A hidden gem according to The Lonely Planet. And they are right!
Haarlem, a former Roman settlement, was granted privileges in 1245 by Count Willem II (William II) of Holland. In the Golden Age, Haarlem was popular with the rich and powerful. We can still see the results of it.
Nowadays it is a great city with terraces, cafes, museums, top restaurants and small places to eat, fancy stores, markets etc. etc.
It is nearby Schiphol airport, Amsterdam, beaches, National park Zuid-Kennemerland and of course the almost endless flour bulb fields or as we say “Bollenstreek”. A perfect mix of culture and nature. And may be the most important thing is the fact that Haarlem is still calm and not overcrowded such as Amsterdam. Plenty of space for all her visitors and it offers you also canals, boat trips, wind wills (in the centre of the city!), small alleys etc. etc.
So don’t hesitate and plan a visit to Haarlem. We can’t wait to make a tailor made program for you. Please inform us about your interests and we will inform you about the possibilities.
Combine your citytrip to Haarlem with a visit at the village of Hansje Brinker.
When you are in Haarlem it is a splendid idea to combine your city trip with a visit to the little fishing village Spaarndam.
It is only a bike trip of 20 minutes away from the centre of Haarlem. You will peddle on a special bike path along the river side of The Spaarne. It is a lovely trip among the polders. When it is raining you can take the public bus. In about 24 minutes you will arrive in Spaarndam.
Spaarndam was one of the first heritage protected villages in The Netherlands. It is an old fishing village well known of the story about Hansje Brinker.
Hansje was a little boy mentioned in an American children book. Many years ago he saved The Netherlands for a tsunami by putting his little finger into a hole in the dike.
You will find the statue of Hansje in the middle of Spaarndam.
Near the harbour there is a perfect place to have a meal. And you certainly must also visit the eel smokehouse in the heart of the village.
Photo impression of Haarlem: