Friday 19 January 2024

7 THINGS THE NETHERLANDS IS SO POPULAR FOR

Bikes, delicious cheese, and vibrant tulips are just the beginning of what makes the Netherlands remarkable, and that’s why it is one of the 4 destinations I would love to visit this year. For now, I will share the top things that make the Netherlands a standout destination. If you're planning a trip, let this be your sneak peek at what awaits. So, without further ado, here are 7 awesome highlights the Netherlands is famous for.





1. Tulip Fields


The Netherlands is globally recognized for its stunning tulips. Indeed, the country's vibrant tulip fields, sprawling across vast landscapes, are a sight to behold. The most renowned among them is the spectacular Keukenhof Gardens! 

Tulip season spans from March to May, attracting visitors from all corners of the globe who come to witness these magnificent blooms. Interestingly, the Netherlands is the largest commercial producer of tulips, exporting billions of bulbs annually.

But it's not just about tulips; the cheese markets offer an array of choices, too. You can even indulge in cheese tastings.


2. The Netherlands is famous for snack walls


The Netherlands offers a unique culinary experience with its iconic snack walls, known locally as 'automatiek'. These are essentially vending machines but for hot snacks, and they're a staple in Dutch fast-food culture. Picture this: a wall with small glass windows, each housing a variety of treats like bitterballen (savoury meatballs), kroketten (deep-fried croquettes), and frikandellen (skinless minced meat sausages). Just drop in a few coins, open the door, and voilà—you've got yourself a delicious snack on-the-go! This efficient snacking solution is perfect for those looking to grab a quick bite while exploring the charm of the Netherlands.


3. Dutch Cheese


When in the Netherlands, tasting Dutch Cheese is an absolute must. The country produces a variety of cheeses, but Gouda and Edam are the most famous.

Gouda Cheese, known for its creamy texture and rich taste, is enjoyed globally. In fact, there's a whole cheese market in the town of Gouda dedicated to this delightful dairy product!


4. Heineken is the world’s second-largest beer company


Heineken Beer is one of the most iconic exports from the Netherlands, and it's found in countless countries, proudly standing as the world's second-biggest beer brand.

Back in 1973, Gerard Heineken started his brewery right in the heart of Amsterdam, and it wasn't long before the local folks developed a taste for this refreshing lager. The brewery quickly became a household name as it expanded.

When you're visiting the Netherlands, do yourself a favour and grab a cold Heineken at any bar or restaurant – they're pretty much everywhere. And hey, while you're at it, why not pair it with some delicious Dutch gouda cheese? Trust me, it's a winning combo! Just throwing out an idea for you to try.


5. The Dutch State Lottery


The Netherlands is also known for having one of the oldest lotteries in the world - the Dutch State Lottery (Staatsloterij). Established in 1726, it has allowed players to win big for nearly three centuries. The lottery is state-run, ensuring fair play and transparency. It's not just about winning money, though, as part of the proceeds go towards supporting sports and physical education projects across the country. Moreover, Eurojackpot by Lottoland UK is the second most popular in the Netherlands.


6. There are more bicycles than people


The Netherlands is renowned for many things, and bicycles top that list. Believe it or not, the number of bikes outnumbers this country's population! The official government site states that while 17 million people are living in the Netherlands, there are a staggering 22.8 million bicycles!

Cycling has become so ingrained in Dutch culture that significant funds have been poured into creating excellent bike lanes nationwide. If you're considering a cycling vacation, the Netherlands is one of the safest and most enjoyable destinations worldwide. So, why not give it a spin?


7. Agricultural Exports


Despite its small size, the Netherlands is a powerhouse when it comes to agricultural exports, coming in second only to the vast United States. You might wonder how this is possible. The answer lies in the Dutch's exceptional farming skills and their groundbreaking advancements in agricultural technology over recent years. They've made strides in areas like lab-grown meat, vertical farming, and robotic milking, to name a few.

If you ever get a chance to fly over North or South Holland, you'll be struck by the sight of countless greenhouses dotting the landscape. With their controlled environments, these glass structures are incredibly efficient, needing just a tenth of the space and a fiftieth of the water compared to traditional outdoor farming.

The sheer volume of meat and produce from the Netherlands is nothing short of remarkable, truly showcasing the prowess of Dutch engineering and innovation.

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