Three weeks in the Netherlands, from south to north

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A three-week stay helps to identify the country's key. Distances are short and the most interesting cities are often not very far away from each other.

Photo gallery

<p>The Saint-Servais Bridge, in Maastricht.</p> <p>Spanjaardsgat hosts a festival renowned by the specialists.</p> <p>Zeeuws Museum in Middelburg.</p> <p>.</p> <p>You can even sleep in the mythical cubic houses of Piet Blom in Rotterdam!</p> <p>Historical facades and arrow of Nieuwe Kerk in Delft.</p> Vue de Prinsengracht. <p>Van Gogh Museum.</p> <p>Rijksmuseum.</p> <p>The lighthouse of Texel dominates the island.</p> <p>Dance in the shadow of volcanoes.</p>

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Steps

  • Amsterdam
  • Rotterdam
  • Delft
  • National Park Hoge Veluwe
  • Groningue
  • Leeuwarden
  • Texel
  • Maastricht
  • Breda
  • Middelburg
  • Sneek
  • Veere
  • Walcheren
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Details of the stay: Three weeks in the Netherlands, from south to north - 19 days

Day 1 : Maastricht

Known for the eponymous European treaty signed in 1992, Maastricht is also a romantic destination. Stroll around the city and feel free to leave the centre to visit its vineyards

Day 2 : Fauquemont-sur-Gueule (Valkenburg)

Take a day-long hook in this charming and tourist city that will carry you in another atmosphere.

Day 3 : Bois-le-Duc (Hertogenbosch)

The capital of Upper Brabant is famous for its remarkable Gothic cathedral.

Day 4 : Breda

On your way to the North Sea, stop at Breda. A 12th century fortified town and home to the Orange family, you can admire its castle flanked by four towers. The old centre of Breda is one of the most charming in the Netherlands.

Day 5 : Zierikzee

Direction the sea. A day will be enough to see the main tourist points of the city, the old port and the tower of Sint-Lievensmonster. Enjoying the delights of the sea on the terrace is a pleasure.

Day 6 : Walcheren Island/Rotterdam

Cross the sea with the N57 to reach Walcheren Island. Pretty little towns await you there: Veere, Middelburg, Westkapelle or Dombourg. After your visit, you will have an hour and a half by car to reach Rotterdam.

Day 7 : Rotterdam

With one of the largest ports in the world, Rotterdam is a dynamic and moving city. Many museums, entertainment and festivities are not missing.

Day 8 : Rotterdam, architectural city

Architecture lovers will be able to stroll for hours in this city. The Cubic Houses of Rotterdam, the Van Nelle factory, the New Luxor theatre and the town hall are all essential.

Day 9 : Delft

From the city to the earthquakes, there is undeniable charm: a morning walk through its little alleys and along its enchanting canals is inevitable! From the Nieuwe Kerk to the market square, the view of the Old Town is simply magnificent.

Day 10 : Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Gouda Goud

A beautiful typical Dutch town, don't forget to taste its famous cheese.

Day 11 : Introductory walk in Amsterdam

After arrival at the hotel, it is advisable to take a boat trip and/or a walk in the red light district. Might as well start with the serious stuff, right? A boat trip gives you a first overall impression of the city. You can take a boat on the Damrak, the street in front of the station, or at many places throughout the city. Ask at the reception desk of your hotel. Depending on the length of the boat trip, organise your dinner (remember that Dutch kitchens close early, around 10.30 pm). You can easily find an Indonesian, Chinese or Thai restaurant near the red zone.
After the boat trip, go for a walk in the red zone, be careful with pickpockets of course. A word of advice: leave the area when there are only men left. You can have a drink at Engelbewaarder (Kloveniersburgwal 59), a very friendly literary café where you can have a well-deserved snack.
If you have some energy left, you can take a walk around the very touristic Leidseplein to have a last drink and even go out if you wish.

Day 12 : Discover Amsterdam

Saturday will ideally start early with a visit to the (Prinsengracht maison d'Anne Frank263). It is advisable to go there before the opening (9am) so as not to spend hours in the longest queue in Amsterdam (sic). After Anne Frank's house, continue your walk along the Prinsengracht and turn left at the Noorderkerk (Northern Church). Every Saturday on the church square, the organic market displays its goods and it is very popular. Admire the beautiful products and then enjoy the famous Winkelcafé apple pie at the corner of Westerstraat and Noordermarkt. Continue your walk in the Jordaan district, once the prolo district of the city and now one of the most popular districts in the capital. Return to Anne Frank's house by following another channel, the Keizersgracht for example. Go to the Place du Spui where the entrance to the beguinage is located (take the alley on the left when you are in front of the Caffé Esprit and turn left again). Breathe, you're out of time! If you wish, it is possible to visit the Amsterdam Museum or at least go through the Civic Guards Gallery (it is free). In the evening, you can go to Melkweg or Paradiso, two musical temples in Amsterdam (check the Internet schedules in advance). For jazz lovers, a visit to Muziekgebouw aan't-IJ is a must. This complex houses various jazz venues (Bimhuis and Ijsbreker). Classical music lovers will find their happiness at the Concertgebouw, renowned for its remarkable acoustics and exceptional orchestra. Otherwise, you always have the possibility to push the door of one of the many brown coffees in the city, renowned for their authenticity.

Day 13 : Cultural visit

Sunday will be a cultural day, it is advisable to make only one large museum (Van Gogh or the Rijksmuseum for example) to avoid indigestion and to choose it according to the additional temporary exhibitions (consult the programmes on the Internet). Anyway, all the museums are located in the same area. After the visit, go to the Vondelpark, the city's large park named after a famous poet. Treat yourself to tapas at the Eetcafé Vondeltuin, enjoy a cold beer at the T'Blauwetheehuis. If the weather is really good, take a moment to relax in the park. And if the weather is bad or if you want to do more cultural activities, take the path that leads to the Jewish quarter and visit the Portuguese synagogue (Mr. Visserplein 3) open until 4pm. This synagogue is the largest in the world and was built in 1675. To finish off beautifully, why not a candlelit dinner at Vijff Vlieghen's restaurant, one of Amsterdam's most famous restaurants?

Day 14 : Island of Texel/Route Route

A trip on the protected island of Texel will take a day and a half. If time permits, you will even be able to swim. Take the road to Sneek late in the day.

Day 15 : Sneek

Admire the marina of the port of Sneek and its famous Watergate, a 17th century gate that spans the canal.

Day 16 : Leeuwarden

Capital of Frise, Leeuwarden has over 600 monuments including the Oldehove, "the Tower of Pisa of the Netherlands". Shopping is at the heart of the shopping street De Kleine Kerkstraat.

Day 17 : The attractive Groningen

The largest and most lively city in the north of the country, Groningen has a city centre exclusively reserved for pedestrians and cyclists. To the south, the Groninger Museum is one of the most stunning constructions in the Netherlands.

Day 18 : Zwolle

Commerçante, Zwolle symbolizes the market power of Hanseatic cities. With a medieval city centre and its Catholic church Saint-Michel, Zwolle attracts many tourists. You can admire the city and its surroundings at the top of the Peperbus tower (75 metres).

Day 19 : De Hoge Veluwe

As you head south, a stopover in the beautiful De Hoge Veluwe Nature Park in the province of Gelderland will conclude your stay in style.

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