Need a break of the city’s hectic, well there are some options to choose from:
You have to be fond of flowers and coloring to enjoy the true beauty of the Keukenhof. Nowhere else wil you find this many tulips and other adorable flowerfields.
Enjoy nature in a pretty environment, while strolling through the lanes of the park.
And although it might have a Martha Stewart kind of tackiness to it, you’ll be sorry if you forget to bring your camera, for those famous tulips do grow in a lovely way.
Plenty of restaurants here, however you should try those typical Dutch ‘poffertjes’ (fritters) here if you get the chance. Not to exciting, but just one of those trips you shouldn’t miss. At least if you believe tulips are ‘swell’!
How to get there
Volendam & Marken
Welcome to the world of authentic fishermen and the typical Dutch way of life.
Volendam is the town known for its fresh caught fish, its inhabitants tidyness and music the Dutch tend to call ‘Palingsound’. While the fishing needs no explanation, the tidiness seems to be grown into the Volendam culture. People here are known to clean there houses everyday until they are as shiny and polished as can be. As to the why…we don’t know. Might just be to keep the smell of freshly cooked fish away! And the ‘Palingsound’? Well a lot of famous singers and bands come from this little town, so people suggest that they get their great voices due to the fact that they are known to eat a lot of smoked eel. So you might just want to try this delicacy and see if you all of a sudden turn into the new Tina Turner. Although the first impression of Volendam might seem quite touristic, this town is as original and genuine as it can be. While you are here, try to eat as much fish as possible, especially the famous eal and of course some of that great haring. Eat your haring in the Dutch way, salted with onions, or try the rolmops with pickles for a change.
Must-do: take the boat across to Marken, a cute little town with beautiful small houses, hidden roads and a great view over the water.
How to get there
Step into the past of the Dutch and visit the Zaanse Schans.
This delightful old hamlet on the banks of the river Zaan gives you the unique opportunity to enjoy a dash of the life as it once was during the seventeenth and eighteenth century.
Wonder along the authentic green wooden houses, the tradesmen's workshops, see how historic windmills come alive and visit the super cute shops. Highlights: the famous d’Hoop op de Swarte Walvis restaurant (luxurious and delicious) and the Albert Heijn shop, the first shop of the grocery empire that is now a worldwide chain. How to get there
Durgerdam is a cute tiny village only 10 km from City Center. It is a day trip you don't want to miss, especially when you have some time to spend in Amsterdam. A fabulous bike tour, in the direction of Amsterdam North, is a natural highlight of your stay. There is nothing to do in Durgerdam, except sit at the waterfront terrace and have a beer and enjoy the Dutch scenery. Fot the Bike tour: click here
Go to Zandvoort if you are looking for more diversity. Zandvoort is a lot bigger, you can choose from many different beach clubs from a relaxed Aussie-feel at Skyline 13, fine-dinning at Riche, open all year Take 5, stylish with super service at Tien, Superb food at the fire p[lace at Vooges, get a meditative tan at Ganpati, walk a bit (Paal 1) for old time favorite Tijn Akersloot or Backpackers on High Heels favorite Zout.
Mark this dates: July 6, August 9 and August 10. Zandvoort (A)live: Spectacular music festival on the beach at several beach clubs.
And if you are bored or burned go into the little village with some great shops (open 7 days a week), restaurants or try yout luck at the casino. Had enough of Zandvoort? Hop in the tuk tuk they will bring you safely to the posh Bloemendaal.
Transport: Train from Central Station
Drop the Havaianas and say hello to the Jimmy Choo’s, for the Bloemendaal beach is posh.
Here beachlife is not about tanning and sunblock, it’s all about seen and being seen.
Be hip, be beautiful and dress-up. Lounge in style with champagne, oysters and lobster, for Bloemendaal takes life at the beach to a whole different level.
Sip your cocktails here at one of the beachclubs, one by one designer-made, and go-with-the-flow of housestyled loungemusic, Californian blond and mobster chic.
BeachClubs: Show your new D&G bikini at Republiek & Bloomingdale or Party in style at BLM. Hippie-like totally relax, dude – kind of place Woodstock. Superb food or hardcore house at Lido Drink Champagne at one of their sensational party’s like Sensual Sushi at Rapa Nui or enjoy One big chill fashion party at Vroeger
Republiek, Vroeger & Woodstock
BLM, Bloomingdale & Lido