Some destinations in The Netherlands seem to be made for family travel especially. And Texel, one of the islands in the north of the country, is definitely one of them. The trip on the ferry alone is an adventure for kids, but there’s plenty more to see and do when you arrive. These are my favourite things to do on Texel with kids.
Texel, The Netherlands: how to get there
- Find cheap flights to Amsterdam and rent a car when you arrive.
- Drive to Den Helder to catch the ferry to Texel. Book ahead to prevent having to wait in line.
- Read my complete guide on Texel, The Netherlands.
Texel with kids, where to stay?
Texel has a lot of lovely hotels on Texel. But with children, I guess it’s far more comfortable to stay in one of the self catering options on the island. I highly recommend staying in one of the cottages of Landal Sluftervallei. The cottages are very comfortable and safe for kids and there’s all kind of things that you can rent, like a baby bed and a playpen. There are a lot of playgrounds across the park and an indoor swimming pool. I especially liked the restaurant with a really good menu and a dedicated play area for children. Read my complete review about Landal Sluftervallei.
Texel with kids: top things to do
My husband visited Texel many times when he was little, with his mum and uncle. I, however, didn’t visit the island until our first vacation as a family. We came to Texel overly prepared, with our car filled to the brim with all that a baby could possibly need. Now we laugh about it, as our last holiday with the little one, we just took two backpacks. But back then, all was new and exciting. We had a terrific time on Texel, as a family and I immediately spotted the best things to do on Texel with kids. So we’ll be back as soon as we can. With a lot less kit.
To the beach!
A friend of mine always says: bad weather doesn’t exist to kids. And I’m coming to realise that she’s completely right. Kids don’t mind a little rain and a strong wind. So sunshine or not: take your kids to the beach in Texel. The island has wide and beautiful beaches. Kids can discover the pretty beach huts, dig away and build a sandcastle, fly a kite or look for shells. And for us big children there are plenty of beach clubs to enjoy some lunch or a drink.
Climb the lighthouse
If you’re staying at Landal Sluftervallei you can easily walk or cycle to Texel’s lighthouse. Until 2003 only the lighthousekeeper had access to the lighthouse, but now it’s for everyone to visit. Once the kids have climbed all the stairs they can enjoy an amazing view over the sea, the island and can even spot the island of Terschelling when the weather is clear.
Being on Taxel with kids is the perfect excuse to visit Ecomare, because really… it’s fun for both grownups and kids. Texel, like the other Wadden islands, is part of Waddenzee which is on the UNESCO World Heritage list. And for a reason, as the delicate ecosystem is unique in the world. Ecomare focuses fully on nature and you and your kids will learn all about the animals living on and near the island. But the best part… you will get to see some rescued seals! Especially younger seals sometimes lose their mothers and drift away. Ecomare takes them in and prepares them for rerelease into nature. Very, very cute.
Follow the Sommeltjes
The Texel Dunes are amongst the most spectacular landscapes in The Netherlands, they’ve made it a national park for a reason. There are loads of hiking trails and bike paths to explore the dunes, but especially for kids, there’s Sommeltjespad: a 1.5 km walking trail where kids can follow little trolls called ‘Sommeltjes’. Us older kids can simply follow the brown arrows. Close to the trolls kids can discover fun facts about the nature and animals living in the national park.
Ice cream time!
What’s a family vacation without ice cream? Nothing, that’s what! And when on Texel with kids you better take them to ice cream farm Labora. Yes, this is an actual farm. Milking robots are milking the cows, whilst the freshes and best creamy ice creams are made with the milk. Don’t worry, it’s all pasteurized (we’re pretty civilized). Other than eat ice cream kids can play in the playground or visit a small paddock with deer.
Go shrimp fishing
As an island, Texel has relied a lot on the fishing industry. Most fishing boats leaving from De Cocksdorp or Oudeschild. And Oudeschild is where you and your kids can join a shrimping boat for a couple of hours while it goes out to sea. During the boat ride, the captain will explain all there is to know about fishing for and catching shrimp. Some fish will be caught, and kids are allowed to help sift through all the fish before throwing back the fish that aren’t shrimp. And after that, it’ll all get cooked and eaten!
Pick your own fruit
De Zelfpluktuin near Oudeschild is absolutely delightful to visit on Texel with kids. Rows and rows of vegetables and fruit is ready to be picked. A sign at the entrance tells you what produce is ripe to be picked, but you can always count on cherry tomatoes, berries and flowers. The gardens are beautifully laid out and there’s a pleasant café for coffee and cake.
Rainy day? A day of colouring and crafts!
Although the weather isn’t usually bad in The Netherlands, you always have to count on a rainy day. So come prepared with weatherproof jackets and wellies for kids. If you’re staying in a cottage, having some crayons with you is always a good idea and Tourism Texel offers free colouring posters for you to print. Or you can take the kids to De Bonte Belevenis estate. It’s a great day out for kids to play indoors and outdoors, visit the petting zoo or do crafts, like make little soaps or bake bread.
Read more about Texel, The Netherlands
- 16 great things to do on Texel
- Self-guided food tour Texel
- A guide to Oudeschild, Texel
- My complete guide to Texel, The Netherlands
Texel with kids
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