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Help with Amsterdam for Christmas and Paris for New Year’s

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Hi,

My 20-year old daughter is studying abroad this year in Amsterdam and the rest of the family (myself, husband and 17-year old daughter) will be visiting her over the holidays. We arrive in Amsterdam on the morning of December 24th (from California) and will stay for 5 days. On December 29th, we all head to Paris for a week, departing on January 5th.

A little more background: my husband and I have been to Paris many times, but not Amsterdam. Older daughter has been to Paris once, and obviously will be quite familiar with Amsterdam by the time we arrive in December. This is my younger daughter’s first trip to Europe.

I’m hoping to get some help with the following:

- Restaurants that will be open on Christmas Day in Amsterdam and New Year’s Day in Paris. Budget is approximately $75/person.
- Suggestions for special holiday activities in either city.
- Recommendation for a day trip by train from Amsterdam. I’ve been considering Delft, Haarlem, Leiden, The Hague and having a hard time choosing one!

Any other recommendations about what to do/see/eat in either city are welcome!

Diane

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