I’ve come to Rotterdam many times over the years, I come because I can’t fly into the UK with a dog in the cabin. I fly from New York into Amsterdam, or Brussels, then take a train, or taxi to Rotterdam where I spend a few days at the Hilton Rotterdam before taking a taxi to the Hook of Holland port where I take Stena Line ferry to England. The little city is really cute, an industrial modern port city with plenty of walking areas to entertain a short trip. The architecture is most notable, I think autumn is the best time to see the city. The colors of many of the interesting structures compliment the bright seasonal changing leaves.
A walk around Delfshaven is great for sightseeing. The charming area’s bars and restaurants are pleasant to explore. Not far away is the De Markthal which is an indoor market housing diverse food and art. My dog Onawa fell in love with waffles the year before, I give her a little piece, she knows, I say waffle and she’s excited. Cube Houses (or Kijk-Kubus) is a must see. This interesting building is great for pictures! The Nieuwe Delftse Poort is also great for pictures. The city gate was reconstructed to replace the old city gate which was destroyed during the second world war. In Rotterdam style it’s brightly colored orange which compliments the vivid brightly colored trees lining the streets beside it.
I visit a good English speaking veterinarian in Rotterdam for a worm pill and stamp in Onawa’s European passport which will allow her into England. Finally, after a nice three day break I take a car service to the port where I board the Stena ferry.
The last time I was there I came to the ferry port early to avoid a football team which was staying in my hotel. I couldn’t get around the hotel without being trapped among loads of paparazzi and footballers. I asked Stena to keep my bags and went for an amazing fish and chips while waiting to board. Once getting back and picking up my bags I checked in and was told that the manager gave me an upgrade. I didn’t realize the guy who helped me stow my bags a few hours earlier was the manager, or that he would upgrade me to a suite.
I was very excited for the upgrade. It was a huge room with a massive window view. I was delighted and enjoyed the complimentary wine and chocolates while we made our journey across the channel. I also had a nice dinner in the restaurant.
I have always been happy with the Stena Line service. If you make plans to go on Stena make sure you sign up for their reward program, the rates are a bit less and once you travel a few times with them the rates start getting really good. I once got 75% off on a journey booked ahead during the summer. It’s fantastic for me because I always book a cabin and the kennel for Onawa.