Specialty shops for special finds in Holland
1) Bram en Aagie
As you cycle through the Beemster, the shop of Bram en Aagie provides a welcome distraction. (Since 1890!), you can buy all kinds of old-fashioned sweets, including cinnamon sticks, liquorice and syrup candy in what is the ‘tiniest shop in the Netherlands’. In fact you can barely stand up here. The shop has been in hands of the same family for many years. Grandson Jaap Klaver now runs it.
NeverNeverland proves that sitting around a table and playing a board game has lost none of its appeal despite the popularity of online games. Here you can score the latest board games, card games and puzzles, as well as lots of classics and parts. They give great advice and you can even test (some of the) games at the table in the shop.
3) Het Schelpenmuseum
The kind of shop that has a new surprise in store for you everywhere you look. You may have to walk through it three times before settling on one of the unique shells, stuffed animals or jewellery. Some of the shells on display are not for sale but belong to the owners’ own personal collection. A museum and shop rolled into one.
4) De Refter
A refter is the Dutch word for a refectory, where the monks eat. This shop specialises in furniture from convents and monasteries. So what can you find here? Plenty of thick, leather-bound books, as well as statues of saints, crockery, glassware, cabinets and stunning prints.
5) Het Klaverblad
This is the oldest coffee and tea shop of the Netherlands, where you can still spot the initials of the Dutch East India Company on the façade, and where tea is still sold in tea caddies. The shop was established in 1769. When you step inside, it feels like you’ve just embarked on a journey back in time.
At Intermezzo you can shop for the most unique cushions, shawls, plaids and bags, which are sewn in their own workshop by ‘Wereldwijven’, or women from different cultural and ethnic backgrounds. The founder Jolanda Branderhorst thought it was rather strange that fashion designers travel to distant countries to produce their designs, when there is so much creative and artisan expertise available closer to home. They also regularly host exhibitions and performances. Please note: closed on Wednesdays.
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