The Netherlands: The Gem of Europe
When considering the most beautiful, most desired vacation destinations in Europe, the Netherlands is at the top of many travelers’ lists. The beautiful countryside, vibrant cities, and rich history make this small but impressive nation a favorite holiday escape. On a visit to the Netherlands there are a few destinations that should not be missed.
Home to the Dutch government, the Hague is The Netherlands third largest city. More than just a government town, the Hague has much to offer the trendy visitor. Impressive museums, tasty restaurants, and sightseeing galore greet all who visit this beautiful city.
As with any city in Europe there are a few destinations that should not be missed. The Mauritshuis Museum is the premier art museum in the Hague. Housing priceless masterpieces from the Dutch golden age, the collections housed within the Mauritshuis include works by Rembrandt, Steen, and Frans Hals. After perusing the beautiful works of art at Mauritshuis, visitors might consider a visit the the Peace Palace, the Japanese Gardens, or the impressive Binnenhof & Ridderzaal, better known as the Inner Court and Hall of the Knights.
Photo credit: Mike McGuff
A short trip from the Hague, Rotterdam was once a quaint fishing village. Beautifully transformed, this impressive city is now known as the Netherlands’ most modern destination. A great destination for families traveling in Europe, Rotterdam plays host to the national zoo. Filled with animals from around the world, the Rotterdam Zoo is one of the most carefully planned and preserved zoos in Europe.
Visitors to Rotterdam will also enjoy a wide variety of museums, gardens, and parks. Enjoy walking through the history of the city by taking the City and Harbor walk. This carefully laid out stroll takes visitors past some of the most important and impressive destinations in Rotterdam providing an impressive overview of the sites and history of the city.
Photo credit: Vincent_AF
Mixing the old with the new, no trip to the Netherlands is complete without a visit to Eindhoven. The oldest city in The Netherlands, Eindhoven lives out the history of the Dutch people. The Eindhoven Museum is an excellent choice for families as it presents the history of the Dutch people in an interactive and unique way. Hands on learning, fun activities, and a well informed staff make a stop at the Eindhoven Museum a must-see when visiting this quaint city.
For the road weary traveler, Eindhoven has something for you too. The De Tongelreep Swimming Paradise provides visitors and locals with a great place to relax and have some fun in the sun. Diving boards of all sizes, numerous slides, a 50 meter lap pool, and more make spending a day at De Tongelreep perfect for any vacation.
Best known for the battle that occurred here during World War II, this city on the Rhine has been enjoyed by visitors and, incidentally, fought over since the 1200s. Home to a quaint zoo and safari park, plenty of museums, and incredible restaurants, visitors have no trouble finding things to do as they discover this beautiful Dutch city. One thing that should not be missed on any trip to Arnhem is a visit to The Netherlands Open-Air and National Heritage Museum. This outdoor wonder invites visitors to explore the national and local history of The Netherlands.
Of course, no trip to The Netherlands would be complete without a trip to Amsterdam. The crown jewel of the nation, Amsterdam has everything. Great restaurants, family friendly activities, rich museums, beautiful canals and even the internationally famous red light district make Amsterdam the top destination in the Netherlands. Amsterdam is also the location of the home of Anne Frank, a top attraction in the city. Amsterdam is filled with great accommodation – name-brand hotels, quaint bed and breakfasts, and hostels on every corner make Amsterdam one of the most accessible cities for travelers on any kind of budget.
Photo credit: Werner Kunz
The Netherlands has much to offer visitors from all walks of life. The hardest part about visiting this part of the world is deciding what to see first.