When you think about the Netherlands, beaches probably don’t come to mind. But the country has some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe – ask the thousands of Germans who flock to the coast every summer!
Scheveningen is the most popular beach town – part of the city of The Hague – where city meets harbour, beach clubs, board walk shops, sand and sea. The sand is white and soft, and the beach stretches out as far as the eye can see in both directions along the Dutch coast.
Right outside of Scheveningen is the nature area of Meijendel (pronounced like My-en-dell). While most of the area is protected, some lovely paths have been built throughout along with look-out points which, after your climb, reward you with gorgeous views of both the dunes and the sea.
You can enter Meijendel right off the Scheveningen beach (get off at the Kurhaus tram stop), making it the perfect spot for an afternoon’s wander. As soon as you step inside, you feel like you’ve left the city behind and stepped onto another planet. The dunes have such a peaceful, rolling landscape, and everything that grows there is so wild and untouched.
(The paths are also perfectly suited for cyclists. As with any truly Dutch area, there are lots of spots to park your bike should you care for a little picnic or a walk down to the water.)
Old German bunkers loom over certain stretches of the beach, and today many are used as bat sanctuaries.
Should you ever find yourself in or near The Hague, a trip to Scheveningen and Meijendel is a wonderful way to spend an afternoon and to see a different side of the Netherlands.
Sophie hails from Toronto but lives in the beautiful city of Utrecht, the Netherlands. Although she loves the outdoors, her true passion is food and she shares this passion on her recipe blog, Feast with Sophie.