Used to live in Haarlem, could be a nice break if AMS is too much.
I would stay in AMS if you have 3-4 days only.
Hate the expensive train tickets to get there, EUR 31.90 for 3 adults plus 1 kid (up to 11). https://www.ns.nl/en/kaartje-kopen/asd/hlm/20230401?show=via
If you buy tickets, you should choose electronic tickets, physical ones cost EUR 1 each more.
Almost all train stations are only accessible if you have a ticket.
PS: will be fuzzy if you have 1 smartphone and 4 persons, easier if each have their own access. Never did electronic tickets, I guess it’s a QR code for each ticket.
A must see is the Frans Hals museum. Like Rembrandt, he also painted the schutters (defence militia), but in much brighter colours.
Good time had by all - weather good apart from torrential rain on our three hour cycle tour:thinking: we’d booked Rijksmuseum anyway and that was great - turns out the Vermeer is totally sold out and Van Gogh for next two weeks too - City crazy busy.
As expected everywhere busy but we ate well Kam Yin day one (good value, tasty) a brilliant Italian day two, Pacioccone off Koggestraat and a truly fantastic Chinese, Sea Palace on a boat.
Finally, went to the swing on top of A’dam lookout - fairly fucking terrifying but I gave nothing of my terror away.
And no drugs or ho’s…although my 11 yr old daughter couldn’t wait to tell her friends about the prostitutes ‘no not naked, in leotards…in a window!’