Living in the Netherlands
Introduction to the Netherlands
You probably know the Netherlands (or Holland) for its tulips, although that’s not likely to be very relevant to you. There’s so much more to tell! The Netherlands, or Holland, has 16 million inhabitants, is one of the smallest countries in Europe, but has one of the most important and most innovative economies. Its capital is Amsterdam and Rotterdam is the country’s second largest city. “A well organised country with open people”, is what internationals say. Nice to know: the Nehterlands was the first country in Europe to offer study programmes taught in English. English is an important language in other ways too. So it’s not a problem if you can’t order your drinks in Dutch: the bartender will switch to English for you. Simple!
Why study in the Netherlands?
Besides guaranteeing a high quality study programme and an internationally recognised degree, the Netherlands offers you a good time. It’s safe and everything is close by. After a few weeks, you’ll be doing everything by bike, eating sandwiches for lunch and saying ‘gezellig’ (try to pronounce that typical Dutch word!) when you’re meeting your friends. You’re welcome in the Netherlands!
Advantages of studying in the Netherlands
Students acknowledge Dutch education for its quality, high standards and top ranking positions. But most importantly: professors and teachers take you, your ideas and your contribution seriously. They are very approachable and encourage you to develop critical and independent thinking. This will prove its worth during the rest of your career and life.
20 interesting facts about the Netherlands:
1. 26% of the Netherlands is under sea level
2. The International Court of Justice (at the Peace Palace) and the International Criminal Court are both situated in The Hague
3. The Netherlands still has around a thousand old-fashioned working windmills
4. The Netherlands is the third biggest exporter of agricultural produce, preceded only by the US and France, even though only 4% of the Dutch population works in the agriculture sector
5. The Netherlands has no less than 32,000 km of cycle paths
6. The Dutch are the tallest people in the world
7. Every Dutch person owns a bike and there are twice as many bikes as there are cars
8. The Van Gogh collections in the Van Gogh Museum and the Kröller-Müller Museum are the largest in the world
9. The Netherlands has the highest concentration of museums in the world
10. The highest point in the Netherlands is in Vaals and is 323 meters above sea level, and is also the point where the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium meet
11. Amsterdam is the capital, but the government is in The Hague
12. The Netherlands has more than 4,400 km of navigable rivers, canals and lakes
13. Saint Nicholas’ Eve on 5 December is the Netherlands’ number one traditional holiday
14. The Netherlands has approximately 1,5 million cows, which together produce 10 billion liters of milk
15. 500 million kilos of cheese are exported per year
16. The Netherlands has 1048 windmills and 108 water mills
17. The mills in the Netherlands represent the age-long battle against water
18. Many of the Dutch eat raw herring with onions using only their hands
19. The first country to legalize same sex marriages in 2001
20. 75% of the world’s flower bulb production comes from Netherlands