Nachtduik, Route du Nord and City Festival ‘à la Rotterdam’: the best tips for late May

Every two weeks, we offer you some choice recommendations for the next fortnight. This time round: take a plunge into Rotterdam’s nightlife, explore North Rotterdam or board a time machine to post-war Rotterdam.

Jeffrey loves partying, Esmeralda is always looking for new happenings and Manon digs culture. Together, they give you the best biweekly pointers for a fun night or day out on the town.

Jeffrey’s tip: Nachtduik

The name of this party – Nachtduik – probably reminds you of snorkels, scuba bottles, fins and icy seawater. But don’t to be afraid of getting your clothes wet. The only plunge you’ll be taking here on 20 May, after paying your 10 euro admission, is into Rotterdam’s fun nightlife. The best thing is that the event has two venues: Annabel and Transport. Which means you can alternate between atmospheric tunes of Âme, which are as mesmerising as the underwater episodes of ‘Planet Earth’, and the growling techno-stomp of acts like Rebekah. As a regular Nachtduik punter, I guarantee you that this is going to be awesome!

Saturday 20 May // Annabel & Transport // 10 euro

Manon’s tip: Route du Nord

Although I’ve been living in this wonderful hell of a town for over two years now, I’m still discovering new neighbourhoods, streets and places to go. And so much is going on outside the centre that it’s a shame not to hop on your bike every now and then and check out a different district. This Ascension weekend, from 25 to 28 May, presents a perfect opportunity to explore North Rotterdam. Because that’s when the free festival Route du Nord will be taking over ‘Noord’, filling it with art, live music and above all high spirits. The event’s central exhibition is in ZOHO on Vijverhofstraat, where you can view work by eight artists. A number of buildings on Noordmolenstraat and Zwart Janstraat have been transformed into temporary galleries and stages for art performances and live music. While the programme is chock-full of things to see and do, the one thing you can’t afford to miss IMHO is Teun Vonk’s installation, which is included in the ZOHO exhibition. It features two huge inflated cushions that you can lie in-between as a visitor, to experience a kind of ultimate pressurisation. Sounds weird? It is – but that’s what I like about it.

From Thursday 25 to Sunday 28 May // North Rotterdam // Admission free

Esmeralda’s tip: City festival ‘Op z’n Rotterdams’ 

Always wanted to know what Rotterdam looked like in the 1950s and ‘60s? Then be sure to visit Central Plaza at some point between 26 and 28 May! Especially for Stadsfestival ‘Op z’n Rotterdams’ (City Festival ‘à la Rotterdam’), they will be converting this location into a veritable time machine. It’s a blast from the past, with everything from record players to furniture and clothing. Couldn’t care less about that period? Then you can always make your way to the ‘Kookgoot’, where dozens of chefs will be inviting the public to sample their art – free of charge – at a number of demo tables. You can also enjoy a number of live cultural events on Binnenwegplein, Schouwburgplein, along Lijnbaan and in the Markthal. And it’s all absolutely free! But there’s more than just live performances: the local retailers in these areas have also thought up some special promotions for the festival-goers! So don’t hesitate to check it out, and allow yourself to be surprised by everything the town has to offer this weekend! And of course, don’t forget to reserve some time for shopping too!

From Friday 26 to Sunday 28 May // Central Plaza // Admission free

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