Noord – Relax while studying in a leafy and cosmopolitan district
What are the best spots for international students in Noord?
Noord may not be the closest neighbourhood to the main educational institutions but its relaxed vibe makes it an ideal environment for studying. There’s still plenty to do here, however, and it’s within easy striking distance of downtown. This district is popular with students and there are many affordable housing options for them.
Life and style
There’s a clue in the name: this district is to the north of downtown, behind the central station. It’s a very varied area that attracts all kinds of people making it a cosmopolitan and interesting place to live. A lot of the student accommodation in Noord tends to be in renovated pre-war terraces from the 30s which make very characterful places to live. To the west, there’s Blijdorp – a fairly quiet and leafy neighbourhood with many flats and dorms on offer. Oude Noord has a hipster vibe and, again, many student digs. And the area around the station – Provenierswijk – has been rejuvenated in recent years attracting a load of new businesses giving it a buzzing feel. Noord has everything you need in terms of eating, drinking and shopping but it’s pretty easy and quick to reach the city centre or the main universities. Find out more about how to rent a home in Rotterdam in our Step by Step Guide.
Seeing and doing
Quality of life in Noord is pretty good. Parks like Vroesenpark are great places to chill especially in the summer (many locals will come here for picnics) and the whole district is a nice escape from the frantic pace of downtown. In the summer many of Rotterdam’s parks have all kinds of festivals too. If you’re sporty, there’s plenty to attract you here. The Roel Langerakpark, for instance, has its own running track which is open to the public. It’s also a mecca for Frisbee fans too by the way. Blijdorp is the location for Rotterdam’s tennis centre while the Rotte River on Noord’s eastern edge is where the university rowing clubs battle it out for glory. If shopping is more your kind of pastime, you won’t be disappointed. Bergweg and Zwart Janstraat have all kinds of stores big and small while Zwaanshals offers more designer options. Better still, head over to De Volle Kast for all kinds of great second-hand clothing with some amazing bargains.
Eating and drinking
A lot of the best eateries and drinkeries are near the station – and there really are a lot! Café Walenburg is a traditional bar with a great range of beers. Provenierswijk with its old buildings and canals also has plenty to offer. The crossing on Proveniersstraat brings together a knot of super (but not super-expensive) places for eating or drinking including Booon, Le Nord, La Cazuela, Dunya and Bio Bodega. The Hofplein district, a little further to the east, is becoming one of Rotterdam’s hotspots with all kinds of new bars, restaurants and shops popping up – especially beneath the railway viaduct called Hofbogen. The so-called ZOHO neighbourhood has something for everyone from jazz clubs to hip hop bars. And don’t miss the open air Biergarten which is THE place to be on a warm summer’s day with a pilsje in your hand! It’s also the perfect place to meet other students.
The quality of life in Noord is fantastic with its pleasant neighbourhoods and variety of entertainment options. And don’t worry too much about reaching y our school from here – Rotterdam isn’t the biggest city in the world so everything is relatively close!
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