Flowers and a nice walk
A blog from Saskia's husband:
My family has lived here for over 300 years. I was born under the Speeltoren, where SAS's flower shop is now (not my Sas!). It used to be my parents' flower shop. Making bouquets was one of the things I always loved to do.
And I still like to make the bouquets for ourselves and for the guests of the Kaakberg. They are in the rooms upon arrival. If you stay longer than a week, feel free to ask me and I will fill the vases for you again.
As a born and bred Edammer, I have written down a long or slightly shorter walk along the most beautiful places, the best local shops and the beautiful monuments of Edam, one of about 45 minutes that can be extended to an hour.
We start from the P parking lot in Edam on Baanstraat. You may park there with the blue disk for a maximum of 4 hours. There is no maximum parking time after 6 pm. Do you not have a blue parking disc? There is one in the cupboard in the hall that you can use.
From the P you walk across the Baanbrug straight ahead into Hoogstraat. On the right you will see a wooden wall, because a big fire a few years ago destroyed some of the striking houses. There is a plan to rebuild them, but what was there will unfortunately never return. Fortunately, there is still enough left. You will notice that on this walk. To the left opposite the wooden wall is butcher Taam, a good butcher.
You walk towards the Dam Square. The Dam Square, built in 1585, is enclosed by the former Town Hall, the former Post Office and the former Butter Market dating of the same year. The current hall is a 19th century wooden covered colonnade in Tuscan style, with the inexplicable name "Lancester". This is now the terrace of the Damhotel. The former town hall is still in use as a wedding hall, and in the building is also the tourist office and the annex of the Edams Museum. Sometimes the door to the left of the wedding hall is open. Then take a look at the beautiful wall paintings. The floor is, according to old custom, sprinkled with sand, so that the floors are sanded nicely by the visitors.
At one side of Dam square you see the former lock, a high Dam, over the water. Cross it and you are in front of the Edams Museum. Nice to visit, also with children, with curious paintings, such as the portrait of Trijntje Keever (1616-1633). At 2.60 meters, she was one of the tallest women of her time. Perhaps the tallest ever. Her history is sad, she was mistreated and put on display. Lydia Rood has written a children's book (Girl on a chain) about it on the occasion of the 650th anniversary of the city of Edam. The Edam museum also has a floating cellar floor. Experience it yourself.
Continue from the museum to the right and then left again into Breestraat. The corner building you will pass is our former theater (Speeltheater), where we created and staged our theatre performances for 30 years and then, just like the cheese, they went all over the world.
In the Breestraat you will pass a number of beautiful buildings on the right to the corner building, where you turn right. This building is the oldest wooden house in Edam. Are you hungry? A little further is the bakery Gorter, a good bakery.
You walk on and turn left before the bridge, onto the canal (Nieuwvaartje). As a child I saw the cows and sheep walking here from the meadows to the farms. They are now all converted into uxury farmhouses. Note: this canal at No. 8, a beautiful relief with carvings and spells.
Continue along the Nieuwvaartje until you see the Sint Nicolaaskerk. Widely known as the Grote Kerk. Before the church, go to the left onto the gravel path, you will arrive at the side portal of the church, but we do not enter the church here, you first go through the gate on the right into the cemetery. Walk across the cemetery to experience how gigantic this hall church is. You will pass some beautiful old grave monuments of prominent Edamese families.
Now walk to the exit of the Cemetery and then left again to the main entrance. The opening hours are from April to September 1:30 to 5, and from October to March until 4:30. But beware! Check the website for the current opening hours, because there may be a service or something else. The monumental hall church is one of the top 100 national monuments in the Netherlands. She is renowned for her 32 stained-glass windows (1602-1627), her beautiful organ and a beautiful Librije.
After visiting the church, go out through the main entrance and to the right and then cross the wooden bridge on the left and again onto the Brouwersgracht on the left. You pass the courtyard of the Proveniershuis (here popularly called De Proeve). The gardens are maintained by a number of residents. Poor elderly people no longer live there, as it used to be, but nowadays it is mainly inhabited by elderly single ladies. The houses are tiny, but beautiful.
Cross the first bridge on the left and continue until the Kaasmarkt. There you will see the former Waag, where the cheeses used to be weighed and traded. Today there is still a small market on Wednesdays, where you can buy fish, fresh vegetables and good quality cheese at reasonable prices. Or there is, in the summer, a tourist 'Cheese Market', where crowds of tourists who are brought in by buses, the cheese weighing and trading is reenacted, while busy filming is done with mobile phones to capture the 'authentic' Edam. For each his own.
From the Kaasmarkt you turn right into the Prinsenstraat. On the left is Visser's vegetable and health food store. Note: closed on Mondays. I suggest we skip the tourist center with the cheese shops. (You can always decide to take this with you later). Instead, we turn right at the (beautiful) cooking shop De Leuke Keuken, into the Kleine Kerkstraat, which after the bend changes into the Lingerzijde.
In the bend is the Speeltoren and the aforementioned flower shop SAS and my birthplace. There are also a few nice shops here: De Kast with toys and gifts and a good bookshop, where they may sell Lydia Rood's book.
You follow the bend and do not forget to look left and right at the beautiful houses. (also look to the right at the 2nd bend on the left side). This actually applies to the entire city center. In the sixteenth century, Edam was the center of shipbuilding. There were no fewer than 45 shipyards. A rich town, and that can still be seen in the beautiful houses of the rich shipowners such as the Schepenmakersdijk, Lingerzijde, and the Voorhaven. Later Edam lost this position due to competition with other cities. Edam was increasingly becoming a sleeping town, also known as the Sleeping Beauty. But the silent witnesses of this glorious time still stand.
You do not turn at the bend of the Lingerzijde, but keep walking straight ahead through the Kwakelsteeg and you will be in front of the Kwakelbrug, the smallest drawbridge in Edam. On the left you see the old shipyard and on the right the tea houses of the luxurious mansions (rear of the Linger side buildings)
At the end of the short walk, cross the Kwakelbrug, turn left onto the Doelland, after the bridge it is called De Bult. At the end, turn left again, straight on over the Constabelbrug, after the bridge immediately right and again right across the Baanbrug. You are then back at the parking lot P.
For the longer walk you can continue after the Constabelbrug into the Spuistraat, towards the tourist center. But don't buy cheese here! The prices are too high and it is often factory cheese. It is much better to turn right before the bridge, at the corner, and walk towards Voorhaven, because at point 18 I will take you to a good cheese warehouse.
You pass Mina, a small Lebanese shop, where Mina, according to Ottolenghi, sells the best hummus in the Netherlands. You can also buy Lebanese take-away specialties here to eat at home.
Continue along the Damplein straight ahead onto the Voorhaven. Look right and left on the other side of the canal to the beautiful houses. The 3rd house on the right is the house with the Swans, next to it is the Lutheran church. The cheese warehouses are also located here. Bakhuis De Koophandel is located in one of these buildings. There you can buy cheeses and bread at good prices. You will be greeted by the scent of deliciously fresh baked bread; buy real French croissants or good scones for your breakfast tomorrow. The Bakhuis is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Sat to 4 p.m. and Sun until 2 p.m.).
With your bag full, walk straight ahead along the Voorhaven and cross at the second (narrow) bridge to the other side. You will see Café De Harmonie there. Here you can rent whisper boats to discover Edam from the water.
You can now also walk back along the Voorhaven and drink a good cappuccino with a treat at the Mastenbroek pastry shop. After this you go over the high Dam again, straight ahead, until you reach the P in the Baanstraat after the Baanbrug.