A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers France vs. the Netherlands for Museums & Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Beaches

Should you visit France or the Netherlands?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which country should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for France and the Netherlands. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

We'll start with a quick overview, and below we will go into all of the details.

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France is a popular tourist destination in Western Europe. It's also a relatively expensive country to visit, but it has a lot to offer travelers who are interested in history, culture, art, and food. Paris is a world renowned travel destination and the most popular place to visit in France. There is no shortage of things to see and do in the city. France is a relatively large country to visit, and the countryside is quite beautiful. France has a reliable transportation system and its an efficient country to explore. There are also many amenities available for tourists and no shortage of hostels and budget accommodation options throughout the country. France is also a popular study abroad destination, so if you're a student, there will likely be a wide variety of students hanging around.

The Netherlands is a much smaller country than France, but it is a fun and diverse place to visit. Despite its small size, the Netherlands has a lot to offer visitors. Most people who visit the Netherlands head straight to Amsterdam and spend the majority of their time exploring this beautiful city. If you have enough time, it's worth exploring other parts of the country as well. Many places can even be visited as day trips. It's also possible to include a trip to the Netherlands in to a longer European vacation. The country's small size and central location make it a great option if you're looking for a couple more places to visit.

Both France and the Netherlands are expensive places to visit, even by European standards.


The Port of Cannes, France The Port of Cannes, France

France is a beautiful, cultural, and romantic country. Many visitors also come because of it's amazing beauty. It's also popular because of the adventure travel, national parks, history and culture, and skiing.

France is actually the most visited country in the world, and it's easy to see why. Offering amazing food, deep history, beautiful coastlines, wine regions, world-class cities, and small villages, this amazing and diverse country offers something for everyone.


The Hague, Netherlands The Hague, Netherlands

The Netherlands is a progressive, vibrant, and historic country. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. It's also known for history and culture, nightlife, food, and water sports.

The relatively small country of the Netherlands is densely populated and is host to world-class cities, amazing history, and plenty of cultural attractions. Also commonly referred to as Holland, much of this country's land has been reclaimed by the sea and is crisscrossed by canals and man-made waterways historically used for shipping and trade. Today, the Netherlands is a modern, diverse, and developed nation that still offers plenty of historic and cultural charm with beautiful old buildings, windmills, farmland, cheese shops, and bike paths. Amsterdam is the most popular city for visitors, as it contains famous museums and historic architecture along canals and streets filled with bicycles. Rotterdam, The Hague, and Utrecht also have museums, history, and culture to explore, even though they see less tourists than Amsterdam.

France and Netherlands: Pros and Cons

  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Great culture, history, and arts
  • Big cities
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Beautiful national parks
  • Adventure!
  • Great road trips
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Great culture, history, and arts
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Not as many big cities
  • Less popular for food
  • Less attractive beach
  • Less hiking options
  • Not as many national parks
  • Less adventure activities
  • Not as many road trip options
  • Less popular with couples

Toulouse, France Toulouse, France

How is France different from the Netherlands?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Below we will examine the differences and similarities between France and the Netherlands. With this information, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in France or the Netherlands?


Both France and The Netherlands have great landmarks and museums for visitors.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in France that are not to be missed. Some of the world's best museums can be found in the major cities. The Louvre in Paris can't be missed, as it offers a huge collection of art, historical artifacts, and cultural items that would take several days to peruse. But it's only one of many museums in the city of lights, as it's also possible to see other major art exhibits around town. Additionally, other major cities offer plenty of museum options as well. Especially Lyon which has several marionette puppet museums, a cinema museum, and the large Musee de Confluences which focuses on humanity.

Paris: One of the most world famous landmarks is the Eiffel Tower. The city is also home to the world renowned Louvre, Notre-Dame, and Palais Garnier Opera House.

Lyon: There are many world class museums and historic landmarks in the city including Musée des Beaux Arts, Musée de la Civilisation Gallo-Romaine, and Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière.

Avignon: The town is filled with historical landmarks such as Palais des Papes, Pont Saint Bénézet, Musée du Petit Palais, and Basilique Métropolitaine Notre-Dame des Doms.

Versailles: The palace is filled with history and impressive items relating to the royal family. Within and near the palace you should make sure you see the Gardens of Versailles, Grand Trianon, the Hall of Mirrors, and the Royal Opera of Versailles.

Arles: It's a small town but it's filled with Roman ruins and remarkable landmarks. Popular sights include L'Amphithéâtre Romain, Les Alyscamps, Cloître Saint-Trophime, and Théâtre Antique.

See also How to Skip the Line at the Eiffel Tower in Paris (Advance Tickets).

The museums and tourist attractions in The Netherlands are world-renowned. With art, culture, history, science, nature, and more, this country has a large number of must-see museums that should be on everyone's itinerary. Amsterdam offers a number of famous art museums such as the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh museum. Also here you'll find the famous Anne Frank house, dedicated to the young girl that hid with her family in the attic during the Holocaust. Even more art museums, historic and modern, are found in the major cities such as the Mauritshuis, Escher in Het Paleis, the Groninger Museum, and the Stedelijk Museum and Rembrandt Museum in Amsterdam. If you're looking for some family-friendly activities, check out the Naturalis in Leiden (a natural science museum), the NEMO Science museum in Amsterdam, the Railway Museum in Utrecht, the Maritime Museum in Amsterdam, and the Open Air Museum of Arnhem. Also, many of the castles around the country have been turned into museums for exploration and historic purposes.

See also Cheap Activities in Amsterdam for Budget Travelers, and The Museums of Amsterdam.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Culture, Arts, and History?


While both cultures have their own history and culture, generally France offers more of this on a visit than The Netherlands

With a long list of famous historical and cultural attractions, France brings in many visitors. It's hard to find a country with more cultural and historical destinations. Starting with Paris, you'll find multiple museums, monuments, cathedrals, and other attractions that showcase the history and art of France as well as Europe as a whole. But Paris is not the only place, as other major cities such as Lyon and Marseille offer similar historical and artistic experiences in their museums, theatre productions, and architecture. Furthermore, even the small towns in the countryside have historic sights such as the numerous chateaus, castles, winery villages, and more.

The Netherlands is an extremely popular destination for those that want to visit historical and cultural sights and attractions, as it offers plenty. With cities dating back thousands of years, a large collection of art and history museums, numerous historic sites such as castles, windmills, forts, and cathedrals, and historic architecture everywhere you look, it's no surprise that people visit the Netherlands for its deep history and unique culture. Historic cities such as Amsterdam, Utrecht, Leiden, Arnhem, and many others provide that quintessential Dutch vibe with historic buildings lining beautiful canals. You'll also find old castles and forts along with world-class art museums. Don't miss the Van Gogh museum, the Rijksmuseum, and the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. Also, make sure you add the historic Open Air Museum of Arnhem to your list, as well as the Mauritshuis in the Hague. Just north of Amsterdam you can find the Zaanse Schans, a town with historic windmills along the river that showcases the life and history of this water-borne nation. No matter what your interests may be, you'll find something for everyone in this culturally rich country. Even if history isn't your passion, you can't miss the beauty in it.

See also Free Things to do in Amsterdam.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Big City Activities?


France offers more big cities to explore than The Netherlands.

Visitors will also find so much to do in France, as the large cities offer many sights and attractions. With multiple large cities, anyone looking to explore museums, history, restaurants, and attractions will easily find it all in France. And Paris is just the beginning, as Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, and others offer charming streets filled with art, architecture, museums, nightlife, and more.

The Netherlands has some large cities, so you'll find plenty of things to do when visiting. Amsterdam is a very popular destination for travelers coming to Europe because it offers historic architecture, world-class art museums, boat trips along the scenic canals, the infamous red light district, and more. Rotterdam and The Hague also offer plenty of big city activities such as museums, theater productions, and great cuisine. While Amsterdam is often included in many traveler's European tours, the other cities in the Netherlands get overlooked despite their terrific attractions.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Small Towns and Villages?


France offers more villages and small towns to explore than The Netherlands.

You'll find plenty of local activities in all of the small towns and villages in France. Travelers could easily spend their entire trip in the small towns in the French countryside. Many of the most charming small towns are in the wine regions of Burgundy, Bordeaux, the Loire Valley, Provence, and others. Visitors to these towns will find historic architecture surrounded by beautiful agricultural landscapes along with delicious food and friendly locals. Some have their own history dating back centuries, too.

The Netherlands offers plenty of small towns along with charming sights and activities, too. If you seek small towns with plenty of charm and history, Holland offers plenty of them. Many towns and smaller cities here have a historic vibe with canals, windmills, local agricultural products, museums, and more. Gouda, Leiden, Arnhem, Haarlem, Naarden, Edam, and Giethoorn are just some of the places worth visiting. They offer local cuisine, cute cobblestone lanes, historic churches, and friendly people.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Theater?


With a variety of venues, both France and The Netherlands provide great options for theater-goers.

France offers many theater and performance venues for visitors. In Paris, the opera and the ballet are very popular attractions. And if you're looking for something not as sophisticated, a number of review and musical shows provide fun options as well. Also, there's the theatre productions, too. Furthermore, you'll find many other great theatre productions all around France in the heart of Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Toulouse, Lille, Strasbourg, and more.

Paris: There are world class theaters as well as smaller local venues where you can enjoy a show.

While in town, many visitors enjoy seeing a show in The Netherlands. Amsterdam has a vibrant theater scene with a huge number of venues such as the International Theater, Royal Theater Caree, DeLaMar Theater, and even De Kleine Komedie which is one of the oldest theaters and puts on a variety of comedy acts. Other cities such as Rotterdam, the Hague, Utrecht, and Leiden have terrific theater and musical venues with plays, concerts, comedy, and kid-friendly productions.

Is the Food Better in France or the Netherlands? Which Country Has the Best Restaurants?


Foodies will appreciated the dining options available in France a bit more than The Netherlands.

Eat your way through France, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. The food here is second to none. French food has earned its reputation over the centuries as being gourmet, elegant, delicious, diverse, and gluttonous. From the fine dining restaurants of Paris and Lyon to the farm-fresh cafes in the small towns, to the abundance of wine in Burgundy or Bordeaux, we promise that you won't go hungry. Every city is proud of the food they serve, and you'll find regional specials throughout the nation, too.

Paris: There are countless local restaurants, markets, and patisseries to explore. Make sure you try the steak tartare, pate, and macarons.

Marseille: It's famous for its bouillabaisse, which is a hearty seafood soup that was once affordable but is now quite pricey.

Lyon: Known as "the Gastronomic Capital of the World" this city stands above the rest when it comes to Michelin star restaurants (there are 17!), fresh ingredients, and unique local flavors. Favorite local dishes include pâté en croûte, rosette de Lyon, and saucisson brioché.

Toulouse: There are many unique regional recipes that make use of poultry, cold meats, and foie gras. Toulouse sausage, cassoulet, Poulet à la Toulousaine, and Foie gras d’oie are all popular local dishes.

Nice: The cuisine brings together fresh regional ingredients and mixes Provençal and Niçoise flavors. You'll find a lot of Italian influence as well. Fresh seafood is the thing to try while you're in town, but other local favorites include socca, Ratatouille, and Salade niçoise.

The Netherlands has a delicious restaurant scene that relies on local flavors. Traditional Dutch foods often include fried snacks such as krokets, small pancakes known as Poffertjes, fried fish, and world-famous cheeses. Furthermore, plenty of terrific restaurants serving a variety of European and global cuisine can be found across the country, especially in the larger cities. Food here tends to be fresh, and the dining and restaurant scene is very active.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Nightlife?


Party-goers will usually choose The Netherlands over France.

The Netherlands has a colorful and one-of-a-kind nightlife scene. Amsterdam is a haven for nightlife, as it attracts a large number of visitors looking for entertainment. The red light district is full of bars and nightclubs, as are other areas of the city. You can also find theater productions and fine dining experiences, too. Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht, Leiden, and other cities also offer plenty of nightlife options with a wide array of bars, cafes, clubs, and theaters.

Amsterdam: The city has some of the best nightlife in Europe. There are plenty of bars, dance clubs, and other activities that you can enjoy throughout the night.

See also Party Hostels in Amsterdam.

The nightlife in France has something for everybody. While Paris is the obvious choice for its bars, clubs, theatre, and shows, the rest of France offers plenty of nightlife, too. The other major cities each have their own vibe, especially along the southern coastal destinations of Marseille, Nice, and Biarritz where beach-goers turn towards nightclubs at sundown. Even some of the smaller cities in the wine regions offer then own nightlife experiences after a day of tastings.

Paris: Head to Pigalle or the Latin Quarter for some of the city's best nightlife. There are all-night parties, cabarets, and exclusive night clubs that you can experience.

Marseille: Much of the city's nightlife is centered around being outdoors. Whether you're on the beach or hanging out at a rooftop bar, Marseille is a magical place.

Nice: The city has some of the best nightlife on the Cote d'Azur. You'll find a number of nightclubs along the seaside as well a bars and pubs in the Old Town. Some of the best clubs are along Promenade des Anglais.

Saint-Tropez: It is a place to see and be seen, so if you're looking for A-list celebrities, glamourous yacht parties, and ritzy dance clubs, then this is your place. While the nightlife scene is filled with extravagance, there are still laid back clubs where you can sip a cocktail in style. The best season to come and party is during the summer months, but you'll still find plenty to do throughout the year.

See also Paris Party Hostels.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Beaches?


France provides a better beach experience than The Netherlands.

France offers stunning beaches that attract visitors from around the world. The southern, Mediterranean coast of France offers plenty of beaches with gorgeous sand, blue water, warm weather, and historical towns. Whether you stay in a larger town with restaurants, hotels, history, and nightlife, or move further along to the quieter spots, you'll enjoy plenty of clear skies with equally clear water and that special French Riviera feeling. Some of the most popular beach destinations in this part of France include Nice, Saint-Tropez, Cannes, and Marseille. Along the Atlantic coast, you'll find even more diversity. The northern coastline is a bit colder and historic, while in the south you can find even more warm-weather beach vacation towns such as Biarritz and the surrounding resort towns close to Spain.

You can check out the beach in The Netherlands. While the weather is a bit cold most of the year, the beaches still attract a decent crowd. With wide stretches of sand, plenty of hotels, and many with easy accessibility by public transit, a trip to the beach here is quite fun and easy if the weather is good. One of the most popular beaches is Scheveningen, right near The Hague, where you can find a boardwalk and other beach activities. Surfing, the Pier, a Ferris Wheel, and plenty of great restaurants make this a fun day trip. Zandvoort aan Zee is the closest beach to Amsterdam where you'll find a good stretch of sand with dunes in the Zuid-Kennemerland National Park. Bloemendaal aan Zee is another very scenic beach with natural areas as well as cafes and restaurants. Egmond aan Zee is a gorgeous beach near an old fishing village with a lighthouse, and is worth the trip. Plenty of other beaches are also easy to reach, including the Hoek of Holland near Rotterdam and the barrier islands in the north.

Is the Shopping Better in France or the Netherlands?


Shopping is a popular activity in both The Netherlands and France.

France is an extremely popular place for shoppers. Paris quickly comes to mind as one of the best shopping cities in the world, as it offers multiple neighborhoods each with their own vibe and personality. But other major cities, as well as the resort areas on the coast, showcase diverse and trendy boutiques where everyone can find something they like.

Paris: Some of the best areas for shopping are Boulevard Haussmann and the Grands Boulevards, the Marais, and Avenue Montaigne and the Champs-Elysées.

Lille: The city is filled with shopping opportunities. Almost any store you could want is in or around the old town and the two main shopping centers in town are McArthur Glen and A l'Usine. Also by the train station is a shopping mall.

Aix-en-Provence: It has some of the best shopping in France outside of Paris. There are many shopping streets where you can pick up trendy fashions or boutique local finds. Head to Rue Marius Reynard, Les Allées Provençales, or Rue Clemenceau for some of the best shopping.

Cannes: With its many affluent visitors, the shopping scene in town is filled with luxury brands and posh boutiques. Perfume and porcelain are both popular things to buy in the area.

Saint-Tropez: Surrounded by luxury, shopping is a must in this glamourous resort town. There are international luxury brands as well as local designer boutiques. Whether you're looking for yachting clothes, cigars, jewelry, or perfume, this is one of the best shopping destinations along the Cote d'Azur. Art is a particularly popular item to purchase while you're in town.

The Netherlands is well-known for its shopping. Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and the Hague are all full of shops where visitors can find everything from fashion to gifts to local arts and crafts. And each of these cities are large enough that different neighborhoods offer a variety of personalities each with their own shopping vibe. Some of the historic areas tend to cater to tourists and sell gifts and crafts, while the fashion neighborhoods and malls offer the latest trends in local boutique shops. Art galleries are also quite common, as are chain clothing stores, tourist shops, and cheese shops, but there's something for everyone. Even smaller cities that attract tourists will offer good deals, trendy boutiques, and local crafts. Look for some interesting finds in Utrecht, Amersfoort, Leiden, Den Bosch, Haarlem or other smaller cities.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Christmas?


France is usually the more popular destination around Christmas.

France is a very popular destination during Christmas. Plenty of cities and towns put up lights and trees with Christmas decorations, host festivals and shows, and organize festive markets. While larger cities such as Paris are always popular, smaller towns are equally as beautiful and visited. Strasbourg, Dijon, Reims, Tours, and Lille are just a few of the destinations which organize extravagant holiday celebrations for residents and visitors alike.

Paris: The city of lights really proves itself around the holiday season. In addition to checking out the Christmas lights, it's fun to go window shopping or check out one of the city's Christmas markets.

Christmas holiday activities are popular when visiting The Netherlands. Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Leiden, and many other Dutch cities decorate their historic city centers with Christmas lights, large trees, and other holiday decor. Additionally, many towns also host parades and festivals to celebrate the holiday season. One of the most popular is the arrival of Sinterklaas, a boat and horse parade that tours Dutch cities and excites the children with his arrival. Many shops also sell festive gifts and delicious treats. Some of the cities also host ice skating rinks and festivals with children's games to bring out the holiday crowds. And if you're looking for a fun Christmas market, check out those held in Dordrecht and Maastricht, or the cave-market in Valkenburg.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Hiking?


France is generally considered to be a better destination for hiking.

France offers some nice hiking trails. A diverse set of hiking options is available for travelers here, as you'll find great trails from the Alps to the Pyrenees to the hills in the wine regions to the beautiful coastlines. In the summer months, the Alps and Pyrenees are especially welcoming to hikers, as these winter ski areas become warm and active with visitors. Also, when exploring the wine regions of Bordeaux, Burgundy, or the Loire Valley, don't forget to take a break from wine and history to admire the beautiful landscapes on foot.

Chamonix-Mont-Blanc: Filled with panoramic views and breathtaking natural scenes, the hiking is among the best in the world. Some of the best hikes in the area include Plan de l'Aiguille - Montenvers Train Mer de Glace, Aiguilles Rouges Nature Reserve Hiking, and any of the "Glacier Views" Hikes.

A few hiking trails can be found near The Netherlands. Despite its smaller size and lack of mountains, plenty of beautiful hiking routes are found all over the country. With a variety of national parks and wildlife areas, many of these trails are easily accessible to the major cities. Some are found along the coastline where you'll hike among sand dunes and along the shore. Others are inland in the forest and follow rivers or canals with the occasional castle or historic ruins mixed in to the itinerary. So, if you're looking to get out of the city for some fresh air, a day hiking is a good option.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for its National Parks?


France is generally considered to have more national park destinations than The Netherlands.

France has a range of national park areas worth visiting. Visitors looking to escape to the wilderness can find plenty of parks to see, especially in the rugged mountainous regions. A few of the best include Pyrenees national park and Vanoise national park, both of which are known for their hiking and beautiful mountain scenery. Elsewhere in France, Le Perche natural regional park in Normandy and Armorique natural regional park in Brittany offer beautiful natural landscapes with a touch of history.

If you're interested in the national parks, The Netherlands has some nice places to visit. The 21 national parks are spread across the nation and serve to protect wildlife and cultural areas. Many of the parks are quite small compared to what other countries offer, but they are still beautiful and significant for what they provide. Some of the most popular include Weerribben-Wieden, De Biesbosch, and Zuid-Kennemerland.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Adventure Travel?


France generally offers more adventure travel options for travelers than The Netherlands.

The adventure travel experiences in France are worth exploring, even if they are limited to certain areas. Across this diverse country, you can find plenty of adventurous activities if you're looking for a break from the history, wine, and food that brings in most travelers. Horseback riding, hiking, canyoning, rock climbing, rafting, and snow skiing are popular activities in the mountain regions, especially around the Alps in the east. Skydiving and bungee jumping are also popular in the countryside. Water sports, surfing, and kayaking are popular along the coastline as well.

While The Netherlands is not known for its adventure side, visitors can still find some exciting experiences. Although it's a small country, visitors can still find adventurous activities along the coast and in some of the natural areas. The beaches offer kite surfing and wind surfing opportunities. Also, plenty of travelers like to go kayaking or canoeing on the many canals and waterways. Zip-lining and ropes courses can be found around the country, such as the Euromast in Rotterdam. Also, almost every city has a rock climbing gym. And if you're really interested in climbing, check out the tallest climbing wall ever built in Groningen.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Watersports?


Both France and The Netherlands offer a fairly equal range of great watersports for travelers.

France has some watersports activities that attract many visitors. With a very long stretch of coastline on both the Atlantic and Mediterranean, as well as a huge array of rivers and lakes, there's no shortage of watersports here. Surfing is popular along both coasts, and not just where the water is clear and blue. Snorkeling and scuba diving are popular, as is kayaking, canoeing, and boating on the ocean, sea, and rivers.

The watersports and seaside activities and attractions of The Netherlands are worth experiencing. With a fairly lengthy coastline, you'll find plenty of opportunities here for kite surfing, wind surfing, and normal surfing depending on the weather. Boating is very popular given the large number of rivers and canals in the Netherlands. Kayaking and Canoeing should be on anyone's itinerary whether you're in a city or out in the countryside. A large number of lakes dot the landscape, too, with opportunities for swimming, water skiing, boating, fishing, and more.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Outdoor Activities?


Overall, France is considered to offer more outdoor activities and attractions to visitors.

The outdoor activities and attractions of France are worth exploring. The countryside that normally draws a crowd to see the vineyards and castles also offers plenty of other activities for visitors. From hiking through the beautiful landscapes to horseback riding to rafting and kayaking, there's something for everyone here. Many of these activities are also kid-friendly, and it's easy to find a day tour or rent equipment on your own for whatever you choose.

The Netherlands offers some fun outdoor activities and attractions for travelers who seek them out. A number of hiking trails, biking paths, and running trails can be found almost everywhere in the country. Boating, kayaking and canoeing are popular almost everywhere, too. Most cities and towns have kayak rentals if you're interested. The beaches are also popular spots for outdoor activities such as swimming, camping, and hiking. And with a variety of national parks and wilderness areas that are all easily accessible via public transit from the nearest city, the Netherlands makes it easy to get out and enjoy nature.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for a Road Trip?


France is usually considered to be a better destination to explore on a road trip than The Netherlands.

Taking a road trip through France is very good way to see the countryside and smaller destinations. As the roads and highways here can take you anywhere fairly quickly, many visitors to France will hire a car and leave the major cities to venture into the countryside. The wine regions of Burgundy, the Loire Valley, Bordeaux, and Alsace are popular destinations, as you can see the vineyards, chateaus, castles, and historic towns intermixed with beautiful mountains, rivers, and the French countryside.

The Netherlands has a few possibilities for a road trip for those that seek them out. Getting around by car is not difficult since the distances to drive are fairly short. On a road trip you can see the many small towns of the countryside, the agricultural regions, historic windmills, old castles and forts, and more. Also, a trip up and down the coastline is quite easy and very scenic, too.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Families?


Families may find more to do in France than The Netherlands.

With a huge array of activities for kids, France is very family-friendly. Plenty of activities for families and kids can be found in almost every corner of the country. The coastal areas in the south draw families for the beaches and resorts, while the mountains bring families for outdoor activities mixed with history and culture. The larger cities offer plenty of fun as well in the form of museums, theme parks, great food, and large parks.

Paris: Check out Jardin du Luxembourg, or one of the city's many playgrounds. Also grab a treat at one of the city's many patisseries. And of course, there's Disneyland Paris.

Saint-Tropez: With great beaches, several amusement parks, waterparks, and even Marineland, there are an endless supply of activities for kids. There's also a zoo and nature reserve for wildlife enthusiasts. For adventure lovers, there are a number of different watersports to try and if the weather isn't cooperating, there are a few good museums and other indoor activities as well.

Because of its large number of kid-friendly activities, The Netherlands is very family-friendly. Plenty of family-friendly activities can be found in the cities and countryside, such as amusement parks, the beach, historical attractions, biking, boating, and more. Numerous amusement parks are located throughout the country. Also, most of the cities have family-friendly museums such as the NEMO Science Museum or the Maritime Museum in Amsterdam, the Natural Science Museum in Leiden, the Railway Museum in Utrecht, or the Open Air Museum in Arnhem. Several zoos are also found throughout the country. And of course, don't forget about LegoLand and the Sea Life center in Scheveningen.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Couples?


Couples will find a longer list of romantic activities in France than The Netherlands.

France is fantastic couple's destination with fun and romantic activities. So many destinations in this large country are perfect for couples looking to get away on a romantic trip, or even a honeymoon. Paris is the obvious choice, as the city of lights oozes romance with fine restaurants, historic architecture, theatre productions, and hidden alleyways. But other destinations are terrific for couples as well, such as the coast, the mountains, the wine regions, and the small towns.

Paris: A city filled with romance, you really can't find a more ideal destination for a European honeymoon or a couple's getaway.

Nice: The old town is filled with romance and charm. You can also take a walk along the Promenade Des Anglais or soak up the romantic countryside that surrounds the town.

Reims: This romantic area is perfect for couples who enjoy wine and history. There is beautiful architecture as well as wine tours and breathtaking hot air balloon rides. Visiting the Champagne Houses is a must for any couple visiting the area.

La Rochelle: This beautiful coastal town is seeped in history. There are beautiful squares, romantic parks, and cobblestone streets that you can wander down. It's also nice to take a coastal walk before grabbing dinner at a local seafood restaurant.

Cannes: It's grand hotels and luxury beach clubs make this a perfect romantic destination. There are world class restaurants, a vibrant nightlife scene, and many romantic spots around town that make for a memorable honeymoon or couple's getaway.

See also Hostels for Female Travellers and Couples in Paris.

Most people don't think of The Netherlands as a couple's destination. Amsterdam is the most popular city to visit, and contains plenty of historic and charming hotels and B&B's which couples find to be very romantic. Elsewhere in the country, similar accommodations can be found that make for a terrific couple's getaway as you can enjoy romantic restaurants, outdoor cafes, scenic boat rides, and cultural activities.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?


Most people consider The Netherlands to be better for backpackers than France.

Backpackers come from all over to visit The Netherlands. With a large number of somewhat affordable hostels, cheap transportation, affordable food options, and low cost attractions, most major cities in the Netherlands are popular with backpackers and budget traveler. Keep in mind that travel costs here are fairly high, though. So, while hostels are less expensive than hotels, they are still not cheap. But with plenty of options and a party atmosphere, Amsterdam especially is very popular with the backpacker and budget-travel crowd.

Amsterdam: With it's party-hard personality and countless low price hostels, this city attracts its share of backpackers. Do note that many of the hostels aren't focused on quality, so make sure you understand what you're paying for. It may be worth booking a slightly more expensive room in a hotel.

See also Best Hostels in Amsterdam, Party Hostels in Amsterdam, and Amsterdam Hostels Near the Red Light District.

Plenty of budget travelers visit France. It's easy to find budget accommodation in most cities and towns, although the overall in this Western European country tend to be high. But the sheer diversity of sights and destinations means that budget travelers or backpackers can find low cost food, activities, and accommodations in most places around the country.

Paris: It's a big city, so it's easy to get lost in the chaos, but there are many hostels and other backpacker hangouts around town.

See also Cheap Activities and Tours in Lyon, France, The Best Hostels in Paris from $20, and Lyon's Best Hostels.

Is France or the Netherlands Better for Students?


France is a more popular country for students.

Many students visit France. With multiple large universities, this country hosts many students every year as both tourists and study-abroad participants. From the large cities to the small towns, it's easy to get around as a student, especially since many hostels and museums offer discounts for anyone under 26. Also, the nightlife is terrific in many of the major cities such as Paris, Lyon, and Nice.

Paris: The city is one of the most popular destinations for international and study abroad students.

Lyon: It is a very livable city with many fun cultural activities for students. There are many different entertainment options during the day, and during the evening there are plenty of places to hang out.

Montpellier: Montpellier is a popular university town that is home to many trendy university students. It's also where you'll find the youngest population of any city in France.

See also Free Things to do in Paris.

It's common for students to visit The Netherlands. With large universities in the major cities and a great infrastructure for younger budget travelers, students will find plenty of opportunities to explore the country and meet up with others. Many of the university areas of the major cities offer extensive nightlife scenes and affordable activities. Utrecht has one of the largest in the nation, as as such the city has a young and vibrant vibe. Amsterdam, Leiden, and Groningen also have large student populations and the accompanying atmosphere for student life, too.

The Hague: This is a very popular study abroad destination so you'll find plenty of international students living here. It's an internationally oriented city so everyone feels right at home.

See also Hostels in the Netherlands for Backpackers, Students, and Budget Travellers.

Is France or the Netherlands Easier for Transportation? Which is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?


You'll find great transportation options in both France and The Netherlands.

Public transit in France is top-notch. The French rail system is a terrific way to move around the country quickly and easily. Most small towns are connected to the larger cities by rail, and the larger cities are connected with high-speed rail, too. The airports are also modern and efficient, and offer connections to everywhere in the world. The roads are also great for driving, too.

See also How to Visit the Loire Valley from Paris.

Is it easy to travel around France?

  • Traveling by train is extremely popular.
  • It's possible to travel by bus.
  • It's quite common to travel by car.
  • Travel by airplane is possible.

The Netherlands has an effecient and thorough public transportation system which can take you anywhere in the country. As a relatively small country with a high population density, getting around in the Netherlands feels like traveling around a city instead of a country. The national train system operates routes on a regular schedule so that you can find a train anywhere at least every hour if not more frequently. And when you're in a city, the bus and tram systems are fantastic, efficient, affordable, and frequent. You won't need a car as a visitor, but if you choose to hire one, you'll find high-quality roads, too. Finally, many of the islands in the north are accessible with public ferries running on frequent schedules. As you probably know, much of the infrastructure in the Netherlands is built around bicycles, so don't be afraid to grab some fietsen and make your way around town on the dedicated bike lanes. It's common to rent bikes at the station if you arrive in a different city by train or bus, or bike rentals are available at many shops around the cities, too. Overall, the transit system in the Netherlands is amazing.

Is it easy to travel around the Netherlands?

  • It's very easy and convenient to travel by train.
  • It's quite common to travel by bus.
  • It's possible to travel on ferry boats.
  • Travel on cruise ships and excursions is possible.
  • It's possible to travel with an organized tour.
  • Travel by car is possible.
  • It's possible to travel by airplane.

Is France or the Netherlands more Comfortable for a Trip?

Both France and The Netherlands are very comfortable to travel around, and offer plenty of amenities for visitors.

Generally, France is considered to be a comfortable and luxurious place to visit. If you're looking to explore in comfort and luxury, then you'll have no trouble here. As the most visited country in the world, travelers will find a huge number of modern and luxurious hotels, along with great public transport, plenty of taxis and tour companies, and an amazing selection of restaurants and cafes. Even if you're traveling on a budget, the level of comfort and amenities in France is very high.

People often come to The Netherlands because it is such a comfortable and luxurious destination. Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, and other cities in the country all offer high-end, luxurious accommodations, fine dining restaurants, and extensive tour options for anyone wishing to travel in style. Even if you don't want to spend large amounts of money, this country is very modern with a high standard of living, and that is reflected in the mid-range and budget hotels, too. It's hard to find an uncomfortable place here, as the tourist infrastructure is vast and thorough.

Is France or the Netherlands more Touristy?

France generally has a more touristy vibe than The Netherlands.

Many of tourists come to France every year, as it's an extremely popular destination. Since it's the most visited country in the world, no one should be surprised with the number of tourists around major sights and attractions, especially in the more popular areas. Paris, Lyon, the southern coastline, the wine regions, and the French Alps are all quite busy with tourists year-round. So, when visiting, you won't be alone. However, it's also not too hard to escape the crowds as this country is fairly large.






Plenty of tourists come to The Netherlands every year, as it's a popular destination. Amsterdam in particular is extremely popular with tourists, and many parts of the city can be quite crowded most of the year. From the red light district to the museums and boat tours on the canals, it's often hard to avoid tourists here. On the other hand, other cities in the Netherlands enjoy significantly less visitors and offer similar cultural and historic activities without the crowds. It's quite easy to get around by train, so take the time to visit another city or two during your trip to avoid the crowds.


Amsterdam, Netherlands Amsterdam, Netherlands

Should I spend more time in the Netherlands or France?

How long in France or the Netherlands?

Both France and the Netherlands have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in France than in the Netherlands. Usually, 7-21 days is a good amount of time for France, and 3-7 days is enough time in the Netherlands.

Families should spend more time in France than the Netherlands. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in France, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in France than the Netherlands. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in France that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in France than the Netherlands if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in France.

  • How many days in France or the Netherlands? Ideal Length of Stay
    France 7-21 
    Netherlands 3-7

A weekend in France or the Netherlands?

The destination of France offers food, water sports, and beaches. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

The Netherlands is a great place to explore. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in France or the Netherlands?

France is a great place to explore. It's also a great beach destination, too. This country offers something for everyone. Since there is so much to do in the area, five days is probably not enough for all of it.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in the Netherlands. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. With all of its activities, you can easily fill five days here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

A week in France or the Netherlands?

The prosperous country of France offers beaches, hiking, and mountains. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. For many, it makes a great getaway for one week. Because of this, one week is usually enough time for a trip here.

Many travelers enjoy the shopping, museums, and theater when visiting the vibrant destination of the Netherlands. This country offers a variety of activities to choose from. If you have one week, this is a great place to go. This would be the perfect place to spend one week, as it has just the right amount of activities.

Two weeks in France or the Netherlands?

The historic country of France offers beaches, hiking, and mountains. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. For many, it makes a great getaway for two weeks. Two weeks is often enough time to do most activities.

Travelers enjoy the shopping, museums, and theater when visiting the vibrant destination of the Netherlands. This country offers a variety of activities to choose from. Two weeks may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Auxerre, France Auxerre, France

Which country is cheaper, the Netherlands or France?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in France is €233, while the average daily cost in the Netherlands is €175. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each country. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for France and the Netherlands in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    France 152
    Netherlands 93
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    France 304
    Netherlands 186
Compare Hotels in France and the Netherlands

Looking for a hotel in France or the Netherlands? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in France

Hotels in the Netherlands

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: France Hotel Prices and Netherlands Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    France 29
    Netherlands 27
Typical Local Transportation prices in France

Some typical examples of transportation costs in France are as follows:

  • Metro
  • Local Bus
  • Metro Pass
  • Airport Bus
  • Train from Airport
  • Parking
  • Funiculaire
  • Metro tickets
  • Hop-on Hop-off Tourist Bus
  • Train

Hired Cars and Shuttles in France

Some specific examples of transportation prices in France:

  • Paris to Lucerne one way Private Transfer: $4,985
  • Cannes to Paris Private Transfer: $3,877
  • Paris to Cannes Private Transfer : $3,877
  • Nice to Paris Private Transfer: $3,823
  • Paris to Nice Private Transfer: $3,712
  • Lourdes to Paris one way Private Transfer: $3,323
  • Paris to Lourdes one way Private Transfer: $3,323
  • Paris to Marseille one way Private Transfer: $3,212
  • Marseille to Paris One-Way Private Transfer: $3,212
  • Transfer by luxury Mercedes from PARIS to => GENEVE or LAUSANNE with Cab-Bel-Air: $2,881
  • Paris to Chamonix One Way Private Transfer: $2,759
  • Chamonix to Paris One-Way Private Transfer: $2,759

Typical Local Transportation prices in the Netherlands

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in the Netherlands:

  • Ride on Tram
  • Renting a Bike
  • One Hour Canal Cruise
  • Single Day Transit Pass
  • Transit Pass to Amsterdam Airport
  • Taxi Ride

Hired Cars and Shuttles in the Netherlands

Also for the Netherlands, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Oostende: $860
  • Private transfer from Utrecht to AMS Schiphol Airport: $122
  • 1-15 pers Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Cologne: $860
  • 1-15 pers Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Dusseldorf: $652
  • 1-15 pers Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Luxembourg: $1,046
  • 1-15 pers Taxi/Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to 's-Hertogenbosch: $292
  • 1-15 pers Taxi/Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Hoek van Holland: $202
  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Airport Amsterdam to Amsterdam : $139
  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Airport Amsterdam to Den Haag: $277
  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Alkmaar: $157
  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Almere: $157
  • 1-15 persons Taxi or Bus Transfer Amsterdam Airport to Amersfoort: $202

Is it cheaper to fly into France or France?

Prices for flights to both the Netherlands and France change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.

  • Food Meals for one day
    France 42
    Netherlands 46
Typical Food prices in France

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in France:

  • Slushee
  • Strawberries
  • Loaf of Bread
  • Coffee
  • Lunch
  • Cookies
  • Orangina
  • Cooked Clams
  • Ice Cream
  • Ice Cream
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in France

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in France.

  • 1h30 Cooking Activity in English: $22
  • Hard Rock Cafe Nice with Set Meal for Lunch or Dinner: $30
  • Hard Rock Cafe Paris with Set Menu for Lunch or Dinner : $30
  • Web-cooking workshop / French cuisine or French pastry: $35
  • Food Tour and Chocolate Tasting in Lille with Audio Guide: $46
  • Gluten Free Food Tour in the Marais with Audio Guide: $46
  • Food Tour and Beer and Spirits Tastings with Audio Guide: $46
  • Authentic Indian Dinner in Paris : $50
  • Paris Capitaine Fracasse Boat 3 Course Dinner Cruise: $51
  • Paris : Bistronomic early dinner cruise: $53
  • Toulouse : No Diet Club Food Tour: $53
  • Seine Cruise Departure from Pont Alexandre III with Dinner Included: $54

Typical Food prices in the Netherlands

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to the Netherlands:

  • Afternoon Tea

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in the Netherlands

For the Netherlands, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Amsterdam Self-Guided Food Tour in De Pijp Neighbourhood : $8.31
  • Amsterdam: Self-Guided Food Tour in De Pijp Neighbourhood: $14
  • Amsterdam: Self-Guided Food Tour in De Jordaan Neighbourhood: $14
  • Self-Guided Food Tour of Amsterdam's De Jordaan District: $14
  • Amsterdam: Pizza Cruise with Drinks: $22
  • Hard Rock Cafe Amsterdam with Set Lunch or Dinner: $28
  • Utrecht: City Boat Tour & Balkan Restaurant Lunch OR Dinner: $32
  • Amsterdam Pizza Dinner Cruise Including Drinks : $38
  • Amsterdam Evening Canal Cruise Including Pizza and Drinks: $42
  • Rotterdam Food tour - 4-hour Self-Guided tour: $43
  • Self-Guided Rotterdam BiteMe Food Tour: $43
  • Three course lunch/dinner voucher : $44

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    France 33
    Netherlands 26
Typical Entertainment prices in France

Here are a few typical costs in France for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:

  • Louvre Entry for Two
  • Castle Entrance Fee
  • Admission to Pantheon
  • Winery Tour (for 2)
  • Catacombs (2)
  • Lunch for 2

Tours and Activities in France

Here are a few actual costs in France for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • 2-Hour Walking Tour About French Revolution : $43
  • 4 hours Paris Night Tour with Moulin Rouge : $885
  • 6 hours Paris City Tour with Seine River cruise and Crazy horse: $1,075
  • 6 hours Paris Evening Tour with Montparnasse and Crazy horse : $1,439
  • 8 hours Paris city tour with Montmartre, Le Marais and Moulin Rouge -: $1,661
  • 8 hours Paris city tour with Montmartre, Le Marais and Saint Germain Des Pres : $1,107
  • 8 hours Paris tour with Montmartre, Le Marais, Saint Germain and Lunch cruise : $1,218
  • A Day at Parc Saint-Paul Ticket and Transport Included: $211
  • Aix en Provence City Tour with Wine and Cheese - From Aix: $83
  • Antibes, Cannes, 3 medieval villages in the hinterland Private Tour: $753
  • Arc de Triomphe, Wine & Eiffel Summit Tour with Hotel Pick up: $1,329
  • Bourse de Commerce - Pinault Collection: Timed Entrance Tickets: $21

Typical Entertainment prices in the Netherlands

For the Netherlands, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:

  • Two tickets to the Houseboat Museum
  • Entry for two to the Anne Frank House

Tours and Activities in the Netherlands

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for the Netherlands.

  • The Anne Frank Tour (Tip Based) Amsterdam : $2.65
  • Free Walking Tour in Haarlem with a Professional Local Guide: $3.24
  • Rude Bastards Tour of Amsterdam: $3.27
  • Amsterdam: Anne Frank and Jewish History Guided Walking Tour: $3.27
  • Guide walking tour in Delft Tip Based: $3.27
  • Rotterdam: First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.27
  • Amsterdam: First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.27
  • Amsterdam: City Exploration Game and Walking Tour: $3.27
  • Utrecht: Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and Tour: $3.27
  • Anne Frank and Amsterdam Jewish History Walking Tour: $3.31
  • Rude Bastards Tour of Amsterdam (CYHIT): $3.32
  • Free Walking Tour of Haunted Amsterdam: $3.32

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    France 19
    Netherlands 22
Typical Alcohol prices in France

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in France are as follows:

  • Beer
  • Sangria
  • Drinks for 2
  • Bottle of Wine
  • Wine

Sample the Local Flavors in France

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in France:

  • Wine tasting in Sablet: $3.31
  • Guided tour Lavender Fields & Distillery between Nîmes & Arles: $6.43
  • Wine tour and tasting at domain FL: $9.97
  • 2 Hour Sparkling Wine Tasting and visit in Beaune: $11
  • Bordeaux: Wine and Trade Museum Entry Ticket & Wine Tasting: $11
  • THE CUBE: Private Tour Of Semi-Gravity Cubist Cellar with Wine Tasting: $11
  • Bordeaux Wine and Trade Museum Admission Ticket with Wine Tasting: $11
  • Aperitif at the winemaker with cellar visit and wine tasting in Alsace: $11
  • Cellar Visit & Bandol Wine Tasting (in French): $13
  • Paris Pub Crawl with Free Club Entry and Free Shots: $15
  • Cultural and historical visit of the Nîmes brewery.: $16
  • Burgundy: Domaine de Montmain Cellar Visit and Wine Tasting: $16

Sample the Local Flavors in the Netherlands

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in the Netherlands:

  • Dordrecht: Distillery Tour with Dutch Gin & Genever Tasting: $7.62
  • Rotterdam: Heineken Building former brewery | Guided Tour: $8.16
  • Rotterdam: Stadshaven Brewery Tour with Beer Tastings: $11
  • Delft Pub Trail : Pub crawl with interactive online game: $16
  • Haarlem Pub Trail: Pub crawl with interactive online game: $16
  • Utrecht Pub Trail: Pub crawl with interactive online game: $16
  • Private Guided Pub Crawl with Beer Maid in Amsterdam: $25
  • Amsterdam: Original Pub Crawl Party with VIP Entrance: $26
  • Cheese and Wine tasting in Amsterdam: $27
  • Amsterdam Leidseplein Party Pub Crawl: $28
  • Leidseplein and Red Light Pub Crawl: 2 Night Pass: $31
  • Amsterdam: Red Light District Pub Crawl: $32

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between France and the Netherlands, we can see that France is more expensive. And not only is the Netherlands much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to the Netherlands would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in the Netherlands and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in France would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in France than you might in the Netherlands.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Why is France more expensive than the Netherlands?

France is a bit more expensive than the Netherlands. Paris and the coastal areas are the most expensive parts of the country, and you can expect to pay a high price for accommodation, food, or even entertainment.

Outside of the most expensive areas in France, it is possible to find some good deals. If you think a little outside of the box and head off the beaten path a bit you can save some money and have a truly unique experience.

Although the Netherlands is also an expensive country, its small size means that transportation costs are very reasonable. Many places can even be visited as a series of day trips from a base, typically Amsterdam.

What are the most expensive and cheapest cities and regions in France and the Netherlands?

In France, the larger cities and most popular tourist destinations are the most expensive places to visit. Paris can be a bit more expensive than the countryside, but the coastal areas are also quite expensive, particularly during peak travel months. Accommodation is very expensive in France, so sometimes you have to think outside the box if you want to find an affordable place to stay.

Amsterdam is an expensive city to visit, and probably the most expensive place to go in the Netherlands. It can be difficult to find affordable accommodation and reservations are recommended well if advance, particularly if you're traveling during the peak seasons. If you're staying in central Amsterdam, it's easy to explore the city on foot, so you can save a bit of money by simply walking between attractions.

How can you save money while visiting France and the Netherlands?

The Netherlands is small enough that you can base yourself in Amsterdam and explore other areas as a series of day trips. This is a more affordable and hassle free way to explore the country.

Both the Netherlands and France are countries where it really benefits you to make reservations well in advance. Whether you're booking accommodation or train tickets, you'll likely find the best deals early on.

Don't feel like you have to see every museum and attraction. Entry fees can add up and sometimes its more fun to just wander around the cities on foot and soak up the atmosphere.

Find a local grocery store where you can grab some food and have a picnic lunch or dinner. This is a great way to people watch and enjoy the beautiful setting.

Lille, France Lille, France

When is the best time to visit France or the Netherlands?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

The weather in France is fairly predictable, as it sees four seasons. Summers are warm all over, and winters can be cold, especially in the northern areas. The southern coastal areas are not quite as cold in the winter, but they can still be a bit chilly at times. The summer, fall, and spring tend to be the busier times for travelers to visit, with summer being the peak time of year for most of the country.

The northern European climate of the Netherlands experiences four seasons, with rainy winters and mild summers. While the temperatures are often cold in the winter, it only snows periodically. Summers can be quite comfortable as they are not too hot.

France is a beautiful country to visit year around. If you want to avoid the heaviest tourist crowds, then it's best not to visit during the summer months. This is also when the temperatures are the hottest and the prices are most expensive.

The weather is most pleasant and the crowds less during the spring and fall seasons. These shoulder seasons are a great time to explore most of the country.

Winter is a beautiful time to visit France, although the temperatures can get quite cold. In general, prices tend to be a bit cheaper during this season, but there is little seasonal price variation in the larger cities. Along the coast you'll find the greatest dip in prices during the winter months.

The Netherlands is a great place to visit anytime between spring and fall. The summer months experience mild temperatures that are still pleasant and comfortable. The best, and one of the most popular times to visit the Netherlands, is between mid-March and mid-May when the country's famous tulips are in bloom.

If you happen to visit the Netherlands during the winter months, you'll still be able to enjoy a beautiful country. Christmas is a nice time to visit with the holiday decorations and minimal crowds.

Should I visit France or the Netherlands in the Summer?

Both the Netherlands and France during the summer are popular places to visit. The summer months attract visitors to France because of the beaches, snorkeling, the hiking, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences. Furthermore, the beaches and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to the Netherlands this time of year.

In July, Paris is generally a little warmer than Amsterdam. Daily temperatures in Paris average around 20°C (68°F), and Amsterdam fluctuates around 17°C (62°F).

In Amsterdam, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Paris. In the summer, Paris often gets more sunshine than Amsterdam. Paris gets 241 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Amsterdam receives 204 hours of full sun.

Paris usually gets less rain in July than Amsterdam. Paris gets 58 mm (2.3 in) of rain, while Amsterdam receives 75 mm (3 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Paris 20°C (68°F) 
    Paris 17°C (62°F)

Should I visit France or the Netherlands in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both France and the Netherlands. The hiking trails, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area are the main draw to France this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to the Netherlands for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area.

Paris is a little warmer than Amsterdam in the autumn. The daily temperature in Paris averages around 13°C (56°F) in October, and Amsterdam fluctuates around 11°C (51°F).

Paris usually receives more sunshine than Amsterdam during autumn. Paris gets 127 hours of sunny skies, while Amsterdam receives 99 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Paris usually receives less rain than Amsterdam. Paris gets 55 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Amsterdam receives 72 mm (2.8 in) of rain each month for the autumn.

  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Paris 13°C (56°F) 
    Paris 11°C (51°F)

Should I visit France or the Netherlands in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to France as well as the Netherlands. Many travelers come to France for the skiing, the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine. Additionally, many visitors come to the Netherlands in the winter for the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine.

Amsterdam can get quite cold in the winter. Be prepared for some very cold days in Paris. In the winter, Paris is much warmer than Amsterdam. Typically, the winter temperatures in Paris in January average around 5°C (40°F), and Amsterdam averages at about 2°C (36°F).

In the winter, Paris often gets more sunshine than Amsterdam. Paris gets 62 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Amsterdam receives 46 hours of full sun.

Paris usually gets less rain in January than Amsterdam. Paris gets 55 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Amsterdam receives 66 mm (2.6 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Paris 5°C (40°F) 
    Paris 2°C (36°F)

Should I visit France or the Netherlands in the Spring?

Both the Netherlands and France are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. Many visitors come to France in the spring for the beaches and the natural beauty. Also, most visitors come to the Netherlands for the beaches and the natural beauty during these months.

In April, Paris is generally a little warmer than Amsterdam. Daily temperatures in Paris average around 11°C (52°F), and Amsterdam fluctuates around 8°C (46°F).

Paris usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Amsterdam during spring. Paris gets 172 hours of sunny skies, while Amsterdam receives 166 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Paris usually receives around the same amount of rain as Amsterdam. Paris gets 50 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Amsterdam receives 52 mm (2 in) of rain each month for the spring.

  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Paris 11°C (52°F) 
    Paris 8°C (46°F)

Typical Weather for Amsterdam and Paris

Paris Amsterdam
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 5°C (40°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 2°C (36°F) 66 mm (2.6 in)
Feb 6°C (42°F) 45 mm (1.8 in) 3°C (37°F) 49 mm (1.9 in)
Mar 8°C (47°F) 52 mm (2.1 in) 5°C (41°F) 63 mm (2.5 in)
Apr 11°C (52°F) 50 mm (1.9 in) 8°C (46°F) 52 mm (2 in)
May 15°C (59°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 12°C (54°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Jun 18°C (64°F) 53 mm (2.1 in) 15°C (59°F) 68 mm (2.7 in)
Jul 20°C (68°F) 58 mm (2.3 in) 17°C (62°F) 75 mm (3 in)
Aug 20°C (67°F) 46 mm (1.8 in) 17°C (62°F) 71 mm (2.8 in)
Sep 17°C (63°F) 53 mm (2.1 in) 14°C (57°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Oct 13°C (56°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 11°C (51°F) 72 mm (2.8 in)
Nov 8°C (47°F) 57 mm (2.2 in) 6°C (43°F) 81 mm (3.2 in)
Dec 5°C (42°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 3°C (38°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.
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France vs. Netherlands Travel Comparison

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