“WHOA….KENNY! There’s an actual town called Gouda in the Netherlands! Do you think that’s where Gouda cheese is from?”
I’m not ashamed to say that this was an actual question I had while looking at a map of places nearby to visit.
Well, you’ll be happy to know that the town of Gouda is, in fact, home to Gouda cheese; one of the most delicious cheese you’ll ever taste. Unless you’re lactose intolerant. In that case, I’m sorry.
Gouda happens to only be two hours from our house in Germany (and only an hour from Amsterdam if you’re visiting), so we planned a little trip to check out the land of deliciousness.
I mean, let’s be real. If you’re visiting a town famous for its queso, then that’s exactly where you need to start your adventure. And what better place to do that than at a place called the Gouda Cheese Experience?!
The Gouda Cheese Experience
The Gouda Cheese Experience hit me with all the feels even before we stepped through the door.
Wheels of gouda sat on the tables outside, and they rolled out the green carpet with fun Dutch fanfare to welcome you as you walk in.
The little shop right inside has all the cheese you need, but save that for after the tour so you’ll know what kind you want to get. Because—spoiler alert—this is an experience, so get ready to enjoy a cheese tasting at the end of it!
The self-guided tour gives you everything you could ever possibly want to know about how cheese is made—from how much grass the cows need to eat and why the land in the area is awesome for cheese, down to the actual recipe for Gouda.
And since this is an experience, you can “milk” a cow (and then enjoy a nice cold glass of it if you’d like), and get a in-depth look at how cheese is made.
Plus you can gather clues to help you become a “cheese master,” which makes it extra fun for the kids.
Fun for Kids and Adults
My husband and I loved the entire thing. I might have been a little giddy while going through all the rooms on the tour, because….CHEEEEEEESE!
My oldest (7) liked it—especially having her own cheese-master scavenger hunt where she learned several things about the entire cheese-making process from start to finish—but there was a little too much information for the younger two (5 and 3 years old).
That said, they still did just fine and totally enjoyed themselves. There’s enough interactive material built in that they still had fun.
Our favorite part was the last part of the experience: the cheese tasting.
We each sampled five pieces of gouda—everything from the young cheese, to mature cheese, a cheese of the day, and a couple other surprises, and learned about each one.
This was especially nice for my picky kids.
They tried every single one of them (even my son who “hates” cheese), and low and behold, they all had one they liked the most.
The workers here are friendly, and speak excellent English, and if we were there for longer we would’ve sat down and enjoyed more cheese right then and there in their little cafe.
Alas, we had more in store for our day, but promised to return to buy cheese before we left for the day.
Hours: 9am-6pm (daily)
Address: Agnietenstraat 21, 2801 GZ Gouda, Netherlands
Must make a reservation. Get tickets here