Best time to visit The Netherlands

Alkmaar Cheese Market in The Netherlands

No country is as famous with its cheese as the Netherlands is! Don't miss your chance to try out all the different cheeses available regionally in one place now

Best time: March 31–September 29, 2023

Alkmaar Cheese Market
Alkmaar Cheese Market

Every Friday from April to September at 10 o'clock in the morning you have a wonderful opportunity to see the cheese as it was created centuries ago. The different guilds and professions, now long forgotten, are coming to life with the beautiful and tasty spectacle. About 2,200 cheeses weighing around 30,000 kilograms are presented at Waagplein square in Alkmaar the way they used to be presented back in 1365! The square is famous ​since it was the only place where you could find weights and thus was central to city's life. Stroll around the stall on your own, or book a tour, in any case this is experience shouldn't be missed!

Practical info

What is the best way to get to the Alkmaar Cheese Market from Amsterdam?

To reach the Alkmaar Cheese Market from Amsterdam, you can take a train from Amsterdam Centraal Station to Alkmaar. It takes approximately 40 minutes. Arriving at Alkmaar Station, you can walk or ride a bike to the city center and reach the Waagplein square, where the Cheese Market is held. This is the most comfortable and efficient way to reach the market. Show more

What time do the cheese stalls close on Fridays?

The cheese stalls in the Alkmaar Cheese Market are open from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm every Friday, starting from April to September. The market may close earlier if all the cheeses have been sold before 1:00 pm. As such, it is better to come early in the morning, this way, visitors can enjoy the market before it gets too crowded. Show more

How much do the cheeses usually cost at the Alkmaar Cheese Market?

Cheese prices at the Alkmaar Cheese Market vary depending on factors like the cheese type, weight, and quality. Generally, a kilogram of cheese ranges around 10-15 euros. Shoppers can try to negotiate with the vendors for better deals, especially towards the end of the market day when the vendors may be more willing to adjust prices. Show more

When was the Alkmaar Cheese Market first established?

Erected in 1365, the Alkmaar Cheese Market is among the earliest cheese markets around the world. Initially founded to allow the farmers and cheese makers to market their products directly to buyers, the market lacked middlemen and taxes. Though now a tourist attraction and cultural festival, it continues to retain its historical essence and customs that showcase the age-old process of cheese trading and making on the market grounds. Show more

What other activities can we do in Alkmaar besides visiting the Cheese Market?

Other activities in Alkmaar include visiting the Stedelijk Museum Alkmaar to marvel at the town's history and artistic collections, cruising through the canals, going on a bike ride to tour the picturesque countryside. Visitors can also check out the upbeat nightlife, with various restaurants, bars, and clubs. They should endeavor to try the local specialty known as Haring (herring), which locals serve in its raw form with onions and pickles. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin