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FOR AGES 3 YEARS TO 18 YEARS
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The Netherlands is a splendid part of northwestern Europe, bordered by the North Sea.
Earlier, the Netherlands was known as Holland (wooded land). Belgium borders the Netherlands to the South and Germany to the East.
Read and enjoy the following facts about this beautiful country.
Let's look at some fascinating facts about this fantastic place.
The Netherlands is covered with substantial expanses of rivers, lakes, and canals.
The Netherlands, in a literal term, means a low-lying country.
This is due to the topography and low sea level elevation.
The Netherlands (one of the European countries) is one of the primary members who started the European Union.
The country is situated in low-lying (sea-level) land.
The Netherlands geologically has a flat terrain with farmland, dunes, and beaches.
The country's coastline extends 280 mi (451 km).
The Netherlands is the largest part of the constituent countries (including Aruba, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten) known as the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
There are a total of 12 provinces in the Netherlands.
South Holland is the most populated province.
The Netherlands also has three special Caribbean Island municipalities (public bodies) located in the Caribbean Sea.
They are Bonaire, St. Eustatius, and Saba, officially known as the Caribbean Netherlands.
Dutch is the only official national language of the Netherlands, and people inhabiting the country are also called the Dutch.
According to UN World Happiness Report 2021, the Netherlands had secured the fifth position.
Over 17 million people inhabit the country.
The Netherlands covers an estimated area of 16,041 sq mi (41,545 sq km), and only 50% of its land exceeds 3 ft (1 m) above sea level.
The central area has low hill ranges, and the southeast has foothills with a maximum range of 351 yds (321 m).
The areas below sea level were constructed by different land reclamation techniques and peat (also known as turf, a partially decayed organic matter) extraction.
At least 2,500 sq mi (6,500 sq km) consists of reclaimed land.
The Dutch are jolly people and great lovers of cheese.
The Dutch have been making cheese since around 400 AD!
During The Dutch Golden Age (16th century), the Netherlands was known for exporting cheese, and now they are among the biggest exporters.
The Dutch are ecologically sound and progressive thinkers, evident through their devotion to bicycles.
Cycling is a standard mode of transport in the country.
Around 36% of people use bicycles for their day-to-day activities.
The Netherlands' capital city is Amsterdam, and it serves as a port as well.
It is a top financial and commercial center.
Amsterdam is a magnificent city with preserved historical sections, museums, and reservoirs of splendid arts.
It is visited by millions of people from across the world.
The official government seat is The Hague; it is the administrative and royal capital.
The Netherlands has partially been constructed on flood-prone land, and the constant ambush by water has been a big problem since Medieval times.
There are several human-made windmills, dykes, and hills.
The historic windmills of the Netherlands have been a classical symbol of the country.
Some of them are still used for drainage.
A total of 1000 windmills are there in the Netherlands.
The Netherlands offers a phenomenal vision of lush green fields with tulips and classic windmills.
The soil type is ideal for the growth of tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths.
The continuous drainage of water from polders (low-lying areas reclaimed from the sea or river often protected by dykes) keeps the soil moist and pleasing for their optimal growth.
The Netherlands has its fair share of history, with power passing through different hands. The Netherlands has been proven to be a difficult land in terms of geology. So let's find out how these changes took place!
Earlier, Celtic and Germanic tribes inhabited the Netherlands.
In the first century, the southern part of the Netherlands was under the rule of the ancient Roman Empire.
For the next few centuries, its prosperity reached new heights.
Then, Roman power got weaker; Germanic tribes invaded the land.
The Franks were the most powerful of them.
The Frank Empire of Charlemagne and its people brought Christianity with them when they invaded the Netherlands in the fifth century.
When the Frank emperor died, the territory was disintegrated into smaller parts.
Dukes and Counts ruled these smaller parts.
The help of agriculture, craft, importing, and exporting of goods made the Netherlands one of the wealthiest areas in Europe.
The location of ports helped in the trade reach as far as Asia and North Africa.
The Netherlands has been surrounded by lakes, rivers, wetlands, and woods, making the land impossible to cross over for conquerors.
In the Medieval Era, the neighboring powers wanted control over the Dutch territory.
The first one was the Duke of Burgundy and the Habsburgs.
An eight-year-long war was fought for independence from Philip II, king of Spain.
In 1581, Utrecht was the first one to gain independence.
In 1648, the sovereignty of the Republic was established.
Until 1794, the Republic remained under the Austrian throne of Habsburg, but just officially.
Even though the Dutch government and its people had been exposed to war hardships and fervent destruction, they continued their economical up-gradation.
In the 17th century, the Republic established itself as the most prominent maritime member of Europe.
Amsterdam became the most important financial center of the Dutch country.
In the 18th century, the absolute dominating empires of Austria, France, Russia, and the United Kingdom affected the Republic on political and financial levels.
The radically inclusive and liberal thinking of the entire country and the then Dutch ruler led to the formation of The Kingdom of the Netherlands, known today.
Belgium separated itself in 1830 and Luxembourg in 1890.
By the 19th century, the Netherlands became a liberal state due to the fundamental reforms evolving through economic and constitutional change.
The Dutch are also credited with many inventions like WiFi, the telescope, the stock market, and many more!
Dutch cuisine has been traditionally developed over the centuries.
The Dutch created their cuisine culture based on the landform which they inherited.
The location of the Netherlands has thoroughly influenced the food habits of Dutch people.
The fertile North Sea river delta of the European Plain gave rise to fishing, farming (crops and domestic animals), and spice trade.
The traditional Dutch food includes vegetables and some meat.
The popular traditional breakfast consists of bread and cheese.
The dinner consists of meat and potatoes with seasonal vegetables.
Their diet contains a lot of dairy products, high in carbohydrates and fats.
Famous Dutch snacks include poffertjes, a type of small pancakes served with melted butter and iced sugar.
They also include bitterballen, which contains finely chopped beef with spices mixed together and then rolled in breadcrumbs and deep-fried.
Another famous snack is appeltaart, which contains sliced apple covered with a pastry lattice and served with whipped cream.
After the official language, the Netherlands' other famous language is Friesian.
In Friesland, it is spoken by more than half a million people.
The Dutch value liberal and independently progressive thinking.
It is a secular country that has around 47% of religious people.
The number of Dutch people who ardently follow a religion is 6%.
The Netherlands society is divided into two major religions, Roman Catholic and Protestant, comprising 22% and 15% of the population.
The social perception of the Dutch people is straight to the point.
They are typically open, honest, and don't hesitate to speak their minds.
Their social etiquette may seem like a surprise, but it really isn't.
In the Netherlands, the standard greeting is short and done with a handshake.
It is common to greet each other by kissing three times on alternating cheeks among family and friends.
The Netherlands has quaintly splendid countryside with picturesque areas. There are many historical places to visit as well. So let's check these out!
The countryside is decorated with lush foliage, canals, rivers, windmills, and striking coastlines.
You can explore the countryside by the well-developed Dutch railways, cars, and bicycles.
The Netherlands is a small country loaded with lots of historical attractions, legendary icons, splendid windmills, vast tulip gardens, and canal systems.
Various places in the country offer the most unforgettable experiences.
This includes Amsterdam, Hague, Rotterdam, canals of Leiden, Martinitoren, and Dom Tower.
Het Binnenhof, an area of the Dutch parliament, is particularly popular.
Saint John's Cathedral and Basilica of St. Servatius are a couple of other famous destinations.
The Netherland's Keukenhof is known as the 'Garden of Europe.'
It is one of the world's most extensive flower gardens.
This magnificent display is spread across 79 ac (32 ha).
The Garden is opened between March and May of each year.
The Netherlands is among the world's biggest exporters of flowers.
Rotterdam has multiple museums; Euromast, an observation tower, offers an exciting panoramic view with an observation window.
North Sea Jazz Festival is another great spot to visit.
The Netherlands has small wondrous cities like Haarlem, Utrecht, Leiden, and Delft.
The railway system interconnects these cities.
The scenic routes of cobblestone squares and buildings of Haarlem are quite popular.
The spectacular canals of Utrecht and Leiden's architectural beauty (some of the buildings are centuries old) are also worth seeing.
The Museum de Lakenhal includes works by the Dutch Master Rembrandt, born in Leiden.
Delft is known for its hand-painted blue-and-white pottery and has a lively market square.
One of the best cheese markets is held in the town of Gouda.
The market opens every Thursday from mid-June to early September.
Other famous markets are Alkmaar and Edam.
The Netherlands was blessed by the world-renowned artist Vincent Van Gogh.
His museum is in Amsterdam, devoted to showcasing his life and work.
The Netherlands' largest city Amsterdam has a biographical museum dedicated to the heroic Anne Frank.
The Anne Frank House, a world-famous landmark, is the third most visited museum in the Netherlands.
The Rijksmuseum, a Dutch national museum, is located in the borough of Amsterdam South, the Netherlands.
The museum has 8,000 articles of art and history, and its total collection of objects is around 1 million.
The collection includes masterpieces by Rembrandt, Frans Hals, and Johannes Vermeer.
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