It all started with a blizzard. High winds and snow that fell to the ground almost horizontally! Within a few hours, Amsterdam and almost the entire country was covered by a thick blanket of snow. Temperatures stayed below freezing for a week, ensuring the snow and ice stuck around for a while. It was cold but Amsterdam looked oh so pretty! I thought I’d share some photos with you of a memorable week in a Dutch winter wonderland!

It all started with a blizzard!

I went for a walk in the snow every chance I could. After that blizzard, the weather cleared up dramatically and we were treated to bright blue skies and dollops of sunshine. The virgin white carpet of snow and the crunching sound it makes under my shoes, the blinding winter light and air so cold it stings – I began to remember why I love and loathe winters!

When the blizzard subsided, we were treated to gorgeous winter scenes like this snowy path along the Amstel River.
When the blizzard subsided, we were treated to gorgeous winter scenes like this snowy path along the Amstel River.

It’s quite a different winter compared to 2012 when it froze for a prolonged period of time and there was little snow. For several days, the canals of Amsterdam were one big ice-skating rink! There was even talk of an Elfstedentocht, the worldโ€™s longest speed-skating competition, with a course that winds 200km along frozen lakes, rivers and canals and past eleven historic Frisian towns. This time around, the canals remained relatively ice-free and there was lots of snow.

Walls of ice in Marken

One afternoon, my partner and I went for a drive to Marken, one of the historic towns north of Amsterdam. Marken is situated on a small island in the Markermeer (a huge lake in the centre of the country). We’d read in the news that the lake was frozen and that the wind was pushing the sheets of ice onto the dikes, creating walls of ice several meters high. We knew we had to see this! When we arrived on the island, we headed straight for the dikes that circle the island. The frozen scenery that greeted us from atop the dike was simply mind-blowing!

The frozen Markermeer
The lakeshore was covered with all sorts of ice formations.
We walked along the dike to the lighthouse to see the huge mounds of ice.
A close-up look at the mounds of ice at the Marken lighthouse.
I spotted these two ducks and a chair along the icy shore. Too cute! ๐Ÿ™‚
And a few geese! ๐Ÿ˜‰
As we made our way back, the sky and the frozen lake looked simply spectacular!
I captured this shot of people strolling along the dike against the background of a setting sun.
I captured this shot of people strolling along the dike against the background of the setting sun.

It was an amazing winter, one I won’t easily forget!

See more winter scenes in Amsterdam

Read about luxury hotels and fine dining restaurants in Amsterdam

Read about how I celebrated a birthday weekend in Amsterdam

10 Responses

  • […] cloaked Amsterdam for two days earlier this week. The last time it snowed this much was in the winter of 2013 – a winter that seemed to go on forever! The past few winters in Amsterdam were relatively […]

  • […] has been a gorgeous winter. Crisp cold air, stunning snowy scenes and curling up next to the fireplace. I truly enjoyed […]

  • […] cold! That said, I did enjoy the winter weather… most of the time. There was an abundance of snow in Amsterdam several times throughout this winter and I loved walking along the canals to see the very pretty […]

  • Amazing winter photos of Amsterdam! I love taking pics of the winter nature and travelling around and as I see you are also a fan of both. As you said, the winter is definitely not over, if you feel like enjoying some more, feel free to visit Canada where you can enjoy amazing winter scenery. Moreover, you have some more time to also enjoy some fun skiing or snowshoeing! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I’ve been to NL last week and boy was it cold there…. I’m heading back on Friday just for the day. I hope it isn’t that cold anymore. It was killing me. Nice pictures Keith!

  • Oh how much I miss the Netherlands and to see Amsterdam and Marken in the winter is simply sublime!!! gorgeous photos my friend!!

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