Forget everything you know about Holland! In fact, the Netherlands is actually asking you to forget about Holland all together. The country’s big new tourism campaign is focused on pushing people away from Amsterdam and the provinces of Holland, which have become overwhelmed with visitors. While there is a lot to see in the family-friendly Holland region, the country is so much more than Holland.
Fun fact: Did you know there are actually 12 provinces in the Netherlands? While people often say Holland and the Netherlands interchangeably, Holland is just one region of the country. It stopped being an independent country in 1812. The region of Holland is now made up of North and South Holland provinces.
There are countless things to do all over the Netherlands with kids. Before you visit, take the time to learn about each of the provinces and their incredibly diverse offerings.
Here are the best things to do in the Netherlands with kids.
Family-Friendly Holland: Amsterdam
Of course, Amsterdam is an incredible area for kids! While it’s famous for its historical areas and less family-friendly spots, Amsterdam is a fun destination for all ages. It’s a vibrant city with something exciting at every turn. Your only issue here will be finding the time to get around to everything you want to see and do.
When it comes to the best hotel for families in Amsterdam, you can’t beat the Linden Hotel. This mid-priced spot has everything you need for a perfect getaway. Located in the convenient and safe Jordaan neighborhood, this hotel has a friendly staff, kid-friendly amenities, and is within walking distance of everything you’ll love.
Exploring North Holland with Kids
North-Holland, or Noord-Holland as it’s locally called, is about way more than just Amsterdam. Explore beautiful beach towns like Bloemendaal, check out the famous cheese in Edam, and experience Dutch life in Zaanse Schans.
If you want to reconnect with nature, stay in Karnemelkplaats Callantsoog. Nestled in the Northern Dutch dunes, this is a prime base for exploring the northern coast.
Things to Do in the Netherlands with Kids: A Trip to Utrecht
The fourth-largest city in the Netherlands, Utrecht has a beautiful medieval old town that is ripe for exploration. If you’re lucky enough to be there for the first Sunday of the month, there are amazing kid-friendly activities at the Dom Tower.
Got kids who love amusement parks? Of course, you do! That’s why you’ve got to check out Port Zélande. This waterfront amusement park just outside of Rotterdam has gorgeous cottages and apartments for families.
Why Kids Love Friesland
Every Dutch person has fond memories of family trips to Friesland. Whether it’s running around the sandy beaches, sailing the sparkling clear water, or cycling through the lush countryside, this is a perfect place to get away from it all.
Want to treat yourself? The five-star kid-friendly Landgoed Lauswolt is an unforgettable place to spend an evening. Golf, enjoy the spa, or just soak in the natural beauty of the region.
Family-Friendly Holland: Down to South Holland
Did you know that South Holland is actually one of the most densely populated places in the world? Explore urban wonderlands like Rotterdam and The Hague then get out to Zeeland for beautiful windmills, and beaches.
Tips for Visits the Netherlands with Kids
Getting around the Netherlands with kids is easy. People are generally laidback and patient with even the fussiest toddler. It’s easy to find kids’ menu and most traditional Dutch food, especially classics like sweet waffles (stroopwafels) and fries, appeal to kids. Almost every bike rental spot will offer child seats and bicycles for young kids.
Tip- Note that many bike rental places don’t offer helmets, so you might want to bring your own.
When you are traveling around, you’ll find that trains have “quiet cars’ ‘ for people looking to unwind. While there aren’t family cars, you’ll find that the other areas are full of excited kids traveling and they’re free to roam.
For accommodation, you’ll find that more expensive hotel options have in-house childcare options that make it easy to sneak away for some adult-only time. While these are a great option, do spend at least a night or two “roughing it.” Dutch families love camping, especially on the Frisian Islands, and it’s a timeless tradition. If you are going during the summer, it’s a cool opportunity for the kids to meet and play with Dutch children and get a taste of local life.
When to Visit the Netherlands
The weather throughout family-friendly Holland and all of the Netherlands is pretty mild. In the coldest month of the year, January, you’ll see temps around 2 degrees C (35 degrees F). In the hottest month, July, the average day is 19 degrees C (66 degrees F). The biggest factor is often rain. From April until September, you’ll find the warmest and driest times.
From the Netherlands, be sure to explore the other top ten most family-friendly cities in Europe.