A day trip to Zandvoort? It is a very clean and beautiful beach near Amsterdam. Only 35 minutes away, you'll find amazing landscapes and wild nature.
If you go to Amsterdam for a long weekend, if you already know the city and its tourist attractions, then why not escape from the city to go to Zandvoort?
Zandvoort is a small city near the beach on the outskirts of the North Sea. The beach is wide and beautiful, golden sand and large dunes bordering the city. 30 minutes away from Amsterdam by public transportation, you can easily spend the day there, enjoy the nature and the beach and return in the evening to Amsterdam.
In Zandvoort, you will find many small shops, restaurants and bars. There are also some fish selling trailers near the beach or even sometimes on the beach itself, including the famous raw herring fillet with onions and pickles on a piece of bread. If you prefer cooked fish, try the Kibbeling, fried white fish served with some kind of tartar sauce. Very good. And watch out for the seagulls, they can chase you on the beach to steal your fish !!! It’s not a joke, they are pretty insistant!
It’s often very windy in Zandvoort and the temperatures are quite cool outside summer season.
That would be known otherwise and we would see many more tourists! It remains a Dutch city after all. So plan scarves and hats if you go from October to April.
As soon as you arrive we advise you to rent bikes. You can even rent electric bicycles if you do not want to do to much physical efforts . There are 2 stores in Zandvoort. The day rate for the normal bike is 12 euros while an electric bicycle will cost you 30 euros. Once you got your bicycles, you can start moving towards the park for pedestrians and bicycles. You can see the sand dunes of sight, deer, rabbits, squirrels, birds, sometimes, seasonally sea lions. The ballad is very beautiful and when you get tired of pedaling, you can stop at the cafe located in the park called Strandrestaurant Nederzandt
The dunes are beautiful and you’ll see sceneries which I find amazing only a few minutes away from the city. You have the feeling you entered a different planet. In some places, you have to leave your bikes to explore some bird breeding sites..
The last time we went to Zandvoort, we had the chance to see lots of deer, grazing quietly as we passed by bike. There were at least three herds of them.
Continuing our walk, we came across another little bar Boshut ‘t Panneland, where a witch welcomes you near the entrance. There you can enjoy pancakes, mulled wine, etc. poffetjes (a dutch specialty) Perfect for a snack after a 15 km of cycling! There are also some villages around the park, that you can choose to explore, all very cute and reflecting the spirit of a typical Dutch seaside town.
Once you finish your bike ride, I suggest you go grab a bite at Chef Thomas Café, a nice small organic restaurant with reasonable prices (for the Netherlands of course).
The beach itself is also very nice, you can enjoy some beach activities such as sand sailing or beach volleyball.
Obviously, you need to choose a day with good weather. If not, you may freeze on site or catch bronchitis between cold and strong winds.
It is not necessary to sleep on site, unless the small town really appeals you. We never stayed more than a day, but there are quite some hotels on site. Indeed, it remains a relatively touristic destination among Dutch tourists themselves! Indeed, a lot of Dutch have a vacation home in Zandvoort and come spend a holiday or a weekend by the sea, close to the ocean and the pleasant nature of Zandvoort. And pedaling between the sand dunes and the forest , it’s really nice
When the weather is nice, we like to walk on the Zandvoort beach, it is a great escape from Amsterdam, which is sometimes very sometimes very touristy. Zandvoort is also very clean.
For hotels, the NH Zandvoort is relatively well rated on Trip Advisor plus it is a certified green hotel, so why not try it if you want to stay overnight? We love to go to Zandvoort, during summer and winter! Dutch people do care a lot about the environment and the cleanliness of their beaches. One part of the beach, more in the South of Zandvoort, between Noordwijk and Zandvoort, is also opened for dogs! I really like that in the Netherlands, their bond to nature and animals!