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Top 10 Biggest Cities in the Netherlands

May 8, 2020 | By: Taylor Randolph

Kinderdijk, Netherlands

The Netherlands is known for its meandering canals, quaint Dutch-style homes, and charming tulip gardens. Many of the bigger cities in the Netherlands still hold on to their old-fashioned charm, while others have embraced modern and industrial-style architecture. As you are planning your trip to the Netherlands, the 10 biggest cities in the Netherlands is a great place to start. 

The top 10 biggest cities in the Netherlands, based on population (in 2019) are:

  1. Nijmegen - 177,818
  2. Breda - 184,403
  3. Almere - 211,514
  4. Tilburg - 219,632
  5. Groningen - 232,826
  6. Eindhoven - 234,235
  7. Utrecht - 357,179
  8. The Hague - 544,766
  9. Rotterdam - 650,711
  10. Amsterdam - 871,680


Nijmegen castle and pond

#10 Nijmegen

We kick off our list of the 10 biggest cities in the Netherlands with Nijmegen. Nijmegen is the largest city in the province of Gelderland and has 177,818 inhabitants. Although Arnhem is the capital of the province, Nijmegen still has a higher population. Nijmegen is known for being the oldest city in the Netherlands. In 2005, the city celebrated its 2000 year anniversary. Enjoy relaxing in front of the old castle at Kronenburgerpark or walk through the ancient Roman ruins at Valkhof park.


Purple flowers in front of Breda Castle

#9 Breda

Breda is one of three cities on our list in the province of North Brabant. The number of inhabitants of Breda is currently 184,403 and is therefore also larger than the capital of the province, 's Hertogenbosch (aka Den Bosch). Breda is a medieval city with beautiful historic buildings, such as the Grote Kerk, Begijnhof, and Breda Castle.


Almere harbor

#8 Almere

A perhaps surprising name on this list is Almere because it is the youngest city in the Netherlands (officially founded in 1984). The entire province, Flevoland, was recently created in 1968 by draining Lake IJssel to create the largest artificial island in the world. As the population of Amsterdam was booming like crazy after World War II, the Netherlands needed more space. Today, Almere is one of the fastest-growing cities in Europe. The number of inhabitants of Almere is 211,514.


La Trappe Monastery in Tilburg

#7 Tilburg

Tilburg is the second-largest city in the province of North Brabant. The population of Tilburg is currently 219,632. Tilburg is home to the famous La Trappe monastery, which is one of two Trappist monasteries in the Netherlands.


People eating by canal in Groningen

#6 Groningen

Groningen is the capital and largest city of the province of the same name. Groningen is a vibrant town known for its student population. The University of Groningen was founded in 1600 and it was one of the first universities in the Netherlands. The number of Groningen residents at the time of writing is 232,826.


Eindhoven Central Train Station

#5 Eindhoven

Eindhoven is number five of the biggest cities in the Netherlands and it is the largest city in North Brabant. With 234,235 inhabitants, the number of inhabitants of Eindhoven is slightly higher than the number of inhabitants of Tilburg. Eindhoven is proud to be the birthplace of the lightbulb manufacturing company, Philips.


Flowers along Utrecht canal

#4 Utrecht

Like Groningen, Utrecht is both the largest city and the capital city of the province of the same name. Utrecht is also called small Amsterdam, because of the numerous canals and traditional Dutch style homes. However, with 357,179 inhabitants, the city is still a lot smaller than Amsterdam. Just outside the city is the largest castle in the Netherlands, Castle De Haar, which is well worth a visit on your trip.


River by the Binnenhof in The Hague

#3 The Hague

We have now reached the top three of the biggest cities in the Netherlands. The Hague receives this respectable honor with no less than 544,766 inhabitants. The Hague is home to the Dutch parliament, the Noordeinde Palace, and the U.N.’s International Court of Justice. Johannes Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring is also in The Hague at the Mauritshuis Museum.


Yellow cube homes in Rotterdam

#2 Rotterdam

Rotterdam is the largest city in the province of South Holland with 650,711 inhabitants. If this list were about the largest cities in the Netherlands, Rotterdam would take first place with an area of ​​325.8 km². Rotterdam was largely destroyed during World War II and was rebuilt in a bold, modern architectural style. The yellow cube homes are an icon of Rotterdam’s ultra-modern design. These are real apartments in the city, but one of them has been turned into a museum so you can walk around and imagine what it would be like to live in a cube.


Amsterdam homes along the canal

#1 Amsterdam

Amsterdam is the largest city in the Netherlands with 871,680 inhabitants. As Amsterdam continues to grow, it would not be surprising if it becomes the first city in the Netherlands to have a million residents. Amsterdam has one of the highest tourist to resident ratios in the world. Every year, the city sees 17 million visitors and it continues to increase.


It may not surprise you that all these big cities are excellent locations for a city trip to the Netherlands. Via TheTravellingSouk you will find all information about the Netherlands and the most beautiful Dutch destinations. Would you rather broaden your horizons outside the Netherlands? Then take a look at the Biggest cities in the world and the Biggest countries in the world. This way you learn something and you may find your dream destination here!

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Hi there! 

We are Jacob and Taylor. Travel is our passion and we love sharing our experiences here at The Travelling Souk. Our hope is that you would be inspired by this little blog to try something new, embrace an adventure, and live life to the fullest. 

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