Ultimate guide to discover Netherlands

Incorrectly known as Holland, Netherlands is a very popular destination located in the northwestern side of Europe. The country is famous for its windmills, canals, tulip fields and cycling routes.

Discover Netherlands, general information

The official name of the country is the Kingdom of Netherlands but everybody uses the word Holland when referring to this country. Actually, Holland are two of the provinces which form the Netherlands and their complete name is Zuid Holland and Noord-Holland.

Discover Netherlands tips to maximize your stay
Visit Netherlands tips to maximize your stay

Kingdom of Netherlands consists of the Netherlands, Aruba, Sint Maarten and Curacao. The last three places Aruba, Sint Maarten and Curacao are some very beautiful islands located in the Caribbean Archipelago.

The main country from Europe consists of 12 provinces with a total surface of 41.873 square meters and a total population of 17.4 million people. Another interesting fact is that about 51% of the total population are non-religious, a pretty rare fact among European who are pretty religious people.

The national currency is Euro for the European country and Dollar for the islands from Caribbean Archipelago.

Netherlands which actually means “lower countries” has more than 50% of its total surface 1 meters below sea level! That is why the windmills and water pumping systems play such an important role in Netherlands history.

Discover Netherlands all year round

Netherlands is a wonderful destination all year round. In each of the forth seasons there are plenty of interesting things to do across the country. Each season has its own charm and beauty and specific activities. Let’s see what you can do in each period of the year!

Spring

Spring months are March, April and May.
The days become longer and the temperatures are rising. There are still some cloudy and rainy days but not enough to ruin your holiday.

Dusseldorf city to visit near Netherlands
Dusseldorf city to visit near Netherlands

It is the season when nature is waking up after the long winter sleep. All the trees are green and all the flowers are in blossom. It is the best time to visit the world famous tulip fields and the Keukenhof garden.

Keukenhof garden is the best place on Earth to photograph and admire huge tulip fields nicely coloured. The gardens are open during spring months depending on the weather and the period when the flowers are in blossom. For example, in 2020 Keukenhof gardens opens from 21 March to 10 May, including Easter Weekend, King’s Day(27 April) and Liberation Day (5 May).

A good way to discover Netherlands and especially Keukenhof gardens is to buy a daily trip from Amsterdam to this wonderful gardens. From Amsterdam: Fast-Track Keukenhof Ticket and Transfer is a very good option especially if you stay in Amsterdam. You have round trip tickets to and from Keukenhof and Amsterdam, skip the line included and the entrance fee.

Amsterdam Keukenhof Guide
Amsterdam Keukenhof Guide

If you are not looking for transportation options to and from Keukenhof, you can buy a ticket which include just the entrance fee and skip the line option. Keukenhof: Skip-the-Ticket-Line Entrance is the option if you stay in Amsterdam and want to visit Keukenhof.

Keukenhof Travel Guide
Keukenhof Travel Guide

Summer

Summer is peak season in Netherlands. Tourists are everywhere! There are endless queues to museums and the most important attractions from Amsterdam other main cities.

The prices are higher than in other periods of the year and it might be very difficult for you to find free hotels and cars to rent.

Netherlands in Summer cows
Netherlands in Summer cows

That is why our advice when you want to discover Netherlands in summertime is to book everything in advance. This is the safest way to secure your trip and to get the best price quality ratio.

It is the best time to explore Netherlands by car and to discover its beauty. You can plan a tour across the country with your rented car or set your camp in a nice city and from there do daily trips to the nearby areas.

Get the best price for your car rental today

Autumn

Autumn is the period when things settle down a little bit and nature is preparing for winter. The crowds have gone, the prices have dropped a little and you have more options available for accommodation.

It is the best time to visit Netherlands if you want to sense the local vibe. The landscape is incredible! The days are mostly sunny and warm and you can explore the country quietly and peacefully.

Winter

Or, why not discover Netherlands in winter? Most of the canals are frozen so do what locals do: put your ice skates in your feet and enjoy some time spent outside with your friends and locals.

Netherlands in Winter
Netherlands in Winter

It is the time of the year when everybody is preparing for winter holidays. Christmas markets are one of the top attractions of the period and all the cities and villages dress in holiday belts.

The number of tourists are pretty low, except for Christmas and New Year holidays when the prices increase and it is pretty hard to find availability in good hotels.

Netherlands cities

The most famous and visited city of Netherlands is Amsterdam, the country’s capital.

Most people who visit Amsterdam are looking for fun, Amsterdam being Europe’s top destination for bachelor’s party and endless dancing nights.
If you are an art lover, then the Netherlands, and especially Amsterdam, is a good place to spend a few days.

There are plenty of museums with many interesting art works; Van Gogh Museum is the most famous art gallery in the Netherlands and especially during peak season, the queue is huge. You will need at least one hour of waiting to enter the gallery. This Van Gogh Museum Ticket is a very smart choice as you have a timed entry ticket to all temporary and permanent exhibitions.

Van Gogh Museum Travel Guide
Van Gogh Museum Travel Guide

The best way to discover Netherlands cities is by doing a tour of the most important ones. And here I recommend you to include on your tour Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Leiden, Utrecht and Groningen.

Check this article for more details about 10 most important cities of Netherlands.

Netherlands countryside

Netherlands countryside offers a completely different experience than the big cities. Here, in the countryside everything is more peaceful and calm. Time is measured in a different way compared with city life.

Molen Hunsingo Old Dutch windmill Netherlands Countryside
Molen Hunsingo Old Dutch windmill Netherlands Countryside

If you are tired of the big cities atmosphere and want to spend some days far from the daily stress, then the Netherlands countryside is the best choice.

You will be impressed by the wonderful and authentic accommodations spread across the country and the beauty and serenity of the places.

Check our article "Unique places to stay in Netherlands countryside" for some very good ideas about your overnight options in the Netherlands countryside.

Netherlands is a wonderful country which has many interesting and diverse things waiting to be discovered. No matter if you are looking for active city life, vibrant nightlife or the peace and serenity of the countryside, for sure you will find a place which suits you best.

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