10 Things To Do During A Dutch Heat Wave

Every Dutch summer is the same. At first it seems like there will be no summer at all. The weather is terrible. It rains. It’s cold. It’s cloudy. It rains some more. Then suddenly the entire country is hit by an intense heat wave as if summer suddenly realised it was late and is desperately trying to make up for lost time.

Such extreme heat can make it difficult to think sometimes. It is simply too hot. That is why I have written a handy list of things you can do during a Dutch heat wave.

Things To Do During A Dutch Heat Wave

1) Try to separate your melted together hagelslag (which has probably now infused to form one giant deformed hagelslag).

2) Place bets on which colour code weather warning the day will end with. The extreme heat usually means an extreme apocalyptic style thunderstorm at some point.

3) Experience massive train delays as the entire transport network falls apart. This is probably because some important computer system somewhere melted.

4) Catch a breeze from a windmill. Just don’t stand too close.

5) Jump in a canal to cool down. Then realise it was a really bad idea when you unintentionally taste some of the water.

6) Cycle with your elbows raised in the hope of creating some kind of arm pit ventilation/breeze (less confident cyclists may wish to do this by alternating arms).

7) Enjoy an extended ‘rokjesdag‘ or (for the ladies) the often hit or miss ‘geen overhemd/korte-broek-dag’.

8) Start a barbecue and then realise that being within 50 meters of it is like venturing into Mount Doom. This is probably why the majority of Dutch barbecues happen in 15 degrees cloudy weather.

9) Drink a summer beer before it evaporates.

10) Dress for any and every weather possibility the following day. Dutch weather is very unpredictable.

What are your tips for surviving a Dutch heat wave?

12 responses to “10 Things To Do During A Dutch Heat Wave”

  1. #3: The sun has started to melt the rails, thus preventing safe travelling across the country. Also, after interviewing some of the conductors, it seems that the heat has affected their brains and has resulted in them in having a more lax, French-like attitude to, y’know, punctuality.

    #6: Fingers crossed!

    #7: They need it lest the hagelslag gets stuck together.

    #10: It would be a good point to warn Frodo before inviting him to attend a Dutch summer barbecue. He might end up getting Mount Doom PTSD flashbacks and attempt to hurl the sausages and burgers to destroy them.

  2. Stultum says:

    9) I think you could get away with wearing a skirt, Stu. Most Dutch don’t know the difference between an Englishman and a Scot anyway ;)

  3. Gez says:

    Number 6. Definitely number 6

  4. henk says:

    don’t forget that you have to talk about it all the time. first you talk about the upcoming heat wave, and during the heat wave you have to mention how hot it is, all the time, to every person you meet.

    some people like to talk about how ”everyone always wants nice weather, and now it finally is nice weather, and now the people complain that it is too hot”

    very important tradition

  5. dragonlady says:

    Sorry living in England we do not want Elfstedentocht (if that means when the canals freeze and you go ice skating.) Unlike Holland our lives come to a complete standstill with the wrong kind of snow etc. Mind you in this current heatwave our trains have been complaining of “the wrong kind of heat” Says it all really.

  6. Invader_Stu says:

    Take a car with a arco and drive around and around and singing the wheels of the car go round and round, all day long.

    greets from Ger

  7. Kevin says:

    How hot is a heat wave in the Netherlands anyway?

    I find what people in typically-cold climates categorize as a heat wave is a normal summertime temperature in warmer-weather places, so I’m curious what a heat wave in the Netherlands is like.

  8. Alison says:

    I, who HATE the heat, have moved to the hottest city in Italy, it turns out. Bologna has been the hottest city in the whole country this summer. Temperatures in the high 30s/sometimes hitting 40. My solution is to not leave the house. ;) That said, it hasn’t been as humid here as it is in the Netherlands. Coming from Florida (where I developed my phobia of the heat), I always heard about this mythical dry heat, but didn’t believe it. I feel justified that it’s still freakin’ hot and miserable for me, but not having as much humidity does help a tiny bit.

    I recommend getting large towels wet and then putting them in the freezer to get nice and cold, then draping them over yourself in front of a fan. Always keep backup frozen towels, though.

    • Stuart says:

      I think I would die if I went to a country that got as hot as 40. I am not good with the heat. I went to Florida once when I was 18 and as a British person the heat totally caught me off guard.

  9. Alison says:

    I was always getting sick from the heat growing up in Florida, so I really do have a bit of a phobia about it now. But growing up in Orlando, it also meant I plenty of the British tourists (including my relatives) who were almost all a shade of lobster red, but so many were determined to soldier on. Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun. ;)

  10. Johan says:

    @Kevin. Formal definition of a heat wave in NL is: 5 consecutive days with 25 Celsius or more, of which at least 3 have 30 or more. As measured at KNMI in De Bilt.

  11. Eliana says:

    Sometimes I go to another place: a park…at home is too much hot! Another day, in the garden in the sun: 41 Celsius. And have always een ice cream!

Tags: , ,
%d bloggers like this: