Some of the schools are already out – and we are counting the days till we can head off on holiday. Just to whet your appetite, here are some key facts about the Dutch and their summer breaks.
1. Some 7.5 million Dutch holiday makers are planning to go abroad this summer. 2.5 million are staying put and 500.000 are still thinking about it.
2. Favourite destinations are, as always, France and Spain. 150,000 people who would otherwise have flocked to les campings and costas are now hoping the weather at home will improve. Good luck with that.
3. Greece comes in at number five which is good news for the Greeks. More people are going there this year: some 150,000 people have decided to prop up the Greek economy and eat delicious Greek mezze.
4. Some 2.5 million Dutch people are spending their holiday in the Netherlands. More people, some 75,000, will be digging out their tents and inflatable mattresses and braving the Dutch climate on a campsite. Gelderland, Zeeland and Limburg top the list of favourite destinations at home.
5. The number of people who haven’t decided where to go or are still rowing with their partners and children about it has gone up from 400,000 last year to 500,000.
7. 15% of Dutch people just take off and see where the wind blows them.
8. 100% of Dutch holidaymakers will long for a peanut butter sandwich within two weeks of departure. (Okay, we made that one up – but here is a list of food the Dutch like to take on holiday.)
9. According to the ANWB, 16.00 on a Saturday is the best time to head off for the sun, if you are going by car and if you have to leave on a Friday or a Saturday.
10. Dutch holidaymakers are instantly recognisable, both the sporty types in the smart walking gear and the beer guzzlers at the campsite. We don’t quite know why.
If you are off for your break in the next few days, we wish you prettige vakantie. And if you are looking for something Dutch to read while you are away – here is our list of essential Dutch reads – in translation.