The Netherlands may be the butt of all jokes when it comes to having a summer. But summer it does have…if you look past all the rain. Since the real summer days can be short in number, we want to make sure expats are able to make the most of all the sunny days, so here are our recommendations on how to really enjoy summer in the city.

Attend an event
Summer in the city and special events are two phrases that go hand in hand when it comes to the Netherlands. Summer really is the moment for each city to shine. We don’t have enough space here to list all the exciting and enjoyable events you can take part in, but head to your local tourism website (VVV) and you’ll be up to date in no time!

Go for a swim
When it all gets too warm you can always find relief in one of the many city swimming pools. These Dutch zwembaden come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. You’ll find everything from architectural gems (e.g. Oostelijk Zwembad in Rotterdam) to water slides (e.g. Noorderparkbad in Amsterdam). As tempting as it may look, don’t take a dive in the Dutch canals. Not only is this not allowed, but equally the water quality is not the cleanest.

Tip: Your temporary home comes might come with a private swimming pool- so don’t hesitate to check!

Enjoy a drink on the terrace
One of the best things about summer in the city in Europe is the terraces. As soon as the first rays of sunshine break through the clouds, the outdoor terraces primp themselves up to attract their first guests. Order a beer or an iced tea with lemon and enjoy the sunshine as it oozes into your pores.

Eat all the ice cream
The Dutch seem to love ice cream almost as much as they love herring, patat, and black licorice. Come summertime you’ll find ice cream parlours all over the city. We recommend making it your personal goal to try all the flavours at your local shop. Now that’s a challenge all expats can get behind!

Explore the city parks
Almost all Dutch cities have placed an importance on green spaces and that is to your advantage when it comes to enjoying the summer outside in nature. Whether you visit the famous Vondelpark, the picnic-perfect Stadswandelpark of Eindhoven, or one of the many Dutch nature reserves, don’t forget to breathe deep and enjoy the smells of summer.

How do you like to enjoy summer in the Netherlands?

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