Holiday reading: if you missed them earlier, here are some favourite features

Wether you’re heading back home to visit family, off to the Mediterranean beaches or just enjoying another part of the Netherlands, holidays are the perfect time to catch up on your reading. Here’s a round-up of our favourite features so far this year.

It’s been impossible to avoid the fact that Dutch gangster Willem Holleeder has been on trial in Amsterdam for most of the year accused of ordering various gangland murders. Gordon Darroch went along for a day and wrote a piece explaining why this is currently the hottest ticket in town.

Another hot topic so far this year has been the rise of English at Dutch universities. Are the Dutch now native speakers of English, and is Dutch-English a distinctive thing? Deborah Nicholls-Lee went to meet linguistics expert Alison Edwards to get some answers.

Housing and the shortage of affordable homes was the big topic of the March local elections, but solutions are being found. For example, could a custom-made tiny house be your new home?

If you are planning to use your summer holidays to brush up your Dutch, technology could be the answer. In January, we had a look at five different techie tools to help get your languages up to scratch.

Photo: Plastic Whale

Also on the tech front, earlier this year we had a look at what the Dutch are doing to solve the problem of plastic soup. From dredging canals to turning waste into nifty new furniture, here are five Dutch initiatives to tackle the plastics crisis.

If you are considering taking up a new sport, rugby could be the one… the sport is really starting to take off in the Netherlands, as Rachel Kilbee found out.

Does money make you happy? One of our best-read interviews so far this year has been with Mundo Resink, who spent a year living without cash. And if you are spending time in the Netherlands this summer, you might want to drop in on some of the Netherlands’ strangest museums. Brandon Hartley visited some of the oddest collections in the country.

You could also go bison spotting. Hunted to near-extinction by the 1920s, European bison clung to survival in a handful of zoos, but now Europe’s largest mammal roams wild in one of its most densely populated regions: the Randstad.

And if you are looking for some romance this summer – and what better place than the Netherlands to fall in love – our Valentine’s Day piece on why you need a Dutch boyfriend should tick the boxes. And yes, most of the reasons apply to Dutch girlfriends too.

Happy reading

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