Sometimes we just want to make beautiful photos and Rotterdam is the perfect city to do so. That’s why you’ll find the best photography and Instagram spots in Rotterdam here. Whether you’re looking for the most instagrammable places in Rotterdam , or sunset spots. These photo locations in Rotterdam are a must visit. If you’re visiting Rotterdam for one day, or even a weekend, you cannot go wrong with these Rotterdam Instagram and photography spots.
Enjoy your stay and discover the best views in Rotterdam and great photography spots in The Netherlands. Street photography in Rotterdam is also very interesting to shoot, as well as all the other insta worthy places in Rotterdam. Find the best photo spots in Rotterdam here and explore Rotterdam in a different way.
Last updated on the 31st of May 2022
Rotterdam Instagram & photo spots: Discover the best things to add to your one day Rotterdam itinerary
P.S. The link to the map is at the end of the article!
P.P.S. If you’re looking for Rotterdam itineraries, free things to do, facts about Rotterdam and more, you can discover that at the end of this article.
Table of Contents
The Luchtsingel is found in, what used to be, a forgotten area by the municipality of Rotterdam. While it is located at the Hofplein, which used to be the bustling heart of Rotterdam, it wasn’t the same for decades. The area of Luchtsingel has been increasingly popular with entrepreneurs, visitors and street artists.
Dozens of buildings were empty, the area looked like trash, and the economy wasn’t working in their advantage either. This was happening to several areas in Rotterdam. And that’s when the municipality decided to organise a contest in 2011. The inhabitants of Rotterdam were asked to think of projects that would increase the livelihood and quality of life in Rotterdam. There was four million reserved to create the winning plan. All the inhabitants of Rotterdam could vote for the final five, and the Luchtsingel won with 48% per cent of the votes.
Nowadays, this area is filled with street art, colourful buildings and, of course, the yellow and wooden pedestrian bridge that is called the Luchtsingel. It’s one of the most instagrammable places in Rotterdam, and the popping yellow colour explains one of the reasons.
2. Cube houses
Of course, I cannot leave the cube houses of Rotterdam out of this list with instagrammable spots. At the beginning of the 70s architects wanted to create buildings that weren’t just grey and typical post-war buildings. Piet Blom and Aldo van Eyck designed the cube houses after being inspired by Le Corbusier. The first cube houses in The Netherlands were built in the city of Helmond. After those were finished, construction in Rotterdam started.
In the cube houses, you have three layers: One with the kitchen and living room, another with study and bedrooms and the last with a little balcony.
There are 38 cube houses in Rotterdam, and they are also referred to as the Blaakse Bos, or Blaak forest, and were built between 1982 and 1984. Imagine that every house is a tree and the entire complex is the forest. One of the cube houses is a museum in Rotterdam and opens to show and inform you about the cube houses in Rotterdam.
Pose however you want: hold the cube houses between your hands, lift them like you’re Popeye or something else. There’s no way that you’ll return from Rotterdam without photos at the best picturesque spots and places in Rotterdam.
Delfshaven is the oldest neighbourhood of Rotterdam and used to be a part of the city of Delft years ago. Delfshaven originated from 1389 and gained city rights in 1825. Around 1550 the town had become wealthy due to fishery and whaling and grew to around 1000 inhabitants. Piet Hein was born in Delfshaven in 1577, and the Pilgrim Fathers went to the U.S.A from the church in the 1600s. In the 1700s the gin industry was booming, and Delfshaven decided to announce they were a separate municipality which led to protests by the city of Delft in 1795. In 1966 Delfshaven became a part of Rotterdam.
Some of the most instagrammable places in Delfshaven, Rotterdam, are the windmill De Distilleerketel and the old Pilgrim Father’s Church. Be mesmerised by history and walk along the cobblestoned streets in Rotterdam.
Another fun photo spot in Rotterdam is, of course, De Zwaan. Yes. The Erasmus bridge. Its nickname is the swan, simply because of its elegant shape. This spectacular piece of architecture in Rotterdam is the cities highlight. This bridge in Rotterdam connects the area Kop van Zuid with the centre of Rotterdam.
Whether you want to shoot the view of the Erasmus bridge from the land or a water taxi, the beautiful views are worth all your tries. Ships continue to sail under the bridge, and water taxis bring their passengers to another part of Rotterdam, trams drive over the bridge as well as cyclists and cars. The Erasmus bridge is a bustling centre within the city centre of Rotterdam.
5. Witte Huis
The first skyscraper in Rotterdam was the Witte Huis or the White House. It was designed at the end of the 19th century and is 43 meters high. Although it doesn’t seem tall nowadays, it was pretty bizarre for that time. It was for a while the tallest office building in Europe and is one of the few buildings in the centre of Rotterdam that survived the war.
Discover and photograph the gunfire on the Wijnhaven side of the Witte Huis in Rotterdam, go for details or try to capture the entire building and parts of its surroundings. No matter what shot you take, this monument in Rotterdam simply doesn’t fail in any of your photos.
One of the newest and most known buildings in Rotterdam is the Markthal. This piece of architecture is both filled with 228 apartments as well as shops and restaurants. It was opened on the 1st of October in 2014 by Queen Maxima. The endless colours, figures and animals on the roof, inside and outside of the Markthal, make a perfect Instagram spot in Rotterdam.
The artwork on the roof exists out of vegetables, grains, fish, flowers and insects. So you can easily decide which part you prefer in your photo. Whether you’re opting for a full picture of, or with, the artwork or without, you can never go wrong with the Markthal. Plus those colours will do great on the ‘gram.
7. Hotel New York
Hotel New York is one of those idyllic and authentic buildings that you can find in Rotterdam. It was the headquarters of the Holland – Amerika Line (from Rotterdam to New York), but Hotel New York was opened in 1993. The hotel was the first hotel that was opened on the Kop van Zuid. Back then there were barely any buildings on this part of Rotterdam, but nowadays there are many (tall) buildings that have changed the Kop van Zuid immensely.
The drastic difference between ultramodern buildings and the older ones is fascinating to see. Thus, one of the best photo spots in Rotterdam and Holland. Whether you’re more into cute buildings or prefer modern architecture, instagrammable places are easy to find in Rotterdam.
8. Oude Haven
One of the oldest harbours and museums harbours in The Netherlands. In the middle of the centre in Rotterdam, you can discover old boats and beautiful surroundings. The first part of a small harbour was settled here around 1350. After a while, it continued to grow and grow. And grow. Until eventually, it became too small, and it changed locations.
Sit on the edge of the waterfront, relax at one of the many restaurants that surround the place and admire the reflections. Be creative with the water, stand in front of old boats and experience the atmosphere. The Oudehaven is a perfect area to relax and enjoy one of Rotterdam’s most beautiful regions.
One of the tallest buildings in Rotterdam is the Euromast. It was constructed for the Floriade by architect Huig Maaskant in 1960. The location was chosen for a simple fact. Anyone who drove to Rotterdam on the highways at the time saw the high tower in front of it. In 1970, 85 meters were added to the Euromast, and the entire tower is 185 meters high. Visitors can go up the Euromast and have an open view of Rotterdam.
The park is the perfect location in Rotterdam to make your perfect touristy photos in Rotterdam. Hold the Euromast by the highest point, lift it up, push it sideways. Go wild and let your imagination run, then your photos cannot go wrong.
Fun fact: A small version of the Euromast can be found at Madurodam.
10. De Hef
De Hef is a lift bridge for railway traffic in Rotterdam that was in use until 1993. A river separates the Noordereiland in Rotterdam with the neighbourhood of Feijenoord. The bridge was part of the traject of Breda- Rotterdam, the first of its kind in Western Europe and was designed by Pieter Joosting. It is currently a monument.
When you’re looking for industrial instagrammable locations in Rotterdam, you will want to go here. And when you arrive, you will quickly understand why the bridge is such a cool photo spot in Rotterdam.
11. Rotterdam Centraal
The central railway station of Rotterdam Centraal is one of the best photo spots in Rotterdam. The current, modern train station was officially opened, after a seven-year construction, by King Willem Alexander on the 13th of March 2014.
The sleek, modern lines of this train station in Rotterdam make an excellent background for lovely photos, as well as for being the main object in focus. Discover what you want to do with the hundreds of people that walk through the doors of the train station and gain new creative ideas.
One of the most beautiful streets in Rotterdam is the Westersingel. Most of the houses were built between 1870 and 1900. Luckily this street in Rotterdam wasn’t bombed during the big bombardment of Rotterdam in 1940. This street is part of the cultural heart of Rotterdam. You will see many statues along this road in Rotterdam, beautiful houses and greenery. See the differences between the old and new part of Rotterdam at the Westersingel.
Photograph the trees, the buildings, the water, the road, the differences between old and new (especially with the Museumpark around the corner). The Westersingel is truly a sight to behold.
Who would’ve thought that you can admire the muse of Pablo Picasso in Rotterdam? Not you probably. And if you’ve asked me years ago, neither would I be aware of the fact. But let’s be honest, it’s pretty cool and unusual. And it’s one of those perfect statues in Rotterdam where you can make the ideal artsy photos.
The statue is called Sylvette, after the muse of Picasso. He met her at 73 years of age in 1954. Sylvette was a model for many drawings, paintings and sculptures of Picasso. The statue in Rotterdam is 7,5 meters high and 4,5 meters wide. And the sculpture was made to enlighten the new character of Rotterdam. It was relocated from Weena and Kruisplein to Westersingel in 2003.
14. Kralingse Bos
One of the best parks to visit in Rotterdam is the Kralingse Bos (forest) and the Kralingse Plas (lake). It’s around 200 hectares and is divided into half: half water and half forest. During summer this is one of the most visited places in Rotterdam, but no matter when you visit Rotterdam, the Kralingse Bos is always a beautiful sight to see.
Discover beautiful windmills, the autumn, or fall, foliage in Rotterdam and the stunning sunsets during the cold winter evenings. In the Southern corner of the lake, you will see small islands. These islands in Rotterdam are here because of the debris from the bombed city of Rotterdam. The trash was dumped in this part of the lake in Rotterdam. Bridges were made from one island to the other, and in 1953 the Kralingse Plas was opened. Enjoy the typical Dutch landscape in Rotterdam.
15. SS Rotterdam
The most famous ship in Rotterdam is the SS Rotterdam which was part of the Holland- Amerika cruise line. It was a steamship with steam turbines and steam boilers that run on oil. Between 1959 and 2000 it sailed the trans-Atlantic route (mainly Rotterdam – New York) and turned into a successful cruise ship by 1968. Since the 15th of February 2010, the SS Rotterdam is back in Rotterdam is the neighbourhood of Katendrecht. It is currently a floating attraction in Rotterdam where you can go for dinner, spent the night or go on a tour through the ship.
Walk through the halls, change decks, discover the beautiful view of Rotterdam and take as many instagrammable photos as you can. And enjoy the magic of one of the few remaining trans-Atlantic ships in the world.
The city hall, or town hall, in Rotterdam, is one of the few buildings in the centre of Rotterdam that survived the big bombardment on Rotterdam on the 14th of May 1940. It was built between 1914 and 1920, and a river was removed for the building.
As this building is pretty big and beautifully designed, it makes a perfect location for great photos in Rotterdam. Walk through the building to the courtyard (only opened on working days) and shoot some more photos there. The building is a monument since 1997 and has been renovated in 2000.
If you’re searching for colourful photo and instagrammable spots in Rotterdam, then the Lichtgalerij in the museum district of Rotterdam is going to be your favourite place. It was designed by Peter Struycken who wanted to change a part of the public space into something that speaks to people. This light gallery in Rotterdam is one of the five works of Struycken in Rotterdam.
After sunset, the lights lit up and change colours every ten minutes, which is programmed with a computer. The red, green and blue lights continuously create different combinations of primary and non-primary colours. So where an ordinary passage is not something people would want to walk through, this gallery tunnel with its rainbow passage in Rotterdam has changed everything. Wait till your colour is your favourite, or play with them. Shoot your photos, get wild and let your imagination let loose.
18. Museum Boijmans van Beuningen
One of the best museums to visit in Rotterdam is also one of the most photogenetic places in Rotterdam. Museum Boijmans van Beuningen is an art museum in Rotterdam and one of the best museums in The Netherlands. Part of their collection are world-renowned drawings, paintings, statues and design. The building dates back to 1935 and is designed by city architect Ad van der Steur.
Walk around in the garden, admire the building from the inside and relax by the water. Or discover statues and the view of the Museum area in Rotterdam. Museum Boijmans van Beuningen is one of the most Instagram worthy places to shoot photos in Rotterdam.
This museum is currently closed
As this part of the museum is closed for renovations, you can head to Depot Boijmans van Beuningen instead, which is a stunning building and also very instagrammable.
19. Kabouter Buttplug
One of my favourite statues in Rotterdam is our loving Kabouter, or Gnome, Buttplug. Now, that’s not its original name, but seeing the photo below you can understand where this nickname comes from. The statue is called initially Santa Claus and is made by artist Paul McCarthy in 2001. The figure is supposed to be Santa Claus with a Christmas tree in his hand. After this piece of art was placed at its location, in a different part of Rotterdam, residents started to complain because they deemed the statue was sexual.
Now, in my humble opinion, if a buttplug is the first thing you see, then it’s not the fault of the statue itself. And if you’re offended by your thoughts, then you should have a good conversation with yourself.
Eventually, the statue was removed to the courtyard of Museum Boijmans van Beuningen on the 22nd of September 2005. But on the 21st of August 2008, the building of the museum was redesigned. And the most controversial statue in Rotterdam was relocated to the sidewalk in front of the museum. The municipality of Rotterdam was planning on relocating the statue yet again at the start of 2008. But not everyone agreed to the new location. Eventually, the location changed, and Gnome Buttplug made its way to the Eendrachtsplein, where it still is today. Strike a pose and don’t forget to smile together with Kabouter Buttplug!
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I hope that these Rotterdam Instagram spots make your day in Rotterdam even better. There are many Instagram and influencer spots in Rotterdam, but not all of them are as popular as the other. Which is a good thing. With so many instagrammable places in both Holland and The Netherlands, it’s sometimes difficult to choose the best photography locations in The Netherlands. But with these most and best instagrammable places in Rotterdam, you at least know the best photo spots in this Dutch city.
Have fun exploring some of the most instagram worthy places and spots to visit in The Netherlands and enjoy the cool photo spots in Rotterdam, Zuid- Holland, The Netherlands. Share this article!
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