Travel Guide to the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Amsterdam  (Photo: wikipedia)

When you go on a tour to Europe, one of the “must-go” places is The Netherlands.

The country is one of the most visited in Europe and there are so many reasons to love the place. But before we go into the details of where to go and what to do, let us get to know the country first and foremost.

The Netherlands is the home of the Dutch. It is a European country that borders Germany to the east and Belgium to the south. Contrary to what most people know, the term “Dutch” actually is a generic term that refers not just to the people, but also the language and culture of the entire nation.

The population is over 16 million and the capital is the beautiful city of Amsterdam. Historically, the Netherlands was once a major naval power, joining the likes of Spain, England, and Portugal in the Age of Colonization and Exploration. Today, it is more known for its wealth of cultural heritage and iconic symbols like windmills, flat lands, and clogs.

And just like most European countries today, the nation is focused on modernizing everything, from the economy, infrastructure, government, and tourism. But the most prominent attribute of the Dutch is their liberal mentality. The country is the best example of a thriving democratic and liberal setting. Being a founding member of the European Union and NATO, as well as the home of the International Court of Justice, the Netherlands is the center or capital of international cooperation.

But the nation is more than just about its glorious image and liberalism. Another very popular attitude of the Dutch is their inherent hospitality to tourists and travelers. As a matter of fact, that’s the very reason why The Netherlands is one of the most sought after destinations in a typical European trip.

Now if you want to discover all the beautiful things about the country and the sort of stuff it offers for your traveling pressure, then you should continue reading this article…

Icons, Masterpieces, Arts

The country is no stranger to the world of art. Does Rembrandt and Van Gogh sound familiar? These two are big time names in the history of the arts. But their masterpieces aren’t the only things you expect to see when you travel here. There are the likes of Piet Mondrian, Frans Hals, and others. And then of course there are the icons including the world famous classic windmills. We haven’t even mentioned tulips.

The People

The Dutch are literally large-sized individuals. As a matter of fact, they are considered as the tallest nationality on Earth. The national traits of the typical Dutch are being thrifty, having a good sense of humor, gregariousness, and of course, being liberal and honest.

Center of Attraction

The city is the symbol of Dutch influence and legacy. While Amsterdam is in itself a very rich city history wise, there’s that unfortunate reputation of image shrouded with sex and drugs. Yes, it may be true that the liberalism of the people has led to a greater extent of tolerance on both sex and drugs, but that image is actually kept to a single “hood” in the city, while the rest of Amsterdam is teeming with good things to discover.

Other Places to Go To

But Amsterdam isn’t the only place in The Netherlands you can be excited about. The country’s tourism business is highlighted by visits to the cities and towns of Edam, Haarlem, Deventer, and Delft. Leiden, Utrecht, and Haarlem are canal towns while Rotterdam has its share of lovely feasts, too.

Tourist Spots

1. Kinderdijk

If one of your reasons of visiting the country is the windmills in the countryside, there’s no better place to see them than in Kinderdijk. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with 19 windmills strung out on both side of the canals. When you go there, you can explore the place by bike or foot, whichever is more fun for you.

2. Rijksmuseum

The best and most popular art museum in the Netherlands is something you really can’t afford to skip. There are about 200 masterpieces that will blow your artistic mind away. And don’t forget the Philips Wing when you’re already there!

3. Muller

If you’re into food, you’ve come to the right place. You see, Muller is not just about being amazed at the artistry of Jean-Michel Hengge in the kitchen, but also enjoying the sumptuous treats of lobster, lamb, scallops, and more.

4. Delft

If there’s another word for lovely, that’s Delft. It is a popular day trip destination in the country, highlighted by activities likes strolling the narrow and canal lined streets and gazing at old and historical buildings and structures. And why not relax while looking at the art of famous Golden Age painter Johannes Vermeer.

5. Hoge Veluwe National Park

The national park is the largest the Netherlands can offer. It is a nice place to take a trip to if you are looking at nature gazing. Go through marshlands, forests, and sand dunes.

So when you travel to the Netherlands, it’s actually fair to say that you’re certainly going to get more than what you expected. It is a place to be if you’re looking at getting an alternative to the usual beaches in the East and the Pacific and the populated destinations in America. A Dutch travel should be relaxed, fun, and interesting.

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