Maeslant barrier

The visitor centre explains the impressive barrier that protects Rotterdam against storm surges.

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Protection against the rising sea level

The impressive Maeslantkering (Maeslant Storm Surge) is one of the wonders of the modern world! The barrier was built to protect Rotterdam and surroundings from flooding and is a great piece of Dutch civil engineering in their struggle against the water!

Automatic closure of the Maeslant barrier

The waterway at Hoek van Holland is very important for Rotterdam, as the large port must be accessible at all times. The waterway must be open, but at the same time Rotterdam needs to be protected from storms and high tide. That’s a dilemma. Therefore the Maeslant Storm Barrier has huge movable arms that can close the waterway in case of a storm. Closing the barrier is done fully automated, even the notification of the ships, eight hours before closure is done without any human intervention.

A storm surge as high as the Eiffel Tower

Visit the magnificent Maeslantkering and see this concrete and steel mega-structure yourself! Admire the arms of 237m (780′) length that would be as high as the Paris Eiffel Tower standing upright, the 22 meter high surge doors and the largest steel ball-joint in the world! Imagine the power this storm barrier must resist when an enormous pressure of 35,000 tonnes of water pushes on each of the doors when the barrier is closed!

Restaurant Keringhuis Hoek van Holland

As it’s nearly always windy at Hoek van Holland, but Restaurant Keringhuis offers a nice shelter for a hot (or cold) drink and a lunch. From November 1st till March 1st it’s opened only during the weekends.

A wonder of the modern world

Do you want to understand why the American Society of Civil Engineers has put the Maeslant barrier on their list of wonders of the modern world together with the Golden Gate bridge, the channel tunnel and the Empire State building? There’s only one way to find out: visit the Maeslant barrier and experience it yourself!