Top 10 Things To Do in Winter

Holland boasts a terrific number of attractions and activities all throughout the year. Some things can only be enjoyed in the winter months, such as the fabulous Christmas Markets, some things are better in winter, and others are recommended, due to being indoors rather than outside.In the wintery months Holland’s landscapes becomes snowy and icy, with a crisp iciness in the air. As long as you are adequately dressed and prepared for the cold, this is a magical time of the year to explore this interesting country. Hats, scarves, gloves, layered clothing, warm coats, and sturdy, waterproof footwear are highly recommended.

Explore Christmas Markets

Most major towns and cities host fabulous Christmas markets. If the bright, twinkly lights illuminating the night skies and the sounds of carol singers wafting through the air don’t fill you with the festive spirit, wait until you see large, towering, and ornate Christmas trees, nativity scenes, traditional dancers, Father Christmas, fun fairs, and artificial ice rinks. As well as an abundance of trinkets and gifts, many of which are handmade or special to a particular area, you can also pick up some great seasonal decorations. There are also numerous vendors offering warming drinks and delicious festive bites to eat. One need not be a Christian to enjoy the Christmas Markets in Holland. A novel and favourite option is the Valkenburg Market, which is held inside a large cave. The Winter Wonderland in Maastricht is also popular. It is difficult not to be swept up in the joviality and fun at the Christmas markets. They offer excitement for all, regardless of age, gender, and religion.

Ice Skating

Holland is home to many lakes and rivers, many of which freeze solid in the cold winter months. The ice is often thick enough for skating on these natural, and often picturesque, rinks. Locals and visitors alike take to the ice, gliding around, and having fun. Many cities set up artificial skating rinks, meaning that no matter where you are in the country, you are never far away from an ice skating opportunity. Don’t be afraid of falling – a small bump here and there is all part of the fun! Hear the whoops of glee, laughter, and merriment, and take to the ice for good old wintery fun. Afterwards, why not treat yourself to a warming drink in a nearby coffee shop or café? Enjoy a mug of hot chocolate or coffee, or perhaps sample kruidenbitter, a typical Dutch liquor that is a winter speciality. You can also warm up with a glass of Dutch beer!

        

Sample Holland’s Winter Food

Holland is known for its rich selection of winter fare. Hearty, warming, filling, and traditional, try things such as pea soup, mashed vegetables, smoked sausages, and andijviestamppot. There are numerous eateries all across the country where you can enjoy a good meal when the night starts to fall and daylight begins to fade.

Step Back in Time at the Dickens Festival

Each year, the Dickens Festival is held on a weekend in the old city of Bergkwartier. Many characters, well known and not so well known, come to life.  A glorious festival, characters dressed in traditional Dickensian period costume and reenact scenes from Victorian Britain. See Oliver Twist, Miss Havisham, Fagin, David Copperfield, Samuel Pickwick, the Ghost of Christmas Past, and more. There are ragged and poor destitute orphans, street urchins, sly pickpockets, drunks, office works, and members of the High Society. Even Queen Victoria pops by to say hello! There are market stalls, and delights such as roasted chestnuts and waffles.

        

Enjoy Christmas in Regal Style

Visit the Royal Palace of Het Loo in Apeldoorn and enjoy a regal, traditional Christmas in Holland. Three hundred years of Christmases are celebrated in style. With gleaming decorations, an impressive Christmas tree, and table ornaments to blow your mind, it shows another side to Christmas festivities.

Have Fun at the Winter Efteling

A tremendous time can be had by all at the fantastic Winter Efteling. The old theme park in Holland really comes into its own in the winter months, with fairytale lighting, roaring campfires, skating, rides, entertainment galore, and more.

 

Be Enchanted at a Church

There are many nice churches all over Holland, which are great to visit at any time of the year to enjoy the beautiful architecture and spiritual serenity. In winter, however, they host charming carol concerts and other traditional events. This is a lovely way to spend time in Holland in the winter.

Explore Old Cities

Many old cities are delightful at any time of the year. These include places such as Utrecht, Haarlem, Delft, Gouda, Den Bosch, Maastricht, and Nijmegen. See interesting blends of architecture, ancient buildings, and plentiful cultural delights. The cheese market at Alkmaar is also well worth a visit.

Stroll Along the Blustery Beaches

You certainly won’t want to bathe or swim, but a wander along the seafront can be very romantic and special in the winter months. Visit such Dutch beaches as Scheveningen, Egmond aan Zee, Zandvoort, and Bergen aan Zee for a windy and wild beach experience.

 

Mirakels Kerstland Brederode

Set within the ruins of Brederode, this is a wonderful winter excursion to take from the lively capital of Amsterdam. It is ideal for all the family, where kids can meet Santa, enjoy a sleigh ride, ride on the big wheel, and more. There are numerous events and activities, as well as market stalls and eateries.

 

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