This is a full listing of the Dutch sporting calendar with a focus on major sports events in Amsterdam and around the Netherlands.
Football (soccer) is by far the most popular sport in the Netherlands. Taking in a match of the Dutch national team (Nederlands elftal) is perhaps one of the great experiences of world football.
Seeing the Dutch fans bedecked in all orange brings back some fleeting memories of the mighty Holland teams from the 1970s and 80s. Johan Cruijff. Total Football. Ruud Gullit. Marco van Basten. Euro 88…
As of late, however, the Dutch team has been in crisis having failed to qualify for the last 2 major tournaments. Missing out on World Cup 2018 in Russia and losing the final of the 2019 UEFA Nations League means the Dutch are now looking towards the Euro 2020 qualifying.
The Dutch national team plays most of its home matches at either Johan Cruijff ArenA in Amsterdam or Stadion Feyenoord (De Kuyp) in Rotterdam.
Euro 2020 Qualification group C home international matches:
Netherlands vs Estonia – 19 Nov 2019, 2045 (Johan Cruijff ArenA, Amsterdam)
Since winning the Euro2017 tournament on home soil, the Dutch women’s team (Nederlands vrouwenelftal) has seen a big leap in popularity. The following matches are Euro2021 qualifiers at home:
Netherlands Women vs Slovenia – 12 Nov 2019, 2000 (GelreDome, Arnhem)
Dutch league (Eredivisie) matches are played from August to May with a winter’s break in early January. AFC Ajax plays its home games at the Johan Cruijff ArenA in Amsterdam. The Ajax home fixture list for the 2019/20 season looks like this:
AFC Ajax vs SC Heerenveen – 14 Sep 2019, 1830
AFC Ajax vs Fortuna Sittard – 25 Sep 2019, 2045
AFC Ajax vs FC Groningen – 28 Sep 2019, 2045
AFC Ajax vs Feyenoord – 27 Oct 2019, 1645
AFC Ajax vs FC Utrecht – 10 Nov 2019, 1215
AFC Ajax vs Heracles Almelo – 23 Nov 2019, 2045
AFC Ajax vs Willem II – 7 Dec 2019, 1830
AFC Ajax vs ADO Den Haag – 22 Dec 2019, 1215
AFC Ajax vs Sparta Rotterdam – 19 Jan 2020, 1430
AFC Ajax vs PSV Eindhoven – 2 Feb 2020, 1645
AFC Ajax vs RKC Waalwijk – 16 Feb 2020, 1430
AFC Ajax vs AZ – 1 Mar 2020, 1645
AFC Ajax vs FC Twente – 14 Mar 2020, 1945
AFC Ajax vs PEC Zwolle – 5 Apr 2020, 1430
AFC Ajax vs Vitesse – 23 Apr 2020, 2045
AFC Ajax vs VVV Venlo – 3 May 2020, 1430
Ajax Open Day – Johan Cruijff ArenA in Amsterdam hosts an open day for Ajax fans to ring in the new season. Free entry, late July 2020.
Johan Cruyff Schaal (Cruijff Shield, winner Eredivisie vs winner KNVB Cup), season opener.
Scheduled for early August 2020.
Athletics / Running / Walking
Friday Night Run – A free monthly 1 hour run organised by running group Phanos. Runners meet at the Olympic Stadium Amsterdam at 1930 on the 2nd Friday of each month. Dates:
8 Nov 2019 / 13 Dec 2019 / 10 Jan 2020 / 14 Feb 2020 / 13 Mar 2020 / 10 Apr 2020 / 8 May 2020 / 12 Jun 2020 / 10 Jul 2020 / 14 Aug 2020 / 11 Sep 2020 / 9 Oct 2020
CPC (City-Pier-City) Run – An annual half marathon event in the Hague which is held in mid-March. Starting in the city, the flat course takes in Scheveningen beach before heading back to the centre. 46th edition will be run on Sunday 8 Mar 2020.
NN Rotterdam Marathon – This big marathon event in the Netherlands attracts over 20,000 competitors including a field of world-class athletes. One of the fastest marathon courses in the world, the race begins on Erasmus Bridge with the finish line being on the Coolsingel. Up to a million spectators line the streets of Rotterdam. The 40th edition will take place on Sunday 2 Apr 2020.
Gaasperplasrun – 1km, 2km, 5km and 10km runs around the Gaasperplaas, a lake in south-east Amsterdam. 26th edition scheduled for June 2020.
Ladiesrun Rotterdam – 5km, 7.5km and 10km running event for ladies only, held in Rotterdam. 14th edition due June 2020.
Dutch Atheltics Championships (NK) – Annual Dutch Championships meet takes place in summer, with qualification places up for grabs to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Expected July or August 2020, venue to be announced.
Nijmegen Vierdaagse – International four days marches event around the city of Nijmegen with up to 50,000 participants – walking 30km to 50km per day over all 4 days. 104th edition will be held over 21-24 Jul 2020.
Dam tot Dam Loop – Very popular fun-run event with tens of thousands of participants – the 36th edition takes place over the weekend of 19-20 Sep 2020. The main 10 mile event from Amsterdam to Zaandam is staged on Sunday 20 Sep 2020, with staggered starts at Prins Hendrikkade.
TCS Amsterdam Marathon – The 45th edition of Amsterdam’s marathon event will be held on Sunday 18 Oct 2020. The race starts and finishes at the Olympic Stadium.
Amsterdam City Walk – 11, 18, 27 and 33 km walking events held the day before the Amsterdam marathon taking in the highlights of the city. Saturday 19 Oct 2019, the longer walks start from the Olympic Stadium.
Olympic Stadium Run – The Olympischstadionloop (41st edition) is a 1km/5km/10km running event which starts and finishes at the Olympic Stadium in the south of Amsterdam. Scheduled for 10 Nov 2019.
Movember Run Amsterdam – 5km charitable (and humorous) run around the Vondelpark in Amsterdam to raise funds for Movember. Also counts as the official Dutch Championship (NK) for running with a moustache. Expected 30 Nov 2019.
Netherlands hosts 2 ATP tournaments during the year:
ABN Amro Tournament – ATP tennis tour event at Ahoy Rotterdam between 10-17 Feb 2020. A strong field of top 20 players is due at the 47th edition.
Libéma Open – International grass court tournament (men’s ATP and women’s WTA) at the Autotron Rosmalen near Den Bosch, 1 hour south of Amsterdam. Used as a warm-up to Wimbledon for some players. 31st edition, 6-14 Jun 2020.
KLM Open – European Tour event (101st edition) is due to be held at Bernardus Golf in Cromvoirt (Den Bosch) in September 2020.
Jumping Amsterdam – Indoor international equestrian event featuring some of the world’s best show jumping and dressage riders. Amsterdam RAI, 23-26 Jan 2020.
Amsterdam Sevens – Annual international rugby sevens tournament with over 120 teams to be played at the National Rugby Centre in Amsterdam. Expected 30-31 May 2020.
Tri Amsterdam – International triathlon event which offers half-distance and full Olympic distance courses from Park Somerlust around the Amstel river area. 21 Jun 2020.
Premier League – The invitational Premier League of darts event returns to the Netherlands for the 4th time in 2020. See Michael van Gerwen and co at the Ahoy Rotterdam, 2020 dates to be announced.
World Series of Darts Finals – International PDC darts tournament featuring the world’s top players comes to AFAS Live in Amsterdam. 1-3 Nov 2019.
Barney Dome: Farewell to the Legend – An fun evening to celebrate the career of Dutch darts legend Raymond van Barneveld who is retiring from the sport. Special guests will include Phil Taylor, Martin Adams, Booby George and Robin van Persie. At Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam on 8 Feb 2020.
Formula 1 – The historic circuit at Zandvoort (near Amsterdam) will host a Formula 1 motor race in 2020. This will be the first F1 race in the Netherlands since 1985. The GP will take place on Sunday 3 May 2020, with practice and qualifying sessions on the Friday and Saturday.
Dutch Moto GP – Popular motorcycle racing event held at the Assen TT circuit. Expected 26-28 Jun 2020.
DTM Race – The Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters touring car series comes to the Assen circuit. Expected 4-6 Sep 2020.
World Port Tournament Baseball – International biennial baseball event featuring the Netherlands, Curaçao, Japan, Taiwan and USA. Expected to return in July 2021, held at Neptunus Family stadium in Rotterdam.
Ben Bril Boxing Gala – Ben Bril (1912-2003) was a Jewish Dutch boxer who fought at the 1928 Olympics in Amsterdam and later survived deportation to a German concentration camp. This annual boxing and dinner show at Theater Carré is held in his memory. 13th anniversary edition due to be held 7 Nov 2019.
UEC Track Cycling European Championships – The Omnisport in Appeldoorn hosts this year’s European elite track cycling championships. 16-20 Oct 2019.
Grachtenrace – Up to 140 sloop boats race over a 22km course around Amsterdam’s canals. The race starts near Jan Schaeferbrug (bridge) at IJhaven and the route takes in various canals including Herengracht, Leidsegracht and Singelsgracht. The finish is at Oosterdok by the Maritime Museum. 33rd edition is due 12 Oct 2019.
Amsterdam City Swim – This charity 2km outdoor swim event in the city features up to 3,000 participants. Expected Sunday 6 Sep 2020.
Friday Night Skate – A 20km organised skate around the streets of Amsterdam held every Friday night (2030, weather permitting) from Vondelpark Pavilion.
League Finals – Ball sport (kind of netball-basketball cross) invented in the Netherlands. League finals day will be held in April 2020 at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam.
Invictus Games 2020
The international games founded by Prince Harry for wounded and sick armed service personnel will be held in the Netherlands in 2020. With 500 participants, the program includes 10 sports: athletics, powerlifting, archery, indoor rowing, JLR Driving Challenge, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby, cycling, sitting volleyball and swimming. The venue will be around the Zuiderpark in Den Haag (The Hague) over 9-16 May 2020.