Monday 16 September 2019

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



Amsterdam’s first bicycle mayor discusses her first year in office

Amsterdam’s first bicycle mayor discusses her first year in office

In June 2016, Anna Luten, the world’s first bicycle mayor, was elected in the Netherlands to act as an ambassador for cycling in Amsterdam and help other cities develop a cycle culture. Deborah Nicholls-Lee met Anna to discuss the highs and lows of her first year in office. There was a time when Anna Luten (29), a former brand manager in the bicycle industry and Amsterdam’s first bicycle mayor, thought she might never bike again. Seven years ago, hurtling through... More >


The ‘I am not a Tourist’ fair and International Festival are back in Eindhoven

The ‘I am not a Tourist’ fair and International Festival are back in Eindhoven

Learning Dutch, finding a house, experiencing Dutch culture, making connections, solving immigration and tax issues…everything is an option at the ‘I am not a tourist’ expat fair which is taking place in Eindhoven for the second time on June 11. The ‘I am not a tourist’ fair is the biggest expat-orientated event in the Netherlands, which until last year had only been held in Amsterdam.  The Eindhoven event has been organised together with the Holland Expat Center South in recognition... More >


12 great things to do in June

12 great things to do in June

Summer is now well and truly with us, so its time to check out some of the great things to do in the Netherlands in June. There is lots of outdoor stuff of course, as well as English-language theatre, art fairs and an electrifying exhibition. Stroll in a Japanese garden You have just eleven days to visit the magical Japanese garden at Clingendael Park in the Hague which only opens its doors eight weeks in the year. Tread carefully; the... More >


10 things you didn’t know about the Efteling theme park

10 things you didn’t know about the Efteling theme park

A certain other magical kingdom may be ‘the happiest place on earth’ but the Netherlands’ homegrown Efteling has been going strong since 1952. Located in the town of Kaatsheuvel, the iconic Dutch theme park first opened its doors to the public on 31 May, 1952. As it approaches its 65th anniversary, Brandon Hartley lists some wild things you might not know about this ‘World of Wonders’. Walt’s Inspiration? A longstanding (and oft-repeated) legend claims that Walt Disney visited Efteling in... More >


The Next Web: technology’s effect on all of us takes centre stage

The Next Web: technology’s effect on all of us takes centre stage

A lot can happen in a year. In 2016 The Next Web almost doubled in size and in 2017 it was bigger still. More interesting though was that the size and scope of technology’s effect on us – not just our businesses but the way we live our lives, in fact our very notions of reality – was up for discussion too. Esther O’Toole took a look. ‘They failed to take into account…man’s almost infinite appetite for distractions,’ Aldous Huxley... More >


DutchNews podcast – The Moonlighting Monarch Edition – Week 20

DutchNews podcast – The Moonlighting Monarch Edition – Week 20

In this week’s podcast we debate the likely shape of the next government after the coalition talks broke down, find out about  look at why Amsterdam wants to let Muslim police officers wear headscarves, fight over who gets the tickets to see the pandas and jibe Molly for knowing nothing about football. Top Story King Willem-Alexander confesses to being a secret KLM pilot News Amsterdam police consider including headscarves in uniform Policeman chases own tail in pursuit of decoy bike Ede is the... More >


Analysis: GroenLinks lacked the muscle to force a radical change of course

Analysis: GroenLinks lacked the muscle to force a radical change of course

The three issues that the parties were unable to agree on were the same areas where Jesse Klaver was most keen to make his mark – but the Greens could still have a say in the outcome, says Gordon Darroch The announcement on Monday evening that talks to form a new Dutch government had broken down came as a shock, but no great surprise. There had been indications towards the end of last week that the four parties – the Liberals... More >



Would you volunteer with refugees? These 14 Dutch people did

Would you volunteer with refugees? These 14 Dutch people did

What is a typical volunteer? This is what international photographer Marcus Valance and his partner writer Daan Posthouwer asked themselves after spending most of 2016 volunteering in Greece and Lebanon during the refugee crisis. The project ‘Portraits of Dutch Volunteers’ grew out of a desire to find out more about what makes a volunteer tick and to show that ‘volunteers aren’t all hippies wearing homespun socks’, says Marcus. They chose their subjects randomly from a large cross-section of willing and... More >


Video: Dutch tv documentary claims Trump has ties to Russia mobsters

Video: Dutch tv documentary claims Trump has ties to Russia mobsters

Dutch television current affairs show Zembla is claiming that US president Donald Trump has extensive connections to Russian oligarchs and even to convicted gangsters. The 45-minute documentary looks at Trumps alleged relationship with Russian mobster Felix Slater and agreements he has with rich Russians. ‘The Russians are alleged to be in possession of sensitive information about Trump. And that exposes Trump to blackmail,’ the programme makers say.  ‘Fake news, tweets Trump: “I have nothing to do with Russia – no... More >


Dutch News Podcast – The Crashing Boars Edition – Week 19

Dutch News Podcast – The Crashing Boars Edition – Week 19

In this week’s podcast we catch up with the latest news from the coalition talks, Dutch success in the Europa League and Eurovision Song Contest, and hear about some runaway pigs in Gelderland. Unfortunately technical gremlins have deprived us of the discussion section of the programme, but normal service will hopefully be resumed next week. Top story Still no government in sight after 58 days News Schiphol tries to cut waiting times Criminals cutting off electronic tags ProRail issues warning about train track selfies... More >


Stop wasting food: six initiatives to change the way we eat

Stop wasting food: six initiatives to change the way we eat

In the Netherlands, we throw away €2.5bn worth of edible food a year – but it doesn’t have to be this way. Deborah Nicholls-Lee reports on six initiatives which were set up to reduce our food waste. The United Nations has pledged to reduce our planet’s food waste by 50% by 2030  and each country must play its part. Here in the Netherlands, we discard over a third of our food output yet 2.5 million people live below the poverty... More >


Have you got what it takes? The hunt for international talent is on

Have you got what it takes? The hunt for international talent is on

The war for talent is on in the Netherlands and international companies are hunting for highly-skilled, well-travelled employees.  Like many expats, Phil Mander came to the Netherlands for a fantastic job opportunity and stayed for the quality of life ‘I moved to Amsterdam from London six years ago and haven’t looked back. In that time, I’ve bought an apartment here, started a family and began working freelance. Amsterdam has one of the best tech scenes in Europe and as a... More >


Sorghvliet park in The Hague is a peaceful place for those in the know

Sorghvliet park in The Hague is a peaceful place for those in the know

Tucked away behind an imposing wall on the route from The Hague to Scheveningen is a little-known park with an eventful history. Moira Holden has been to visit. A sea-like carpet of bluebells stretches deep into the woodland in Sorghvliet Park as spring coaxes out the wildflowers. Secluded by a high wall as the traffic thunders up the road towards the seaside, this peaceful Dutch scene replaces the sound of the cars with a relaxing, calm mood. Sorghvliet translates into... More >


Libris prize goes to Alfred Birney’s novel on traumatised abusive father

Libris prize goes to Alfred Birney’s novel on traumatised abusive father

The 2017 Libris prize for best Dutch novel has been awarded to De tolk van Java (The interpreter of Java).  Novelist Alfred Birney (65) received a cheque for €50,000 and a bronze medal from the hands of acting culture minister Jet Bussemaker on Monday. Birney’s autobiographical novel tells the story of his father who fought on the Dutch side during the Indonesian war of Independence (1945 – 1949) and the horrendous treatment he put his family through in later years.... More >


Master class: museums open doors to Dutch language learners

Master class: museums open doors to Dutch language learners

Groups learning Dutch as a second language have been crossing the entrances of a range of museums after the Stad en Taal (city and language) initiative was launched to teach Dutch culture in an accessible way. Julia Corbett joined a tour at the Rijksmuseum. The daunting task of speaking Dutch has just become a lot easier thanks to the Rijksmuseum’s new initiative, which immerses learners into the language and culture of the Netherlands during intimate Dutch speaking tours. Under the... More >


Don’t pose for selfies on railway tracks, Dutch rail operator urges

Don’t pose for selfies on railway tracks, Dutch rail operator urges

Dutch rail company ProRail has launched an urgent appeal to people not to take selfies of themselves posing on or next to railway tracks. An average of nine people are caught walking on or too close to the railway and they are the biggest external factor for delays, ProRail spokesman Jaap Eikelboom told the AD. ‘It could be people taking the dog out or taking a short cut, but increasingly, we see people taking photographs,’ he said. In 2012, railway... More >


May the fiets be with you: a bikepacking trip in Noord Holland

May the fiets be with you: a bikepacking trip in Noord Holland

Bikepacking is a new cycling trend. It’s basically lightweight touring/camping on a mountain bike or racing bike using the latest generation of bags which don’t need carriers or racks.  Mike Cooper went on a bikepacking trip through Noord Holland and Friesland The great whites were following me. There were eight of them. They were big. I wasn’t nervous, I was enjoying their company. One thing about long-distance solo bikepacking: alone is the default. Great white egrets, herons more common to... More >