I´ll in the Netherlands for 7 days (8 nights) in February and am looking to spend, probably, 5-6 nights in Amsterdam and 2 nights elsewhere in the country. Any winter-specific recommendations outside of Amsterdam? I want to avoid places that are dead or lose their charm in colder weather. Thanks!
You might read some of the other posts regarding places to visit. Day trip to Leiden, Delft, the Hague, Hoorn, Enkhuizen and Utrecht; all are worth a visit. They are all an easy train ride away from Amsterdam; I would consider staying put in Amsterdam if you are only going elsewhere for two nights.
I agree with the above but Haarlem is also really worth a visit. It is so close to Amsterdam, 15 to 20 minutes on the train. There are nice walks to do, just go to the Tourist info centre on the main squarre for walking routes. The Jopen Chuurch is a brewery in a church that is great for lunch. The Teylers museum is a gem if you like science.
Also, Zaanse Scans is a good place to visit then. This is the windmill destination close to Amsterdam. It is hell in summer with overcrowding but in February it will be fine. There are a number of windmills on a river that you can visit, it costs less than 5 euros to enter a windmill. Choose the wood saw mill if it is open, it is really intersting how it works and the people running it will explain it all to you.
I agree with the previous posters that Zaanse Schans is worth a visit although I would not consider this outside of Amsterdam - it's still the same public transport company. Enkhuizen and Hoorn (important cities in the 17th century) are worth visiting as are Leiden and Delft. If you want to see something completely different go to Rotterdam, which has some of the most exciting contemporary architecture in Europe, and boasts one of the largest harbours in the world. If you are adventurous there is a speedboat service that zips around the harbour at breakneck speeds and gets you very (!) close to some of the huge ships and machines used by the companies operating there.
Unfortunately the weather in February is pretty terrible so I would recommend you just assume that everyday will be grey and gloomy to avoid any disappointment :-)
You should definitely carefully research Netherlands weather in February.