Haarlem is a beautiful old town, with a picturesque old town centre, which is known for its many shops (it once has been elected best shopping town in the Netherlands).
It is about 25 km (15 miles) West of Amsterdam.
The main square (Grote Markt) with the St. Bavo church is a must-see, and Haarlem has some museums worth visiting (Teylers Museum, Frans Hals Museum).
Americans may recognize in the name Haarlem the name of a New York neighborhood. This is correct - Harlem has been named after Haarlem.
The easiest way to go there is by train. There is a frequent train connection (a 20 minutes' ride), all day long, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. There are up to 8 trains per hour.
It is a doable bicycle trip (for more experienced cyclists). A tip: you'll probably want to stay north of the railroad track, as this is a lot quieter and greener.
In the centre of town, around Grote Markt there is a free WiFi network (Free Wifi Haarlem) for everybody to use.
Sint Bavo Church in Haarlem