The days are getting shorter and (stormy) autumn weather keeps us inside more and more. Afraid you'll get bored at home? The following shops offer more than enough inspiration to survive rainy days.
"We try to be as accessible as possible with our offer," says Gerrit-Jan Kruidenier, owner of the independent bookshop. Because he can decide what he buys and also imports books himself, you come across very special books as well as popular literature. Kruidenier: "The shop moves with what the customers want and what we think is special.
Or wander with Het goede leven: Hoe Nederland in een halve eeuw steeds welvaren became by Annegreet van Bergen to the past. "It is nostalgia, but not in the sense of 'everything used to be better'," says Kruidenier. "It's more about little things that have changed: what we eat, that you hardly ever see a woman on the back of a man's bike anymore, or laundry hanging in the wind." A book full of anecdotes and observations guaranteed to provide many "Oh yeah, remember?" moments.
Prefer a compelling historical story? Then plunge into the couch with Musch by Jean-Marc van Tol. This first part of the Johan de Witt trilogy is based on the correspondence of the pensionary from Dordrecht. Kruidenier: "A wonderfully written book and extra fun for the people of Dordrecht, because as a reader you really find yourself in the Dordrecht of 1650.
Feel like going to the cinema, but it's raining cats and dogs? Then stay on the couch and create your own cinema feeling at home with freshly popped popcorn from Allenbrand's Gourmet Popcorn.
Halfway down the Voorstraat, at number 284, you are lured in by the seductive, warm smell of fresh popcorn. A year ago, the American Joshua Allenbrand and his girlfriend Mirjam opened the doors of the first American popcorn shop in the Netherlands here. The corn is roasted in front of you - it doesn't get any fresher than this! And it couldn't be more American, because Joshua grew up between the popped corn thanks to his parents who have been running a popcorn food truck for almost a quarter of a century.
Warm autumn flavours
And don't think that your choice is limited between 'normal' sweet and salty. How about the Snickerdoodle flavour devised by Joshua's mother: deliciously autumnal with a hint of cinnamon and undertones of vanilla and butter. Sweet tooths can also indulge in the Stroopwafel, Caramel Coffee and Red Velvet Cake flavours.
More of a savoury person? Then curl up on the sofa with a bowl of Cheddar Cheese popcorn, Butter & Salt or, to really get you going, the slightly spicy Jalapeño Chilli Cheese. If you can't decide between sweet and savoury, you can always go for the Caramel & Cheddar Cheese mix, Caramel Sea Salt or the original Kettle corn, based on Joshua's father's secret recipe that started it all a quarter of a century ago in Kansas.
Stripwinkel Sjors has been a household name in the world of comic books for over 40 years. Owner Ineke Horst: "Comics are expressive. It touches people. They are actually silent films in book form."
Many people think of comics as Donald Duck, Suske & Wiske or Tintin. If you enter Stripwinkel Sjors with that idea in mind, a whole new world will open up for you, because there is so much more! Just like regular reading books, there is a lot of variation. Besides Fantasy, action, adventure stories and Japanese manga, there are also very arty comic books, historical comics, comics about politics and beautiful graphic novels. Comic books full of humour, but also about heavier subjects such as depression, dementia, bullying, burn-out, eating disorders, and beautiful stories about love and friendship.
A feast for the eyes
At Sjors you will find them from all corners of the world and for all ages. The more than 40,000 comics will make you dizzy. Besides being fun to read, they are often exceptionally beautiful. Pablo Auladell, for example, brilliantly illustrates the famous poem Paradise Lost by the 17th-century poet John Milton in over 300 pages.
"There are also, for example, comics about music," says Horst. "From Jazz and The Beatles, to André Hazes and Kiss. It can be a biography of the artist or band or songs that are depicted, like Nick Cave's Murder Ballads, for example."
If you're looking for something a bit more action-packed for the darker evenings, pop into 4 Your Games, the specialist shop for board, card and dice games. If you are not already addicted to games, you will become one here. "We sell fun and conviviality."
By the hand through gaming land
With over 1800 board game titles alone, you will always succeed here. But where to start with so much choice? "We take you by the hand, as it were, through the world of games," says owner Maico Paschold. "By asking the right questions, we always end up with a game that really suits you." From simple card games, cosy family games and games for two, to elaborate strategy games. Games for a short party, to games that you can easily lose yourself in for a full day. From small games that you can easily take with you wherever you go, to complex board games that involve building entire worlds. You will find it all here.
But what if nobody wants to play with you? Then join the popular weekly game nights. Wednesday and Friday evenings are devoted to the game Magic: The Gathering. Friday nights are also the place to be for board games. Admission is free and there is room for over fifty people, so there is always a spot available. That's how it goes at 4 Your Games: before you know it, you've not only found a new game, but also a new hobby.
At Intertoys you will find everything to make any rainy days for children fly by. Nowhere in Dordrecht will you find so many toys together.
From bouncy books and cuddly toys for the little ones to trendy teenage toys, from the latest trends in toy land, board games and Barbies, to wooden toys, books and handicrafts. "The range is both wide and extensive," says branch manager Nathalie Duijzer. "From the big brands, you won't find just a few products here, but really the complete line."
Shopping in peace and quiet
Many a child stands in front of a wall full of Playmobil, for example, to marvel. From fire brigades and tough knight scenes to settings with princesses and fairies: the brand has something for everyone. Duijzer: "Very popular is the 'Spirit'-line, about the horse girl Lucky who experiences all kinds of adventures in the Wild West with her friends and horses.
Friends & Family Evening
Because it is sometimes difficult to see from a box exactly what you can do with a toy, Intertoys organises special Friends & Family Evening Purchases where all sorts of toys are demonstrated. Besides useful (and fun!) demonstrations, you also get a 15% discount on toys on these evenings.