Experience the Dutch North Sea coast on a weekend in Holland

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Canal in Eenrum - Dutch North Sea Coast

The Dutch North Sea coast and its hinterland


We have been on research trips to the north several times Dutch This time we had two days to explore the Dutch North Sea coast between Den Helder and the province of Groningen. UNESCO Waddenzee Werelderfgoed invited us as travel bloggers to visit. The tips we have collected are perfect for a holiday on the Dutch North Sea coast.

Our journey began in the NetherlandsWe start in Den Helder, the city in North Hollandfrom which the ferries are up the island of Texel depart. That was also the reason why we were there. We had before ours Beach vacation Already spent a few days along the Dutch North Sea coast on the southernmost island in the Wadden Sea. With such a stay you can combine this tour along the North Sea from North Holland via Friesland to the province of Groningen.

Dutch North Sea coast map

The Dutch North Sea coast offers numerous highlights. With this map you can easily find the best places. Beaches and coastal towns are waiting to be discovered. The map also shows experiences and recommended restaurants along the coast. A holiday on the Dutch North Sea coast promises relaxation and adventure.

Map created using Wanderlog, a road trip planner on iOS and Android

 

Dutch North Sea coast near Kaap Noord - North Sea coast holidays
Dutch North Sea coast near Kaap Noord - here you can vacation on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

Our weekend trip on the North Sea coast in Holland

From Den Helder we follow the dike along the North Sea - either parallel to it or on it. Our journey is almost always along the coast, even though we do not constantly see the sea. The Dikes in this region protect the hinterland from storms on the North Sea coast.

Nevertheless, you can feel the proximity of the sea everywhere. There is a lot of ship and boat traffic on the canals that cross this landscape. Our destination for this day and starting point for the excursions over the next few days is the town of Eenrum in the province of Groningen. Even the overnight stay is an experience, because we are guests

 

Canal in Eenrum - Dutch North Sea Coast
Canal in Eenrum, typical for holidays on the Dutch North Sea coast - Dutch North Sea coast

 

In the smallest hotel in the world

We are curious. Normally, superlatives do not always do what they promise. But that was the case here. When we were in Grand Hotel de Kromme Raake When we arrive in Eenrum at the agreed time, we find the doors locked. Through the window we see a reception desk that looks like it came from a painting by Edward Hopper. I immediately feel like I've been transported back to the 50s.

But no one opens the door even when we ring the bell. What now? Then it occurs to me that there might be information about this in our travel documents. I find a phone number there. When I call there, the answer is the mustard factory, which is just around the corner.

 

Reception in the smallest hotel in the world for the Dutch North Sea coast vacation
Reception in the smallest hotel in the world - vacation on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

Unusual check-in

The man on the phone, who seems a little stressed, says he knows who we are and that we are staying at the hotel. However, he is so stressed that he cannot bring us the key. We should please come to his restaurant and pick up the key. Oh yes, and he cannot show us our accommodation in person because he is currently looking after two bus groups in his restaurant. "A strange reception," I think to myself.

But fine. We walk the few meters around the corner and get our key. Number 1. Oh yes. Before we leave, we are given the instruction: "Please come to dinner an hour later than agreed. Then there will be less going on here." And another cryptic explanation follows: "You can open all the doors in the hotel except two. They are locked. This key doesn't fit either." Now I'm really curious.

Accommodation as in Edward Hoppers pictures

We unlock the front door and go through the only door that fits the key. This leads to a colorful room. I immediately notice the art print above the desk. The picture shows Humphrey Bogart, Marilyn Monroe and James Dean at a counter where Elvis the Cocktails pours. Apparently the owner also associates his establishment with impressions of Edward Hopper. Its "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" perfectly captures the atmosphere of this hotel.

A whole hotel for us alone

The aged furnishings in this living room confirm my first impression of a guest house as I would have expected in the 50s. A wooden wall is brightly painted with scenes that tell stories. Of women. A garden. Life in the country.

In the middle of the wooden wall there is a double door, which we open out of curiosity. Instead of leading into another room, however, it leads directly into a huge double bed. The kind you often find in old fishermen's houses in Holland. Only here there is more space. To get to the comfortable mattress, you first have to crawl over a wide frame. Only then do we sink into soft clouds.

To emerge from this again proves to be a time-consuming endeavor. Only when you have climbed the frame again, you can crawl back to the entry back. It takes some practice to get along with this type of bed.

The exciting thing is that the bed is accessible from two sides. One of us climbs in from the living room. The other from the big bath.

Breakfast at home

On the way to the bathroom we discover a room that may have once been the kitchen. Today it houses an old wood-burning stove, like the one my grandmother used to have. On top of it are a coffee machine and a kettle, inviting us to have a cup of coffee or tea. The next morning it turns out that our breakfast is being served there.

And what a place! With a selection of delicious breads (the croissants are simply amazing!). A platter of cold cuts and cheeses enough for a whole company. Boiled eggs. Freshly squeezed orange juice. And all of this in total privacy. It's like eating at home, but without the work that goes into running a household.

Slowly we realize that we are actually here in the smallest hotel in the world. We are the only guests.

 

Discover the Dutch North Sea coast

Well-fortified and after a deep sleep in our bunk we set out to explore the Dutch North Sea coast in Friesland and Groningen for two days.

 

A current tip from Annika Hijlkema from Marketing Groningen:

Auf dem Ziltepad You can visit the churches in the pretty villages of the provinces of Friesland and Groningen while hiking or cycling and discover the beautiful landscape of the north of Holland along the way. The route runs in 9 stages from Hijum via Oostrum and Vierhuizen to Uithuizermeeden.

 

Canal, houseboats and windmill
Canal, houseboats and windmill

 

Enjoy the Dutch North Sea coast

The first day of our stay we spend with a tour of the region. Our first stop is this

The fishing museum in Zoutkamp - typical Dutch North Sea coast

In a warehouse where buoys and other equipment for coastal fishing were once kept, you can learn about the development of fishing in Zoutkamp. We learn that the fishermen still live here, but their fishing boats are now in a neighboring town that is closer to the sea.

The boats that are docked in the canal in front of the museum either belong to the museum or are excursion boats or House boatswho make a stop here. The fishermen from Zoutkamp no longer actively fish from their home port. This is no longer possible since the dyke systems on the Lauwersmeer were completed.

 

ZK2 - fishermen from Zoutkamp drive with this abbreviation the Dutch North Sea coast
ZK2 - fishermen from Zoutkamp sail the Dutch North Sea coast. Take care when vacationing on the Dutch North Sea coast.
fishing

Riding Pit 11
9974 PJ Zoutkamp

Through the vast hinterland of the Dutch North Sea coast we continue to Dokkum in Friesland. This is one of those small towns we love in Holland. Small. Cozy. Manageable. With alleys, where a nice house to the next rows. We will have lunch first

Stadscafe Artisante

In a casual bistro atmosphere, we will have lunch at the Stadscafé Artisante in the center of Dokkum. Here you can sit outside and watch the bustle of the bridge over the canal. In the midday heat, however, the seats on the bistro terrace are already occupied. Therefore we order our sandwiches in the restaurant.

Diepswal 1
9101 LA Dokkum

 

Next door is the Craft Beer Brewery of Boniface, one of the larger breweries in the area. In a narrow townhouse on the canal in Dokkum, the young beer brewers produce selected craft beers, which they serve to local beer lovers. We learn that the name goes back to the Irish monk Boniface, who was murdered 754 in Dokkum. After him, they name one of their beers.

Brewery Boniface

Diepswal 5
9101 LA Dokkum

Take time for a stroll through Dokkum. Along the canal you can watch the buzz on the canal ships. There are also restored houses to see. We take a walk through the city while we wait for the tide. It's not until six in the evening that we can do the mudflat walk we planned for the evening. Therefore, we postpone our dinner in the late afternoon. At KB Foods in Dokkum we feel right at home. With a steak and salmon filet we spend the rest of the waiting time until the tide in a pleasant environment.

 

In the brewery Bonifatius in Dokkum for a stop at the Dutch North Sea coast vacation
In the Bonifatius brewery in Dokkum - worth a stop on your holiday on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

KB Foods

Keppelstraat 4
9101 MV Dokkum

 

 

The Dutch North Sea coast on a clean-shoes hike in the watt

The last destination of the day for this trip is the small town of Paesens near Moddergat. We have arranged to meet Harm Jan in a visitor center. He accompanies us on a walk through the mudflats. He regularly guides visitors on their mudflat walks and shows them what there is to discover. There is a lot.

He stops at inconspicuous plants on the side of the road. He picks a few branches and eats them. “That’s samphire,” he explains. “Sea asparagus.” We already had this during our Stay in Texel got to know. "How tedious it must be to harvest it," I think to myself.

 

What you need for a mudflat walk

  • If you're going on a mudflat hike, you'll definitely need rubber boots. You'll be wading through mud. Sometimes you'll even sink up to your knees.
  • Since the wind almost always blows at the sea and the weather can change quickly, you need one rain jacket.
  • Another practical pair of rain pants is one that can get wet.
  • When it's sunny or windy, a hat with a brim protects you from the elements.
  • If you go out into the mudflats alone, you should definitely take a compass with you so you can orient yourself if fog sets in.

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The fog is coming fast in the watt. This is also Holland holidays by the sea and Dutch North Sea coast
The fog comes quickly in the mudflats - vacation on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

We are glad that Harm is with us, because it is not long before we are stuck in a thick wall of fog. I am relieved that we had not planned a hike into the mudflats. With such poor visibility, I would not want to be in the mud off the coast, knowing that the tide will come back in the not too distant future.

As it starts to drizzle more and more, we soon decide to return to the visitor center. There, Harm serves us fresh mint tea "made from home-grown mint" and tells us about his kitchen experiments with local herbs and plants.

We need half an hour to drive back along the coast to our one-room hotel in Eenrum. An eventful first day comes to an end, which brought us closer to the Dutch North Sea coast. The next day we spend the morning in Eenrum, because right next to our hotel is

 

Various types of mustard Dutch North Sea coast holidays
Various mustard varieties

 

The mustard mill of Eenrum

Just a few steps around the corner we have arranged to meet with “Holland's last mustard maker, who makes real Groninger mustard from organic mustard seeds from the region.” That is how Sten Sipkes introduces himself to us. Making mustard is his passion, even if he came to it in a rather roundabout way.

Sten tells us that just a few years ago he earned his money as a truck driver. "Then my girlfriend was offered the opportunity to take over the mustard mill's restaurant in Eenrum," he says. She couldn't turn down the offer and worked closely with the mustard maker for several years.

Then he wanted to retire and was looking for a successor. He also offered her this. However, that exceeded their possibilities. So she asked her friend, Sten, if he didn't want to go into the mustard business. At first he waved it off. "I don't know anything about it." After a bit of back and forth he finally gave in. And so today he produces real Groninger mustard with the historic mustard mills.

"What makes it Groningen mustard," I want to know. "Only black mustard seeds are used for this," and he points to a bowl full of tiny seeds. "Only those give our mustard the right taste." He laughs mischievously. "And of course some secret ingredients." In any case, the mustard soup that we try in the restaurant of the mustard mill has its own taste. Good and spicy.

Mustard mill in Eenrum

Main street 12
9967 RJ Eenrum
Tel. 0595-491001

 

 

The hanging kitchens of Appingedam - Coast in Holland
The hanging kitchens of Appingedam - worth a stop while on holiday on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

Appingedam and its hanging kitchens

We spend the afternoon in the small town of Appingedam. This is like many places in the region, on one of the channels. Many of the houses along the canal have small wooden dungeons housing the kitchens. The hanging kitchens offer an extraordinary sight. But otherwise, the small town is worth a stop with its beautiful old town and the well-kept houses in the city center and along the canal.

 

Basiliek Appingedam
Basiliek Appingedam - enjoy your holiday on the Dutch North Sea coast

 

Eat well in the Basiliek Appingedam on the Dutch North Sea coast

In Appingedam we enjoy one of the best dinners of our trip along the Dutch North Sea coast in the Basiliek Appingedam. The Kosterij in Appingedam is located in the former church building of St. Nicholas Church and its outbuildings. There we are served a delicious dinner with regional specialties.

I like the elegant atmosphere in this restaurant. The historic building is particularly inviting in combination with the classically simple furnishings. The subtle but tasteful decoration underlines this impression. We feel immediately comfortable in this environment. The very attentive, but restrained service does the rest. For that reason alone we recommend a visit to this restaurant.

The food we enjoy at Basiliek Appingedam is the best of our whole trip along the Dutch North Sea coast. Here someone cooks with passion. This is shown by the “Greetings from the kitchen” as well as the delicate “biscuits” for starters. My steak in red wine sauce with potato gratin is delicious. And when it comes to chocolate snacks and cookies with coffee, I simply cannot say “No”, even though I am already full. An all-round delicious and successful dinner on our last evening in the province of Groningen. This restaurant is definitely worth a detour.

Basiliek Appingedam

Solwerderstraat 45
9901 BB Appingedam
Tel. 0596-683131

 

 

Further information about the Wadden Sea:

The Dutch North Sea Coast - Our conclusion:

There is much to discover on the Dutch North Sea coast. Especially slow travelers and connoisseurs will feel comfortable here. There is no trace of mass tourism. And that's good. In this way, we meet again and again people who take their time for a chat. They introduce their home with enthusiasm and enthusiasm. We all feel that he or she has consciously chosen this land and life in that region.

Like them, we are enjoying our far too short time in this quiet area in the north of Holland, which is not just made up of coast and mudflats. We are delighted by the well-kept small towns and villages as well as the wide landscapes. These are particularly beautiful in spring because meadow flowers and hedges are blooming everywhere.

As we travel back to the south of Germany, we look longingly at the geese flying north towards the coast. We would love to come back to the Dutch North Sea coast. There is certainly more to discover here.

questions

What activities are available for children on the Dutch North Sea coast?

The Dutch North Sea coast offers plenty of activities for children. Families can build sandcastles, fly kites and splash in the shallow waves. Many beaches also have playgrounds and there are child-friendly attractions such as the Madurodam miniature park and Duinrell amusement park.

Are there any special culinary specialties that you should try on the North Sea coast?

Yes, you should definitely try fresh seafood on the Dutch North Sea coast. Herring, kibbeling (fried fish pieces) and poffertjes (small pancakes) are local specialties. Local cheese and Dutch fries with various sauces are also very popular.

What opportunities are there to explore nature on the North Sea coast?

The North Sea coast offers a wide range of opportunities to explore nature. There are numerous cycling and hiking trails through the dune landscapes, nature reserves and along the coast. Bird lovers can observe rare bird species in the protected areas, and in spring the blooming tulip fields are a highlight.

Are the beaches on the Dutch North Sea coast barrier-free?

Many beaches on the Dutch North Sea coast are wheelchair accessible. There are special beach wheelchairs, wooden walkways and ramps to facilitate access. Some beaches also offer disabled facilities such as toilets and parking spaces.

What is the climate like on the Dutch North Sea coast and what time of year is best to visit?

The climate on the Dutch North Sea coast is temperate maritime. Summers are mild and winters relatively cool, but rarely extremely cold. The best time to visit is from May to September, when temperatures are pleasantly warm and the weather is ideal for beach activities and outdoor activities.

 


Travel Arrangements

Parking at the airport

Here you can reserve your parking space at the airport.

Arrival to the Dutch North Sea coast

Compare and book flights here*. KLM and Lufthansa will follow AmsterdamFrom there, it is best to take a car, as this is the only way to be flexible enough to get to know the towns in the region better.

We travelled from southern Bavaria in our own car. We took two days for the journey, with an overnight stop on the more than 1000 km long route. This made the journey easy to manage. Do you have a few more days? Then we recommend a Road trip through the Hanseatic cities in Holland.

Rental car on the Dutch North Sea coast

Cheap car hire - quick and easy booking here *

Accommodation for the Dutch North Sea coast

Discover for example here Accommodation in the province of Groningen *

 


 

Dutch North Sea coast
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Other Slow Travel Tips You can also find it under this link.

Source for Dutch North Sea coast holidays: own research on site. We would also like to thank UNESCO Wadden Sea World Heritage for the friendly organization of this trip. We did not receive a fee for this. However, our opinions remain our own.

The article was updated on 03.07.2024

Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Photos © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Video © Copyright Petar Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline

Experience the Dutch North Sea coast on a weekend in Holland

Monika Fuchs

Monika Fuchs and Petar Fuchs are the authors and publishers of the Slow Travel and Enjoyment travel blog TravelWorldOnline Traveller. You have been publishing this blog since 2005. TravelWorldOnline has been online since 2001. Your topics are Trips to Savor and wine tourism worldwide and Slow Travel. During her studies, Monika Fuchs spent some time in North America, where she traveled to the USA and Canada - sometimes together with Petar Fuchs - and spent a research year in British Columbia. This strengthened her thirst for knowledge, which she pursued for 6 years Adventure Guide for Rotel Tours and then for 11 years as Study tour guide for Studiosus Reisen tried to breastfeed all over the world. She constantly expanded her travel regions, but curiosity still gnawed at her: “What is beyond the horizon? What else is there to discover in this city? Which people are interesting here? What do you eat in this region?” These are the questions she is now trying to answer as a freelance travel journalist (her articles have appeared in DIE ZEIT, 360° Canada, 360° USA, etc.), among others. travel writer and travel blogger answers in many countries around the world. Petar Fuchs produces the videos on this blog as well as on YouTube. Monika Fuchs from TravelWorldOnline is below Germany's top 50 bloggers in 2021 Other Information about Monika and Petar Fuchs. Recommendations on LinkedIn from tourism experts Further recommendations from cooperation partners and tourism experts Professional experience Monika on LinkedIn

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