There are still several cheese markets in the Netherlands that you can visit. Today we went to the one in Edam. It is no longer a working market, but more of a demonstration. We had never been to a cheese market before, so I was excited to check it out.
The market is only open on Wednesdays.
Parking was very clear an easy – in a field within walking distance – costing only €4.
Then it was a short walk through the old, quaint town of Edam.
We arrived around 10:45, and already there was quite a crowd. Although there were benches to sit on, they were full, and it was standing-room only. But don’t despair! There actually isn’t a whole lot to see 🙂 So if you are a bit patient, eventually some space will open up, so you can get a closer look.
You can watch the men throwing the cheese balls to each other as they set them up on the ground. And look at the bottom picture on the right: see them carrying the cheese on a kind of sleigh?
If you look carefully, you’ll notice that the cheese comes in two colors: yellow and red. The colors have nothing to do with the cheese itself. It used to be that the red balls were the ones marked for export, while the yellow balls remained to be sold in the Netherlands.
You might also notice that you can buy the smaller balls of cheese for €15. We did not, so I can’t tell you how it was 🙂
There are several nearby towns that you could check out while you’re in the area, such as Volendam and Marken. Volendam is quite close, but we chose to take a short drive to Marken.
Is it good for kids?
Alas, I have to admit that the kiddos (ages 8 & 5) were not very impressed. We only stayed about 15 minutes before there were complaints of boredom. Still, I say it was an interesting experience. Maybe we’ll try another one when they’re a few years older…
What about the cost?
The market itself is free. We paid €4 for parking.