Starting out as a small medieval settlement Hoorn obtained city rights in 1356. This gave the city the right to hold a market, charge taxes and build a weighing house, a town hall, defensive walls and city gates. Thanks to its favourable location on the Zuider Zee the town prospered. The shipping business expands into a world-wide organisation when Hoorn joined the East India Company. Wealthy traders built imposing houses to show off their success. But at the end of the 18th Century trading activities ceased. Hoorn lay dormant until it was connected to the rail network in the 19th Century.
Nowadays Hoorn is a popular town with people living in new residential areas.
But, during a 2-hour walk along the harbour and through the old city centre, you can still experience the atmosphere of the Golden Age.
max 20 for the walking tour
A visit to the Westfries Museum