Netherlands Travel Guide: Country & Destination Information for Visiting

Updated: 2019-06-22.

Kingdom of the Netherlands | Koninkrijk der Nederlanden

The Netherlands is actually one constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Kingdom of the Netherlands is the actual sovereign state and constitutional monarchy.

The four constituent countries of the Kingdom are Aruba, Curaçao, the Netherlands (in Europe), and Sint Maarten, each which is often referred to as a country; they each participate on a basis of equality as partners in the Kingdom. On this website, to avoid confusion, we will refer to the constituent state of the Netherlands (mainland Netherlands) when “Netherlands” is mentioned, not the entire Kingdom.

The European mainland portion of the Netherlands borders Belgium to its southwest and Germany to its southeast. The United Kingdom is just to its northwest across the North Sea.

The Netherlands (Dutch: Nederland) obtained its name from being a very low-lying country. About 20% of the country, as well as almost the same percentage of the population, is located below sea level. The Netherlands is divided into 12 provinces (Dutch: provincies) and 3 overseas “public bodies” (openbare lichamen, or special municipalities, not part of a province). The Netherlands is often referred to as “Holland” by foreigners, though this term is inaccurate, since North and South Holland are merely two of the twelve provinces within the Netherlands.

A trip to the Netherlands would be anything but without a visit to the capital and largest city, Amsterdam. Amsterdam is a romantic city, known the world over for its “coffee” shops and canals, as well as its famous red light district. Amsterdam is the pioneer city that made other cities think green and open up more bicycle lanes for commuters, and it is at the forefront of many other cultural and progressive movements.

The Netherlands is well-known for its numerous windmills, and there are many to see throughout the entire country. Other than Amsterdam, this small country is filled with many little cities and towns that have a vibrant and unique character all of its own, cities such as Haarlem, Rotterdam, Utrecht City, Den Haag, Leiden, Delft, and Groningen.

flag of Netherlands

Netherlands Travel Information & Key Points

General points to know about the country of Netherlands – demographics, important ages, phone numbers, key statistics, and more, whether you’re traveling there or not.

Capital: Amsterdam (& largest city)

Population: 17.3 million (2019 estimate)

Language(s): Dutch

Monarch: King Willem-Alexander

Prime Minister: Mark Rutte

Currency: Euro € (EUR)

Area: 41,543 km2 (16,040 mi2)

Dialing Code: +31

Time Zone: Central European Time “CET” (UTC+1), DST/Summer Time: Central European Summer Time “CEST” (UTC+2)

Demonym: Dutch (what is a demonym?)

Endonym: Nederland (their name for their country)

Emergency Number: 112

Drinking Age: 18

Smoking Age: 18 to purchase

Age of Consent: 16

Drives on the: Right

Electricity & Adapter: 230 V, 50 Hz, Plug Types C / F (define)

ISO Country Code: NL