If traditional Dutch windmills are your thing, then your favourite place in the whole wide world might be Zaanse Schans.
Zaanse Schans is sort of like a Dutch culture theme park. Here you can find all things that can be considered stereotypical Dutch: bicycles, windmills, canals, cheese, and clogs. Off the top of my head there are about 5 full size windmills here, not to mention miniatures that are scattered on the site between the various traditional Dutch houses and other buildings showcasing all things… Dutch.
One of the best things about Zaanse Schans is that it’s free! There’s no entry fee to the site and you can even get lots of free cheese samples in one of the stores. Aside that that though, there’s a fee for entering the windmills, using the public toilets, and for the main museum at the entrance. There are combo passes available but I think if you enter one windmill that’s probably enough unless you are a hardcore windmill fan. Single entry to a windmill here costs around 3.5 euros.
Transportation There are many ways to go to Zaanse Schans from Amsterdam. My favourite way is on a bicycle. The site is located about 16km northwest of Amsterdam and you get to see what the Dutch countryside looks like. Not to mention it’s an active and healthy way to get around. Alternatively, from Amsterdam Centraal you can take bus #391 directly to the entrance or take a train to Koog-Zaandijk and walk about 1km to Zaanse Schans.
In my opinion, it’s definitely worth doing a half or full day trip out to Zaanse Schans. It’s a beautiful part of Holland that is unlike anywhere else. And if you’ve only been to Amsterdam, then you haven’t seen the “real” Holland. Not that Zaanse Schans is the “real” Holland either but I think you get the idea. For more information please visit http://www.dezaanseschans.nl/en/