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travel in Sept

We'll be in Amsterdam for 4 days in late Sept. Will some things, like ferries, be closed for the season?
Since it's not tulip season, and weather may be cool, what are best day trips for 2 or 3 days?

Regarding train tickets: it looks like point-to-point tix plus r/t airport train ticket would be best. Comments?

Thank you for any suggestions.

Posted by
2487 posts

No guarantee, of course, but September can have quite agreeable temperatures.
The only ferries in Amsterdam are those at the rear site of the Centraal Station, linking Amsterdam-North with the centre. They run all year round.
Dozens of possible day trips from Amsterdam. What are your interests?

Posted by
11289 posts

If you're only in Amsterdam for 4 days, unless you've seen it before, you won't want to spend 2-3 days out of town; there's lots to see and do in Amsterdam itself.

Do you have Rick Steves Amsterdam & The Netherlands? In the book he details all kinds of day trips, from cities to small towns to more rural areas, and includes goof-proof directions for each, along with some accommodations for those that would make a good overnight. You can read about the options, and decide what you're in the mood for when you're there. As tonfromleiden said, which day trips are "best" will be determined by what you're looking for in a day trip.

Posted by
3933 posts

We took a day and went to The Hague (Den Haag) for Madurodam...which was a blast. Also visited the MC Escher museum. Also took a partial day for Haarlem, which was nice.

Others do day trips to Delft (didn't get there). We visited Gouda (from Dordrecht) and had a nice visit and did a few hours walking tour.

Posted by
19 posts

Thanks for your response, tonfromleiden . Interests: outdoor sites, walking tours, history/ fortified town ( maybe Delft?), architecture, unique Netherlands experiences. We will be using public transportation only.

Posted by
19 posts

Thanks, Nicole P and Harold. I have reviewed the Rick Steves book, but wanted personal opinions in order to pare down the many choices.
We have been to Amsterdam before and have visited museums, barge tour , canal boat and some fun pubs. So, now we want to get outside the city a bit.
Thanks for any suggestions.

Posted by
1005 posts

Last September was HOT. There were days in Amsterdam when it was 90F/33C. So be prepared to anything.

Regarding train tickets, you might want to look into Tripkey, which is a train/tram/bus pass similar to the the OV-Chipkaart. It's convenient for foreigners because it is linked to your credit card, so you don't need to top it up all the time or hassle over a refund at the end of your trip.

Posted by
2487 posts

fortified town
The best fortified town around is Naarden. An absolute beauty. A 20-min walk from the railway station Naarden-Bussum (use OpenStreetMap for directions), which is 25 mins with the half-hourly train from Amsterdam Centraal.
With your interests, you'd like Leiden, 40 mins from Amsterdam with trains running every 15 mins. You could easily combine it with Delft, which is another 20 mins on the same railway line.

Posted by
3933 posts

I'll expand a little more on what we did since I have a little more time now...

...our partial day trip to Haarlem we visited St Bavos church - I mentioned in another post about how we were approached by one of the custodians (in a red sweater - there were a few of them in red)...and he told us so many wonderful things about the church - things we never would have known. So if you get to St Bavos, look for a custodian and try to latch on and have them tell you some secrets about the church! We also wandered to the windmill that is there.

I mentioned Madurodam.

We did a day trip to Gouda from Dordrecht, and also did a visit to Kinderdijk to see the windmills. Enjoyed both immensely but I should have swapped the days (we went to Kinder on a Sat and went to Gouda on Sunday - Easter Sunday, so pretty much everything was closed...should have did it the other way around so we could have popped into some shops in Gouda). Kinderdijk would be a long day trip from AMS tho.

Gouda can be reached by train in about an hour. Easy to walk to the centre from the train stn and we picked up a walking tour book. We did the shortened version of the walk, which cut out about 20 min of a 2 hr or so walk. We bought a walking guide at the weighing house at the town square. The booklet was a little tongue in cheek the way it was written, so that was nice.

Posted by
11289 posts

For architecture, Rotterdam is great. The tourist office has a brochure with an architecture walking tour, which doubles as a free map (their regular map is not free). Don't miss the Cube Houses and the Cube House Museum.

I loved Utrecht, with its unique bi-level canals and great museums, and general great vibe. I also liked Leiden. While Utrecht and Delft also have universities, Leiden was the only one of the three that had a "college town" look and feel. The science museum in Leiden is very interesting. Did you know that EKG's and kidney dialysis are from the Netherlands? I didn't until I went to this museum.

I was much less taken with Delft than most others are, and found the Hague only of interest for its museums (some good, but none made the impression of the Centraal Museum or the music box museum or the rail museum, all in Utrecht).

You'll notice my focus was on cities; that's why I asked about your interest. For many, my destinations would be far too urban for their taste.

Posted by
2487 posts

In Leiden the Museum Boerhaave, the science museum, is momentarily closed for renovation.
Delft can be somewhat touristy, but not in an unpleasant way. A visit to the Old and New Churches (on the same entrance ticket) might interest you, if only for the graves and memorials of some major figures in the early days of the Republic. The grave of William of Orange is of an un-Dutch richness, fitting for the man who is regarded to be the founding father of the Dutch independence.

Posted by
19 posts

tonfromleiden, thanks for info. Rick Steves doesn't mention Naarden in his book. So, a short train ride from Amsterdam? Combine it with another town or is it enough on its own?

And, I'm reading conflicting accounts of Tripkey details, including places to pick it up and whether you need to drop it off ( or if accumulation of charges on charge card suffices as receipt).

Posted by
19 posts

Thanks to all who responded to my inquiries. As I firm up plans, I may need to pick your brains again.

Posted by
2487 posts

Rick Steves doesn't mention Naarden in his book
Apparently they assume it won't be a high priority for their target group.
Combine it with another town or is it enough on its own?
Naarden is good for half a day. You can easily combine it with Utrecht, which is less than 30 mins away on a frequent direct train. The station-cum-shopping-centre is a planological disaster, but once left behind you'll see it's a wonderful city. The Oudegracht is special with its two-storied quays (and excellent lunch facilities) and the area around the Dom Tower (the pride of the city) is unexpectely quiet and peaceful.