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Counting World Heritage sites: #84 (Van Nelle Factory)

Van Nelle Factory is the newest Dutch addition to the UNESCO list, having been inscribed just last year. Its recognition stems from its pioneering place in industrial architecture. The couple of interior pictures at the official link above suggest elements of interest but I doubt I would come here at all if not for UNESCO designation.

The factory is a functional office, event, and industry complex with some museum elements. It is possible to join a tour of the factory on specific days at specific times, which did not fit into my itinerary. It is also possible to gain an invitation to the complex during occasional special events, none of which was happening on the day of my visit (and probably would not fit into my itinerary either).

So I drove up to the gates, walked to the security booth with the telescopic lenses on my camera fully extended to add heft to my appearance and inquired of the guard inside if I could pass through the territory to take a few exterior pictures. He interrupted his late lunch for long enough to indicate that I had to stay outside of the fence. And that was that. I walked around the fence and took a few different perspectives of the building, one of which is presented here.

Van Nelle Factory, Rotterdam, Netherlands

This is stretching the boundaries of “visited” when it comes to my collection of sights, I have to admit. Nonetheless, the loose definition of “seeing the sight to the maximum extent of its accessibility at the time of my visit” more of less applies. I made a dedicated drive to get here, I tried to get in, I took several pictures. Another UNESCO site in the bag. Highly unlikely to be ever visited again.

And with that, I covered every single World Heritage site in the Netherlands home country. The only one remaining Dutch site for me is the town of Willemstad, on Curaçao, which is somewhere down on my list of travel targets for the future.

Van Nelle Factory is located on outskirts of Rotterdam. I am not sure about its accessibility from town, but it is about an hour away drive from Amsterdam.