Christmas Break in the NL: What To Do With Kids?

by farrah on December 15, 2014 · 0 comments

Like pretty much everyone else, the kids are going on holiday break next week. My husband is only off the 25th and 26th, so that will leave me to plan…something. Fortunately I have friends in the area that are also going to be sticking around, so hopefully we can work something out . I have yet to sit down and really look hard at the logistics, but so far this is what I have come up with. Here are my Christmas break ideas for kids in the Netherlands.

naturalisNaturalis Biodiversity Center last Thanksgiving

Yoga with the kids

I am still doing (and loving) the aerial yoga that I started a couple of months back. I won’t find out until tomorrow if my instructor will be hosting classes over break, but we discussed the possibility of doing one with myself and the kids. She offers a children’s yoga already- so my plan is to take them to the time slot I usually reserve for myself- which amazingly enough is just me in the class. I am trying to imagine the four of us and the instructor in a class by ourselves. Hijinks will ensue!


Thankfully we have that handy museumkaart. If you live here, you really need to get your hands on one of those- they’re for admission to museums and sometimes a special line for quicker entry. There are SO many in the NL to choose from- here are some of our favorites.

  • We’ve been to the nearby nature museum in Tilburg several times. Wonderful dinosaur exhibit and easy access from the train station (across the street!).
  • The creepy crawly reptile museum is always a huge hit. Spiders, bats, lizards galore? Oh yes.
  • Our friends in Den Hague will also be up for a get-together so we’ve discussed going to the Gemeentemuseum in Den Hague.
  • There’s also still the Rijksmuseum that we have yet to see. I know. What kind of NL expats are we?
  • I was blown away by the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden. We went last year during our trek there over Thanksgiving, and could easily have spent the entire day checking out all of the cool exhibits and activities. I might have to bump this to the top of our list.

Christmas markets

We’re not fooling around this year: we actually have a plan and are going to Germany for a couple of days to check out the markets in Trier and Nuremberg. I’m really excited about both of these and looking forward to returning to our all time favorite hostel. I’ll happily have a post on both of these when we get back.

Indoor playplace

  • These are all over the NL. The biggest one near us is just a few miles away at Circus City. We’ve been there several times and the boys love it- I like that the menu has many food choices that aren’t insanely expensive. Breda also has Monkey Town which is HUGE and always filled with kids.
  • Additionally you have those pancake houses just about everywhere. Poffertjes for everyone!

Random coolness

  • There’s Koning Winter in Den Hague which hosts so many outdoor activities for everyone. They have winter markets and those chilly outdoor activities like ice skating and sledding (? not sure how unless they make snow) which I know my kids would love.
  • Magical Maastricht is the one market I would recommend in the Netherlands. I know, I know- there are others. But last year we didn’t have great luck in Valkenburg so for us Maastricht was a better bet. The boys loved the ferris wheel and the crowd was manageable.
  • Craving Christmas lights? There are light shows everywhere. Here’s just one example in Amsterdam.

That’s easily a list good enough to cover a week, right? What is going on in your area?


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