As editor-in-chief of Aalsmeer Today, Aalsmeer holds few secrets for Arjen Vos. Due to his work, he visits all corners of Aalsmeer and knows practically everyone in the community. Drinking a cup of coffee with Arjen Vos is often interrupted by a wave or a greeting to a passer-by. Local character Arjen, shares some of Aalsmeer’s best kept secrets with us!
Aalsmeer Today is an online platform where you can find and read all about what is happening in Aalsmeer. The latest news, the friendly locals and the most amazing background stories.
“Secret” things to do in Aalsmeer
The Historical Garden, the Water Tower and the flower auction; all a must when making your first visit to Aalsmeer. A first visit to Aalsmeer should also include sailing your own or rented boat or alternatively booking the Westeinder boat trip. Stop by the ‘Nieuwe Meer’ brasserie where you can have a cup of coffee on the terrace, and watch the boats passing by. “De Nieuwe Meer marina is quite quirky because you need to use the swing ferry to get there.” But there are also places of interest in Aalsmeer still unfamiliar to many visitors.
Open Gardens Weekend
The annual Open Garden Weekend takes place in June. “The locals open their gardens to the public, it’s really great. This floral weekend gives you the opportunity to have a peep behind the scenes of local life. For example take one of the houses on the Uiterweg, and you think: what will I find here? So you walk into the garden and you are faced with a little piece of paradise. I would highly recommend you to jump on your bike and visit some of these beautiful gardens.”
Stommeermolen, Aalsmeer’s imposing windmill
The local miller, who lives in the Stommeermolen is a lovely and very hospitable guy, Arjen explains. “A great guy from Friesland who has a real way with words.” When you see the mill is running, you know the miller is at home and according to Arjen he is almost always at home, because he works from home as an engineer. “He works for the mill foundation, designs mills and takes on renovation projects.” The miller restored the Stommeermolen himself: from a ruin to a magnificent jewel on the landscape. “You can just ring the bell, and the miller is always happy tell you all about the mill.”
Pilgrim’s path Hogedijk
Did you know that the Pilgrim’s Path runs through Aalsmeer? Arjen is referring to the Hogedijk (dyke) between the Oosteinderweg and the Aalsmeerderweg. The Hogedijk is part of the Pilgrim’s Path and a quiet footpath in a beautiful setting. Away from the hustle and bustle of the neighbouring busy towns and cities.
The secret of the flower auction
The flower auction in Aalsmeer is, of course, no longer a secret. Nevertheless, the flower auction is itself a public place, something few visitors are aware of. A place where Arjen used to visit with his kids on a regular basis.
Are you going to the flower auction on your own? Then follow Arjen’s tip and visit the original auction. “Look out for the plant clock which you can only see by getting up on the roof.” At the main entrance follow the signs to the parking roof. Drive across the roof to the grey/brown entrance. Walk inside and prepare to be impressed! “The clock here is absolutely huge.”
Aalsmeer according to Arjen Vos
“I see Aalsmeer as a beautiful village to live in. The combination of nature, culture, entertainment, sports, shops, schools, people, churches. Everything’s here. You don’t really have to leave Aalsmeer to find anything better and that’s quite extraordinary for a village.” Arjen lists a number of unique amenities: its own beach, the largest inland waterway in the Netherlands, many sports facilities, its own theatre, restaurants with so many different flavours and the metropolis of Amsterdam just around the corner.