Pouring rain, a wind force of 8, grey, cloudy and dark days: this is probably what comes to mind when you’re thinking about autumn in the Netherlands. And you’re not entirely wrong: Autumn is indeed the wettest season here. But autumn days can also be beautiful, bright and mild in temperature, as proven last week. This is why Dutch autumn is such a versatile season. On a sunny autumn day, Dutch nature is at its best, but it is also the season of staying gezellig inside all day without feeling guilty. This week, we teach you how to enjoy Dutch herfst (autumn) to the fullest!
The Dutch LOVE to hike, especially in autumn. Of all seasonal hikes, the herfstwandeling (autumn hike) is by far the most popular. Did you know that the Netherlands has an infinite number of places to go for a beautiful herfstwandeling (autumnal walk)? A forest, park, nature reserve or heath is never far away. Do you want to feel extra Dutch? Grab your bike and map out a beautiful fietstocht (cycle tour). Or just get lost and see where the Dutch wind takes you: ‘Op bonnefooi gaan’, as they call it here.
In a typical Dutch forest, you will find many different trees in vibrant colours like oranje (orange), geel (yellow) en rood (red). The most common trees are eikenbomen (oaks) and kastanjebomen (chestnut trees). The kastanjes (chestnuts) you will typically find here are not the edible sweet ones, but the wild ones you cannot eat. Do you like to get crafty? you can search for kastanjes, eikels (acorns) and dennenappels (pinecones) or dry your own herfstbladeren (autumn leaves) and use them as decorations to spice up your home!
Not feeling like dragging yourself out of your cosy, warm house? Then don’t! Binnenblijven (staying inside) is a single Dutch verb and that’s probably for a reason..
Autumn is also the season to stay indoors and make yourself as comfortable as possible.
Besides watching Netflix on a rainy day, the Dutch love to play all kinds of different spelletjes (games). Board games, card games, dice games… you name it!
What is a cosy day in without comfort food, right? Take your old Dutch recipe book off the shelve and try some of the typical Dutch recipes: Appeltaart (apple pie), speculaas (typical Dutch spiced biscuit) and one of the endless variations of stamppot (mash pot) for dinner, easy to make and everything you need right now!
When the clock strikes five in the weekends, it’s ‘Borreltijd!’ (time for drinks).
As each season comes with a different type of beer, autumn is the time for Bokbier: a deep brown beer with a full-bodied sweet flavour. Complete your stay-at-home herfstborrel with oude kaas (old cheese) and gerookte makreel (smoked mackerel), these Dutch bites combine perfectly with Bokbier!
Hopefully will learn to appreciate the infamous Dutch autumn a bit more now. Talking about seasons is a great way to learn Dutch words about types of weather, nature, outdoor activities and seasonal foods. Check out our course offer to find out about our variation of Dutch courses!