Canals in Haarlem

The Best Ways to Get From Amsterdam to Haarlem

Are you excited to go and explore beyond the buzzing streets of Amsterdam and discover the charming town of Haarlem? Look no further!

Whether you’re a museum enthusiast, nature lover or interested in beautiful architecture, Haarlem definitely has something to offer you. And conveniently enough, there are several ways to reach this lovely city from Amsterdam.

In this simple and direct guide, we’ll show you the easiest and most straightforward ways to travel from Amsterdam to Haarlem. Read on to find out everything you need to know.

Canals in Haarlem

How to get from Amsterdam to Haarlem

Here you will find the most convenient ways to travel to your next destination: Haarlem!

Direct train from Amsterdam to Haarlem

The most convenient and time-saving option to reach Haarlem from Amsterdam is by taking a direct train. Trains operate regularly throughout the day, providing you with flexibility in your travel plans.

The train journey typically takes around 15 to 20 minutes, offering you a comfortable and scenic ride through the Dutch countryside. Departing from Amsterdam Central Station, the train will take you directly to Haarlem Central Station, conveniently situated near the town’s main attractions.

Both Amsterdam Central Station and Haarlem Central Station are located in the centre, so this makes traveling extra convenient.

An e-ticket (which is 1 euro cheaper than a regular ticket) will cost you 4.90 euros for a single ticket in 2nd class. I would suggest using the NS travel planner to see when and where your train departs. This journey planner is also widely used by locals.

Amsterdam to Haarlem by train

Other transportation options

While the train is the most popular choice, there are alternative transportation options available for your journey from Amsterdam to Haarlem.


If you’re an adventurous soul looking for a more active experience, consider renting a bike in Amsterdam and cycling to Haarlem. The distance is approximately 20 kilometers and the route treats you to picturesque landscapes, including windmills and flower fields.

Cycling allows you to experience the Dutch countryside from nearby and to fully immerse yourself in nature. It will take around one hour and fifteen minutes to cycle from the capital city to Haarlem. This is pretty adventurous though.

Once you reach Haarlem, you can continue exploring the city by bike!

woman riding a bike in Haarlem


Another option is to take the bus from Amsterdam to Haarlem. I would recommend taking the train instead, as this is quicker. However, if the trains aren’t running you can still reach Haarlem by taking the bus. You can take the line 80 bus, which takes around half an hour.

Haarlem Bus

Car or taxi

If you desire the convenience and privacy of a car, hiring a taxi or renting a car is also an option. Uber is available in the big cities in the Netherlands. The drive usually takes around 20 to 30 minutes, depending on traffic conditions.

To explore the centre of Haarlem you won’t need a car though, so this would just be of use for transportation to Haarlem itself.

Personally, I would prefer to make use of the public transportation system (the train). This is not only more sustainable, but also a lot easier! Besides, it’s even quicker than driving yourself.


Here you’ll find your most frequently asked questions answered.

Is there a direct train from Amsterdam to Haarlem?

Yes, absolutely! A direct train connects Amsterdam and Haarlem. Trains depart regularly from Amsterdam Central Station, taking you directly to Haarlem Central Station.

How long does it take to travel from Amsterdam to Haarlem by train?

The train journey from Amsterdam to Haarlem typically lasts around 15 to 20 minutes. It’s a quick and seamless trip, allowing you to explore both cities in a single day if you would like to.

Is Haarlem worth visiting?

Haarlem is without a doubt worth visiting! It’s an intriguing town with a rich history, stunning canals and impressive architecture. It also has a more local feel to it.

Often referred to as a smaller and more tranquil version of Amsterdam, Haarlem has its own unique charm and attractions. Don’t miss the chance to wander its quaint streets and visit the well-known Frans Hals Museum.

Narrow streets in Haarlem
Quaint streets in Haarlem

Is Haarlem better than Amsterdam?

The answer to this question largely depends on your own personal preferences. If you prefer to have your senses stimulated, then you will most likely prefer Amsterdam. However, if you like to visit a city with beautiful canals that is not yet overrun by tourists, then Haarlem is the place for you.

Haarlem offers a quieter and more relaxed atmosphere, perfect for people looking for a more peaceful getaway. At the same time, there are several great things to do in Haarlem and there are many good museums to explore.

On the other hand, Amsterdam is the vibrant capital, home to a lively nightlife and more than enough cultural experiences. There are lots of nice local bars and rooftop bars. There are also many romantic things to do in Amsterdam.

Each city has its own charm, so I would recommend exploring both of them to see which one you like the most.

Haarlem canal with old houses in the background
A beautiful canal in Haarlem

In conclusion

Traveling from Amsterdam to Haarlem is very convenient, especially with the direct and frequent train service. The short travel time allows you to have a pleasant journey.

Look out of the window, admire the Dutch scenery and before you know it you’ve arrived at your new destination!

If you prefer to travel by car, you can either hire a car or grab a taxi. Uber is widely used in the Netherlands, especially in the bigger cities.

Whether you prefer the energy of Amsterdam or the tranquility of Haarlem, you’re in for an unforgettable experience exploring the best of the Netherlands. Enjoy your travels!

Away with Danae

flower store in Haarlem
A local flower store in Haarlem

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