Order our new book, Atlas Obscura: An Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders
Mini book

Volendam, Netherlands

Cigar Band House

Mosaics created from 11 million cigar bands 

Edit Place

The quaint Northern municipality of Volendam is known as a quintessential Dutch town. Many women still even walk the harbor streets dressed in the traditional pointed bonnet and floral dress. It’s a town proud of its heritage and every detail of every building reflects that tradition.

In the Volendam museum, the traditional details continue with a dash of artistic flash. Next to the main building of the museum is the cigar band house, a collection of mosaics made entirely from cigar bands. The cigar band project began in 1947, when a local artist began collecting and assembling the bands into designs. Over the years, he collected 11 million bands, creating vibrant scenes from Volendam of people in traditional dress, sailors and fish in the harbor.

Beautifully reflecting the Dutch lifestyle, the work found its permanent home in the Volendam museum in 1995, where mosaics cover the walls and even the tables of the rooms.

Know Before You Go

Walking distance from the center of Volendam

Edit Place