The Netherlands offers travellers plenty of options for sightseeing and shopping. Inevitably, your stay in this country will come to an end. However, you can always bring memories of the Dutch people, places, and way of life home with you in the form of Dutch souvenirs. You will find shops and outlets selling great souvenirs across the country, in fact, you will be spoiled for choice.
Sometimes the souvenirs here can be a little tacky, odd, and other times rather cheesy (literally speaking!) but they will always be fun and great ways of remembering your Dutch trip. After all, who wants to bring back something that will soon lose its significance?
That is why you need to bring back something that is uniquely Dutch.
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The Best Dutch Souvenirs to Bring Home
Something that we travellers share is our love of bringing home things that reminds us of the days or moments spent in a country. Holland or the Netherlands is a great destination not just for sightseeing but souvenirs. The question is? What will evoke memories of the Dutch way of life once you leave this great tourist destination?
Of course, you can always bring home a windmill replica but if you're looking for unique souvenirs from the Netherlands, we have some great suggestions. Because we understand what it means to retain memories of places visited, we only recommend the best souvenirs. Items that are not only great but easy to bring home after visiting the land made famous by its canals.
The Delicious Dutch Cheese-Products
Perhaps a cheesy suggestion to make, but Dutch cheese is a great souvenir from this Scandinavian country. We all agree that describing Holland without images of windmills, green meadows, grazing cattle and the biggest export of the country - cheese is not easy. Along with tea, bread, and butter, cheese is an ever-present item at breakfast times in almost every Dutch home.
Cheese-making among the Dutch has, for centuries, been an integral part of the national heritage. It has evolved to be one of the country's most highly prized products. Just as you cannot leave without tasting the delicious Dutch cheese that is available in a variety of flavors and textures you also cannot leave without this iconic souvenir from the Netherlands.
In fact, your only difficulty maybe how much to buy. Any good shop will only be too happy to help you pack and preserve your cheese for travelling by sealing it. What if you don't want to carry real cheese home but still want something related? Then we suggest you get a kaasschaaf. This Dutch cheese shaver will be a great alternative. You can get this unique shaver from cheese vendors.
The Traditional Dutch Sugary Confections
No doubt, the Dutch enjoy their rich sugary confections. And the sweet (or salty) liquorice known as Drop is the most popular, which doesn't come as a surprise, considering the fact that the Netherlands has the world's highest per capita consumption of liquorice. Concerned about the health effects of too many sugary eats? Try the Dutch Drop. Drop should not worry you as it's less sugary and is also reported to possess healing properties, particularly when it comes to soothing your sore throat.
If you are in Rotterdam, Blaak market has stalls displaying all manner of traditionally-made Dutch confections. Another special shop in Rotterdam City is Jamin. While it opened 125 years ago, Jamin still remains a prime choice because of its variety, fun décor, mixing and packaging options. We promise that you can never get wrong with their confectionery: they are nice-looking, portable, and make great gifts or souvenirs from the Netherlands.
Stroopwafels, the Dutch Mini-Waffles
The delicious stroopwafels make awesome Dutch souvenirs if you have a sweet tooth. A stroopwafel is basically a waffle filled with caramel or syrup filling, something you not only want to taste during your Dutch stay but also bring home as a souvenir or gift. You can buy these in most food stores fresh and hot.
Compact and small, you can warm these flavoursome mini-waffles over a cup of coffee just like the Dutch do. Once you get the feel of it, you will be craving these waffle-like cookies after you've returned home. So, why not satisfy your new stroopwafel urges by bringing a package or two back home?
Buy Original Delftware Pottery Items
Delftware is the internationally-recognized blue and white hand-painted pottery pieces iconic to the Netherlands. The pottery originates from the southern part of the Netherlands in the city of Delft. You can buy original delftware in many different sizes and shapes ranging from ornaments, beautiful plates, cow-shaped cream jugs to a clock. You can also get them in many forms such as small figurines or tiles.
Delftware ranks high among our top Dutch souvenirs recommendations. When buying these iconic blue and white delftware pieces as souvenirs or gifts to take home, ensure they are wrapped in bubble wrap to survive the journey home.
The Colorful "Klompen” Clogs
Every year millions of these colourful wooden shoes, known as Klompen in Dutch are produced specifically as souvenirs. So why get left behind? Get these clogs that are often painted in colourful patterns, although you can still get them in natural wooden colours.
Although you are not likely to see anyone wearing clog in cities like Amsterdam, Klompen have an extremely practical use for rural farmers in the Netherlands. Traditionally, the clogs are used for covering feet while the farmers are working in the muddy fields as well as for protection against extreme temperatures.
Want to see how the clogs are made? Then visit Zaanse Schans. Only 20 kilometres from Amsterdam, this little charming village runs a wooden shoe workshop where you can see demonstrations of live clog making and the best part, a clog shop. Well, we are certainly not expecting you to buy clogs for use on your farm back home but what about getting them as Dutch souvenirs?
Dutch Beer from World-Class Breweries
When you mention Dutch beer, most people will assume you are referring to Heineken, the huge brand that is famous worldwide. However, as tasty as it is, this country has many other beers that may even be more delicious! The Netherlands has over 50 breweries that serve all kinds of great beers.
One such brewer is Brouwerij 't IJ located in Amsterdam close to a windmill. Another local brewer you will find in Amsterdam is Brouwerij de Prael close to the city's central train station. If you are in this city, why not visit either of these breweries and taste their awesome products and, more importantly, get a unique Dutch souvenir to carry home?
In Amsterdam, we traced the last remaining traditional distillery, De Ooievaar. This family-run brewer is mostly known for Genever, some sort of gin precursor. However, De Ooievaar also brews a range of unique liqueurs as well as some old-fashioned bitters that carry evocative names like Bride's Tears and Rose Without Thorns.
Going further than the capital city Amsterdam? Great, the Netherlands has regional and even some seasonal brews. The city of Rotterdam, for example, has De Pelgrim, a brewery that produces award-winning beers with water sourced from the Rotterdam River. Their beers use the best-sourced ingredients such as pure yeast and aromatic hops.
And guess what? Some of these local beers are not easily found outside of the Netherlands. So why not grab a couple of local beers as you go home?
Ever Thought of Dutch Flowering Bulbs?
The Netherlands is not only known internationally for her gorgeous tulips but also other types of blooming bulbs such as Dutch daffodils, hyacinths, amaryllis, lilies, crocuses, and alliums that make perfect gifts.
Perhaps you have thought of planting such tulips in your own garden back home? Well, that is not a problem because you can always carry some back home with you. As long as you buy seeds or bulbs stamped as having been cleared for international customs, you are good to go. Where can you get them? Easy, at the main flower market, De Bloemenmarkt in Amsterdam.
Bring Home the Candles Ambiance
You will be forgiven if you think of candles as plain household items. But wait until you visit Holland and discover how they go beyond being what we know of them as everyday household items. In the Netherlands, they are used to deliver a soft, cosy ambience to a room that would otherwise be very ordinary.
Candles make great decorations as they are available in numerous sizes, textures, and colours to complement every home decorative style. And the Dutch seem to appreciate this considering that they burn about 13 pounds (6 kg) per person annually. Regardless of their apparent simplicity why not copy the Dutch and give your space that unique ambience with these special souvenirs from the Netherlands.
A Map of the Amsterdam Canals
You cannot visit the Netherlands and not use the canal system. It may surprise you that Amsterdam's city centre, for example, has been configured by a multi-tiered canal belt encircling Dam Square. In fact, the name of the City has been derived from Amstelredamme after a dam on the River Amstel.
This amazing historical feat of engineering happened during the Golden Era of the 17th century making Amsterdam a key European port city. We found many stores around Amsterdam that sell old prints of the city's canal system. This may interest you as a unique Dutch souvenir if you have an eye for historical facts.
Get an Ajax Football Club Scarf
You may perhaps not be too keen on football, and Dutch football for that matter but we are sure someone back home would appreciate a souvenir gift that reminds them of the Ajax Foot Club. Ajax FC is the premier football club in Amsterdam and is historically the nation's most successful club.
When in the City of Amsterdam, you will notice the passion of the city residents for this club, and getting yourself a football shirt or scarf is a great way of getting into the game once back home. And it doesn't hurt that the club's colours are red and white, making pretty attractive sports attire to wear even back home.
The logo of this much-loved team famously features Ajax, the ancient Greek hero, and you will easily get it on a range of branded merchandise sold on the team's website. People will be awed by your Ajax scarf, T-Shirt, or mug back home even when you have no idea about the team's legendary exploits.
Get the Handy Dutch Birthday Calendar
Do you love surprising family members and friends on their special anniversaries such as birthdays? We appreciate that most of us might think we don't need a birthday calendar as our apps and social networking sites always remind us of upcoming anniversaries for family and friends.
But the Dutch birthday calendar may change your mind when you find what it can do. Why not get one, pack it with upcoming birthdays, anniversaries and even plan your trips so they coincide with your own birthday or anniversary?
Replicas of Cute Little Kissing Kids
While we could not ascertain the exact origin of the adorable images of the young Dutch boy and girl kissing, they have now become the heart-warming global image of Holland. Whether you choose an image of these two youngsters smooching on a tiny figurine, magnet or Delftware, these will be some of the Souvenirs from the Netherlands to bring home.
No great escapade is complete will without mementoes. Your outing becomes more memorable with the best Dutch souvenirs which will always remind you of places and things done in this great country.
Something for the Kids, Nijntje Knuffel
We cannot afford to forget the kids back home, can we? We believe Nijntje, the famous cartoon rabbit from a 1950s children's book by a Dutch artist by the name Dick Bruna will do perfectly. The name Nijntje is actually a child's mispronunciation of 'konijntje' (bunny rabbit) although in the translated versions Nijntje is simply known as 'Miffy'.
Another excellent Dutch souvenir for a kid back home is a Nijntje knuffel (stuffed animal) which in Dutch also means 'hug'. How sweet! Imagine combining a knuffel knuffel with a cartoon book depicting the adventures of Nijntje? You can find Knuffels with Nijntje in different outfits in many shops across Amsterdam.
In particular, we recommend you visit De Winkel van Nijntje, a store that is solely dedicated to this cute bunny. This retailer sells an extensive selection of Nijntje gear such as thermos flasks beloved by Dutch adults and children alike.