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Cost of a Netherlands Trip: Travel Tips to Know for Visiting

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Are you looking for a charming yet inexpensive vacation spot where you can build memories that will last a lifetime? If so, the Netherlands will likely be your destination of choice. But picking the perfect destination isn’t the only thing you’ve got to think about. Here’s a complete guide to the cost of a Netherlands trip.

You’ll want to research in advance, make sure you can afford the visit, and plan. That way, you’ll get to know the most popular hotspots and lesser-known attractions that are often even more charming and memorable than typical tourist hangouts. 

How Much Does it Cost to Visit the Netherlands?

Amsterdam skyline with traditional rooftops, canals, and historic architecture
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Naturally, the cost of travel depends on where you’re coming from, how you travel, how long you’re there for, and the time of year you visit. Depending on your budget, it’ll cost you between $350 and $700 for three days in the Netherlands and around double that for a week.

Let’s break some of this down:

Getting to the Netherlands

Travel Insurance

It’s always a good idea to purchase travel insurance before going on any long-distance trip. It can save you thousands of dollars if your flight is canceled or you get sick or have an accident. But, when visiting the Netherlands, travel insurance isn’t just a good thing. It’s a must if you aren’t an EU national.

Non-EU travelers are required to have travel insurance that covers medical expenses. Your insurance policy must be valid for the entire time you visit the Schengen area, not just your Netherlands trip.

The required minimum coverage for medical emergencies is €30,000 (currently just over $32,300). If you only want medical coverage, VisitorsCovearge.com offers some very affordable options.

A one-week medical insurance policy from them costs between $12 and $24 per week. But, these policies don’t cover some more serious problems that may arise during your vacation.

Should you desire comprehensive coverage that includes flight accidents, trip delays, trip cancellation, baggage loss, and medical insurance, shop for the right policy on TravelInsurance.com.

Airfare

KLM Crown Lounge at Schiphol International Airport
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Booking.com offers one-week round-trip flights from major cities in the United States and Australia for between $800 and $1,100. But, if you’re traveling from a major city in Europe, the average price for a one-week round-trip ticket is about $100.

Services like Going.com and Dollar Flight Club may offer better deals, but you’ll need to keep your travel plans flexible and be willing to adjust arrival/departure dates to save money.

Bear in mind that, to enter the Netherlands, you’ll need either a round-trip ticket or an ongoing ticket to a country outside the Schengen travel zone.

Train

Train at Amsterdam Centraal station
Leonid Andronov / Adobe Stock

You can take a train to Amsterdam anywhere in Europe, even the UK, through the Eurostar or “Chunnel.” Ticket prices start at $68 but can be as high as nearly $600, depending on distance and your chosen class. Like flights, the higher the class, the more expensive your ticket.

See Related: How Much is a Trip to Amsterdam? [Full Trip Cost Guide]

Visa

Well-Travelled US Passport with International Entry and Exit Stamps
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

If you aren’t an EU national, you’ll need a visa to travel to the Netherlands. Visa prices vary depending on nationality, but most non-EU travelers can expect to spend about $160 for a visa. The visa is valid for 90 days.

Cost of Accommodation

All sorts of places are available in the Netherlands, from the ritziest Old World hotels to the ubiquitous, inexpensive Dutch hostel. Let’s start at the lower end of the scale:

Hostels and Vacation Rentals: Perfect for Smaller Budgets

Hostelle bunk beds
Hostelle / Booking.com

Booking.com lists many Dutch hostels offering dormitory accommodations, with prices ranging from $25 to $50 per night. There are also some budget hotels with private rooms. Prices range from $45 and $75 per night.

Vrbo offers small, cozy accommodations for a single traveler, with prices ranging from $80 to $150 per night. Options include apartments, small houses, and small chalets.

These accommodations are ideal for people who want to travel on a mid-range budget, as you can save money by cooking your own food instead of eating out all the time.

Hotels and Luxury Rentals: Live Like Royalty

Conservatorium Hotel Entrance
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Alternatively, if you really want to travel in style, the Netherlands offers more expensive and unique accommodation options. Again, you can source some once-in-a-lifetime rentals from VRBO, such as this luxury houseboat in Amsterdam city center for a cool $2000 a night.

Then there’s Crane Hotel Faralda. This wacky place isn’t just a hotel; it’s a tourist attraction in itself. This 50-meter crane overlooks the MDSM shipyard and offers an unparalleled view.

And if we’re talking tourist attractions, the Buitenplaats Vaeshartelt, in Maastricht, dates back to the 17th century and was originally one of King Wilhelm II’s residences!

There are still centuries-old trees on the property, as well as a secret garden and old fountains. Depending on when you go, they’re actually pretty reasonable, too, with some rooms on some dates going for less than $150 a night!

See Related: Proven Ways to Get Free Hotel Rooms

Cost of Transportation

GVB Ferry in Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

If you’re eager to travel on your own terms, you may consider renting a car. Rentalcars.com is a pretty good resource.

I found a good deal for four-seater vehicles for just over $40 daily. The average daily cost of a 5-seater vehicle ranges from $50 to $60, depending on the model you pick.

However, you don’t need to rent your vehicle because Holland has an amazing public transportation system. You can easily take buses around big cities or trains from big cities to small towns.

The only downside is that it can be costly. Typical prices are about 32% higher than the average cost of public transportation in the rest of the EU.

One-day tickets cost about €19 (USD $20.50), two-day tickets about €28 (about USD$32.00), and a three-day ticket costs about €36.50 (USD$39.00). That said, the services are prompt and immaculate, so it’s clearly money well spent.

Grachtengordel (Canal District)
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

My advice is to rent a bike. This is about the bike-friendliest place on Earth, and it’s the best way of navigating most cities, villages, and towns in the Netherlands. There are also tons of bike tours in larger cities, which are cheap ways of exploring multiple attractions in a short amount of time.

See Related: Tips for Riding a Bike in Amsterdam

What is the Best Time to Visit the Netherlands?

Canal in Leiden, Netherlands
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

June to August is typically considered the best time to visit the Netherlands. The weather is balmy, making it easy to enjoy outdoor attractions without getting wet or cold.

The only downside is that this is the peak season for tourists. Travel and accommodations will be more expensive than at other times of the year. You’ll need to book your trip well in advance to get reasonable deals and visit the attractions you want to see.

If you’re keen on enjoying outdoor attractions without the crowds, the best time to visit is April to May or September to October. The weather may be wetter and chillier, but you’ll still be able to go cycling, mudflat hiking, bungee jumping, ride a beer bike, and check out Holland’s famous dunes without discomfort.

Alternatively, an off-season trip is your best bet if you want rock-bottom prices. If you visit between November and March, some outdoor attractions will be closed because of the cold, frosty weather. But, you’ll be able to visit the country’s best museums leisurely.

You can also go ice skating on certain Dutch canals. Just about every city and town has canals; just ask the locals to ensure the canal you pick is frozen to avoid a bad accident.

The Christmas season is another great time of year to visit as, like the rest of Western Europe, the Netherlands gets decked out in its festive best, being overrun with twinkling lights, holiday festivals, and Christmas markets! Carnaval at Noord Brabant is yet another good place to visit if you come in February.

See Related: Best Time to Visit Amsterdam

What are the Top Attractions to Visit in the Netherlands?

Anne Frank House

Anne Frank House, Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Anne Frank House should definitely be near the top of your list of Dutch attractions. You can visit it alone or as part of a tour that includes the Jewish Quarter and interesting insight into World War II.

While Anne Frank’s story is internationally known, there is nothing like the incredible experience of seeing her home in person to make Anne’s account come to life.

Van Gogh Museum

Van Gogh Museum Gallery - Fine Art Paintings and Exhibits
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Devoted to the life, times, and works of the Netherlands’ most renowned and celebrated artist. This magnificent museum, housed in a stunning building, is a top-priority attraction in Amsterdam and shines a light on the troubled mind of this misunderstood genius. Get tickets ahead of time to save some cash.

Rijksmuseum

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

One of the finest museums in the entire world, the Rijksmuseum is simply massive, and the stunning building that houses it is an attraction in its own right. The main state museum of the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum, is the ultimate authority on Dutch history, culture, and art.

It has ticketed entry, but you can save a few pennies by booking ahead. It also has a super gift shop and yummy nibbles on site.

Keukenhof Gardens

A rainbow of tulip flowers at the entrance of Keukenhof Gardens in The Netherlands
Woodrow Matthews / ViaTravelers

The Keukenhof Gardens is yet another well-known attraction. The botanical garden is best known for its tulips but is also home to hyacinths, lilies, roses, carnations, and other flora. A whopping 7 million flower bulbs are planted here each year, and it is utterly magical when in full bloom.

Kröller-Müller Museum and Hoge Veluwe National Park

Kröller-Müller Museum in Otterlo, Netherlands
Kröller-Müller Museum / Kröller-Müller Museum

My last one is a twofer! The Kröller-Müller Museum and adjacent Hoge Veluwe National Park, just north of the storied city of Arnhem, are both well worth visiting.

The museum is home to a huge collection of Vincent Van Gogh’s artwork as well as pieces by Piet Mondrian, Paul Gauguin, and Pablo Picasso. The 73-acre outdoor sculpture garden is yet another breathtaking wonder, with multiple masterpieces by the likes of August Rodin, Jean Dubuffet, Claes Oldenburg, and Coosje van Bruggen.

Nature lovers should be sure to visit Hoge Veluwe National Park. Amazing animals you can expect to see include red deer, roe deer, wild boar, foxes, badgers, the European pine marten, mouflons, and even Eurasian Wolves. There are sand dunes, woodlands, and free bicycles, so you can explore the park and enjoy its beauty to the full!

See Related: Famous Landmarks in Amsterdam to Visit

Lesser-Known Attractions Worth Visiting in the Netherlands

Delft

Hugo Grotius Statue in Markt, Delft
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Delft is a small town between Rotterdam and The Hauge. It’s best known for its Delftware, the famous hand-painted blue and white pottery originating in the 1600s. You can see the master artists at work, wander the town’s narrow streets, check out the Old Church and Eastern Gate, and enjoy authentic Dutch food from a local market stall.

Veere

Harbor Sunset in Veere, Netherlands
Martijn / Adobe Stock

Veere is in the province of Zeeland, next to Veerse Meer (Veere Lake). It’s a cute town with great views and is home to Oma’s Snoepwinkel, which offers authentic Dutch candy. Be sure to check out the harbor, De Koe windmill, Westkapelle Light House, and Domburg Castle when you’re in town.

See Related: Most Beautiful Villages in the Netherlands

Utrecht

Utrecht Netherlands Cityscape
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Most tourists know about Utrecht, but it doesn’t get nearly as much attention as it should. It’s a great place for a food tour because it’s home to many great restaurants.

It’s also an ideal place to shop or simply wander the canals and enjoy the view. The locals are friendly and eager to help you get to know a bit about Dutch culture.

NEMO

Nemo Science Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Kyle Kroeger / Via Travelers

NEMO is a unique science museum and well-known to the Dutch. But doesn’t get a lot of attention from foreign tourists. This fascinating museum in Amsterdam is a great day out if you’ve got kids in tow.

Our House Amsterdam

Inside Our House Museum Amsterdam showing the dance floor
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Another unique museum in the Dutch capital, Our House Amsterdam, is the world’s first museum dedicated to electronic dance music (or EDM). This immersive musical museum experience will enthrall all who enter!

FAQs

Is the Netherlands Safe for Tourists?

The Netherlands has a murder rate lower than 5.27 for 100,000 people, making it one of the safest countries in the world. Nonetheless, you’ll want to watch out for pickpockets and petty thieves, especially when visiting Amsterdam. Keep a close eye on your belongings when visiting popular tourist attractions and when on local transportation.

Is the Netherlands Expensive to Visit?

The Netherlands is one of the top ten most expensive countries in Europe. You may spend much on your Netherlands vacation if you don’t plan and/or arrive during peak tourist season.

Alternatively, you can also plan an expensive trip if you have a travel budget. If it’s a once-in-a-lifetime visit, don’t limit yourself to a tight budget if you want to see all that the country has to offer.

Book Netherlands tour packages so you have a guide to help you get around. Check out the nation’s best eateries instead of eating fast food.

Is the Netherlands Cheap?

The Netherlands is expensive, but you can plan a cheap vacation here. Winter, fall, or early spring have the best prices. Stay at a hostel rather than a hotel or rental.

Choose free activities and visit attractions that don’t have a costly entrance fee. Better yet, spend as much time outdoors, exploring nature and getting to know the locals.

How Many Days Are Enough for a Trip to the Netherlands?   

You could stay until your visa runs out and never run out of things to do in the Netherlands! The country’s historic cities, small towns, natural wonders, historic and modern architecture, and multiple attractions make it a place you’ll want to visit more than once if you’re able.

Even so, you can see the country’s main tourist attractions in about four days. A five to seven-day visit will help you get to know the country pretty well, but you’ll want to stay for at least ten days to check out the best-known venues and the lesser-known gems hidden in small towns and villages.

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