The Island Texel by Dutchess Travel Diary©
When you think of The Netherlands, you'll probably think of Amsterdam, Cheese, Tulips and smoking Marihuana. But The Netherlands is so much more than that. Want to see the real deal? Don't miss out on the best? Proud to be a Dutchie I share with you the 10 places you have to visit in The Netherlands (outside of Amsterdam).
With endless waterways, bridges and no cars, Giethoorn is (not surprisingly) also known as the Venice of the North.
The town Giethoorn is like something out of fairytale. Photo by Pixabay.
This hidden Gem in The Netherlands is getting more and more popular amongst foreign tourist. Rent a `whisper` boat. A little motorboat with a silent engine. Most rental places provide picknick baskets as well (optional) and different routes you can sail. On a hot summer day, don`t forget to bring your swimwear to join the locals for a refreshing dip. Want to visit in winter? Make sure to bring some ice skates to explore a true winter wonderland from the frozen canals.
For more information about boat rentals, accommodation, getting there and activities, Check out Het Zwaantje.
Beaches, spotting seals, typical Dutch flat countryside, sand dunes and national parks. The island Texel (say Tessel) is by far one of the most popular holiday destinations amongst the Dutch.
The lighthouse at the Island Texel by Wikimedia.
It's possible to enjoy the island with a one-day visit, but at least one overnight stay is highly recommended. Cars are allowed on the island, but for those who want to go Dutch all the way: definitely, consider renting a bicycle or bring one of your own. Bike rental is available at the harbour upon arrival. Teso runs ferries to the island throughout the day, departing from Den Helder.
Don`t miss out on:
The local seals will simply steal your heart. Photo by wikimedia.
The place of origin of the world-famous Delft Blue porcelain and artist Vermeer (the creator of `The Girl With The Pearl Earring`). Whether you want to dive into art, history, culture or just enjoy a cold local brewed beer, Delft is a great place to spend the day.
The historical center of Delft is almost like stepping back in time. Photo by wikimedia.
Only a 45 min train ride away from Amsterdam, you have no excuse but to visit this unique historical epicentre. Check out Delft.com for more information..
Combine the best Dutch Cheeses with serene historical fisherman villages. A day out to Edam, Volendam and Marken is an absolute must for anybody that wants to be able to say, that they`ve been to the Netherlands.
Only a 30-minute bus ride away from Amsterdam and connected with one-another by a ferry service.
Tip: Don`t miss out on getting a photo made in traditional Dutch Costume!
The towns Edam, Volendam and Marken are the perfect historical Fisherman's towns to enjoy old Dutch culture. Photo's by Dutchess Travel Diary©.
5. The Keukenhof
Be blown away by the endless amount of colours and shapes of the stunning Dutch flower: The tulip. This flower garden is designed by the same landscape architects of Amsterdam`s Vondelpark: Jan David Zocher and his son Louis Paul Zocher. The park is now grown out to a 200 hectares flower heaven.
The endless colour spectacle of the Keukenhof is truly mindblowing. Photo by wikimedia.
Only open during Dutch spring (half March till half May). For more information check out dekeukenhof.nl.
6. The Zaanse Schans
Windmills, clogs and Dutch candy. Have to admit, the Zaanse Schans is very touristy, but a great place to get those typical Dutch Snap. Learn more about Dutch history and eat yourself sick of delicious Dutch Waffles: `stroopwafels`. Make your very own wooden clog, visit some of the oldest Dutch windmills or go for a little stroll through the historical village.
Whether the Zaanse Schans is your thing or not: it won`t get much more Dutch than this.
Summer or winter, the windmills of the Zaanse Schans always look picturesque. Photo by pixabay.
7. The Veluwe National Park
One of the biggest national parks of the Netherlands. A great getaway for outdoor lovers. Rent a mountain bike, go for a picknick, explore some of the famous routes from the back of a horse or go for a hike.
Early birds visiting the park might get lucky and spot some local wildlife. Photo by wikimedia.
Want to top up with a touch of culture? Visit world`s second largest Van Gogh collection at the Kröller-Müller Museum or royal palace `Het Loo`.
Royal palace 'Het Loo' is definitely one of the most impressive palaces in the Netherlands. Photo by wikimedia.
For more information about the area check out visitveluwe.com.
Due to its most Southern location, Maastricht is considered more `exotic` than any other city in the Netherlands. The beers are more German/Belgium alike, the food is great, the climate warmer in summer and colder in winter and the dialect is a funny mix of French, German, Flemish and Dutch. Surrounded by picturesque hills, Maastricht is definitely the pearl of the south.
During winter, Maastricht changes into a Christmas Wonder Land. Photo by wikimedia.
Are you one of those travellers, that just want to thick as many countries from the box as possible? Close to Maastricht you`ll find the `DrieLandenPunt` (Three-countries-point); where you can visit three countries (The Netherlands, Belgium and Germany) in just one single step!
Cross three countries in just one single step! Photo by wikimedia.
Located in the centre of the country (only 30 min by train from Amsterdam Central). Utrecht is also known `Little Amsterdam`. Stroll along the cute canals, go shopping in the various local shops or enjoy the numerous restaurants, bars and cafè in town.
Want to escape the hussle of Amsterdam, but still enjoy citylife? Utrecht is the perfect escape. Photo by flickr.
You`ll hardly find any place more serene than Dwingelderveld National Park and its surrounding historic country towns. The flat landscape makes the area perfect for biking and MTB but also hiking, and horseback riding are very popular. An overnight in a traditional `Plaggenhut` is highly recommended.
Sunrise at Dwingelderveld National Park. Photo by wikimedia.
Want to know more about visiting the Netherlands? Please feel free to contact me or leave a comment below.