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* A trip through The Netherlands

Updated on October 25, 2014
Titia profile image

Titia just loves camping in her Van. Being an inspector of sheep she has to travel through her country all summer long.

Wooden shoes
Wooden shoes | Source

Guides to The Netherlands - so you know where to go on your trip to Holland

12 Dutch Provinces - 12 Views on Holland

In "a trip through The Netherlands" I want to take you on a sightseeing trip and show you some other aspects of my country, which tourists normally wouldn't see when they travel through The Netherlands. Holland through my camera is the Title, because I do a lot of travelling in my country due to being a sheep inspector of the very rare and old Dutch sheep breed Drenthen Heath Sheep

So....this is quite a challenge, because The Netherlands may not be that big, it has so many interesting things to share apart from the 'normal' tourist attractions like Amsterdam and the famous museums, like the Rijksmuseum or Van Gogh museum. The Netherlands is devided in 12 Provinces: North-Holland, South-Holland, Zeeland, North-Brabant, Limburg, Utrecht, Gelderland, Overrijssel, Flevoland, Drenthe, Groningen and Friesland. Each one has its own landscape. I'll show you one attraction which is typical for that particular Province.

I live in the South part of the Province Zeeland, called Zeeuws-Vlaanderen

I'm sorry, it has become a rather long journey, but I hope you'll enjoy it anyway.

Copyright text and photos, if not mentioned otherwise: Titia Geertman

The province map images are courtesy of each province site in the Dutch Wikipedia

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1. North-Holland - A cheese market tradition

Alkmaarder Cheese market, a must see in The Netherlands

North-Holland: country capital is Amsterdam and provincial capital is Haarlem. Up North you'll find Alkmaar and this city is famous for its Cheese Market. There are only four official cheese markets left in The Netherlands and the Alkmaarder cheesemarket is famous for the way they move the cheese around, a tradition of 400 years. As a tourist you can't buy the cheese on the market itself, but there are lots of cheese stores around where you can buy the local made cheese. The market is only open on Fridays, from the first Friday in April until the first Friday in September, between 10.00am and 12.30pm.

Cheese Market in Alkmaar
Cheese Market in Alkmaar

Photo courtesy:

Museums in Alkmaar - The Beatles, Cheese, Beer and Stoves

Downtown Alkmaar is a beautiful old city and it has some nice museums, worth to take a look

Titia's Photos Province North-Holland - Holland is famous for its Windmills, Water and Vegetables

Click thumbnail to view full-size

The Isle of Texel - belongs to the Province North-Holland

Dutch Singers - Jan Smit, Jeroen v.d. Boom, Nick and Simon, Trijntje Oosterhuis, Guus Meewis

We have a lot of Dutch singers and some of them come from Volendam. Must be a musical city.

2. South-Holland - Big Cities and Nature Reserves

The Biesbosch - water and willow trees

South-Holland: besides the government/provincial capital The Hague and the largest port in Europe Rotterdam, a real nature treasure can be found in the South part of this Province: The Biesbosch.

The Biesbosch is one of the most beautiful parks I've seen (well I haven't seen many outside my country) and it is one of the last freshwater tide areas in Europe. A real must if you love nature, wildlife and birds.

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

The Biesbosch played a large part in the resistance network during WorldWar II. You can visit it either by renting a rowing boat or on an organized boat tour. You can see more pictures here Pictures Biesbosch

Titia's Photos Province South-Holland - Windmills, Cows, Clouds and big Rivers

Click thumbnail to view full-size

3. Zeeland (Zealand) - land surrounded by sea and sea arms

Zierikzee: back to ancient times

Zeeland or Zealand in English: is my 'hometown' province and I live in the lowest part, the only part that isn't surrounded by water on three sides, but only on two sides, because the third side is connected to Belgium.

Recently I wrote a lens about 'my' part of the Province which you can find below as a featured lens. So I decided to show you a beautiful old city: Zierikzee.

Zierikzee has a bit of a special meaning for me, because my father's father has been the head of the postoffice there for a long time, when my dad was young. My dad made a few beautiful drawings of the old tower of Zierikzee.

Drawing of the tower of Zierikzee, by my Dad Synco Schram de Jong at the age of 20
Drawing of the tower of Zierikzee, by my Dad Synco Schram de Jong at the age of 20 | Source

Titia's Photos Province Zeeland - Farmland, Polders, old Creeks and Small Villages

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Blof - Singer group from Zeeland

Many books have been written about The Netherlands

A lot of writers have written books about Holland in one way or other.

It certainly is well known:

Dutchies have a mind of their own.

Each Province has its specialties,

in landscape and originallities.

Most land is bordered by the sea.

We're multicultural as the world should be.


4. North-Brabant - exuberant hospitality

On Safari in The Netherlands -Safari Park Beekse Bergen

North-Brabant:Friendly people with an exuberant hospitality. Near Tilburg you'll find the largest wildlife zoo in Europe Safari Park Beekse Bergen. Visitors can explore the park either in their own car, by bus or on foot.

You'll find a variety of about 1200+ animals there like lions, cheetahs, giraffes, apes and its famous for its bird shows.

Safari Park Beekse Bergen

Photo courtesy: Beekse Bergen

Titia's Photos Province North-Brabant - Creeks and Ditches

Click thumbnail to view full-size

5. Utrecht - where History meets Modern Times

The City of the famous Canal Pubs

What makes the city of Utrecht in the Province Utrecht so special is not only the famous Cathedral with the Long John tower, but the canal structure in the inner city. You will see here the unique wharf-basement structures, which create a two-level street along the canals. Used as storage rooms in the old days, they've been turned into pubs today.

Utrecht: old canal in 1890
Utrecht: old canal in 1890
Utrecht: old canal today
Utrecht: old canal today

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

Titia's Photos Province Utrecht - Nature Reserves and a Drenthen Heathsheep herd

Click thumbnail to view full-size

6. Limburg - Famous for its fruit pies

and the only 'mounain' we have in The Netherlands

Limburg is the most South situated province of our country. It's bordered to Germany on the East side and Belgium on the South and West side. It has our one and only 'mountain' where the three countries come together on Mount Vaals. It is famous for its gravel caves.

The big river Meuse is floating through the whole province, from South to North.

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

Limburg has its own official regional language.

Band from Limburg

Netherland - Vintage Contemporaries

Netherland (Vintage Contemporaries)
Netherland (Vintage Contemporaries)

Interesting book about the friendship of two 'immigrants' in New York, one from the Netherlands and the other from Trinidad.


7. Gelderland - historic river landscape

Zutphen on the river IJssel

Gelderland is a beautiful province where most of the big rivers find there way to the sea. I've chosen the old city of Zuphen, situated at the border of the river IJssel.

It's a beautiful old city and the river IJssel is a beautiful river too, lots of 'food' for cameras.

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

Titia's photos Province Gelderland - In between the big rivers

Click thumbnail to view full-size

8. Flevoland - New Land and New Cities

The Land we reclaimed from the Sea

Flevoland is literally risen from the sea, as it is a 'hand made' piece of land. When they decided in 1916 to close the open Zuidersea in the North, they named this sea the IJsselmeer = IJssel Lake. There were too little ilands in this lake, Urk and Schokland and they build a dam around them and filled it up with sand and soil and so the Noord-Oost Polder was born. Later they did it again with a bigger piece as they needed more land for people who worked in Amsterdam. The combination of the two pieces of reclaimed land is called Flevoland. The Dutch are famous as it comes to waterworks. If you want to know more, you can search on the keywords and they will bring you to Wikepedia.

I'm not going to choose the old village Urk, though it deserves a visit, but I choose Lelystad, the province capital. Lelystad is 'famous' for two things: replica of the Batavia ship and Aviodrome


Mutiny on the Batavia Ship

Dutch East India Company - Back to history

The Batavia ship was one of the ships of the Dutch East India company the V.O.C. The reason why this particular ship is famous, is because it has a history of mutiny and it shipwrecked on its first trip.

On a wharf in Lelystad they've build a replica of this ship and turned it into a museum. Photo is mine.


Aviodrome in Lelystad
Aviodrome in Lelystad

The Aviodrome is an Aerospace Museum located on the Airport Lelystad. It was established by the Dutch airline KLM and the Dutch airplane manufactorer Fokker.

Titia's Photos Province Flevoland - Taken on the coastal road from Lelystad to Almere

Click thumbnail to view full-size

The Netherlands in a Nutshell

The Netherlands in a Nutshell: Highlights from Dutch History and Culture
The Netherlands in a Nutshell: Highlights from Dutch History and Culture

Visiting The Netherlands and not see the famous Rembrandt? Some things you just must have seen before leaving a country.


9. Overijssel - Rivers, Nature and Woods

Nature reserves

Overrijssel is a province with beautiful nature. The name means 'Over the IJssel' = Lands across the river the IJssel'.

The highest point is the Tankenberg (295ft above sea level), it's a Push Moraine and the lowest point is the Mastenbroek Polder near Kampen (6f below sea level).

Mastenbroek 1750
Mastenbroek 1750

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

Mastenbroek polder around 1750

Titia's Photos Province Overijssel - Washlands of the big Rivers

Click thumbnail to view full-size

The Dutch Kitchen

I'm sure we have some strange food going around in the eyes of foreigners, but the Dutch kitchen is a kitchen where honest food is prepared.

Different from for instance the USA, we Dutchies like to have all our food on one plate: potatoes, veggies/salade and meat or fish.

10. Drenthe - the land of Peat, Dolmen and Myths

History, Heath fields and Drenthen Heath sheep

If I ever want to move, it will be to the Province Drenthe. This is one of the most beautiful provinces in The Netherlands and it has such a great history that I don't know where to start. I think I'll just make a link list to give you some websites to look at. Almost everything in Drenthe is worth looking at. This province is the cradle of my very old and rare Dutch native sheep breed Drenthen Heathsheep. You could visit the open-air museum Orvelte, the whole village is turned into a museum. It's a great place if you like biking, there are lots of different accommodations to stay overnight, though in Summer it's rather crowded. The provincial capital Assen is famous for it's big motor race circuit and the yearly motor races TT Assen

Drenthe-Poem - Photo: The museum village Orvelte


Titia's photos in Province Drenthe - Going back in History

Click thumbnail to view full-size
DolmenDrenthen Heathsheep herdHeath field at 7.00am and -5CPeat stack in OrvelteCornflowers in wheat field
Dolmen | Source
Drenthen Heathsheep herd
Drenthen Heathsheep herd | Source
Heath field at 7.00am and -5C
Heath field at 7.00am and -5C | Source
Peat stack in Orvelte
Peat stack in Orvelte | Source
Cornflowers in wheat field
Cornflowers in wheat field | Source

11. Friesland - the land of Friesian Horses, Cows and Seals

Friesland has its own official language

In the Province Friesland you'll find a lot of nice things to do. Friesland has, like Limburg, its own official regional language. Among other things, Friesland is famous for the Seal Rehabilitation and Research Centre (SRRC) of Lenie 't Hart in Pieterburen, way up North in Friesland at the border of the Wadden Sea.

It started out as a simple 'crèche' for young seals in 1971 and grew into an internationally well known and well respected scientific research-based seal hospital, where many sick seals have been cared for and have been set back to freedom when healed.

Friesian Islands in the Wadden Sea - Rough nature and long beaches

These islands belong to the Province Friesland

Friesian Singer Group "De Kast"

Little Quilts from The Netherlands

Simple Pleasures: Little Quilts from the Netherlands
Simple Pleasures: Little Quilts from the Netherlands

Quilts were made in the old days, when the winters were cold and there was no central heating. Quilts keep you warm and we Dutchies have made some darn pretty ones.


12. Groningen - University City

Agriculture and the Wadden Sea

The Province Groningen with its province capital Groningen, is the most northern province in The Netherlands. There is a big University in the city Groningen (a beautiful old city) and the landcape is a treat for every photographer's eye. As I don't know what to choose, I'll give you a link to the Province Groningen where you can click around. On top you can choose the English version.

City of Appingendam- hanging kitchens

Photo courtesy: The Netherland Connection/Experience

Here ends my tour

I hope you've enjoyed yourself

Here ends my tour of showing you my land from a different view. Alas I haven't made photos of the landscape in the Province Groningen yet. It's diagonally at the other side from where I live and I think it's about a 5/6 hour drive to get there. I haven't been there on sheep inspections either.

There is so much more to see besides the obvious things like Amsterdam, the Rijkswacht, Van Gogh, Mills and so on. Not that I don't recommend you should see those things, not at all, they're beautiful and part of our culture, but if you step aside the 'Highway', you'll see a different landscape, that's all.

I hope you've enjoyed your trip, I've enjoyed making it.

When you ever decide to come to The Netherlands, just let me know, I might be able to meet you somewhere.

Courtesy pictures that are not mine: or

Like to hear if you've ever been to Holland

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    • profile image

      sherioz 4 years ago

      Your photos here are spectacular. I love this article about places to visit in different parts of Holland.

    • siobhanryan profile image

      siobhanryan 5 years ago

      The photograrphs are astounding, Great info-Brillant

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image

      Blackspaniel1 5 years ago

      Fantastic images

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      Back to sparkle up your Holland through a camera article. The very best of wishes.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 5 years ago

      I love your photos - great lens. You should join Zazzle and sell them as posters or cards or whatever just go to Its FREE and a great way to make commissions. Check it out

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 5 years ago from UK

      I've always thought I'd like to live in the Netherlands, you have a beautiful country and not so cut off from everything as we are in the UK. Lovely to learn more about your people and places.

    • durham profile image

      durham 5 years ago

      Definitely on my to-do list for traveling. My cousins are from Dutch decent (Their father), so have heard lots of stories from him.

    • spartakct profile image

      spartakct 5 years ago

      thanks for a nice and informative lens!

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      I love the fact that I can travel the world by simply visiting Squidoo's many lenses. I love your visual tour of Holland. My husband's family immigrated from Holland when he was a very young boy so I really feel a connection to your area of our pretty little planet. Best of wishes.

    • profile image

      Lindrus 5 years ago

      What a delightful and informative lens! And you have some nice photos posted.

    • Tamara14 profile image

      Tamara Kajari 5 years ago from Zagreb, Croatia, Europe

      What a lovely travel guide! The Netherlands is one of the places I'd like to see some day. Thank you for presenting your beautiful country for others. Blessed :)

    • Titia profile image

      Titia Geertman 6 years ago from Waterlandkerkje - The Netherlands

      @sukkran trichy: Thanks for your blessing, much appriciated.

    • OldStones LM profile image

      OldStones LM 6 years ago

      Very nice lense. The Netherlands is on my list of places to visit. Part of my family imigrated from the Netherlands to the US in the 1840s. I believe they were from Noord Sleen. Thank You for this great lense

    • Titia profile image

      Titia Geertman 6 years ago from Waterlandkerkje - The Netherlands

      @OldStones LM: Noord-Sleen is in the Province Drenthe, up North, about 4,5 hour drive from my home. I'll be close to there next week on a sheep inspection tour.

    • sukkran trichy profile image

      sukkran trichy 6 years ago from Trichy/Tamil Nadu

      thanks for the lovely virtual tour. beautifully constructed, informative lens. ~blessed~

    • profile image

      NYThroughTheLens 6 years ago

      What an incredible lens. Really well put together and exciting to read through.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 6 years ago from Idaho

      What an amazing journey, thank you so much for sharing this. I love the way you put it together with the maps of each region. Excellent. Blessing this and adding it to my wildlife and nature blessing lens. PS. I love that photo of the cows with the windmills in the background, it is perfect!

    • Geekgurl profile image

      Kimberly Hiller 6 years ago from Chicago

      You have a lot of wonderful videos and pictures. I briefly stopped in Holland when I was on a Study Abroad trip. I liked dancing around in the wooden shoes (and almost falling on myself).

    • Charmcrazey profile image

      Wanda Fitzgerald 6 years ago from Central Florida

      Wow what an education. I had no idea such a little country had so much variety. I've not been to Europe but when I go Holland is now on my list.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      A well researched lens. A great deal of time went into creating this.

    • Timewarp profile image

      Paul 6 years ago from Montreal

      Great lens, I hope to visit some day...angel blessed :)

    • UKGhostwriter profile image

      UKGhostwriter 6 years ago

      brilliant lens Titia!! - well done!

    • ChrisDay LM profile image

      ChrisDay LM 6 years ago

      Magical pictures - you have a good eye and great talent. I love The Netherlands in its many guises.

    • profile image

      GetSillyProduct 6 years ago

      awesome lens, I like how you staked out all the different territories and had a section on each. I want to go on holiday now!

    • justholidays profile image

      justholidays 6 years ago

      Ah, The Netherlands, my other country... Although also a flat land, it's a beautiful land, is it?

    • religions7 profile image

      religions7 6 years ago

      :) and now it's in :)

    • Missmerfaery444 profile image

      Missmerfaery444 6 years ago

      Superb! This wonderful photo tour has made me want to visit Holland for sure. Blessed!

    • profile image

      blanckj 6 years ago

      I would love to visit Holland. What a great lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Take My Hand and One Year of Love songs are good, easy listening. The zoo pics are incredible. I feel like I've visited Holland.

      What a great idea for a lens.

    • Othercatt profile image

      Othercatt 6 years ago

      Wow! It's so beautiful! I especially like the Safari pics. I wish I could go! Here's a blessing for Holland!

    • Titia profile image

      Titia Geertman 6 years ago from Waterlandkerkje - The Netherlands

      @religions7: Oops I forgot, it's lensrolled now and thank you for the compliment about my lenses, though I still get hardly any visitors outside squidoo to my lenses. Only 1 or 3 a day and often 0 in a week.

    • religions7 profile image

      religions7 6 years ago

      Any lens about the Netherlands you make is welcome to my Dutch Headquarters group - I've yet to see you make a lens that isn't excellent. However, the lensrol / link or feature thing still holds.

    • Mix Mafra profile image

      Michelle Mafra 6 years ago from Corona CA

      Great lens! I can't wait to see the treasures of Holland personally. Your pictures are truly outstanding!

    • norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 6 years ago

      This is a wonderful lens on your country and you have featured so many interesting facts. Featured this on Australia from Its Beginning

    • deyanis profile image

      deyanis 6 years ago from Oz

      Titia, I've learned so many things about Holland from this lens and the pictures are just beautiful. --- Blessed ---

    • cloudiosify profile image

      cloudiosify 6 years ago

      Love ya, Holland!

    • KarenHC profile image

      Karen 6 years ago from U.S.

      I love your photos of Holland! It looks like a very appealing country to visit. My husband has been there for business (years ago), and he'd like for both of us to visit there for vacation sometime.

    • JeremiahStanghini profile image

      JeremiahStanghini 6 years ago

      A very different view of Holland indeed!

      With Love and Gratitude,


    • profile image

      JoshK47 6 years ago

      What lovely pictures, and such an informative lens to go with them, thanks for sharing this! :)

    • stephenteacher profile image

      Stephen Carr 6 years ago from Corona, CA

      Love the information and pictures! Nice lens.

    • profile image

      promotional-coupons-codes 6 years ago

      Awesome Lens I got to know Holland more after reading this lens.

    • rlivermore profile image

      rlivermore 6 years ago

      What a great tour of Holland! It makes me want to go visit!

    • juliannegentile profile image

      Julianne Gentile 6 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio, US

      Oh my goodness! I'm so glad I tagged you. This is a fantastic lens and your own personal photos are just beautiful. Thank you! Blessed

    • mivvy profile image

      mivvy 6 years ago

      excellent overview of lesser known places

    • TeacherSerenia profile image

      TeacherSerenia 6 years ago

      Came back to bless this lens now that its finished, Excellent lens Titia. Blessed by the western european angel.

    • aka-rms profile image

      Robin S 6 years ago from USA

      Thanks for the tour! I hope to one day see it all in person.

    • TeacherSerenia profile image

      TeacherSerenia 6 years ago

      Excellent and cant wait to see it all.

      Did Abel Tasman also come from Zealand by any chance?

      Because I come from NEW ZEALAND!!

      Abel Tasman discovered and named New Zealand

    • ChemKnitsBlog2 profile image

      ChemKnitsBlog2 6 years ago

      THis is a great addition to the Jenga stack. Well dome!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      What a wonderful tour of Holland that you have taken us on!