If there’s a country that has historically spent wisely its money, it’s the Netherlands. The cities of the Netherlands are the former Spanish colonies used all the gold and silver coming from the New World to become one of the most developed countries in the world. The whole Netherlands is actually a huge work of engineering; the country sits on swampy lands and stays well below the sea level thanks to several huge dams located in the country’s coastline. Amsterdam is, by far, the place where most of the people who visit the Orange country go, attracted by its deserved dubbing as Vice City, its stunning museums and its iconic city center, but the modern Rotterdam, Utrecht, a mini-Amsterdam in several ways, the green and chilly Groningen and The Hague, where the Netherland’s most famous beach hosts lawyers from the International Court are very interesting cities too.
The country is the worldwide capital of urban cycling: it is possible to travel from any city in the Netherlands to any other following a safe bike road which crisscrosses the tulip fields and the infinite channels that cover the Dutch countryside. Dutch people are melomaniacs too, they are arguably Europe’s biggest Jazz lovers and they embrace Classical as well as Electronic music. These are but some of the million things the Netherlands have to offer to you. Read here about the top 10 cities in the Netherlands.
Netherlands City List
There’s not a single city in the world which has the level of tolerance towards drugs and sex as Amsterdam. This economic center of the world has become a symbol of the progressivism that Dutch people embody better than anyone. The city’s foundation is written on its very name: the capital of the Netherlands was born in the 14th century next to a dam over the river Amstel and quickly became one of the most important European trading centers. Since its independence from the Spanish Kingdom, Amsterdam became a paradise for artists, scientists, philosophers and urban engineers. These people built a wonderful city which is indeed a pleasure to visit any time of the year. The old city center, with its iconic small and colorful houses, is perfect to get lost for several hours; the city’s cultural heart, Museumplein, is a buzzing art center; its multiple parks are a preferred place for tourists and locals alike on sunny days.
This one of the best cities in the Netherlands is also widely accepted as the European capital of Jazz and there are countless bars and Jazz clubs all around the city. Oh, and if you’re staying in the city for more than just some days don’t forget to get you We Are Public card, which provides free tickets and discounts for cultural events ranging from concerts at the Bimhuis and the Concertgebouw to temporal exhibits at several of the city’s museums. Discover much more in our articles about Amsterdam!
2. The Hague
Globally known majorly as the headquarters of the International Court of Justice, The Hague is fast coming up as a travel destination in itself. People are waking up to the fact that there is more to the city than just courts and black robes. Known for its distinctive international flavour owing to the multiple embassies, international offices and courts here, The Hague is the more conservative and solemn brother of Amsterdam. The Hague is perfect for those looking for some respite from the tourist infested common cities in the Netherlands. Large roads, parks and huge avenues, in each block, give a sense of austerity and elegance to this city. This best city in the Netherlands is a haven for architecture enthusiasts and fast coming up as a must-see place for people coming to this country.
Utrecht is the religious centre of the Netherlands. It is home to many art museums giving it a very cool hipster vibe alongside its ancient religious background and Utrecht University makes it a student-friendly city. One of the most diverse places and popular cities in the Netherlands, Utrecht is fast becoming a top list in every traveller’s itinerary.
Known as the student capital, Utrecht is home to many cheap places to eat, drink and party making it popular fast with the tourists arriving in the Netherlands. Various festivals are organised in the city as well throughout the year. People flock here for the bars, for the open markets and the amazing young ambience. Art buffs and architecture buffs find this to suit their taste too. Needless to say, there is something for everyone in this city if you spend enough time here.
Known best for its technological university and lively student culture, Delft is a cosy little city in South Holland. You’ll be acquainted with the rich history of this side of Holland, and also the works from the Dutch Golden Age. Delft is an amazing place for a few days of recreation. This city to visit in the Netherlands might not be the most popular destination on your itinerary, but that’s one of the reasons why it makes for such an amazing getaway. Its expansive and scenic canals, open markets, lively crowd and brilliant summer weather will make it a place you’ll always remember. The Beestenmarkt will pull you back to it every day of your stay, thanks to its amazing atmosphere and options to eat and drink. Indeed, localities refer to it as the best meeting place in the city.
Visit the two iconic churches, the Nieuwe Kerk and the Oude Kerk, built with superb architectural expertise and pleasing to the eye. Or if you’re an art lover, looking into the life of one of the greatest Dutch Golden Age painters, Johannes Vermeer, will surely leave you mesmerized. The Vermeer Centrum offers unparalleled insight into the works of the artist, as well as his life and inspiration. Attractions aside, Delft is a superb place to shop. It has many fantastic shopping streets, and stores ranging from boutiques to full art galleries. Even the food in the city is of a wide variety, so your taste buds will never be disappointed during your trip. Delft is a warm little town, perfect for a few days of relaxation.
Rotterdam is the largest port in all of Europe and the second-largest city of the Netherlands. Rotterdam is a must-have on your Dutch itinerary complete with its brilliant attractions and iconic modern buildings. After the second world war, Rotterdam was a city in utter ruins. But when you look at the city today, you would never guess it. This modern Dutch city today houses some of the most striking works of architecture you will ever lay your eyes upon. Its ideal location along the Nieuwe Maas has ensured it’s growth at a rapid rate. This growth can clearly be seen in the number of eye-catching structures in this city. The first is across the river itself, the Erasmus Bridge, also known as the swan.
As you move into the city, you’ll come across the monumental Markthal, the thought-provoking Kunsthal, and the unbelievably intriguing Cube Houses. Some of the best architectural minds of Holland have worked their magic in the city and it clearly shows. Shopping and nightlife in the city are simply superb, with a variety of options ready to look after whatever your needs are. The Dutch football club FC Feyenoord also call Rotterdam their home. The city’s skyline is actually a rare feature which isn’t usually seen in Dutch cities, but Rotterdam has truly grown into a progressive and forward-looking city. The lively and bustling atmosphere of the city is made better by the pleasant people and interesting attractions, making Rotterdam one tremendous city.
The most Southerly city in the Netherlands is that of Maastricht, a beautiful Dutch destination which is surrounded by rolling green hills and close to the border with both Germany and Belgium. Entirely different from the equally beautiful cities of Holland, the Dutch Limburg Capital boasts plenty of attractions, including walking opportunities, foodie experiences, and plenty of history.
This most beautiful city in the Netherlands is perfect for a long weekend break, and not just because the city is easy to reach and even easier to get around (almost all of the city’s major things to do can be reached on foot, or better yet, by bicycle). Instead, highlights include taking a guided tour of the Maastricht Underground tunnels (a maze of underground routes covering over 10 km under the city), experiencing the free to visit Helpoort (the last medieval gate Maastricht has to offer), finding the best view of the city (be sure to head up the red tower of Sint-Janskerk), and shopping in Boekhandel Dominicanen (a bookstore housed in a former church). If you’re feeling a little peckish, then a trip to Bread and Delicious is an absolute must, while those who love luxury will enjoy the fact that 80% of Maastricht’s hotels are rated four-star or above!
Situated in a provincial and calm part in the north of the nation, wandering into Groningen’s downtown area can be a significant stun – it is an in vogue, energetic spot overflowing with vitality and is totally pedestrianized. A mixed scope of design styles can be found in the middle, because of the quick revamping of the city after it was totally obliterated in the Second World War. With a vast understudy body, there is dynamic arts and culture scene, cheap restaurants and a ton of good bars to choose from.
Because of its vicinity to Amsterdam, Leiden is an extraordinary day trip option, as it has a large group of things to see and do. The memorable center of the city is a delight to explore. Its plenty of trenches, seventeenth Century structures, and limited back roads give Leiden a charming vibe to it, and there are heaps of incredible historical centers to visit.
From Haarlem, you can be in the center of Amsterdam within 15 minutes, but you can also set foot on the beach within 15 minutes. Sounds perfect, right? Haarlem is becoming most famous for people that want to experience the Amsterdam feeling, but want to escape from all the tourists and chaos.
You must check out the main square of this must-see city in the Netherlands, this is where it all happens. You will find plenty of fancy restaurants, the beautiful church and the city hall where you will often see people getting married. In my opinion, the most photogenic street is the Warmoesstraat, just behind the main square. But there is more! Haarlem is the perfect city to wander around and get lost in the many beautiful hidden streets. You will see lots of courtyards with old authentic Dutch houses.
If you want to see more of the authentic Dutch architecture you should go for a walk along the river Spaarne and you will not be disappointed. Where you should go for food and drinks? Here are some of the famous brunch spots: Mica, ByLima, Anne Max, Blender, Mogador Coffee, Dodici, Fortuyn and Diga. They are not the standard tourist spots, they are a bit hidden and not all of them are located in the main center of Haarlem, but it is worth visiting them.
Lying on the banks of the Stream Waal, Nijmegen might be one of the most established towns in the nation, albeit a considerable lot of its old structures were sadly crushed in the Second World War. A large number of them were recreated, be that as it may, and some decent structures still speck the inside. With the extensive understudy populace reviving this antiquated spot, a standout amongst the best activities here is to stroll along the dazzling riverside promenade and watch the world pass by.
Deventer was part of the Hanseatic League; a trade union created by seven Dutch towns situated on the river IJssel during the 14th and 15th centuries. This union led to enormous prosperity and today all of these cities are worth a visit to see the beauty and history on display. Deventer is full of beautiful old architecture and home to some great museums, art galleries and churches. It’s also the host of some fantastic yearly festivals. For instance, Deventer op Stelten, Deventer Boekenmarkt and the Dickens Festijn.
During Deventer op Stelten the town hosts performers from around the world (many on stilts) for a weekend every July. Held on the first Sunday of August, Deventer Boekenmarkt is the largest book market in Europe. This most visited city in Netherlands hosts around 878 book-stalls, with many rare and very old books on display and available to buy. And every year on the weekend before Christmas the Dickens Festijn (Dickens Festival) dresses up the historic Bergkwartier in Christmas finery and more than 950 characters are brought to life!
Eindhoven is a beautiful city in the Netherlands full of museums, great cultural diversity and a great symbol of progress and modernity of the Netherlands. The city mostly is known globally for being the home of electrical giant Philips and football giants PSV Eindhoven, there’s a lot more to Eindhoven than just that. The city is a great blend of different cultures, as is with a lot of Dutch cities, and also full of attractions to keep you wonderfully occupied. You’ll notice the emphasis on a variety of buildings to reflect the rate at which the city and the country have progressed, especially when you lay your eyes on De Blob and the Van Abbemuseum.
The museum, in fact, is home to one of the most impressive collections of contemporary art in the country, and it’s building is striking, to say the least. The Phillips Museum doesn’t get left behind in this aspect. The global company is known internationally for its innovations and developments in the field, all of which are interactively displayed in the museum. And again, as is the reputation of the country, you can definitely have a memorable night out in Eindhoven with its a brilliant collection of nightclubs and bars. The crowd and the atmosphere are sure to blow you away. This warm city is a great destination for a trip deeper into the fascinating cultures of the Netherlands.
13. Den Bosch
Den Bosch is a wonderful city to visit for those looking for a glimpse into the traditions and heritage of the Netherlands. This famous city in the Netherlands is filled with old-world charm, a myriad of quaint cobblestone streets and scenic canal routes meandering beneath the surface. Den Bosch is the place to discover unique art, shop in local Dutch stores and enjoy a traditional Bossche Bol (a delicacy from Den Bosch, which is a chocolate-covered puff pastry filled with whipped cream). The best place to enjoy a Bossche Bol is at confectioners Jan De Groot.
One of the best-loved things about the Netherlands is the canals and Den Bosch is no exception. Old City Hall, the Markt Square and Gothic St John’s Cathedral give visitors a taste of an old-world Netherlands. Market days are on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays if you want to get a feel for Dutch life in the city.
Dordrecht, the seaport and one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, is located on an island and is bordered by five different rivers. In the past, it was an important city with trade-in wood, cereals and wine, yet the culture and its wealth are still visible today (monuments, museums, theatres, etc.). Today the city is principally known for shipbuilding, wood and steel industry.
The city is rich in history, so there are a number of museums, monuments and fantastic historical buildings. Very interesting activity there is sailing through the old harbours on an electric boat, which takes you past houses built in the water and under bridges. Must-sees are the Great Church and collection of paintings of the Dordrechts Museum. From the Groothoofd there is a gorgeous view of the rivers’ intersections. Nearby there is a nature reserve National Park De Biesbosch, consisting of many waterways, islands, lakes and marshes. Here you can enjoy plenty of outdoor opportunities, such as hiking, cycling, kayaking and even bird watching. You can rent a boat and explore the beauty or go horseback riding
Netherlands City List is letting us know all the best cities in Netherlands to visit as it is providing a brief description of the top 10 cities in Netherlands to visit and some Netherlands major cities. Hope this article would be beneficial for you as it provides the name of cities in Netherlands and kindly shares your views.
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