Hindeloopen, or Hylpen as we say in Friesland, is known for its painting and stylish costumes from the past. Go on a journey to the picturesque town and discover the history of this important trading city on the IJsselmeer. Walk over the many bridges, authentic town houses and find special vistas. Be sure to visit the first Frisian Iceskating Museum with the largest collection of skates in the world. Hindeloopen is also the setting for popular events such as the Elfstedentocht and the IFKS Skûtsjesilen. In 2018 the Lonely Planet named Hindeloopen a 'top experience'. Come and visit this beautiful city.
Visit Museum Hindeloopen
Your voyage of discovery starts at this museum. Explore the uniquely painted interiors with their flamboyant patterns of flowers, leaves and birds. Were you aware that the Dutch Royal family are big fans? All three princesses have had their own ‘Hindelooper’ chair. You can now discover the origins of these beautifully decorated cotton fabrics with combinations of flowers and checks. After visiting the museum, it’s fun to watch the artists at work in the galleries dotted around the city. Traditional yet full of innovative applications. The colourful fabrics are available at some of the shops in Hindeloopen.
Read more about the Church of Hindeloopen
The Hindeloopen skyline is dominated by its church, called Grote Kerk, visible from many miles away. This national monument was rebuilt in 1590, after the previous church had been destroyed during the Eighty Years’ War. Following various extensions and a replacement, today’s octagonal spire was added as the crowning glory of the tower in 1724. It has a dome and a beautiful wind vane in the shape of a sailing ship.
Read more about the fountain
The beautiful ‘Flora en Fauna’ Fountain by the Chinese artist Shen Yuan was part of the 11Fountains art project. She was inspired by the city arms of Hindeloopen in which a tree of life is encircled by a buck and hind. In Shen's vision, the tree symbolises life energy and wisdom. When sitting on the large wooden antlers that surround the fountain, you'll see exotic birds spewing water and chatting together. I wonder who they're talking about?
A reminder of the saga about ‘it Kweade Wiif fan Hylpen’ (the angry woman of Hylpen) can still be found on the house at Buren 44 in Hindeloopen. A façade stone shows a dog with an angel above it, with its wings spread out above the dog.
Read more on the lifeboat house
A particularly photogenic building and location is the bright blue KNRM lifeboat station on the dike in Hindeloopen. The old lifeboat station dating from 1911 has become a national monument. In the times of the Zuiderzee, the KNRM would head out from Hindeloopen to save sailors from drowning, but nowadays they keep a close watch out for water sports enthusiasts and tourists.
Visit the locks and Sylhús
Hindeloopen is full of national monuments, such as the locks and the adjoining Sylhús. The locks were built back in the 17th century, and are the connection for recreational boats between the city centre and the harbour and the IJsselmeer lake. The boats using the locks are a constant source of pleasure and amusement in the high season. Why not sit a while on the folklore bench under the Sylhús veranda and listen to the most fantastic stories told by the locals.
Visit the Iceskating museum
The first Frisian Skating Museum gives the complete history of the heroic Frisian 11-city skating marathon. The museum also contains the largest collection of skates and sleighs in the world. Not to forget the world's largest skate, which is no less than 6 metres and 11 centimetres long. There are also all kinds of attributes from all the winners of the marathon race. And rarities, such as a frostbitten toe. And how about the very same skates which the then Crown Prince Willem Alexander wore when he skated the Elfstedentocht under the alias of W.A. van Buren in 1986? There is also a complete section dedicated to short track skating. In the cosy restaurant named after a traditional Frisian type of skate, the doorloper, you can rest your legs and enjoy a tasty treat.
Book your tickets in Hindeloopen
Elegant patterns of flowers, leaves and birds on wooden furniture and also on souvenirs characterize the Hindelooper Painting. Visit one of the few painters in Hindeloopen who still has this art or try to master it yourself by participating in a workshop.
Hindelooper Traditional costume
In the 17th century, the Hindelooper women regularly crossed the Zuiderzee in the barge to wave their sailors off or to pick them up in Amsterdam. There they saw exotic treasures, such as beautifully decorated cotton fabrics. At home they used the fabrics in their own costumes. Combining flowers and materials resulted in a colorful whole.
First Frisian Iceskatingmuseum
The Frisian Elfstedentocht is the oldest and also the first skating tour along the eleven cities of Friesland. On January 2, 1909, the first Elfstedentocht on iceskates took place. Really wintery weather is needed with sufficient and severe frost. The last Eleven Cities Tour took place on January 4, 1997. The tour of more than 200 kilometers has taken place 15 times so far. In the Iceskating Museum you will learn more about the Tour of ToursRead more about the museum
Walking on the dike
Get to know the walking route between the two Frisian Hanseatic cities: Stavoren and Hindeloopen, located on the former Zuiderzee. On the IJsselmeerdijk you walk among the sheep along the nature reserve of the Fryske Gea: the Bocht van Molkwar. During this 11 km long route it is nice and challenging because of the fences that you have to climb over every now and then. To go back to Stavoren you take the Arriva train in a relaxed way. So put on your walking shoes and walk along the Frisian IJsselmeer coast.Look at the route
“ This is Hindeloopen, one of the most beautiful and picturesque places in Friesland. ”Esther, lifelicious.nl
Tourist information Hindeloopen
The Tourist Information in Hindeloopen is located at the Museum Hindeloopen. You will always be personally attended by a 'local'. So ask them about everything you want to know about experiences in Southwest Friesland. Also pick up the free inspiration magazine and the inspiration newspaper full of events and stories.Visit the Tourist Information