia

Villa Thalia
Villa Thalia

Villa Thalia, the former Thalia Lounge, has now been renovated and drastically transformed, is an exclusive night club situated in the stately building of the former movie theatre Thalia at Kruiskade Rotterdam. Villa Thalia is the biggest and most well-known nightclub in the center of Rotterdam. The movie theme is a red thread through Villa Thalia, where luxury and style are predominant. You can do some social talk, relax, enjoy a drink & dance and meet new people in a classic environment.

Café De Vrienden Live

Café De Vrienden Live
Café De Vrienden Live

Situated in a peaceful location in the Old Harbor, the stage café De Vrienden Live in Rotterdam is the one of its kind ideal place for a drink or a good dinner and the best night out plan. Expect full-time live music entertainment at this party pub. You can experience this friendly and unique sing-along atmosphere at De Vrienden Live every week!After dinner starting from 10 pm the live band will rock the place and they will play your personal favorite song on request. The DJ booth is a beer can shape and he entertains the party crowd when the band is having a break. There live music show is continued on every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. So what are you waiting for . . .

Après-Skihut

Après-Skihut
Après-Skihut

This place is one of the Netherlands’ most famous party pub for more than 20 years situated at the Town Hall Square in Rotterdam. They are having it’s one big après-ski party over there. The Après-Skihut party crew, DJ, singers, and confetti make students, businessmen and construction workers sing and dance all together. The theme parties are immensely popular among party people in greater Rotterdam and tourists. You can dance on the bar until the early morning hours with all your friends whomake the Skihut in Rotterdam perfect for groups of friends and bachelor parties. Try one of the special Après-Skihut cocktails, like a drop shot, a Flügel or an Apfelkorn.

Conclusion

Let us conclude the topic,in this article we had a brief introduction of Rotterdomalong with highlighting some of its prominent norms, culture, and nightlife. We also went through different activities and places to enjoy the nightlife of the City, Musical venues, Bars, Restaurants and Nightclubs as well. Such activities provide a great source of entertainment for tourists and locals as well.

As already elaborated, , the nightlife of The Rotterdomis mainly based in its bustling downtown areas where boutiques, cafes, concert and dance venues, galleries, museums, and restaurants offer something really special to everyone who loves the culture, shopping and nightlife. There are plenty of pubs & bars scattered throughout the City areas and they are truly satisfying the desire of thirsty visitors where you can enjoy your cocktail with the mesmerizing architectural beauty of the hand-crafted beers and their decors.

You don’t feel any hunger during your trip that is why we also suggested some of the finest restaurants in the city that offer exotic and delicious food along with your favorite drinks. You can really enjoy the taste of good food along with some great booze.

And lastly, we went through comprehensive options of nightclubs that offered great music and fun with some delightfully exotic choicesof drinks and cocktail that willdefinitely delight your overall experience of charming nightlife during your stay at The Rotterdom.

All of the aforementioned experiences will work together to make your journey of Rotterdom really a memorable one. A perfect and balanced blend of the above-identified activities can actually boost your experience and make your trip extremely unforgettable for you.