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Nederland Itinerary

My wife and I will be flying direct to Schiphol and spend 7 nights in the Nederlands. Here's how I've allocated our time (overnight):

Day 1 (Amsterdam): arrive 10:50am, check in, Van Gogh Museum?
Day 2 (Amsterdam): private canal tour, Rijksmuseum
Day 3 (Amsterdam): explore Amsterdam
Day 4 (Utrecht): drive to Hoge Veluwe National Park, bike to Kröller-Müller Museum, end day in Utrecht
Day 5 Utrecht): Explore Utrecht
Day 6 (Delft): drive to Kinderdijk (am), Den Haag (pm), end day in Delft
Day 7 (Delft): Explore Delft
Day 8 (Brugge): Drive to 's Hertogenbosch, drop off rental, train to Brugge

We've previously spent 3 nights in Amsterdam and stayed in the Jordann, but the Rijksmuseum was being renovated and my wife is a fan of the Dutch Masters so it's a must. We're both fans of Van Gogh but it's negotiable since we'll also see the Kröller-Müller on the way to Utrecht. We've done the red light district and don't feel a need to go back. The Anne Frank house isn't our thing. There's still a lot of exploring we need to do in Amsterdam, including slow paced lunches and dinners, and quiet areas. Any thoughts on the Belgijnhof or recommendations for something like it? I'm also considering the Hermitage...any thoughts?

The goal is to relax a bit without being in and rush, and to minimize driving. Days 5 and 7 get us out of a car for a day. On Day 8, we'd prefer to arrive in Brugge for the Belgium leg of our vacation after most of the day trippers are gone.. I have an inordinate fondness for canals and would like to tour the Belgijnhof. Any thoughts? Are there other recommendations for 's Hertogenbosch?

Posted by
1645 posts

The “Begijnhof” in Bruges is not so big and easy to visit. There is a little museum “Begijnhuisje” and they can tell also you what the best moment is to visit the church, as there are worship services throughout the day at regular times.

If you like canals you can bike along one from Bruges to Damme and even further to Sluis just across the border in The Netherlands. Nice area in spring time, a detour to Sint Anna ter Muiden en Oostkerke are worth to consider.

Driving through The Netherlands, think about to avoid the notorious rush hours in de "Randstad" , as most places you want to visit are part of it. So use as much as possible public transport.

Posted by
2828 posts

Is there a particular reason for which you are driving to 's- Hertogenbosch on day 8 before heading off to Brugge? Are you planning some sightseeing in the way? If not, it is better to drive from Delft to Rotterdam and catch a train (preferably a Thalys, much faster and modern) at Rotterdam Centraal to Belgium.

Posted by
149 posts

Sorry for the typo Wil. I was referring to the Begijnhof in Amsterdam as a quiet place to relax while exploring new areas. We have six nights in Flanders and if the weather cooperates we'll bike from Brugge to Damme and perhaps on to Oostkerke to see the white windmill you've recommended in previous threads.

I wasn't very clear about plans for 's Hertogenbosch Andre. Since we're trying to avoid daytrippers in Brugge and extra fees for dropping off our rental car in Belgium, I thought we'd drive from Delft to 's Hertogenbosch for lunch and some sightseeing. I'd like to do the Binnendieze tour and climb the tower of Sint Jan.

Posted by
149 posts

Thanks for the suggestions in Utrecht Wonderful. We also plan to take the guided tour at the Museum Speelklok. As for jet lag in Amsterdam, after checking into the apartment we are renting near the Hermitage, we plan to stay active as we've done on our three previous trips to Europe. I thought it would be fun to re-visit the Van Gogh Museum, have dinner, and try to go to bed around 10pm.

Posted by
1976 posts

I really enjoyed the Begijnhof in Amsterdam - it's small and quiet, very peaceful. When I was there in 2007, visitors weren't allowed to walk down the paths past the church, but it's still worth a visit. Amsterdam's oldest house (1477) is there; it used to be a Beguine convent.

The Oude Kirk next to the red-light district is a cool place - the floor is made up of gravestones and the church has contemporary art exhibitions - a neat contrast between old and new.

I also enjoyed Amsterdam's Chinatown. It has a lot of restaurants, and a Buddhist temple (He Hua Temple) which visitors can enter.