The average autumn temperature in the Netherlands is a balmy 14.6℃, and you can expect 314 hours of sunshine this season. This is perfect weather for enjoying some day trips out with family and friends. In the Haarlem area you can make the most of what autumn has to offer, get out in nature, enjoy the scenic country parks and even take a trip to the beach. Autumn in Haarlem is when the colours change, the nights begin drawing in, and the children start to anticipate the arrival of Sinterklaas.
Head to the beach
In Haarlem you are only a 15 minute drive away to the beach. Zandvoort at Sea is always inviting for a great day out, and is also the current venue for the Dutch Formula One. It’s still warm enough in the early autumn months to enjoy a paddle in the ocean, and the beach itself is 9km long, so there is no danger of overcrowding. You can swim, sunbathe, lounge, and go for long walks with your dog along the sand. There are plenty of places to eat along the boardwalks, or you can take a tasty picnic with you. If you are taking lunch to the beach, go for foods that don’t need cutlery, like baguettes and fresh fruits. Natural, wholesome foods will keep you full for longer when spending the day on the beach. If you love watersports, there are plenty to choose from at Zandvoort, including surfing, paddleboards and canoeing. It is a wonderful way to explore the coastline and appreciate nature.
Enjoy the autumn harvest
Just a short drive from Haarlem is Olmenhorst (Lisserweg 481, 2165 AS Lisserbroek), where you can go and help with the bountiful autumn harvest. On weekends you can go and pick the delicious apples and pears, fresh from the trees. You can eat the fruit straight from your basket, or make pies, puddings and apple jams. Another great idea for the apples you harvest has come from Markus Praat and his wine store A Sense of Place in the center of Haarlem, where you can go and make your own apple cider or choose from the delicious ones he has there. A The Old Farm in De Oude Boerderij (Noorderweg 8, 1948 PK Beverwijk) you can pick fruits, vegetables and even some pumpkins for your Halloween celebrations.
Christmas shopping and Sinterklaas
Autumn is the perfect time to get started on some Christmas shopping before the crowds. You will find everything that you need at Schalkwijk Shopping Center (Floridaplein 13, 2037 AK Haarlem), and there are plenty of delicious eateries where you can enjoy a spot of lunch. You can pick up some great stocking fillers for the little ones at Intertoys and find a party dress at Groove Fashion or VanHaren. Don’t forget that Sinterklaas comes to Haarlem in early November on his journey from Spain. He arrives by boat on the Spaarne River and makes his way on a parade through the town – it is a fun and festive autumn event for all the family.
Autumn is a very special time in the Haarlem area and a time of harvest. You can also have some great day trips out, making the most of the (hopefully) good weather before winter comes.