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The official tourist agency for each country maintains overseas branches that provide excellent in-depth information on a vast array of subjects, including special interests.

U.S. & Canada -- Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions, 355 Lexington Ave., 19th Floor, New York, NY 10017 (tel. 212/370-7360; fax 212/370-9507; www.holland.com).

U.K. & Ireland -- Netherlands Tourist Office (no walk-in service): P.O. Box 30783, London WC2B 6DH (tel. 020/7539-7950, premium-rate brochure order line tel. 09068/717777; fax 020/7539-7953; www.holland.com).

Most tourist information offices in the Netherlands, from big city and provincewide offices down to the tiniest village booth, are called "VVV." Those letters are followed by the destination's name: VVV Amsterdam, VVV Den Haag, VVV Haarlem, VVV Leiden, and so on. Triangular blue-and-white VVV signs are a common sight. The letters stand for a tongue-twisting name: Vereniging voor Vreemdelingenverkeer (Association for Visitor Travel) -- even the Dutch don't much like saying that every time so they call it simply the VVV (pronounced vay-vay-vay; or more like fay-fay-fay when spoken in an Amsterdam accent). VVV offices are efficient and have multilingual attendants on duty. They can reserve local accommodations for you, help with travel arrangements, tell you what's on where, and plenty more.

The umbrella organization for the VVV offices (no walk-in service) is the Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions (NBTC), Post Box 458, 2260 MG Leidschendam (tel. 070/370-5705; fax 070/320-1654; www.holland.com).

For tourist information when you arrive at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport and to make hotel reservations, go to the Holland Tourist Information desk in Schiphol Plaza (tel. 0900/400-4040), which is open daily from 7am to 10pm.

The Euro -- Holland's currency is the euro.

Useful Websites

In addition to official tourist organization websites -- such as www.visitholland.com, www.amsterdamtourist.nl -- there are many other useful sources of online information.

  • Independent Travel Advice: www.amsterdamhotspots.nl, www.channels.nl.
  • Hotels and Restaurants: www.go-amsterdam.org, www.specialbite.nl, www.iens.nl.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.