A man-made forest (1928) situated close to Amsterdam, Amstelveen and Aalsmeer. A good place to relax and enjoy nature, with excellent facilities for families with children.
Some things to do:
- Marked walking routes ranging from 4-7 km.
- Jogging routes of 5 km, 10 km and 21 km.
- 14 km long route for bikes. Bikes can be hired at the main entrance on the Van Nijenrodeweg (+31 20 644 54 73, http://www.bikerentalamsterdam.nl).
- Goat farm (great for the kids, see http://www.geitenboerderij.nl/).
- Open air theather (± july-august, see http://www.bostheater.nl/).
- Two pools for kids and several playgrounds.
- Climbing in living trees in Fun Forest in the Amsterdam Forest, see http://www.funforest.nl/
- Canoes and pedal boats can be hired at the "Grote Vijver", the big pond
(+31 20 645 78 31, http://www.kanoverhuur-adam.nl/, make sure you have ID with you as deposit).
- A pancake house, Boerderij Meerzicht
(+31 20 679 27 44, http://www.boerderijmeerzicht.nl/).
- A ferryboat that will take you close to the pancake house or to the beaches on the other site of the lake the Nieuwe Meer (http://www.rederij-oeverloos.nl/).
- Visitors’ centre close to the main entrance at the Bosbaan (rowing course)
Open: Tuesday - Saturday from 12.00 to 17.00, Sundays from 10.00 to 17.00
(+31 20 545 61 00).
- Camping (http://www.campingamsterdamsebos.nl/).
An interactive map can be found here:
http://www.amsterdamsebos.amsterdam.nl/algemene_onderdelen/plattegrond. You can also download the map by following the link to the PDF called Plattegrond Amsterdamse Bos.
It has been asked several times in the Amsterdam Forum what there is to do for kids in and around Amsterdam. Many of the answers are summarized below, with credits to everybody active in the forum:
In and around Amsterdam:
Science museum Nemo
The Tropenmuseum has special activities for kids:
Artis, the zoo of Amsterdam
Café Groot Melkhuis with playground in the famous Vondelpark:
Amsterdam Forest with playgrounds, pools, goatfarm, pancake house etc
Climbing in living trees in Fun Forest in the Amsterdam Forest
Amstelpark near RAI Station with playgrounds, train, midget golf etc
Indoor playground (ages 1-12)
Animal farms for kids
Near the village Ouderkerk aan de Amstel: http://www.elsenhove.nl/
Amsterdam SouthEast: http://www.kinderboerderijbrinkie.nl/
Reproduction of the VOC ship Eastindiaman Amsterdam
Amsterdam Dungeon for kids older than 10 years
Pancake Boat: Cruise and unlimited pancakes
Puppet theaters (check if appropriate for non-Dutch kids)
A day at the beach in for instance Zandvoort or Scheveningen . Also see http://www.iamsterdam.com/en/visiting/aroundamsterdam/regional-parks-and-beaches
Big outdoor playground about 45 minutes from Amsterdam:
The Netherlands in miniature (The Hague)
Natural History Museum (Leiden)
Dick Bruna Museum, the creator of Nijntje (Miffy) (Utrecht)
Bataviawerf and Nieuw Land (New Land) Museum (Lelystad)
Reconstruction of two Dutch United East Indies Company (VOC) ships, one of the ships is finished and can be visited: http://www.bataviawerf.nl/. The Nieuw Land Museum is next door and has a big area where kids can play and explore: http://www.nieuwlanderfgoed.nl/. Combination tickets are available.
There are too many to list, google “attractiepark”
See for instance http://www.efteling.com/ , http://www.duinrell.nl/, http://www.sprookjesbos.nl/ (Limburg, in the south of the Netherlands)
This huge park to the South of the city of Amsterdam (and also bordering Amstelveen and Aalsmeer) is a quiet and green haven from the bustle of the city. If you love green spaces you'll want to come here as Amsterdam does otherwise have a distinct shortage of green spaces. The park was built in the 1930s as a means of providing work for 20,000 unemployed people during the great depression. The land was drained and the trees planted to create a manmade forest near the city. There is a visitors centre and cafe here, but since almost all teh visitors are Dutch almost all information is in Dutch only. But since most Dutch people speak perfect English and are so very friendly if you ask for help you are almost certain to get it.
In the Amsterdamse Bos (forest of Amsterdam), there is a climbing park with different courses in living trees.
See the website for more information!
Go birdwatching, 40 km east of Amsterdam.
The Oostvaarderplassen is a nature reserve in the Netherlands,
Despite its age, the polder it exists in only became dry in 1968, it has an international importance as a European wetland. The Oostvaardersplassen can be divided into two areas, wet and dry.
In the wet area along the Markermeer , there are large reedlands on clay, where moulting geese often feed. This area is also home to cormorants, spoonbills, barnacle geese, white herons and the Great Bittern, among many other animals.
The dry area was originally a habitat for willow trees. The first year hundreds of seedlings could be found on a square metre. The area is kept open by konik, deer and Heck cattle. These big grazers are kept out in the open all year round without supplemental feeding. The theory is that in time, the current open landscape will evolve into a natural forest. The only big grazers missing are the moose and the wisent (European bison). It is unlikely that the moose will be introduced but there is hope for the wisent as it fills a different niche from Heck cattle.
The Oostvaardersplassen today covers 5600 ha, of which 3600 ha are marshland and 2000 ha are grasslands and roughs.
There are White Tailed Eagles all year round
More info about birdwatching and the Oostvaardersplassen and how to get there: