New land... the maasvlakte.

Written by Niels on

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Today we decided to take ourselves and our dog to the beach, for a walk and to catch a breeze in the wind. Usually driving to a industrial port site is not regarded logical if you were planning to hit the coast, well that's different in Rotterdam.

In the sixties the port of Rotterdam - back then already Europe's biggest port - was expanding rapidly and space in the densely  populated western region of the Netherlands was running out. The port authority created land in the sea to house future economic growth. The "Maas vlakte" (Muese plains) was created and exhausted a couple of years ago. In 2008 the port started adding 2000 hectares of land ("Maasvlakte 2") and finished doing that this year, within time and budget even.

The new land does not only house industry and smelly pipes, the port authority added various recreational sites like beaches too. And that is why its the closest place for us to go to when in need of a beach. So we drove up their today for probably the fourth time by now, but it keeps feeling a little bit odd. Imagine your driving onto a road while your GPS suddenly says that the road is under water. When walking around on the mostly empty man-created piece of nature everything reminds you its so young, dunes are still growing, grass is fresh and there is only a road and rail... besides that, nothing, only the breeze of the wind...

For those traveling through Europe, its definitely one of the "modern day wonders" that's not in your Lonely Planet. Yet it is so worth visiting...

Rotterdam