Utrecht tops list as favourite Dutch city for adults in the Netherlands

Utrecht tops list as favourite Dutch city for adults in the Netherlands

A survey by Hendrik Beerda Brand Consultancy has revealed that Amsterdam is no longer the favourite Dutch city among adults living in the Netherlands. In 2024, this honour now goes to Utrecht. It’s not all bad news for the Dutch capital though, as Amsterdam still tops the list in ratings by teenagers. 

Survey on favourite Dutch cities

The Cities & Regions Brand Research monitors the reputation of the Netherlands’ 100 largest municipalities and since 2011, 123.000 residents in the Netherlands have participated in the survey about favourite Dutch cities. The participants are asked about brand awareness, appreciation, loyalty, visit intention, growth expectations and reputation of the different cities.

Utrecht favourite Dutch city among adults in 2024

Compared to the last ranking of favourite Dutch cities in 2019, Amsterdam has fallen from first place to fourth place, and Utrecht has now taken the number one spot.

The crowds of tourists and high shopping and catering prices in Amsterdam are some of the reasons given for the decrease in the city’s popularity among adults. “The atmosphere in Utrecht is experienced as much more pleasant and the adult Dutch also have much more sympathy for Rotterdam and Maastricht,” said brand advisor Hendrik Breeda. “Utrecht is also experienced as much friendlier and more attractive and is therefore at the top of the wish list for a day out.”

Here are the favourite Dutch cities among adults in 2024:

  1. Utrecht
  2. Rotterdam
  3. Maastricht
  4. Amsterdam
  5. Nijmegen

Utrecht isn’t the only city in the Netherlands to rise in ranks: Rotterdam rose from the third favourite to the second place position thanks to its “continuous innovation”. Maastricht also went up in the ranking due to its “hospitality and high quality of stay” making it a favourite holiday city in the Netherlands. 

Amsterdam favourite Dutch city among teenagers in the Netherlands 

Despite losing its status among adults, Amsterdam has remained a favourite for 12 to 18-year-olds in the Netherlands. The city maintains this status with Dutch teenagers thanks to its bars and clubs providing a rich nightlife for the younger generation.

Here is the list of favourite Dutch cities among teenagers in 2024:

  1. Amsterdam
  2. Rotterdam
  3. Utrecht
  4. Maastricht
  5. The Hague

“For teenagers, Amsterdam still retains its magical status as a city where it all happens, but the city is also losing its shine for this target group,” said Beerda. Other Dutch cities are becoming bigger competitors and are increasing in popularity among youths in the Netherlands. A mix of hospitality, shops, architecture and the city zoo make Rotterdam one of the top favourites, while Utrecht is considered the top city for shopping by teens

Simone Jacobs


Simone Jacobs

Editor for the Netherlands at IamExpat Media. Simone studied Genetics and Zoology at the Univeristy of Pretoria in South Africa before moving to the Netherlands, where she has been working...

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