We went to Windmill Island for the first time yesterday, and it is now one of my favorite places. Ever.
Granted, it's just a little kitschy, but the grounds were beautiful and the windmill is undeniably cool.
The windmill is named De Zwaan and is an actual working windmill that Holland bought from the Netherlands in 1964. Windmills are considered national monuments in The Netherlands, and there is a ban on selling them outside the country, but De Zwaan was heavily damaged in World War 2 (it was used as a military lookout) so Holland was able to purchase it (for just $2800!) It was the last real, Dutch windmill to be sold outside of The Netherlands.
We got to take a tour of it and climb its 5 stories. We walked on that balcony too and got to see the blades up close. It's not working now, but will be by next summer. They still use the windmill to produce wheat flour, which I thought was really cool.
There was a miniature model of a traditional Dutch town...
...and a merry go round that Olive got to ride all by herself.
We had so much fun, and can't wait to go back soon!