Friday 13 December 2019

Longer articles about living in the Netherlands, Dutch society, culture and travel plus third party content from our partners

DutchNews podcast – The Crime Doesn’t Pay Dividend Tax Edition – Week 42

DutchNews podcast – The Crime Doesn’t Pay Dividend Tax Edition – Week 42

Fireworks and firearms are to the fore in this week’s podcast as we rake over the ashes of Rutte’s dividend tax debacle, find out how police blew open a suspected terrorist cell in Arnhem, and reveal how Amsterdam plans to make New Year a less explosive occasion. Plus the Night Watch gets a very public makeover and for once there’s plenty to cheer about in the sporting arena. In our discussion we look at how local mayors are increasingly being... More >


A cycling nation: how the bike impacts on Dutch society

A cycling nation: how the bike impacts on Dutch society

We all know that the Netherlands’ has world-leading bicycle infrastructure. But how does this affect us, the society that uses it? Joshua Parfitt delves into the benefits of being bike-friendly. Two mamils (middle aged man in lycra) arrive at a cafe in The Hague. The weather’s great and they proudly show off a digital map displaying bicycle routes, which when zoomed out makes the Netherlands look like a network of varicose veins. ‘Ah it’s really nice here,’ says Ivor, sipping... More >


DutchNews.nl destinations: get a taste of the south in Venlo

DutchNews.nl destinations: get a taste of the south in Venlo

Venlo’s strategic position on the river Maas, right on the border of Germany and the Netherlands, has made it a travellers’ and merchants’ crossroads since Roman times, and a central point in the final battles of WW2. Esther O’Toole has been checking out this very southern Dutch town. The urban regeneration after the war has allowed Venlo to grow into a bustling city today with a strong local culture and sense of place. And despite the wartime damage, it managed... More >


The word is out: Spoken word poetry in English comes to the Netherlands

The word is out: Spoken word poetry in English comes to the Netherlands

Spoken Word – a performance art where words are conveyed to an audience in poetry, rap or music – is powerful, accessible and diverse. Deborah Nicholls-Lee shines a spotlight on the emerging English-language scene in the Netherlands. In a curtained-off room lined with books and posters, in the back of a west Amsterdam bar, a blond woman in a floral dress bobs around the microphone nervously. She ties herself up in knots with disclaimers about the spoken word poetry she... More >


DutchNews podcast – The Pitchforks and Pindakaas Edition – Week 41

DutchNews podcast – The Pitchforks and Pindakaas Edition – Week 41

  It’s been a week of departures as D66 leader Alexander Pechtold handed over the reins to Rob Jetten, Mark Rutte pulled the plug on his dividend tax plan, Unilever rowed back from Rotterdam and the Zwarte Piet motorway blockers had to leave their clogs at the door. Plus Bibian Mentel hangs up her snowboard as she reveals she’s been diagnosed with cancer for the 10th time. In our discussion we take a look at the ongoing efforts to reunite... More >


Rotterdam awakes as Amsterdam’s property market overheats

Rotterdam awakes as Amsterdam’s property market overheats

Expats are shunning the crowded, overpriced capital and heading south to buy property in Rotterdam. We find out why house buyers cannot afford to overlook Rotterdam.    Richardo Cruz Fortes, mortgage advisor at Expat Mortgages, foresaw, like many others, what is happening in the Rotterdam property market today. ‘What I’ve been calling Rotterdam for years now is “the sleeping giant”,’ he tells me. Rotterdam has everything you’d expect a large city to offer, Richardo explains, but has long played second... More >


The dram busters: Dutch investors splash out €10m on whisky collection

The dram busters: Dutch investors splash out €10m on whisky collection

A group of Dutch investors has bought one of the world’s largest collection of rare whiskies for €10 million. The 3,100 bottles, which previously belonged to the Italian whisky connoisseur Valentino, have gone on display in Sassenheim. The oldest item dates from 1843 and there are also bottles from 1940, when distilling whisky was officially outlawed under wartime restrictions. The 12 collectors from specialist investment firm Scotch Whisky International bought the stock three years ago and have spent the intervening... More >


Stolen portrait returns to Rotterdam museum after being spotted at auction

Stolen portrait returns to Rotterdam museum after being spotted at auction

A 17th-century portrait of Prince Maurits of Orange is on its way back to the Rotterdam Museum nearly 50 years after it was stolen from the galleries. The painting by Michiel Jansz. van Mierevelt, which dates from 1607, turned up at an auction at the Zeeuws Veilinghuis in Middelburg. The museum was tipped off a day before the sale was due to take place and alerted police, who assigned the case to a specialist art and antiquities crime team. The current... More >



For sale in Amsterdam, family homes in a very green building

For sale in Amsterdam, family homes in a very green building

A family home in one of the greenest buildings in Amsterdam and which won’t set you back more in mortgage payments than you would pay in rent? A home with its own garden and great views, which is just a few minutes from Schiphol airport and the city centre? Too good to be true? Next year, developer Heijmans will start work on Vertical, a new residential project in Amsterdam west, which, the company says, is the place for modern families... More >


13 things you have to know about the 80 Years War

13 things you have to know about the 80 Years War

It is 450 years since the start of the 80 Years War (1568-1648) and the Rijksmuseum has made it the subject of a major new exhibition. Here’s what you need to know about why this was such an important event in Dutch history Who was fighting who and why? It was Netherlands versus Spain. The Netherlands of the 16th century was a patchwork of 17 gewesten ( areas ruled by nobles) stretching to the French border and including what is... More >


Blogwatching: The best flexible work spots in Hilversum for freelancers

Blogwatching: The best flexible work spots in Hilversum for freelancers

The Bitterballenbruid moved to Hilversum in 2014 and has been living there with her Dutch husband and her cat ever since. She writes about about Hilversum and ‘t Gooi area, eating too many bitterballen, getting married in Holland, learning how to be Dutch… and the language on her blog The Bitterballenbruid.  Freelancer? Remote worker? Me too! (The latter.) I often work from my office at home, but sometimes you need to get out of the house! Maybe you need some human interaction…... More >


Nursing home opens art gallery to beat social isolation

Nursing home opens art gallery to beat social isolation

A nursing home in Amsterdam is turning part of its space into an art gallery in October in an attempt to bring the community closer to its residents. The Vreugdenhof in Buitenveldert has invited 10 guest curators, all aged 65 or over, to display 120 works of art including paintings, sculptures and photographs in its communal areas. Marie-Jose de Bie, of Stichting Smaak which runs the facility, said part of the idea was to bring art to residents who were... More >


Buy bulbs and spot bare bums: 15 great things to do in October

Buy bulbs and spot bare bums: 15 great things to do in October

The nights are drawing in and the autumn half-term holidays are approaching – but there are lots of great things to do in October. Why not listen to a Pulitzer prize winning journalist or go mushroom spotting, or even take in a play? Look at a Leonardo The Teyler’s museum in Haarlem proudly presents the first big exhibition featuring Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings in the Netherlands. The museum has squirreled together 30 drawings from various museums around the world for... More >



First Dutch online second-hand car dealership cleans up industry image

First Dutch online second-hand car dealership cleans up industry image

You can now buy a second-hand car and have it delivered to your door with a few clicks of the mouse. We find out why expats are embracing online car shopping. It sounds counter-intuitive to spend thousands of euros on a car you haven’t seen, but Bynco, the Netherlands’ first 100% online second-hand car dealership, has seen sales soar since it launched in 2017. ‘I was genuinely amazed when it turned up outside my house. Right until the last moment,... More >


The Dutch Film Festival goes English: blockbusters with subtitles galore

The Dutch Film Festival goes English: blockbusters with subtitles galore

The annual Dutch Film Festival in Utrecht, which culminates in country’s most prestigious film awards, is making a big drive to attract an international audience this year, by subtitling many of the film screenings, including several box office hits. Here’s what you should know about the upcoming festival and a selection of what’s on offer. 1 The Nederlands Film Festival is a Dutch institution and has been around since 1981. Cocking a snook at Amsterdam, Utrecht has traditionally been the... More >


Recycled medieval parchment pieces show sustainability is not new

Recycled medieval parchment pieces show sustainability is not new

A search in the archives of Utrecht and the city’s university library by master student and medievalists has unearthed hundreds of fragments of medieval parchment which had been used to mend books, cover documents and recycled in various other ways. The fragments, some no bigger than a stamp, others comprised of several pages, tell of such diverse subjects as religion, eating habits, poetry, medicine and astrology. Among the more spectacular finds are the only known written text by Christian theologian... More >


The government is reforming the tax system: here is what you need to know

The government is reforming the tax system: here is what you need to know

On Tuesday, the government published its 2019 spending plans, which include several changes to the tax system likely to have an impact on expats. In particular, we now know the government will not introduce a transition period for people claiming the 30% ruling. The government plans to introduce a number of changes to the tax system this year, although some measures will not come into effect until 2020 or later. Here’s a quick overview of the proposed changes. These will... More >


You may have a Dutch passport, but when are you really Dutch?

You may have a Dutch passport, but when are you really Dutch?

At least one of your passports may prove that you are Dutch. But who actually gets to be seen and accepted as a Dutch person by society at large? Traci White has been finding out. The ‘average Dutch person’ seems to be the only voter that Dutch political parties have cared about during elections this year and in 2017, even though no one knows who this imaginary man or woman is. One party’s ‘gewone Nederlander’ is another party’s ‘boze burger’.... More >