The Netherlands is a relatively small country that is filled with interesting, beautiful cities that are worth your time: Amsterdam. The Hague, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Maastricht are just some of the better known. Don’t miss Delft, one of the most charming Dutch cities where they make the beautiful blue and white hand painted pottery. There’s Leiden, part of the Flower Strip, an area world famous for its flower markets. And just an hour from Amsterdam by train is the town of Gouda, famous for its mellow, cows milk based, delicious cheese and its incredible architecture.
For all there is to see my favorite time of the year is spring. To be honest, I just love springtime. Cold winter temperatures and bleak overcast days are finally fading away. Everything feels new and fresh. This is especially true in the Netherlands.
Flowers. I took a train from Amsterdam to Aalsmeer to visit Keukenhof Gardens in April a few years ago. Imagine looking out of the train window and seeing fields filled with colorful strips of blue, red, yellow, purple and pink flowers for as far as the eye can see. It takes your breath away. The Gardens are so varied and incredibly colorful. You’ll be inspired to come home and plant a garden. You can buy bulbs there and they’ll send them to you at just the right time of the year for you to plant in your area.
Kings Day is the best day to visit Amsterdam in the whole year if you want to mingle with the locals and enjoy one huge party. It was formerly known as Queen's Day, when Beatrix was Queen. If you like parties, make sure you time your visit to Amsterdam around Saturday, April 27, 2019. Imagine a city wide block party with flea markets, carnivals in the parks, and loads of street vendors. The holiday is actually country wide but Amsterdam is where you want to be.
Festival Season begins. The Dutch do love their festivals and they roll out in the spring. There are film, music and culinary events taking place practically every weekend throughout April and May. Take a look at I amsterdam’s festival guide to see what’s going on.
Free Concerts in the Park. May sees the return of the Vondelpark Open Air Theatre, where you'll find dance, music, cabaret, comedy and children’s events every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until September. It’s totally free but donations are appreciated.
Liberation Day Every year on May 5, Amsterdam and the entire country celebrates the country’s liberation from German troops in 1945. To celebrate the country’s continuing freedoms, Liberation Day sees the city comes alive with festivals, concerts and special events including public banquets, or Freedom Feasts as they're known and a huge floating concert on the River Amstel, where you'll find the King and Queen.
If there’s one time of the year that brings out the best in Amsterdam and the Netherlands it surely is spring.