It’s the holiday season!
Also here in The Netherlands the holiday season is about to start! It is not all about Christmas, since the holiday season here is a mix of several feasts. Later on more about that. If you are planning a visit to Holland in this time of the year, then continue reading this blog to learn more about what there is to do!
1. Christmas markets
All over The Netherlands you will find these typical markets for this time of the year: the Christmas market! In Amsterdam you will find even more than one, and if you search something special you should visit the Christmas market located in the Vondelpark: it has a Finnish/Scandinavian theme! If you search something really special then you will need to travel to the south of the Netherlands, to Valkenburg to be more specific. In this city you can visit a Christmas Market in a cave!
2. Ice skating
The closer we are heading for Christmas, the colder the weather will become. Although it will not always be freezing, in several cities you will find icerinks in a special Christmas atmosphere. Don’t worry you cannot try to skate a round, since ice skates were not actually part of your luggage: almost always they are for rent on the icerink!
3. Christmas sale shopping!
Are you not that much in the holiday season mood, but you would enjoy searching for a nice piece of clothing for a small price? Then this is also the time for you! Around mid-November the winter sale starts, and it will continue until January. It is a great time for sale shopping in order to find that one nice piece you were already looking for for a long time.
A couple of cities in The Netherlands have taken creating the holiday season atmosphere to the next level. In the south of the Netherlands you should really visit Maastricht or Valkenburg. Next to Christmas Markets, icerinks, and a lot of sale shopping, you will also find special Christmas expositions (such as a route with Nativity cribs from all around the world in Maastricht) and routes with Christmas lights and light shows. In the west of Holland you can experience the ultimate Christmas in Amsterdam, but also in Rotterdam! Both cities contain more than one Christmas market in several areas of the city, special routes with Christmas lights and more!
However, in The Netherlands there is more than only Christmas this time of the year! On November 11 Carnival starts, and we celebrate St. Maarten, a night in which kids ring the doorbells in the neighborhood for candy, on the 11th of November also. December starts with another feast before people buy and decorate their Christmas trees. It all has to do with a magical figure called Sinterklaas, a saint from Spain, who comes to visit Holland every year with a big ship full of presents which he gives to the children. If you want to see how he arrives in Holland with his ship: make sure you are in Amsterdam at the 15th of November! In any case, visiting The Netherlands in November or December will give you an unique experience of the holiday season.