The whole of North Holland boasts some of the most beautiful, golden sandy beach in Europe. At Bergen aan Zee, a mere five kilometres through the dunes from Bergen itself, the beach is flanked in the east by marram grass-covered dunes and in the west by the magnificent North Sea, stretching as far as the eye can see. It is a great place for long walks, to get lost in your thoughts and forget the rest of the world.
But in summertime, the beach comes into its own as a huge playground for young and old, and it has something for everyone. You can laze about on a towel in the sand, read, play with the kids, build sand castles and trenches, play football or throw your frisbee - with a little imagination there are endless possibilities. And if you run out of imagination, you might like to try a windsurfing lesson, or kiteboarding or waterskiing...
And the beach pavilions in Bergen aan Zee are becoming bigger and better by the year. A handful of them are open all year round, some only at weekends, offering great food, drinks and entertainment. At the start of the beach season in April, more pavilions are erected to cater for the greater numbers and varying tastes and pockets. Some are simple shacks offering ice creams, cold drinks and snacks like the famous Dutch patat and kroketten (chips and ragout-filled croquettes), but others are rather fancy, serving haute cuisine and a choice of select wines on crisp, white tablecloths. There's much on between, so you're sure to find a place that's just right for you.
Getting to Bergen aan Zee
Bergen aan Zee is easily accessible by car via Bergen or Egmond, and there's ample parking available at a price: €1.90 per hour from 10:00 until 19:00 (1 March to 31 October).
Much more fun and relaxing, however, is cycling. It's a beautiful bicycle ride from Bergen to Bergen aan Zee, and whether you follow the cycle path along the main road or go through the quieter dunes, it'll take most people just 20 minutes. There are a number of places in Bergen where you can rent a bicycle. For a few hours, a day - as long as you like. And parking is free!
Walking is another option, of course, and you'll see even more of the stunning landscape so unique to this area. All the (cycle) paths in the dunes are very well signposted.
Photo Gallery Bergen aan Zee
All the photographs in this gallery were taken by Robin Glendenning. Feel free to use them for your own, non-commercial purposes. High resolution versions are available upon request, as are framed high resolution prints. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.