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2/3 day layover near Amsterdam/Schipol.

I want to break up the long plane ride from Boston with a 2/3 day layover in Amsterdam in each direction.

On the way we’ll probably want to do a bit of touristy stuff right in the city, mid May, and on the way back, we’ll probably just want to relax. We've been to Amsterdam, and know what we'd want to see there, but coming back, we’d just like to go to some picturesque town not too far from the airport (and accessible by pubic transportation) where we can just chill and recover from almost 3 weeks of intense sightseeing . A place where there are nice shops, restaurants, etc. Nothing rural or suburban though. We want to relax, but we don't want to be bored.

We’re thinking maybe Haarlem or Delft?

Any other thoughts?

Posted by
4700 posts

I loved Delft and I think there is direct train service to/from Schiphol. (I went directly from Schiphol to Delft but there was some construction and I had to change in The Hague, which wasn't a big deal.) I spent only a night there, though. It's a chill town, very charming, much calmer than Amsterdam for sure. You can do easy day trips (Rotterdam, The Hague). You could actually do the beginning stop in Haarlem if you've already been to Amsterdam before - easy to day trip into Amsterdam from there.

Posted by
6496 posts

Leiden is a beautiful canal laced town. University town. Pilgrim history,
Near Delft so same train. More to see than in Delft.

Posted by
14267 posts

Delft would probably be very relaxing, I think I'd get bored by Day 2. But you can always commute to The Hague on the tram, for some top-notch museums, shopping, or the beach at Scheveningen (change trams in The Hague). 38 minutes by train from Delft to Schiphol.

Haven't been yet, but both Leiden and Haarlem sound nice to me. Friends stayed in Haarlem for a week mostly to see Amsterdam, saved a lot of money and didn't mind the commute.

Posted by
2487 posts

And you can also stay in Utrecht, 35 mins from Schiphol airport on direct trains.
All these cities have their own qualities. Haarlem is perfectly situated on the river Spaarne, and has the wonderful Frans Hals and Teylers museums. Leiden has the largest historical centre and the beautiful Rapenburg canal, and is the easiest for train connections to all others. Utrecht is peaceful around the Dom tower and perhaps - with Haarlem - the best for shopping. Delft answers the most to the idea of a Dutch city and is the most touristy.

Posted by
77 posts

Many thanks to all! I'm thinking a night or two in Delft will be just right!

Posted by
77 posts

Many thanks to all! I'm thinking a night or two in Delft will be just right!