Noord-Holland

National Park Zuid-Kennemerland

A cross in the dunes

Highlights of Holland

Posted by on Oct 16, 2012 in Amsterdam, Friesland, Gelderland, Groningen, Noord-Holland, Places, Zeeland, Zuid-Holland | 0 comments

Highlights of Holland

If you visit Holland and only have limited time, then these are the ten places that you must visit. 1. Amsterdam Amsterdam is the Dutch capital and the largest city of the country. Its airport, Schiphol, is the main port of entry of the country, and is probably where you start your visit of Holland. Amsterdam is a beautiful city – at least the downtown area is. You can easily explore Amsterdam on foot, but the best way to enjoy Amsterdam is on a canal cruise over the city’s many canals. Be sure to visit the secret annex where Anne...

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Highlights of Amsterdam

Posted by on Aug 24, 2012 in Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

Highlights of Amsterdam

Dam The Dam is the main square of Amsterdam. On the Dam square you can find the National Monument, commemorating the Dutch war victims, and many monumental buildings, including the royal palace of Amsterdam. Canals Amsterdam is famous for its many canals and the typical canal houses. A good way to enjoy these is by foot, an even better way is on a canal cruise. Read more: The canals of Amsterdam. Anne Frank house The building that houses the famous secret annex where Anne Frank and her family were hiding from the nazis is now a museum, and...

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National Park Zuid-Kennemerland

Posted by on Aug 20, 2012 in Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

National Park Zuid-Kennemerland

The dunes in the National Park Zuid-Kennemerland, also known as the Kennemerdunes, are great for walking or cycling. The park is home to some rare plants, like Marsh Grass-of-Parnassus and several kinds of orchids. You may also encounter many species of animals, including deer, sand lizards, natterjack toads and nightingales. Scattered around the dunes are several monuments for fallen heroes of the second world war, usually members of the resistance movement who were caught and executed in the dunes. They found their final resting place in...

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Brederode Castle

Posted by on Aug 12, 2012 in Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

Brederode Castle

An old, medieval castle, built in the 13th century by William I of Brederode. The castle was destroyed, abandoned and rebuilt many times, until Wolfert of Brederode died in 1679. He was the last member of the Brederode dynasty, and when he died the castle was abandoned for good. In the 19th century the first restorations took place, sponsored by the Dutch government. After those restorations, the castle became the first listed national monument. At the time of writing, the castle is open to the public, for a modest entrance fee, except in...

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War cemetery Overveen

Posted by on Aug 8, 2012 in Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

War cemetery Overveen

In the dunes in the national park Zuid-Kennemerland, near the towns Bloemendaal en Overveen, is a small cemetery: The Erebegraafplaats (Cemetery of Honour) Bloemendaal/Overveen. A Dutch Cemetery of Honour is for people – military and civilian – who gave their lives for their country. In this particular cemetery are only civilians: 372 men and one woman. All of them were active in the resistance movement during the second world war. During the war, Holland was occupied by Nazi-Germany. People who actively opposed the nazis risked...

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The canals of Amsterdam

Posted by on Jul 12, 2012 in Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

The canals of Amsterdam

Amsterdam is famous for its many canals. The main canals form concentric semicircles, against the IJ river. Alongside the canal are thousands of monumental buildings. The main canals are the Heerengracht, the Keizersgracht and the Prinsengracht. Look at the photo of the Prinsengracht, above, at the beautiful bridge, and at the beautiful canal houses on the bank. There are hundreds of these typical Amsterdam canal houses – can you imagine? The canals were dug for several reasons. One of them is defense of the city: The innermost canal,...

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The great Haarlem organ

Posted by on Jul 2, 2012 in Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

The great Haarlem organ

Seeing all these colonnades of bone so methodically ranged about, would you not think you were inside of the great Haarlem organ, and gazing upon its thousand pipes? The above quote comes from Herman Melville’s famous novel, Moby Dick. He compares the inside of the mouth of a whale with the great Haarlem organ. This great Haarlem organ is the pipe organ of the St Bavo church in Haarlem. It was built in the 1730s, by celebrated German organ builder Christian Müller. At the time, it was the largest organ in the world. Some of the greatest...

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A windmill in Haarlem

Posted by on Jul 1, 2012 in Noord-Holland, Places | 0 comments

A windmill in Haarlem

From 1778 until 1932, windmill De Adriaan, on the bank of the river Spaarne, was an important landmark for the city Haarlem. Disaster struck in 1932, when the mill was completely destroyed by fire. Since that time, there have always been plans to rebuild De Adriaan, but it did not happen until the turn of the century. In 2002, 70 years after the fire, a completely new windmill finally opened its doors and spinned its sails. Though new, the windmill, also named De Adriaan, looks exactly the same as his predecessor. “De Adriaan” is...

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