Discover the beauty of the Netherlands

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Once Upon A Journey
Roxanne and Maartje are the female Dutch duo behind Once Upon A Journey.
The Netherlands
4 days
The Netherlands
4 days
Boat ride Monuments sightseeing Romantic getaways

The Netherlands is a small country but has lots to offer! It's easy to travel around by car or public transportation. And as it's such a small country, you will be able to see multiple places in a short time. Dunes, beaches, cute villages, authentic windmills, they all can't be missed. And of course, you can't leave the Netherlands without visiting Amsterdam. We always went far away to explore the world, but simply forgot how beautiful our own country is. And visit the Netherlands between mid-april and the beginning of May to see some colorful tulip fields on the way!

Dutch people are very tall! The tallest people in the world actually live in the Netherlands. Nobody knows why the Dutch are this tall, but theories say it’s a combination of genetics, wealth, a rich diet and quality health care.
One-third of the Netherlands is under sea level. The Netherlands translates to “the lowlands” and the rising sea levels, because of global warming, might be a big problem for the Netherlands in the future.
Get prepared to go biking! The Dutch love to bike, there are more bicycles in Amsterdam than people living in the city. Biking in Amsterdam can be pretty chaotic, so watch out! Also while walking in the city.
Dutch people are very tall! The tallest people in the world actually live in the Netherlands. Nobody knows why the Dutch are this tall, but theories say it’s a combination of genetics, wealth, a rich diet and quality health care.
One-third of the Netherlands is under sea level. The Netherlands translates to “the lowlands” and the rising sea levels, because of global warming, might be a big problem for the Netherlands in the future.
Get prepared to go biking! The Dutch love to bike, there are more bicycles in Amsterdam than people living in the city. Biking in Amsterdam can be pretty chaotic, so watch out! Also while walking in the city.

Get to know the Netherlands and all its charm in 4 days

DAY 1

Bike ride in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Rent a bike and explore Amsterdam the local way

Dutch people love to bike. There are more bicycles than people in Amsterdam, so what's a better way to see the city yourself by bicycle! It's an easy way to get around and it’s the local way. If you don’t want to bike, you can also easily walk around Amsterdam. Or use public transportation.

Some of the must see places are: the neighbourhood the Jordaan and the famous Negen Straatjes (Nine Streets), Dam square, the Begijnhof, and the Vondelpark.

If you want to visit a museum, we highly recommend the Anne Frank House and Rijksmuseum.

Dutch food in Albert Cuyp market, Amsterdam

Visit the Albert Cuyp market and try famous Dutch food

The Albert Cuyp market is one of the oldest and largest markets in Amsterdam. The market is located in the neighbourhood the Pijp and is open from Monday to Saturday.

Make sure to eat the following Dutch snacks: poffertjes (tiny pancakes) and stroopwafels. If you eat fish, eat kibbeling and herring (haring)! And of course, try some cheese. The Dutch are famous for its cheeses, like Gouda and Edam.

Canal cruising in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Hop on a canal cruise and see the city from the water

The Amsterdam canals have been awarded UNESCO’s World Heritage status and during this boat trip you will see why! You will get to see the city highlight’s but now from the water.

Spot the Westerkerk (church), the Amstel river, the Skinny Bridge, and enjoy the beautiful canals and Amsterdam houses.

Fun fact: Amsterdam has more canals than Venice and the city has over 1,200 bridges!

DAY 2

Pancake Bakery in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Have breakfast at the Pancake Bakery

Start the day with Dutch pancakes. The Pancake Bakery is a world known famous pancake restaurant! And not with thick American pancakes, but with thin Dutch pancakes. They are so delicious! The cosy pancake house is located in an old Dutch canal house.

Zaanse Schans, Zaandam, Netherlands

Visit Zaanse Schans

Make your way to the Zaanse Schans from Amsterdam! It's possible to travel to the Zaanse Schans by public transportation (just hop on a train) or by car. It will take you between 30 and 45 minutes to get there.

The Zaanse Schans is an unique and authentic area of the Netherlands. Here you can find traditional windmills, wooden houses, handicraft shops, museums, and barns. Go to the warehouse to see how clogs are being made, go to the cheese factory, the fresh bakery for some fresh goods, and go inside a windmill.

Waterkant in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Have food and drinks at Waterkant

Back in Amsterdam, visit the restaurant and bar called Waterkant. Waterkant is a very popular place in Amsterdam, also amongst locals! It's located at the water and when the sun is shining everybody wants to enjoy some sunshine, good food, drinks and music here.

DAY 3

Giethoorn village in Netherlands

Visit Giethoorn

Giethoorn is a wonderful village to visit. With its beautiful houses and many canals, it truly reminds us of Venice! The village is popular with tourists from abroad and the Netherlands. It's a small village about 2-2.5 hours away by train from Amsterdam.

Giethoorn is a mostly car-free village. The little village is so dependent on its waterways, many of the houses cannot be reached by road.

If you travel in the Netherlands between mid April and the beginning of May, make sure to keep your eye out for tulip fields! Because you will definitely see them from the train window or your car!

Ice skating in Netherlands

Have lunch at Smits Paviljoen

Have lunch at Smits Paviljoen. Take a seat on our outdoor terrace on the water with a beautiful view over the lake.

Try the dish 'broodje kroket', if you eat meat. It's a typical Dutch dish to eat and it's so good!

Boat Trip to Giethoorn in Netherlands

Go on a boat trip on the water

The absolute best way to see Giethoorn is by boat. Rent a boat and drive around the canals yourself, during the summer months it can get pretty busy on the water. Make sure to also visit natural park De Wieden.

DAY 4

Zandvoort beach in Netherlands

Visit Zandvoort aan Zee and go to the beach

Travel to Zandvoort aan Zee and enjoy the Dutch beach! It's about a 30 minute train ride from Amsterdam. Zandvoort is one of the Netherlands’ most popular beach destinations. Zandvoort aan Zee has clean sandy beaches and trendy beach bars.

Tijn Akersloot in front of the beach in Netherlands

Have lunch at Tijn Akersloot

Have lunch at beach pavilion Tijn Akersloot, while enjoying a great view over the beach and sea. At Tijn Akersloot you can enjoy a relaxed atmosphere, good food and of course the beach all year round.

Sit comfortably on the terrace and watch the surfers and paddlers, join a round of beach volleyball or yoga or let the sun do the work and stretch out on a beach bed.

You might stay there the whole afternoon if you don't watch out!

Water activities in Netherlands

Take a stroll on the beach, relax, go for a swim or do some water activities

Take a stroll on the beach and/or dunes! Depending on which time of the year your visit the Netherlands, relax in the sun and go for a swim in the Noordzee. Be prepared: the water is always a little cold!

We in the Netherlands have a saying 'uitwaaien', which means get a breath of fresh air. So even if the weather isn't great, Dutchies still love to go to the beach to get a breath of fresh air.

If you are into water sport activties, it's also possible to go surfing, stand-up paddle boarding, kitesurfing and other water sports right on the water.

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Before you travel

  • Dutch weather can be pretty unpredictable and it can be rainy and chilly all year round. Make sure to bring some warm clothes, a rain jacket, and comfortable hiking shoes.
  • The best time to see tulips in the Netherlands is from late April until mid-May! And the famous flower garden the Keukenhof is open from the end of March until mid May.
  • For a coffee in the Netherlands you don’t go to a coffee shop, as they have little to do with coffee. For a coffee you go to a cafe! At a coffeeshop you can get something totally different!
Discover the beauty of the Netherlands

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Once Upon A Journey

Roxanne and Maartje are the female Dutch duo behind Once Upon A Journey, a platform for the LGBTQ+ community and everyone who loves to travel. The girls are in love with each other, traveling, writing, and photographing.