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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 03:33 PM
  #61  
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what are thoughts on making Haarlem the base for 5 days?
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Old Jan 17th, 2014, 06:41 PM
  #62  
 
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<what are thoughts on making Haarlem the base for 5 days?>
That was the subject of my post at 3:57

Here is a link to my TR that goes into greater detail:
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...nd-utrecht.cfm
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Old Jan 18th, 2014, 01:11 AM
  #63  
 
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PalenQ, the number 3 tram terminates at Zoutkeetsgracht, which is at exactly the opposite end from Houthaven, so that tram isn't of any help, the closer to van Diemenstraat you get.
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Old Jan 18th, 2014, 09:04 AM
  #64  
 
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danon5 - I have based in Haarlem for the past several visits to Amsterdam - I find it a more Dutch city a more real city and prices much lower for similar accommodations than in Amsterdam. Just a 20-minute train ride from Amsterdam and trains roll all the time - also a good base for visiting other places like Zaans Schanse, Alkmaar and its famous Firday morning Cheese Market, Delft, etc. Great rail links and also a direct bus to Schiphol Airport for arriving or departing easily from Haarlem or getting to Haarlem for your first night.

Haarlem is a dreamy town - don't miss it even if you stay in Amsterdam, which if I were a first-time visitor I would urge you to do - a place you can if spending most of your time in Amsterdam you can easily go back to during the day and go out at night after a rest, etc.
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Old Jan 18th, 2014, 09:34 AM
  #65  
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well--after reading these blogs, I think we'll locate in Haarlem! It looks just amazing and we like that it is smaller. So --any personal suggestions on apartments to rent in Haarlem? Is the city center the best area to search for?
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Old Jan 18th, 2014, 09:34 AM
  #66  
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PalenQ --can you adjust our bike trips out of Haarlem now?
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Old Jan 20th, 2014, 08:52 AM
  #67  
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We have our search narrowed to 2 apartments in the city center of Haarlem. we are just waiting on confirmations. Can we easily adjust the bike trip recommendations to leaving from Haarlem? we like the idea of biking in one direction and taking the train back as it seems we can cover more ground that way. Also --any insider tips of things to see/do in Haarlem??
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Old Jan 20th, 2014, 10:17 AM
  #68  
 
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http://www.corrietenboom.com/

Haarlem's Anne Frank House!

http://www.franshalsmuseum.nl/nl/

Frans Hal Museum even if not into Dutch Masters paintings - the lavish house is worth the trip.

These are Haarlem's two main sights to me besides the Grote Markt - the main square and Grote Kerk - big church on it - otherwise just wander the canals and picturesque back alleys - well there is also the Hash Museum if you have a high interest - pun intended - in cannabis - Haarlem is know as Cannabis City for its long role in spurring the Dutch coffeeshop experience - where cannabis is de-factolly legally sold and smoked. Lots of those in town too.

I'll go over a few bike trips I have taken later and if spaarne, a Fodorite who lived in Haarlem for a spell and also did biking chimes in you'll get another perspective.

The Vroom and Dreesman department store on the main pedestrian drag has a great top-floor cafeteria with low prices, down-home Dutch food and views over the city.

The VVV or Tourist Office is at the southern end of the pedestrian shopping zone - pick up detailed maps there for biking and advice.

Bikes can be rented at the train station.
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Old Jan 20th, 2014, 09:52 PM
  #69  
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AWESOME---I will continue to check in for your bike trip advice and perhaps those of your Fodorite friend.
Thanks much.
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Old Jan 21st, 2014, 10:28 AM
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A favorite bike trip from Haarlem would go thru the heart of the flower fields to Lisse, passing the Keukenhof, the famous gardens only open in parts of April and May though at times in late summer too.

The route goes via Hillegom on back roads right thru the heart of the flower fields and at any time of year - well in warm weather there will be seas of pulchritudinous blooms for miles the eye can see. You can bike all the way to Leiden and put your bike on a train to return to Haarlem - Leiden is a wonderful old city well worth a look around - lots of neat canals and a neat city center.

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=googl...ed=0CCoQ8gEwAA
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Old Jan 21st, 2014, 03:37 PM
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I have also biked from Haarlem to Zaandvort, the premier seaside beach area in Holland and always packed on a nice day in summer. The bike path partly goes thru wild dunes.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 01:12 PM
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Any suggestions on a carrier in the Netherlands --or , should we take the train to Copenhagen and depart from there?>

there is an overnight train between Amsterdam and Copenhagen, to me one of the nicest cities in Europe - spend a day there and move on the short distance to Oslo then take one of Europe's most dramatically scenic trains to Bergen.

https://www.google.com/search?q=oslo...=1600&bih=1075
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Old Jan 23rd, 2014, 05:27 PM
  #73  
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PalenQ - we are looking at two apartments one is Haarlem-House Short Stay and the second is called Short Stay Haarlem. Do you know either of these? Would it help for me to identify the street they are on?
Thanks.
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Old Jan 24th, 2014, 09:53 AM
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they seem to be the same place and they are well located, not right in the city centre but on a canal just opposite it - seems fairly close to the train station. Location looks nice as do the photos of the flats.
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Old Jan 24th, 2014, 10:37 AM
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The apartments look nice but IMO it is better to be near the Grote Markt which is where much of the action is. The prices look similar to those of Stempel's Hotel which is across from the cathedral and just around the corner from the Grote Markt. Stempel's is a wonderful and atmospheric hotel with large modern rooms, very comfortable beds and a free workstation in the room (at least in the superior room) The location can't be beat and it is a nice 10-15 walk to the train station. It is also a block from the river. I would prefer not to stay in the station area.
Stempel's price does not include breakfast but the breakfast at extra cost is well worth it - one of the best we have ever had at a hotel buffet.
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Old May 28th, 2014, 05:10 AM
  #76  
 
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If you would like to rent a bike or do a tour in Amsterdam, in the city centre or on the country side of the north part of Amsterdam. Visit www.thekingofamsterdam.nl they are only 250m from the Central Station, they have amazing tours and the lowest prices for bike rental. For accomadation see www.bbwelcome2amsterdam.nl they are also very close to the Central Station on the Northside of town. The ferry from the Central Station to the Northside is free and goes back and forth 24/7.
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