What you missed: the best of Dutch News so far this year

Photo: DutchNews.nl

Summer is always a good time to catch up on the big stories and interviews you might have missed – particularly given this year’s weather keeping us off the beaches. Here is a list of some the best of Dutch News longer reads in 2023.

Amsterdam expats don’t live in a bubble, it is a glass cage
Gordon Darroch wrote a thorough rebuttal of Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema’s caricature of the well-heeled expat living in a bubble.

You don’t have to be rich to have a good life in the Netherlands
Roberto Payer, 72, came to the Netherlands from Italy in 1969 to pursue his dream of becoming an international hotel manager. He worked his way up from bus boy to become cluster general manager of two of Amsterdam’s most prestigious hotels. Roberto retired in 2022 but took time out to answer our 10 questions.

Photo: Brandon Hartley

The long and winding road to getting a Dutch driving licence
Getting a driving licence in the Netherlands is far from easy – and if you are not lucky enough to come from an EU country, you will have to pass the skills and the theory test, even if you have been driving for decades. Dutch News readers shared their experiences with Brandon Hartley.

Dutch destinations: the future is now in Rotterdam
Often overlooked by international visitors who flock to its famous sibling up north instead, Rotterdam is arguably cooler and more eclectic. In a Dutch Destinations travel guide, we recommend visiting the port city for a vibrant culinary scene and architecture straight out of a sci-fi film.

Photo: Brandon Hartley

Six self study tips for improving your Dutch
For students thinking of signing up or simply eager to improve their Dutch, Bart Nawijn has six helpful self-study tips. ‘Once you make it a habit to improve by yourself, the whole process becomes much more enjoyable. This way, you can keep learning and progressing without lessons or a teacher.’

Young British men after a wild time told the stay away from Amsterdam
A criminal record isn’t normally the kind of souvenir tourists want to take home, but Amsterdam has launched a new campaign to warn nuisance Brits that this may be precisely what they get. In a campaign geo-targeted to Britain, Amsterdam wants search engine queries such as ‘cheap hotel Amsterdam’ and ‘pub crawl Amsterdam’ to bring up two sobering, English language videos.

A still from the video. Screenshot: Gemeente Amsterdam

No more excuses. It is time to learn Dutch
Dull lessons, unsympathetic native speakers… It’s easy to become disheartened with learning Dutch. ‘Speaking Dutch is not just about buying some cheese or herring,’ says Albert Both. ‘It’s really about talking with people, making jokes, talking about feelings – things that really matter to you.’

What is all the fuss about immigration in the Netherlands?
The Dutch cabinet collapsed because of disagreements about potential measures to reduce immigration. The stumbling block which led to the cabinet’s demise was, officially, failure to agree on measures to reduce the number of refugee family members following a relative to the Netherlands. But the debate degenerated into mishmash of terminology and seemingly random figures. So what is the real picture?

Photo: DutchNews.nl

I went to a Dutch sauna and lived to tell the tale
Internationals in the Netherlands are often aghast when they discover many of the country’s saunas are nude and mixed-gender. But our regular columnist Molly Quell survived the experience – and even enjoyed herself.

Inburgering with DN: what sort of foreigner are you?
Dutch News has its very own essential guide to integrating into the Netherlands. In lesson 39, we looked at what sort of foreigner are you? After all, to properly know your place in Dutch society it is essential understand the official, and not so official, definitions.

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