Surviving winter in the Netherlands

Even though it’s officially still autumn, the temperature is descending and the wind is getting colder. You might feel as if  it’s already freezing cold outside, but prepare; Winter is coming! The season of short evenings, dark nights and cold weather is arriving sooner than you’d think. You might not be used to these kind of temperatures, and want to snuggle up and hermit inside for a 3 month lasting winter sleep. But don’t let the cold weather scare you, even in wintertime Utrecht is one of the best places to be! Today we’re providing you with some tips to overcome the Dutch winter weather.

Buy a ‘pittenzak’

It might be a strange object but this little bag of grains will be your favorite object the coming months. Heat it in the oven and the grains will hold in the warmth for several hours. So for those cold lonely nights, use a pittenzak to keep you warm and comfy. You can easily heat it up, and put it near your feet in bed. No cold nights for you anymore!

Rain suit

When thinking of winter weather in the Netherlands you might think of a pittoresk city view covered in a blanket of white snow. Unfortunately, Dutch winters are usually even rainier than autumn times. You definitely should be well-prepared to overcome these rainy days. I’d recommend you to buy a decent rain suit, which will keep you dry even in the toughest rain storms. Every true Dutchie has this garment in their closet, since we venture outside even in winter on our bikes to go to class or work.

Eat ‘oliebollen’, lots of oliebollen

Although this Dutch treat is typically eaten at New Year’s eve, it is definitely worth trying in the weeks leading up. Oliebollen are deep fried dough balls with raisins in them. This might not sounds very appetizing, but I assure you; they’re delicious. You can try to make them yourself, or buy fresh ones at the bakery. One of the best oliebollen-makers is on the Neude square. Treat yourself to this yummy Dutch winter snack!

Organize a game-night!

In the colder months of the year Dutch people tend to stay in more often than usual. This does not mean however, that we stop having fun! If you want to have a typical Dutch winter night, then get a group of friends together and organize a game-night with Dutch board games. Mens-erger-je-niet , Ganzenbord, Risk and Colonisten of Catan are some of the most famous Dutch board games, which will ensure you of a (slightly competitive) fun night in with your friends. If you don’t like staying in, you can even find some cafés or bars where they have the games ready for you to play!

Make the most out of your winter in the Netherlands by following these tips! Don’t forget to check out our blogs on other things to do or make during winter, such as Dutch Winter Recipes, Movie theatres in Utrecht and typical Dutch winter traditions. Enjoy!

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