Visiting The Netherlands

The Seasons


When is the best time to visit The Netherlands?

The Netherlands has a maritime (North Sea) climate, with moderate and fluctuating temperatures. The warmer months are from April to October with the higher temperatures generally occurring between June and August. Summers are generally cool, although the recent years did bring some tropical days and daylight in the summer season can be up to 17 hours. In the winter, daylight is generally 8 hours. The winter months begin from November to March, with freezing temperatures and sometimes snow. Although coastal areas are generally milder than the inland areas, it is often windy, while rain although frequent all over the country, tend to be light.

What to Wear

Layers of clothes and an umbrella are advisable when visiting The Netherlands, since in any period of the year the weather can change quickly. You can sometimes even experience every season in one day.

Spring

Enjoy the first sunshine after a long winter, together with the locals who will all be outdoors on a beautiful day. Parks and terraces will be packed, however do be aware of the quickly changing weather. Rain and different temperatures are common in the spring.

Smell hyacinths in the air, go horseback riding, cycle around the tulip fields or go for a walking tour in one of the historical Dutch cities. Discover the national park ‘Hoge Veluwe ’ , visit the open-air museum and spend the night in one of the countryside estates.

Enjoy a pannenkoek (traditional Dutch pancake) , watch the boats with a glass of white wine with the exquisite white Dutch asparagus served with Hollandaise sauce or try the nieuwe haring (herring) as the new season starts in May/June. Spring will give you the chance to experience The Netherlands at its best!

Summer

Summer days can be long and warm with the sun setting only after nine o’clock. Cities such as Amsterdam never seem to go to sleep. Summer is the time for people to catch up with the outdoor life. On a nice sunny day everybody will try to be outside. Boats are cruising through the canals and people enjoy picnics in the parks. The main beaches of Zandvoort and Scheveningen will be very busy with quieter, peaceful spots along the coast.

Summer has a lot to offer for everyone. Take your family to the Efteling theme park or enjoy freshly picked strawberries as you explore the landscape and orchards of the Betuwe or sail around the North Sea. Visit the amazing Deltaworks in the province of Zeeland and enjoy delicious local Zeeuwse fish soup or visit the white peacocks of Staverden Estate in Ermelo and stop by the nearby milk farm.

Go to outdoor concerts like the Amsterdam ‘Grachtenfestival’, watch street theatre, and finish your day with enjoying the vibrant nightlife. Summer is the time for all kind of festivals, like the colourful and festive Gay Pride/Canal Parade, Dance Valley or the cultural theatre festival ‘De Parade’. Soak yourself in the happy vibrant Dutch summer vibe, which you just have to love!

Autumn

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In autumn the days get shorter and the nights are chilly. Rain, wind and sun will follow each other quickly. The streets are quieter than usual, and people prefer to be inside and only go out to move from one place to another. Autumn is a great period to slow down just as the locals do and enjoy one of the country side spa and relaxation tours. Watch traditional festivals such as Sint Maarten’s, when children carry paper lanterns in processions are still practised in some areas, or enjoy a glass of wine with a heartwarming bowl of pumpkin soup.

If relaxation is not your cup of tea, you can still brave the wind for a (kite) surf experience on one of the lakes or open water sports. Shelter from the rain by enjoying one of the world famous museums, visit beautiful old houses during the Monument Open Day or have a gastronomical or typical Dutch food experience. A drive or cycle through the countryside or a walk around a city park on a sunny autumn day will showcase the beautiful, stunning colours of autumn, an experience that one should not miss!

Winter

Ice skating is part of the Dutch culture. You can either skate around at one of the Ice skating rinks, or occasionally enjoy the icy landscape of the countryside. If it is really cold the canals will freeze and you can enjoy the old canal houses from a different perspective!

Stroll through the quaint streets, visit the Christmas markets and watch people in the beautifully lit shopping areas. Enjoy the museums, the winter cultural events (The National Ballet and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam are amongst the best in the world!) and warm yourself with a hot chocolate or a glass of mulled wine by the fireplace in a romantic country estate or in a bustling city old-fashioned ‘brown’ bar. Winter can be long but winter life in The Netherlands can be cosy; a time to enjoy, as we call in Dutch, the “gezelligheid”. Try the traditional winter specialties such as the heaty ‘ewrten’ (pea) soup, delicious stews and various types of stamp pots (mashed potatoes).
Please  visit  our blog: ‘Tales of Orange’  and learn more about The Netherlands!