A IS FOR AGRICULTURE, ARCHAEOLOGY, & ART
The Netherlandshas several Archaeology Sites including several ancient Roman sites. The Pesse Canoe is believed to be the oldest known boat in the world. Carbon dating indicates that the boat found in Holland was constructed during the early mesolithic period between 8040 BCE and 7510 BCE. It is currently housed in the Drents Museum in Assen. Krijn is the common name of a Neanderthal fossil discovered off the Dutch coast. The discovery is most notable for being the first evidence of a Neanderthal presence in The Netherlands.
Dutch ART describes the history of visual arts in Holland, after the United Provinces separated from Flanders. Earlier painting in the area is covered in Early Netherlandish painting and Renaissance art. Art Museums are located throughout the Netherlands. One of the most famous is the Rembrandt House in Amsterdam.
The Netherlands has a variety of BIRDS. The country has many bird sites.The South-West attracts large numbers of geese and other waterfowl in winter. Around 10 to 12 million birds migrate between their breeding grounds in Siberia and Scandinavia and their wintering grounds in Europe or Africa and stop at one of the West Frisian Islands. Up to 6.1 million birds can be found in the Wadden Sea area. The National Park Wadden Sea Lower Saxony holds an annual "Migratory Bird Days" and Texel is home to the annual Dutch Birding week. The Hoge Veluwe National Park has woodland species such as woodpeckers and the Honey-Buzzard and the Goshawk. The largest population of the red-backed Shrike is at the Bargerveen Nature Reserve. Land reclamation projects of the country have created new habitats for many species of migratory birds.
The Netherlands has many BRIDGES and Bridge Keepers Houses. The Zeeland Bridge is the longest bridge in The Netherlands. Moses Bridge is an "invisible" bridge across the moat at Fort de Roovere. Python Bridgehas a red snake-like shape and spans the canal between Sporenburg and Borneo Island. The Slauerhofbrug is a fully automatic bascule bridge (aka tail bridge) in the city of Leeuwarden. It is also known as the “Slauerhoffbrug ‘Flying’ Drawbridge”
The Netherlands has all forms of COMMUNICATION including newspapers, magazine, radio, and television, and Internet Service Providers. Postal Codes in Holland are are formed of four digits then two letters (in capitals), separated by a space—1234 AB, for example. Webcams are located throughout Holland.
The Dutch Guilder was the CURRENCY of the Netherlands from the 17th century until 2002. Between 1999 and 2002, the guilder was officially a "national subunit" of the euro. However, physical payments could only be made in guilder, as no euro coins or banknotes were available. In 2002, the Euro became the official currency. Banknotes valid at the time of conversion to the euro may be exchanged for euros at branches of the Netherlands Central Bank until 1 January 2032. The Netherlands Antillean Guilder is still in use in Curaçao and Sint Maarten (two countries in the Kingdom of the Netherlands). In 2004, the Surinamese guilder was replaced by the Surinamese Dollar. The Amsterdam Stock Exchange is the oldest stock exchange in the world.
There is evidence that DINOSAURS roamed what is now The Netherlands. Part of a Betasuchus was found in The Netherlands. Highlights at the Maastricht Natural History Museum include Cretaceous fossils from Sint-Pietersberg, most notably the skull of a Mosasaur and specimens of Hoffmann's giant turtle, Allopleuron hofmanni and Suyckerbuyk's turtle.
EDUCATION in The Netherlands is oriented toward the needs and background of the pupil. Education is divided over schools for different age groups, some of which are divided in streams for different educational levels. Schools are furthermore divided in public, special(religious), and general-special (neutral) schools, although there are also a few private schools. The Dutch grading scale runs from 1 (very poor) to 10 (outstanding).
A variety of EVENTS are held throughout the year in The Netherlands including festivals and trade shows. There are markets throughout the country. De Bazaar in Beverwijk is a unique market and has a lot to offer. There are also parades and carnivals. The largest national event is celebrated every year on the monarch's birthday – King's Day.
The FLAG of The Netherlands is a horizontal tricolour of red, white, and blue. Variants of the flag have been in use since 1572, and in 1937 the flag was officially formalized as the national flag of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It is the oldest tricolor flag still in national use. Countries in the Kingdom of the Netherlands have their own flag.
Little evidence is available about FOOD in the late medieval Low Countries. In the 14th century, the process of gibbing was invented that created an export industry for salt herring. Gardening was initially practiced by monasteries, but castles and country houses began also to develop gardens with herbs and vegetables and hunting grounds. During the 15th century haute cuisine began to emerge, largely limited to the aristocracy. In the 17th century, food was closely related to Northern French cuisine. During the 18th & 19th century the potato became a staple food. Each region has its own specialty. The Southern Dutch region is the only one which developed an haute cuisine and it forms the base of most traditional Dutch restaurants. The Netherlands has fast food restaurants and they also have their own type of fast food, sold at a snackbar. Kibbeling, consisting of small chunks of battered white fish, has become a national fast food. The country has Food Festivals, Events, and Shows. There are also food and beverage trade shows
The Netherlands has had many FORTS. Fort Bourtange is a historical museum. Fort de Roovere has undergone a renovation. There are several forts along the Frisian Water Line. Some of the buildings at Fort De Kwakel have been converted into houses. Fort Muiden is used as offices and has a museum. Stelling van Amsterdam is a ring of 42 forts around Amsterdam and Fort along Den Ham is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Stelling van Amsterdam. Fort Wierickerschans is in good condition and is unique in the world because of its design and historically important buildings.
The GLOBAL POSTION of The Netherlands is approximately 52 degrees latitude north and 5 degrees longitude east. The geographic center is northeast of Lunteren. The highest point in the in the country is Vaalserberg a hill with a height of 1,059 ft. The lowest point is Zuidplaspolder −23 ft. below sea level.. Geocaching is a high-tech sport using a Global Positioning System and The Netherlands has many Geocaches.
The HISTORY of The Netherlands dates back to 5500 BC. when the area was inhabited by the Celtics and German tribes. They were eventually ruled by the ancient Roman Empire, the Franks, and the Charlemagne. After the fall of the Charlemagne the Low Countries territory was divided into several smaller states. In 1555, Charles V abdicated, giving his Spanish Empire to his son, Philip II, and the Holy Roman Empire to his brother Ferdinand. In 1581, the Union of Utrecht proclaimed independence from Spain. It was not recognized by the Spanish Empire until the Twelve Years' Truce in 1609. Until 1794, The Dutch Republic remained under the power of the Austrian throne of Habsburg. Growth of the liberal and republican ideas all over the world and resistance to these ideas by the people who ruled the Dutch Republic, led at the end of the 18th century, to the creation of The Kingdom of the Netherlands, which after the fall of Napoleon included also the territories of the today’s Belgium and Luxemburg. In the second half of the 19th century, the Netherlands became a liberal and modern state. Today It is one of the most developed and wealthiest countries in the world.
Holland has many Public Holidays but not all are national holidays. The most important holidays are Sinterklaas, Christmas, New Year's Eve, Easter and King's Day. Each holiday has its own traditions and accompanying foods.
The Netherlands has a variety of INSECTS including many butterflies and moths. There are also a variety of spiders including some poisonous spiders. Scientists in the country are experimenting with different insects that could replace animal meat as a source of protein.
The Netherlands has many, many ISLANDS. The largest island is Texel and includes 7 villages. The oldest traces of civilization on Terschelling Island date from around 850. Ameland Island has 4 villages and one small part-village. Schiermonnikoog Island is a municipality and a national park.
The JUDICIAL System in The Netherlands is divided into 11 districts, each with its own court. Each district court is made up of a maximum of five sectors, which always include the administrative law, civil law, criminal law and sub-district law sector.
The official national LANGUAGE of the Netherlands is Dutch, and spoken by almost all people in the Netherlands. Dutch is also spoken and official in Aruba, Belgium, Curaçao, Sint Maarten and Suriname. It is a West Germanic, Low Franconian language that originated in the Early Middle Ages and was standardised in the 16th century. There are also some recognised provincial languages and regional dialects. The Netherlands also has its separate Dutch Sign Language called Nederlandse Gebarentaal and has 17,500 users. The country has a trend of learning foreign languages and many people are able to converse in English, German, French and Spanish.
LIBRARIES are located throughout The Netherlands including National, Regional, State and specialized. The National Library is based in The Hague and was founded in 1798. The Openbare Bibliotheek in Amsterdam is the largest public library system in the country.
The Netherlands has many LIGHTHOUSES. The Urk Lighthouse is the oldest in the country. The tallest lighthouse in Europe is located in Huisduinen. Its nickname is "Tall Jaap". You can climb the tower and view the Donkere Duinen. There are 2 active lighthouses at Westkapelle. The oldest lighthouse, built 1458-1470, stands at the entrance to the village and is a remainder of a church that burned down in the 18th century. In 1818 the light was added to the top. The other one, on the outer slope of the dyke, was built in 1875 of cast iron. Together they form lights that lead vessels coming from the northern part of the North Sea into the narrow and busy shipping lane directly under the south west coast of Walcheren. There is a 3rd lighthouse on the inner side of the dyke that is part of the Dyke and War museum that has never has been activated. lighthouse is an important aspect to the mariner.
The Netherlands has several MOUNTAINS and hills. Mount Vaalserberg is the tallest mountain in the European part of The Netherlands. It is also the point at which Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands all come together. A popular sport is mountain/hill/rock climbing.
The Netherlands has hundreds of MUSEUMS. The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is one of the most popular. The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam has an extensive collection of the work of Van Gogh. The Mauritshuis in The Hague is a museum set in the 17th-century palace of a Dutch count and has a small of Golden Age art treasures. The Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen museum in Rotterdam features art forms covering a period of over 7 centuries.
The Netherlands has several OBSERVATORIES and 2 planetariums. In 2015, De Boschplaat was named an International Dark Sky Park. In 2016, The Lauwersmeer National Parkwas named a Dark Sky Park. The country has Astronomy Clubs & Organizations.
The Netherlands belongs to many International ORGANIZATIONS including the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Holland has been a member of the UNITED NATIONS since 1945 and has participated and provided troops for numerous United Nations Peacekeeping Operations around the world.
The Netherlands has a population of 17,000,000. Many famous people have called the Netherlands their home including the artists Vincent Van Gogh and Rembrandt. The Netherlands has had several monarchs. The first monarch was William I. The current monarch is Willem Alexander.
The Netherlands has a variety of REPTILES. There are 4 lizard species, the sand lizard, the common lizard, the wall lizard, and the slow worm. There are 3 species of Snake in including the Grass Snake (Natrix natrix), the Adder (Vipera berus). There are also frogs and toads. The Turtles Center is a museum in Alphen aan Den Rijn. Some species are endangered. HerptoFauna Foundation supports projects that promote animal welfare, especially groups belonging to the order of reptiles, amphibians and arthropods. There is a Reptile Zoo in VLISSINGEN.
The Netherlands has many RIVERS. The Linge is the longest river entirely within the Netherlands. The Meuse River is the second longest river in Netherlands and one of the largest rivers in Europe. The Ems River an important highway of industrial transportation. River cruises are popular. Many cruises start or finish in Amsterdam.
The Netherlands has a variety of TRAILS including hiking trails and biking trails. The coastline of the Netherlands is part of the North Sea Trail, a walking route circumnavigating the North Sea. The Pieterpad is a long distance walking route.There is a special flower route.
The Netherlands has all forms of TRANSPORTATION. The country has one of the most advanced motorway networks in the world, with Variable Message Signs and electronic signalization across most of the network. Driving is on the right side. Vehicle registration plates are assigned bearing the same "number" as that shown on the vehicle's registration document. If a vehicle changes ownership, the registration number remains unchanged. Cycling is a popular means of transport and 27% of all trips are by bicycle - the highest of any country in the world. The OV-chipcard is the ticket for public transport in the Netherlands. The country is well connected to the UK by ferry with crossings connecting the country with ports in the south east, east and north east of England. The country has several Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, which is one of the largest in Europe. The Princess Juliana International Airport on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin, has very low-altitude flyover landing approaches and is considered one of the scariest airport runways in the world. The Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport, an airport on the Dutch Caribbean island of Saba, has one of the shortest commercial runways in the world, and is also considered one of the scariest runways in the world.
There is evidence that at one time The Netherlands had active VOLCANOES. During the late Jurassic times the Zuidwal volcano was active and is now a submerged part of the Netherlands known as the Wadden Sea. Mount Scenery is a potentially active volcano in the Caribbean Netherlands. Its lava dome forms the summit of the Sabais land stratovolcano.
The WEATHER in the Netherlands is unpredictable. With its long North Sea coast, the country has a typically moderate marine climate.
The Netherlands has a variety of WILDLIFE. Rodents make up the largest order of mammals. hares and rabbits differ from rodents in a number of physical characteristics, such as having four incisors in the upper jaw rather than two. Hedgehogs are easily recognised by their spines. Shrews and solenodons closely resemble mice, while moles are stout-bodied burrowers. The most distinguishing feature of Bats is that their forelimbs are developed as wings, making them the only mammals in the world naturally capable of flight. Large mammals, such as roe deer, red deer, foxes, and badgers, are mostly restricted to nature reserves. Some species, such as boars, beavers, fallow deer, mouflons (wild sheep), and muskrats, have been introduced locally or reintroduced. Some animals are endangered. .
The Netherlands has many ZOOS and aquariums. The Rotterdam Zoo is considered the best in the country. The Sea Life Center in Scheveningen has hundred of species of fish. It has a large glass tunnel which is the oldest tunnel aquarium in the country.