When packing your bags to head to the Netherlands, you probably wouldn’t spend much time mulling over which swimmers to take. Lets face it, it’s not really a well known beachy destination. However, this may be a bit of a snap judgement. Believe it or not the Netherlands has it’s own version of a riviera and without doubt the central focus is Scheveningen Beach. It doesn’t quite have the weather of Cannes or Nice, but the beach is undeniably beautiful. A day trip here is well worth your time. Here are 5 things to do at Scheveningen Beach!
Scheveningen Beach is about an hours drive or train ride from Amsterdam and a 30 minute drive or about an hours train ride from Rotterdam, making it a great day out from both popular tourist hubs. It is also about 20 minutes from the Hague!
Big, Beautiful Sandy Beach
The beach at Scheveningen is brilliantly wide, beautifully clean and long – so so long! We went on a particularly windy day in May (the weather cant always be guaranteed in northern Europe) and we got to see so many kite surfers out on the water – it was magnificent! The day was so cold and so windy we thought they were just a little bit crazy! However, their skill on the water was nothing short of incredible! It was very entertaining!
All along Scheveningen Beach there is a huge array of beach bars. Some cater for families, some for couples, some themed, some a little more upmarket. Even though they can differ wildly in decor, there is one thing they all have in common – they all look amazing!
On a hot and sunny day I can imagine nothing better than chilling out on the beach and then wandering over to subdue a pang of hunger or to wet ones whistle!
There is a lovely two tier promenade that follows the beach all the way to the pier. The day we were there we were lucky enough to see a VW car show and I get the impression various events are held here throughout the year.
You can also have lots of fun discovering all the figures from the installation ‘Fairytale Figures by the Sea‘, by American artist Tom Otterness. The kids loved them and we spent ages playing with them, on them and around them!
You can’t miss the pier on Scheveningen Beach with it’s iconic ferris wheel on the end.
You can choose to walk on the top of the pier or explore the inside. It was a bit chilly on our day there, so we chose to go inside. We were so surprised to find boutique surf shops, food outlets, funky bars, live DJs, sweets and ice cream shops! On top of that, everything was 100% kid and pet friendly! It’s a great place to hang out (especially when it’s a bit rainy outside).
Shops, Bars, Hotels and Restaurants
The promenade near the pier opens out into a square with a carrousel and entertainers dotted around. You will also start to see shops and restaurants such as a Macdonald’s and, a very Dutch, Hena store, plus lots of other bars and restaurants.
You can also enjoy walking past the majestic building of the Grand Hotel Amrath Kurhaus. In 1897 it housed the first Dutch cinema, and today it is an upmarket 5 star hotel, that has seen the likes of the rolling stones pass through its doors.
Things to Remember
Toilets are all paid for. On the promenade it will cost you 60 cents and in the pier a visit will set you back €1.
Parking along the front is not cheap at €6 for 2 hours and you will find the most parking down the west end of the beach.
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