Despite its reputation for grown-up fun, Amsterdam is fast becoming a hot spot for family-friendly city breaks. With plenty of festive charm (and a host of weather-appropriate activities), winter is the perfect time to visit.

Lucky little Amsterdammers get two reasons to celebrate. A few weeks before Christmas, Sinterklaas – the Dutch Saint Nicholas – paves the way for a season of sugary treats. Give your kids a taste of edible Dutch traditions: pepernoten (small spiced biscuits), chocolate letters and oliebollen (Dutch donuts). The icing on the cake? When temperatures plummet, local kids strap on their skates for a whizz on the frozen canals. Whatever the forecast, there’s no shortage of winter fun to be had. Here are our top picks.

  • Winterparadijs

    Amsterdam RAI, Europaplein 24, 1078 GZ

    Get the whole family into the full festive spirit with a visit to Amsterdam Winterparadijs. Winter activities abound with ice skating, tube sliding and curling, plus traditional Dutch games. If you want a more gezellig experience (think cosy comfort), settle into the winter cinema or toast marshmallows on an open fire. Finish your day with a ride on the Ferris wheel to see the city from on high. From 21 to 30 December 2018.

  • Amsterdam Light Festival

    Throughout the city

    Amsterdam’s annual Light Festival sees its streets and waterways illuminated with enchanting light installations from around the world. Teasers for this year hint at inflatable structures stretched over canals and 3D blueprints. Take a self-guided tour on bike or foot or book a boat ride to get a view from the canals. Either way kids will be captivated by the bright and the beautiful.

  • Amsterdamse Bos

    1182 DA Amstelveen

    Covering almost 1,000 hectares, Amsterdamse Bos is a welcome retreat from the bustling city centre. Spot Highland cows and birds of prey, or take the kids to meet kids of another kind at the goat farm. There’s an outdoor playground to burn off excess energy, too. Snow forecast? Join locals sledging down de heuvel before refuelling with Dutch pancakes at Boerderij Meerzicht.

Book your city break

Save money when you book your train and hotel with Eurostar*

You may also like

Autumn in Amsterdam

As the nights draw in, dance, drink and eat your way around the ‘Dam.

Find out more

Amsterdam Christmas markets

There's nowhere better for a fun, festive Christmas break. Enjoy Amsterdam at Christmas.  

Read more

New Year's Eve in Amsterdam

If you want to see the New Year in with a bang - head to Amsterdam.

Read more

All bookings are subject to the relevant terms and conditions made available at the time of booking. A current copy can be found here for hotels and for Train + Hotel packages respectively. For any further questions, please refer to our help pages.

We are a Member of ABTA which means you have the benefit of ABTA’s assistance and Code of Conduct. All the standalone hotels and Train + Hotel packages we sell are covered by a scheme protecting your money if the supplier fails. Other services may not be protected and you should ask us what protection is available.

Essential Travel Information: For travel advice including general health advice, check

Eurostar Holidays Limited is a company registered in England and Wales under company number 11005481. VAT Registration number 286 2413 93. Registered at Kings Place 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG. Eurostar Holidays Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Eurostar International Limited.

*Savings based on Train + Hotel package bookings on when compared at the time of booking to the price of the same standalone train and standalone hotel booked separately on

Image credits: © Amsterdam Light Festival; © Amsterdam Light Festival; © Winterparadijs; © Amsterdam Light Festival; © Alphons Nieuwenhuis; © Alamy; © Eurostar; © Shutterstock