Alkmaar Cheese Markets & Dutch Windmills

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Alkmaar Cheese Markets & Dutch Windmills

Alkmaar’s cheese market is the number one tourist attraction in the city. Every Friday from 10:00, from April through September, you can watch cheese being traded in the same time-honoured way as it has been for centuries. If you are visiting Alkmaar, this colourful and folkloric spectacle on the beautiful Waagplein (‘weighing square’) is an absolute must-see.

Highlights Alkmaar Cheese Market & Windmills

*Guided walking tour in Alkmaar
*Performance of the Cheese carriers on the Cheese market
*Visit to the Windmill

As soon as the market opens, the samplers and traders go to work. Inspecting cheese is more than just looking at its exterior. Cheese is knocked on and a special cheese scoop used to obtain a piece, which is then crumbled between the fingers and smelled. And, naturally, it is tasted to assess the relation between taste, and the percentages of fat and moisture.


Price bargaining per kilo is still done by means of clapping hands: bargaining by clapping one another’s hands and shouting prices. The last clap clinches the sale of a batch of cheese.


Once the deal is closed, cheese carriers use a barrow to take the sold cheese to the Waag, where it is weighed in the Waaggebouw. Currently, there are three pairs of scales: the lower, middle, and upper scale. The tasman (purse man) weighs the cheese, and the waagmeester (weighing master), a public servant, supervises the correct weight being passed on to the buyer; the motto of the Alkmaar cheese carrier guild being “Een valse Waghe is de Heere een gruwel” (a false balance is an abhorrence in the eyes of the Lord).


After the walking tour with an experienced guide, whom will tell you more about striking Alkmaar and its past, we go to “Schermerhorn”. This town is famous for its three old windmills in the idyllic polder landscape. We will visit one of the windmills, here you can admire the early technique of water management from the Golden Age.

By doing this, the Dutch built successfully on their future.

Are you interested?

Set up your own trip and book your visit now at Bakker Travel. We arrange transport and tickets for small groups from 9 persons and more!

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