The Most Famous Windmill In Amsterdam (Local Guide Explains)

May 2, 2023

The Netherlands, and in particular its capital Amsterdam, is home to some of the most beautiful and famous windmills on the planet. These pieces of Dutch cultural heritage are scattered around the city, but what is the most famous windmill in Amsterdam?

What is The Most Famous Windmill in Amsterdam?

Let’s cut straight to the chase and answer this question, as the most famous windmill in Amsterdam is undoubtedly the windmill known as De Gooyer.

This windmill dates way back to the 16th century and is one of the biggest windmills in the Netherlands; with that, it is amongst the largest in the world!

Windmill De Gooyer Amsterdam

De Gooyer was originally built to be a flour grinding mill, but it has had plenty of uses throughout its impressively long lifespan. It has been restored and rebuilt several times by the Dutch government to preserve its cultural heritage, and in its lifespan, it has been located in three separate locations scattered around Amsterdam!

Unlike some other windmills from its era, De Gooyer sadly is not open for visitors and can only be enjoyed from the outside. This does not make the mill any less impressive, though, as simply looking at this majestic 27-meter-tall structure is well worth your time if you are visiting Amsterdam.

History of De Gooyer

De Gooyer in Amsterdam

Such an impressive windmill must have an equally impressive backstory, and when it comes to its history, an impressive backstory is not something De Gooyer lacks!

Let’s take a look at the history of this impressive structure.

The windmill was originally built all the way back in the 16th century. It was located at the edge of the city of Amsterdam and was part of an impressive system consisting of several windmills positioned in a row to most efficiently harvest the wind energy that hit them.

Sadly, on a faithful day, the windmill was destroyed, and in the year 1725, it was moved to an entirely different location in the city. Here it continued to serve its purpose of milling grain and flour for almost a century. In 1814, it was relocated once again as it was placed on a large stone pedestal for everyone in Amsterdam to see.

From this point on, the mill started to decay until the city of Amsterdam paid for its restoration in the year 1928. The idea was for it to be a display piece, but when World War II came around, the mill was used once again to mill grains for the people of Amsterdam, as a supply of electricity was lacking due to the war.

Late in the 20th century, De Gooyer received its final restoration job after a storm had caused significant damage. Nowadays, the mill is still standing proud in the city of Amsterdam!

What Makes De Gooyer Unique?

Windmill De Gooyer in Amsterdam

Since De Gooyer is considered one of, if not the most famous windmill in Amsterdam, and perhaps in all of the Netherlands, it must have some unique features that make it stand out from the crowd.

One of these features is rather obvious at first sight, namely the sheer size of the windmill! With an impressive 27 meters in height, De Gooyer is one of the tallest windmills in the Netherlands.

This immense structure is impossible to miss; the blades and the mill’s structure are so huge that they make De Gooyer unique in and of itself.

Another feature unique to De Gooyer is that the mill is placed on a large pedestal, making it appear even larger than it already is. This was done when the windmill was moved from its original place to its current location, where its primary function was to attract attention to Dutch heritage.

Furthermore, De Gooyer is made unique by its unusual location, as it is located right in the center of Amsterdam.

This is an unusual place for a windmill, as surrounded by plenty of tall buildings, it only gets a little wind, but this was also done in the spirit of attracting attention, to essentially show off the impressive Dutch culture associated with De Gooyer.

Is De Gooyer Still in Use?

We have now seen that De Gooyer is one of the most famous and impressive windmills, with a rich history spanning hundreds of years. But this raises the question, is this beautiful structure still in use today?

The answer to this question is a mixture between yes and no, as the windmill is no longer in use for the actual useful purposes it was once built for, milling grain and flour.

It is, however, still operational, as the blades still turn, making it seem like something is going on. This turning of the blades, however, is strictly for show, but it does make the mill into an impressive tourist attraction as it gives tourists a one-of-a-kind look back into the 18th century by seeing a fully operational Dutch windmill in action!

Sadly, the inside of the mill is not open for visitors, unlike some other windmills. This is done to preserve the beauty and pride of this impressive piece of Dutch culture, but this does not make it any less worthy of your time.

The mill is incredibly impressive from the outside, especially when the blades are turning, making this a must-see for anyone visiting Amsterdam. The mill is surrounded by popular restaurants that allow you to sit in the center of Amsterdam while enjoying a majestic view of one of the world’s most famous windmills!

Is De Gooyer Worth Visiting?

Windmills are an integral part of Dutch culture. No visit to the Netherlands is complete without visiting at least one windmill. And what better windmill is there to visit than the most famous one in Amsterdam, and perhaps in all of the Netherlands!

De Gooyer is definitely worth a visit for any tourist visiting Amsterdam and The Netherlands. Sadly, it is not open for visitors, but it is still a majestic sight to behold.

Grab a drink on one of the many surrounding terraces and take in the view; it will more than surely be worth your time.

If you are lucky enough to visit at a time when the blades of the mill are turning, it is impossible to say when exactly this will be as it is, of course, heavily dependent on weather conditions and available staff, you are in for a true treat.

During this time, you can truly transport yourself back in time into the shoes of an 18th-century citizen of Amsterdam. This is a truly mesmerizing experience and is definitely worth your time if you’re on a trip to Amsterdam.

Where is De Gooyer Located?

Suppose you’re interested in visiting this majestic windmill. In that case, it is, of course, essential to know where in the city it is located, so let’s take a closer look.

De Gooyer is located in the center of Amsterdam and is surrounded by canals. This does not say much, though, in a city full of canals, but De Gooyer is located between ‘de Nieuwe vaart’ and ‘de Singelgracht.’

If you reach this vicinity, it is impossible to miss the immense 27-meter-tall windmill on a giant stone pedestal!

If you aren’t familiar with Amsterdam, or if you’re interested in a more straight-to-the-point description of De Gooyer’s location, the address of the windmill is Funenkade 5, and the postal code is 1018AL Amsterdam.

Typing this into your navigation will get you there in no time!


All in all, De Gooyer is the most famous windmill in Amsterdam. It has been used for centuries and is still intact today. It was built to mill grain and flour, and it has a rich history from being used in world war II to being a major tourist attraction today!

Sadly, the mill isn’t open for visitors, but grabbing a drink at one of the many surrounding terraces is more than worth your time if you’re visiting Amsterdam!

More about


Written by

Leo van den Berg
As a Dutchman I am extremely proud of the beautiful country in which I live. My goal is to convey my passion and love for the Netherlands to as many people as possible.

Read more articles

Copyright © 2020 – 2024 All Rights Reserved