When you are planning your trip to Amsterdam, you might wonder; Does Amsterdam have a Beach? It would be nice to know if a beach day can be part of your Amsterdam Itinerary. Let’s find out!
Amsterdam has several artificial beaches spread out over the city. They are known as city beaches or urban beaches. Amsterdam is not directly at the Dutch coastline. When you want to travel to the coast, you need to leave the city. However, beaches like Zandvoort and Bloemendaal are reachable using public transport within an hour from Amsterdam.
Let’s find out more about the city beaches of Amsterdam, and where you need to go if you want to spend a day at the Dutch coastline!
Amsterdam City Beaches
Amsterdam is a city built on watery lands. And while the city is not located directly at the Dutch coast, you’ll find many rivers close to Amsterdam. Amsterdam-Rhine Canal, IJ-lake, and IJ are the biggest rivers and lakes connecting Amsterdam indirectly to the sea. Alongside these places, you’ll find the best city beaches in Amsterdam.
Let’s start with one of the most unique city beaches in The Netherlands. Strand Zuid in Amsterdam is a bit out of the historical center. You can easily reach it with public transport in a few minutes. When you leave from Amsterdam Central Station, it will only take 12 minutes by metro. Strand Zuid is close to Amsterdam RAI, the biggest conference venue in Amsterdam.
It is a special place with several bars and restaurants alongside the artificial beach. During the summer months, you can go here to have a drink, some food, and relax in one of the beach chairs. Almost every day, Strand Zuid transforms into a club setting when evening falls. It is a perfect place to have a party and meet some local people.
The only downside is that it’s not regular to go for a swim to cool down from the warm sun. Luckily there are enough cold drinks to keep you hydrated!
Strand Zuid is also a popular location for different dance events throughout the summer. If you’re into Techno, House, and Electronic Dance Music, it is the perfect place to go!
During the summer months, Strand Zuid turns into a Winterwonderland, which they call ZuidPool (Dutch for the South Pole). The location opens only during events. Some of them are open for the public, but you need to buy tickets in advance.
Strand Zuid opens every year between May and September. Take a look at their website for the latest information regarding opening times and events.
A unique place at a former shipyard (NDSM Wharf) close to the city center. PLLEK Amsterdam is a cultural hub where you’ll find an artificial beach, but most of all, unique cultural events. Their mission is to introduce different cultures to the public. When you take a look at their events agenda, you’ll notice the variety of events and performances.
Are you into Yoga? Every Sunday morning, they organize a Yoga class, and when the weather is beautiful, you can attend the class outside, overlooking the IJ-shore.
It is great to spend some time here, enjoy some cultural music and meet up with some locals. PLLEK Amsterdam is easy to reach with the ferry from Amsterdam Central Station. They are open throughout the year, and when it is not a sunny beach day, you can easily spend some time inside in their unique restaurant.
Swimming Beach Sloterplas
Sloterpark is in Amsterdam New West. A neighborhood located around 35 minutes with public transport from Amsterdam Central Station. It is a charming city park where you can go for a relaxing day. Right in the middle of the park, you’ll find a small lake, Sloterplas, which has a small artificial beach and is great for swimming during the summer months.
To reach Sloterpark, you need to take tram line 13 from Amsterdam Central Station. You can also catch a train to Amsterdam Sloterdijk station and from their hop on metro line 50 in the direction of the park.
Beaches near Amsterdam
When you want to visit a real beach at sea, you’ll need to travel a bit out of the city center of Amsterdam. However, The Netherlands is a small country, so it won’t take long to reach the beaches close to Amsterdam.
It is recommended to travel with public transport during the beach days. Visiting the beaches is very popular during the summer months. Traveling by (rental)car will only take longer because of the different traffic jams, and it is hard to find a parking place, which are often very expensive. Traveling with public transport is more cheap, reliable and fast!
Both the villages Zandvoort and Bloemendaal are directly at the Dutch coastline. During the winter months, there is not much to do in these villages. However, during the warm sunny days in the summer months, both villages are one of the busiest places in the country.
Zandvoort and Bloemendaal are within an hour’s reach of Amsterdam. Many people refer to these places as Amsterdam Beach. It is easier to remember for many people instead of saying Zandvoort or Bloemendaal. Both beaches are very close to each other but have a different vibe.
Zandvoort Beach (Zandvoort aan Zee)
The Beach in Zandvoort is more family orientated. The wide beach is great to spend some time sunbathing, relaxing, and swimming in the sea. You’ll find many beach bars alongside the beach where you can go for a drink or some food.
Zandvoort Boulevard is a long walking path connecting the village with the beach. Perfect for a nice walk close to the beach.
The beach in Zandvoort is one of the best places in The Netherlands to go kitesurfing. Every year many events are taking place like Red Bull Megaloop – if the weather is not to rough.
Bloemendaal Beach (Bloemendaal aan Zee)
Two kilometers more north, you’ll find the next village, Bloemendaal. This beach is more lively, with many beach bars, events, and clubs. Bloemendaal Beach is also great for relaxing, sunbathing, and swimming. However, many different beach clubs are creating a unique vibe. Almost every day during the beach season, you can attend different (dance) events at Bloemendaal.
One of the most popular events is the annual Surfana Festival. A weekend camping in the dunes where surfing, music, and sustainability are the most important factors, next to having a great time with like-minded people. Some of the best (inter)national artists are performing every year at this festival.
Bloemendaal Beach is often referred to in The Netherlands as Dutch Ibiza. The bohemian culture with the many clubs and events are creating a similar vibe as known in Ibiza. One of the most popular beach clubs in Bloemendaal is Bloomingdale. Some of the best DJs around the world are performing here during the summer season.
The best time to visit both Bloemendaal and Zandvoort Beach is between May and September. During this time, you’ll experience the sunniest days in The Netherlands. However, it can be raining a lot in this period as well.
The IJ-canal is connecting Amsterdam to the North Sea. The village located on the coast is IJmuiden, a typical port village. From this port, you can take the ferry to Newcastle. Or when you’re traveling to Amsterdam from Newcastle, you’ll arrive at the port of IJmuiden.
IJmuiden describes itself as a raw port village with many things to do. The beach is excellent for those who love watersports. IJmuiden is much quieter then Zandvoort or Bloemendaal, which makes IJmuiden great for a family beach day.
Reaching IJmuiden beach will take around one hour with public transport from Amsterdam Central Station.
Located on the other side of Amsterdam, you’ll find Almere. A city in the youngest province of The Netherlands. Almere has a long coastline along the IJ-lake. A freshwater lake where you can spend your time on different water activities or a beautiful beach day.
Almeerdestrand is lesser known by many people. However, during the summer days, it can be very busy. Many locals from Almere city and its surrounding villages are looking for a relaxing and refreshing day at these beaches. It is easier for them to go here then travel to the coastline.
You can reach Almeerdestrand with public transport from Amsterdam Central Station within an hour. Visiting Almeerdestrand is spending your time like a local. It is a perfect beach for a family day when you’re traveling with kids, or when you’re not looking for the trendy vibe in Bloemendaal and Zandvoort.
Best Beaches in The Netherlands
The coastline of The Netherlands is around 1000 kilometers long. So you can imagine there are many more beaches which are great for a visit. When you are spending a few more days in The Netherlands and looking for a beach day away from Amsterdam, we recommend visiting one of these beaches:
Scheveningen Beach (The Hague)
The best-known beach in The Netherlands is Scheveningen Beach. Located in The Hague and part of the area Scheveningen. The beach in Scheveningen stretches out over a few kilometers, where each part has a unique vibe. You’ll find a sports beach with a beach stadium for sports like beach volleyball and great surf spots. The boulevard beach with many restaurants, shops, and the famous Scheveningen Pier. And Black Trail Beach, which is quieter during the day and turns into one of the best clubbing spots during the night.
Scheveningen Harbor is dividing the beach and is also a great place to go with many bars, restaurants, and shops. When you visit the southern part of the harbor, you’ll reach Scheveningen Southern Beach (Zuiderstrand), which is much quieter and the beach where the locals from The Hague go for a relaxing beach day. It is our favorite beach spot in our city! It still can be busy during the summer days, but the vibe is just so relaxed, and the beach is very wide, so there’s enough space for everyone!
A bit further down south, you’ll find Kijkduin Beach, which is also a part of The Hague. This beach is a real, local beach. You won’t find many tourists here, except for during the high season, when lots of Germans and Belgium tourists stay at one of the campsites near Kijkduin.
Kijkduin is known to have one of the best kitesurfing spots in The Netherlands. You can read all about Scheveningen, Kijkduin, and the highlights of The Hague in one of our other articles;
Hoek van Holland (Rotterdam)
This part is best known as the busiest ferry port of The Netherlands. Ferries to England are leaving several times a day. But Hoek van Holland, or Hook of Holland in English, has a lot more to offer.
The coastal town is an official part of the city Rotterdam. It is the most popular beach for people from Rotterdam to go to in the summer. Hoek van Holland’s beach is over 3 kilometers long and 250 meters wide. You’ll find only a few beach clubs along the beach, which makes the beach perfect for a relaxing day.
Hoek van Holland is not only great for a beach day relaxing and sunbathing. The nature in this area is beautiful, so it’s recommended to explore the dunes and surroundings, following one of the foot- or cycle paths.
It takes a bit longer to reach Hoek van Holland from Amsterdam. But you can still reach it using public transport within 2 hours from Amsterdam Central Station.
However, a visit to Hoek van Holland is better to combine with a visit to Rotterdam. A city we describe in our article 26 best cities in The Netherlands.
When you’re looking for a unique Dutch beach experience, we recommend considering the island of Texel. However, visiting this island will take you at least two days.
You’ll need at least a half-day traveling to the island from Amsterdam. And the other time you can use for exploring the largest of island of the Wadden islands.
The environment of Texel is unique, with a lot of grasslands and sheep farms. Local restaurants and a few small villages. Of course, the island has a great beach where you can go for relaxing, swimming, watersports. Everything you like! The sea surrounds the whole island, so you’ll find beautiful beaches everywhere you go!
A great place to stay in Texel is at Texel Yurts, not very luxury, but a unique experience for exploring Texel’s nature!
Traveling to Texel from Amsterdam Central Station will take up to around 5 hours. Depending on how long you’ll need to wait for the next ferry to leave.
Best Time to Visit the Dutch Beaches
The Netherlands is not known for its tropical weather. We are famous for our rainy and cold days. However, we have one of the most crowded coastlines in the world. And don’t let that image fool you, because there are many beautiful sunny summer days in The Netherlands.
Official summer is between July and September, but during the spring period starting from April, there can be lovely summer days in The Netherlands.
The best period to visit the Dutch beaches would be between April and August. September is known to have colder and rainy days, but sometimes it can be sunny as well.
With the recent climate change in the world, we also noticed this in The Netherlands. On average, temperatures are warmer, and there are more sunny days. However, you don’t go to The Netherlands for a tropical holiday. You would be better of visiting Cape Verde, the island of Sal has perfect weather year-round.
Are you interested in a sunny tropical holiday? Read our guide to the 25 best things to do in Sal, Cape Verde!
Read more about Amsterdam
Still planning your trip to Amsterdam? We wrote several articles to help you answer your questions about The Netherlands and Amsterdam. So you can have the best trip possible while visiting our country!
When you go to Amsterdam, we recommend spending at least two days exploring the city. And when you want to see more of the surroundings, you might be better off adding a few days to your itinerary. We tell you all about how to spend your time in Amsterdam in these articles;
Want to know more about The Netherlands? Make sure to read our other articles about the country;
Or check out the complete list of articles about The Netherlands.