How to Survive Dutch Summers

I heard a joke the other day: “I really like Dutch summers – it’s the nicest day of the year.” Sad, but true. My favorite season can easily be missed by blinking or sneezing. But no fear – I have some tips to help you survive these rainy, cold Dutch extended falls aka summers.

1. Never leave home without an umbrella. Actually, this is isn’t as much a tip as a way of life in the Netherlands. The heavens have a tendency to open at any given moment – regardless of the season.

2. If the sun appears, you need to be outside. Make your way outside alongside tourists and locals alike to soak up as much Vitamin D as possible. Let me extend that statement – even if the sun isn’t out, as long as it’s not pouring rain – go outside. It’s still oddly warm, so get some fresh air, and take advantage of the many outdoor activities during the summer such as Pluk de Nacht, the open air film festival.

Pluk de Nacht

3. Layers are your friend. The temperature can vary about 10 degrees (F) in one day, so layer up. Doesn’t hurt if one of those layers is a rain jacket. Oh yea, I strongly recommend leather or waterproof shoes.

4. If the depressing weather doesn’t stop, go to one of the many museums.  Amsterdam has over 50 museums! At this rate, I will get to see all of them. Here’s the view from the EYE Film Museum, in between the rain. I highly recommend EYE, Van Gogh, and FOAM (the photography museum).

View from EYE Museum

5. Just go with it. I cannot tell you how many times it just started pouring and I’ve caught myself watching Dutch people on their bikes, continuing on their merry way like the gallons of rain weren’t even affecting them. During the Gay Pride Celebration, people just kept dancing in the street – even during the downpour – cause a party don’t quit just because the weather is off for a few hours.

Besides, after the storm it’s always a beautiful, so enjoy it while you can :)!

Amsterdam's canals



Linked to the My Global Life Link-Up at


6 thoughts on “How to Survive Dutch Summers

  • August 30, 2014 at 8:08 am

    Love this. Could have been Britain instead of NL though! Exactly the same. We recently spent the August bank holiday at Alton Towers and it rained constantly throughout the whole entire day. We had a terrific time! Bonus was that due to the rain there was no waiting time for the rides which was amazing. I had some visitor from the USA and they kept asking me, ‘is it really August? is it so cold all the time here in August??’. Too funny as I used to ask that every year and then decided to just go with it (as you say!). Found you on the My Global Life Blog link up.

    • August 30, 2014 at 10:23 am

      Hi Meghan and thanks for dropping by! I had the same reaction as your American friends and each Dutch person I complained to calmly replied, “Dutch summers.” So I figured I better deal with it – via some workarounds ;). Glad to hear you had fun at Alton Towers – no lines are definitely a benefit!

  • September 24, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    I grew up where it was rainy for a large part of the year and I’m still amazed by how consistently sunny it is where I live now – and I’ve lived here for 10 years! I love the sun these days but I get so nostalgic when we have a rainy day (like today!). It’s pretty much always rained whenever I’ve visited the Netherlands and it feels so familiar…reminds me of where I grew up. I’ve had beautiful days in the Netherlands, too, and I always love that feeling that’s in the air when the sun comes out and everyone is happy and outside. :)

    Thanks for participating in the #MyGlobalLife Link-Up!

    • September 24, 2014 at 11:06 pm

      Hi Cate, something amazing has happened recently – in the last 2 weeks, our real summer appeared! It is amazing to see an entire city appear outdoors once the sun is out. I also find myself changing plans just to be outside and soak up as much Vitamin D as possible.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and inviting me to your #MyGlobalLife link up! Every month, I’ve found interesting blogs and made new friends :).

  • October 22, 2014 at 11:02 am

    YES! Love this. I live in Germany now but I’m from Florida, and I cannot tell you how long it’s taken me to get used to the weather here. That gray cloud that floats over the country and sits there from like November to April lol Great advise here, especially “just go with it.”

    • October 22, 2014 at 9:02 pm

      Hi Dana! I used to say Germany comes in two colors – gray or blue/green. When the sun is shining, it’s so picturesque and postcard perfect. But those other days made me want to move back home. Now that I live in the Netherlands, where the heavens open up at ANY given moment, I can appreciate the weather in Germany much more :)


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