The Netherlands in short, Dutch: Nederland, also commonly called Holland in English is a Benelux country and a founding member of the European Union. The summers are cool here but the winters are severe with some chances of snowfall. Rainfall can be expected in any month of the year. Dutch is the official language here. English, French and German are the other languages that are spoken, out of which English is widely spoken. The people, language, and culture of the Netherlands are referred to as “Dutch”.
Handshake is the commonly practiced form of greeting. Although tipping is not mandatory, but it’s better to pay rounds figure in restaurants and taxis. A humble gift should be taken to the host’s house always when invited for a meal. Informal clothes are worn on a daily basis, but people are expected to turn up in formals at social functions and smart restaurants.
• Efteling — renowned theme park with fairytale elements like elves and dwarves
• Hoge Veluwe National Park — largest national park with heathlands, sand dunes and woodlands
• Keukenhof — millions of tourists visit these enormous flower fields each Spring
• Kinderdijk — these windmills show the typical Dutch landscape in all its glory
• Marken — a former island, and more authentic than Volendam, it is well-known for its characteristic wooden houses
• Schokland — old island evacuated in 1859, a well-preserved ghost village remains
• Texel — largest island suited for cycling, walking, swimming and horse riding
• Volendam — traditional Dutch countryside fishing village with clogs, costumes and windmills
• Zaanse Schans — popular well-preserved historic windmills and houses
The national airline that operates in Holland is KLM-Royal Dutch Airlines. It connects to almost all the major cities of Europe, North America and Asia. Amsterdam Airport is the hub for many international and local flights. It is located at 15 km away from the city and it takes 20 minutes to reach there by train. The Airline, KLM, provides bus service every 15-30 minutes which takes passengers to some of the famous hotels of the city. Public buses can be availed too, to reach destination. Trains connect to Amsterdam’s Central Station and Zuid Station. Taxis take tourists to almost any location. The Airport features duty free shops, banks, showers, business center, baby rooms, and car hire.
Rotterdam airport and Eindhoven airport are 8km away from the city. Trains and buses operate every 15 minutes to transport passengers to their hotels. Facilities such as duty free shops, eateries, car rental, and internet can be availed at these airports. No departure tax is implemented on passengers at any of these airports.
The main sea ports are Hook of Holland, Vlissingen and Rotteradm. Stena Line, P&O ferries and DFDS seaways provide ferry service to get to Holland.
If traveling by railway, Eurostar provides the best service and connects to all the major cities of Europe. It provides high grade services. Good offers are provided on regular basis and to utilize them they should be monitored from time to time. Unused tickets are easily refunded. The Inter-Rail pass can be bought to avail the unlimited second class train travel within 29 European countries.
Top class road network connects Holland to majority of cities in Europe. They are well maintained and signs are posted every where for safe driving. 120kph is the speed limit while driving on highways. Many car dealing agents exist if opting for car-rental. Some of them are Avis, Europcar and Budget.
Cycling is also a major means of transportation in Holland and is part and parcel of daily life. Tourists can hire cycles from the airport or other service providers with some money-deposit.
Pottery of Delft, Makkum and Workum is a must buy. Silverware from Schoonhoven, crystals from Leerdam and diamonds from Amsterdam are highly recommended.
Hotel Of Holland
• Hotel-Restaurant Oud London BV: Woudenbergseweg 52, Zeist – 0343 491245
• Holland Michigan Hotels: Van Weerden Poelmanweg 4-6, Soest – 035 6038383
• Doubletree Hotel Holland: Van Weerden Poelmanweg 4-6, Soest – 035 6038383
• KERCKEBOSCH BILDERBERG KASTEEL ‘T: Arnhemse Bovenweg 31, Zeist – 030 6926666
• Beurs Hotel Zeist: Slotlaan 301, Zeist – 030 6930696
• Woudschoten Conferentiecentrum B.V: Woudenbergseweg 54, Zeist – 0343 492492
• Hotel Arena: ‘s-Gravesandestraat 51, Amsterdam 020 8502400
• Hôtel Campanile Amersfoort: De Brand 50, Amersfoort 033 4558757
• Regardz Berghotel Amersfoort: Utrechtseweg 225, Amersfoort – 033 4224222
• Park Plaza Victoria Amsterdam: Damrak 1-5, Amsterdam – 020 6271166