|Amsterdam (Badhoevedorp, Duivendrecht)|
Capital of Amstelland and the Netherlands as a whole.
Located just south of Schiphol, Aalsmeer is one of the few areas around Amsterdam that did not see its lakes, the Westereinderplassen, be drained in a search for land.
Once a proper town of its own, Amstelveen has grown exponentially since the Second World War, making it effectively a suburb of Amsterdam in modern times.
Effectively annexed by Amsterdam, Diemen is a densely populated city that links Zuidoost with the rest of Amsterdam.
|Hoofddorp (Schiphol Airport)|
Perhaps better known as the Haarlemmermeer, which, like the Beemster is a drained lake.
|Ouderkerk aan de Amstel |
Though it is older than Amsterdam, Ouderkerk is still the town it used to be, located in the reclaimed rural area that all of North-Holland once was.
A densely-packed agricultural municipality, filled partly with massive greenhouses.
Although containing large stretches of the archetypal Dutch polder landscape, the area is one of the country's primary economic powerhouses, focusing mostly on financial services and logistics. Partly because a large part of the area, the Haarlemmermeer polder, was a lake until 1852, there is relatively little old architecture.
Many visitors to the Netherlands will actually arrive in Amstelland itself, as Schiphol Airport lies within it.
From Schiphol, you can take the train to the north, to Amsterdam, or to the south, to Hoofddorp, Nieuw-Vennep and further to Leiden. Also, there are many buses services, including ones to Haarlem, Amstelveen and Uithoorn.