The Netherlands is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe. Every year many millions of tourists come to the Netherlands to see the country and all its attractions. Before you visit the Netherlands, it is crucial to know what the Netherlands is known for. And who better to do that than a Dutchman himself, so in this article, I'm going to explain to you exactly what the Netherlands is known for.
The Netherlands may be a small country, but it is known for many things. The country is most known for its cheese, wooden shoes, windmills, tulips, coffeeshops, canals of Amsterdam, Delftware, soccer, bicycles, DJs, painters, genever, and countryside.
Dutch society is based on four core values: freedom, equality, solidarity, and work. The country has a low crime rate, making it a safe and welcoming place for visitors and tourists from all around the world. According to the World Happiness Report, the Netherlands is fifth on the list with the happiest people in a country. They are kind, honest, polite, friendly, and punctual. In this blog, I will tell you everything about the Netherlands and what the country is known for.
The Netherlands is a densely populated country with a population of over 17 million people. The majority of the population speaks Dutch, the official language of the country. It closely resembles German and has words from both English and French.
Besides Dutch, Friesian is the secondary language spoken in the Netherlands. More than half a million people speak this language in the Dutch province of Friesland. Dutch society overall is very modern and independent and believes in both equality and individuality.
The Netherlands is a secularized country with only 47% religious people. Among them, only 6% of people strictly follow religion and attend church regularly. Currently, Dutch society has two main religions: Roman Catholic and Protestant, which are 22% and 15% of the Dutch population, respectively. Other minor religions in the country are Islam (5%), Buddhism, and Hinduism (5% together).
When it comes to social etiquette, Dutch people will greet you formally with a handshake, and if you have a close relationship with the person, you will kiss each other three times, starting with the left cheek, from your own point of view. This could be quite a culture shock when you visit the Netherlands for the first time, but soon you will get to know when to kiss someone and when you won't.
Moreover, Dutch people are direct and straightforward, and there is no such thing as rudeness because they call it openness. Bear in mind that Dutch people do not mean to be rude to anyone because it is their style to speak honestly and straight to the point.
While people in the Netherlands are not against becoming rich or wealthy, most see it as a negative trait if someone spends large sums of money publicly. Most probably, they will label that type of person a "show off." Likewise, never ask people how much money they make as it is considered a bit offensive.
Most people think about Amsterdam, the vibrant nightlife, the delicious food, tulips, windmills, cheese, coffeeshops, and the red-light district when it comes to the Netherlands. However, the Dutch country is more than these things, such as the fantastic, colorful, and picturesque countryside.
The countryside is lush green with lots of canals and rivers, windmills, a long coastline, and beautiful beaches. Keep in mind that the countryside has little or no hills and mountains. The terrain is vast and flat, with many canal systems used to pump and supply the water outside the mainland.
About 45% of the Netherlands is above sea level. The highest point is 323m above sea level, and the lowest point is 6.7m below sea level. That's why the Netherlands has efficient and reliable systems to pump the water from the mainland into the sea.
In the Netherlands, the countryside is quiet and peaceful. The lush vegetation and cool breeze will soothe your mind and tranquil your heart. The countryside is the best place to visit if you want to enjoy the lush greenery, ride a bicycle, or listen to birds singing.
You can travel to the countryside by fast, safe, and comfortable trains. The well-developed railway network has over 400 stations that connect most towns and cities in the country. Besides, you can also explore the beautiful countryside by car. I believe traveling by car is the most relaxing way to explore the picturesque scenery of the countryside. That way, you can also avoid fix schedules and stop at any place you want.
Undoubtedly, the Netherlands has many beautiful attractions, like Amsterdam, The Hague, and Rotterdam. However, you can visit many small villages and towns to get rid of the city's hustle and bustle. Visit the following places to relax and enjoy the scenic beauty of Holland.
Giethoorn (119 km or 74 miles from Amsterdam):
Giethoorn has over 90 km of canals and is known as "Venice of the North." It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Dutch countryside. You can rent a boat and explore the town from the water. From there you will be able to see the beautiful village with its old and pretty houses.
People iceskating in Giethoorn, The Netherlands:
Volendam (20 km or 12 miles from Amsterdam):
Volendam is a 17th-century town, and here you can find traditional brown buildings with red roofs. It is also known for its fishing and old-fashion clothing. Its also home to some of the biggest names in the Dutch music industry.
Naarden (23 km or 14 miles from Amsterdam):
Naarden is one of the best-preserved fortified cities in Europe. The city is especially famous for the unique star-shaped way in which the city was built. You can take beautiful walks around the old buildings in this city, and you can even take a tour through the canals that surround the fortress.
Naarden in its unique star-shaped form:
Harlingen (115 km or 71 miles from Amsterdam):
Harlingen is a scenic countryside town famous for its architecture. Here, you will find beautiful medieval mansions and houses made of gable stones. It's also possible to take a ferry from here to one of the Dutch islands in the Wadden Sea.
Zierikzee (147 km or 91 miles from Amsterdam):
Zierikzee is a small seaside town with a lot of monuments to visit. This relatively small city has no fewer than 568 monuments. The most important monument is the "Sint-Lievensmonstertoren." This church tower is also called the "Dikke Toren," which means the fat tower. Visit the "Dikke Toren" to enjoy the beautiful panoramic view of the countryside from its top.
Many cities in the Netherlands were built around canals. Some cities and towns characterized by beautiful canals are Leiden, Dordrecht, Utrecht, Alkmaar, Leeuwarden, Amersfoort, and Groningen. Amsterdam, the capital city of the Netherlands, is best known for its beautiful canals. The city's canal district is mentioned in the UNESCO World Heritage list.
If you want to discover and enjoy Amsterdam from a different perspective, I recommend taking a boat through the beautiful canals. I am sure you will remember the ride for years and tell your children about it. In addition, you will understand why Amsterdam is called "the Venice of the North."
Every canal in the capital city showcases a unique charm. The most popular canals of Amsterdam are the "Herengracht," "Reguliersgracht" and the "Prinsengracht." All of them have their own uniqueness and show the beauty of Amsterdam.
Don't forget to visit the bridge on the corner of Reguliersgracht and Herengracht for a stunning view. There are fifteen bridges in Amsterdam, and among them, the most beautiful is The "Magere Brug," also known as the Skinny Bridge. The Magere Brug is incredibly lit at night, making it the city's most romantic spot at night.
So if you want to make the perfect romantic picture with your love, this is the place to be!
Moreover, Leiden has the most number of canals, moats, and bridges after Amsterdam. So if you find Amsterdam too crowded, Leiden will be a good option for you. You can also visit Delft to see the most beautiful canals. People will tell you about the canals' historical value, which served as defense and lifelines throughout the town.
Click here to learn some Amsterdam canals facts.
Exploring Amsterdam from the water:
Holland is the biggest exporter of vegetables, fruits, plants, flowers, bulbs, and decorative trees globally. The latest statistics show that the Netherlands exported 6.2 billion plants and flowers in 2020.
Anyway, tulips are Holland's signature flowers that attract people from all around the world. Holland has a favorable climate for other flower types, such as hydrangea, crocus, and Dutch roses.
I recommend you to visit the countryside, where you can find a vast sea of tulips and other types of flowers that will surely soothe your eyes and refresh your mind. Make sure you visit the tulip fields between mid-march and mid-May.
The crocus season starts in March, followed by hyacinths and daffodils. Likewise, the tulip season begins in April, the best time to enjoy the beautiful blooming tulips in colorful fields. If you want to get the most out of your trip, explore the countryside by bicycle or by car if you are short on time.
Click here if you would like to know why the Netherlands grows tulips.
There are more than 1100 windmills in the Netherlands. Some windmills are still used for drainage, including the iconic windmills like the Molen de Otter (Amsterdam) and the Moden de Valk (Leiden). The Dutch government has restored the Molen de Valk, which is used for grinding grain. It is also a beautiful museum showcasing the history of windmills in Leiden.
The Netherland is known for its iconic windmills. Millions of tourists visit Holland to explore windmills, which has become an exciting thing to do in the country. Bear in mind that the Dutch government has made substantial efforts to restore most of the historic sites. The two most popular places for tourists to visit windmills are the "Zaanse Schans" and "Kinderdijk."
Holland celebrates the "National Mill Day" in May. More than 600 windmills and watermills are opened to visitors and tourists every second Saturday in May. If you want to enjoy such historical sites, I recommend visiting Holland in April and May to see the colorful tulip fields and explore the iconic windmills. The best way to see these windmills is by bicycle.
Exploring the windmills by bicycle:
Research shows that people in the Netherlands have been brewing beer since the medieval era. Heineken, Hertog Jan, Amstel, Bavaria, and Grolsch are the famous Dutch beer brands today.
Besides, you can find a wide variety of specialty beers brewed in local breweries. Most people like to taste beers at the brewery, but many others also love visiting beer pubs. Luckily there are lots of them in the whole of the Netherlands.
Most people visiting Amsterdam do not miss the House of Bols. It is one of the oldest distilleries in Europe. The House of Bols offers a guided tour to visitors, allowing them to visit the company's facilities and taste the famous Dutch genever and some cocktails. You can also learn about how the company makes cocktails and jenever in their facility.
If you are a real beer lover, then you are in the right place in the Netherlands. For example, you can visit special beer cafes all over the country, and it is also possible to get a tour at many breweries. Below you will find some of the nicest brewery cafes in the Netherlands.
This is a beer that comes from Haarlem. The name comes from the fact that the beer comes from barrels of no less than 112 liters. They call these barrels "Jopen." They have a beautiful cafe and restaurant in a church in the center of Haarlem. Here you can enjoy delicious beers and food.
This brewery is located in the beautiful city of Rotterdam. The brand is known for its bold flavor combinations. Kaapse Brouwers is located in the Fenix Food Hallen. This culinary hotspot is definitely worth a visit.
De Beyerd is a brewery in Breda. The beer was created in 1838, and there are no fewer than 125 flavors and types available. In their brewer's café, you can taste all kinds of beers and also have a delicious snack.
Because the Netherlands is known for its beer, it is certainly advisable to visit one of these breweries when you are in the Netherlands.
Cheese-making has a long history in the Netherlands. Today, you can find hundreds of cheese varieties in the Netherlands. The most popular and commonly available cheeses in the Netherlands are Leidse cheese, farmer's cheese, and goat cheese. Besides these cheeses, people love to eat Gouda cheese, a yellow cheese made from cow's milk.
Gouda is available in different varieties, including the softer and creamier Jong and the sharper flavored Belegen. Edam is another famous cheese available in most shops. The cheese has derived its name from the town of Edam. The round shape and beautiful red-color rind make it the signature cheese of the country.
Kanterkaas is a hard cheese compared to Gouda. It is produced in Friesland and has a wide range of flavors. The most popular Kanterkaas variant is flavored with cloves and cumin.
According to Ben Coats, people in the Netherlands eat a lot of cheese and drink a lot of milk. They say this diet makes them the tallest people in the world, but not everyone agrees with this theory.
The world-famous Dutch cheese:
I won't be wrong if I say there are more bicycles than people in the Netherlands. There are more than 22.8 million bicycles in the Netherlands, which means that every Dutch person has an average of 1.3 bicycles. The Dutch government has been making significant efforts to make cycling safer and comfortable for people.
The government has built an extensive network of cycle paths with smooth surfaces, clear marks, lights, and signs for bicycle riders. For example, the Netherlands has no less than 37,000 kilometers (22,990 miles) of bicycle paths.
In most towns and cities, the cycling paths are entirely separated from other vehicles or traffic. Even if the motorized traffic and cyclers share a path, clear signs enable the motorist to know these are bike streets.
Bicycles are an integral part of day-to-day life in the Netherlands, and cycling is very popular among the Dutch. The Dutch people use their bikes mostly for transportation, but a lot of people use them for pleasure as well.
Anyway, there are over 72,000 people in Amsterdam who ride bicycles in the morning rush hour. Bikes are twice the number of cars on the streets of Amsterdam. More people are getting conscious of climate change and global warming. That's why bicycle use is going up in the Netherlands as an effort to adopt eco-friendly practices.
Wooden shoes or clogs are traditional footwear in the Netherlands. Research shows that people have been using wooden shoes for seven centuries. However, you will rarely find locals wearing clogs on the streets. However, these shoes are famous accessories for foreign tourists who buy these items as souvenirs.
You can find a beautiful pair of classic and modern wooden clogs in most shoe shops and markets throughout the Netherlands. Wooden clogs are a great addition to your wardrobe.
I recommend visiting Volendam to see local artisans making traditional footwear. Most women can't resist buying a lovely pair of wedding clogs made from unpainted wood.
The Dutch have been wearing clogs since the 13th century. The wooden shoes absorb sweat and allow your feet to breathe. In the Netherlands, wooden shoes are mostly worn by artisans, factory workers, fishers, and farmers to protect their feet.
I have already mentioned above that the Netherlands is famous for its rich heritage and vibrant culture. You may not know, but Delftware items are parts of Holland's rich history and culture. For instance, delftware ceramic items are beautiful pieces that you can find in any region of the country.
In Amsterdam, you can find a wide variety of vases, shakers, and hand-painted tiles. Every porcelain piece you see on the market represents the iconic history of the Dutch country.
Today, painters use porcelain items for painting the traditional decorations on them. The best thing about these items is that they are handmade. I recommend visiting the beautiful town of Delft to find the most authentic delftware.
Collection of Dutch Delftware:
Like any other country, the Netherlands has cities it is famous for. All of these cities have their own unique character and thus distinguish themselves from each other. This makes it extra fun to visit these cities and discover what makes them so unique from the others.
Because the Netherlands is a relatively small country, the cities are close together. This makes it extra easy for tourists to visit different cities during their vacations in Holland.
Below I will explain some well-known Dutch cities. All these cities are wonderful to visit, something I do myself regularly. So make sure to put them on your must-visit list.
Everyone, of course, knows the capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam. This beautiful city is notorious and famous for many things. The capital, which is located in the Dutch province of Noord-Holland, is definitely the number one most visited city in the Netherlands.
This is of course because it is one of the most famous cities in the world, but there are other reasons why Amsterdam is so special.
Amsterdam is an incredibly multicultural city. The inhabitants together represent no less than 180 different nationalities. When walking through Amsterdam, you notice that it is a vibrant city where many different cultures live together.
The nice thing about this is that most people immediately feel at home in Amsterdam. Everyone is friendly to each other, and asking for directions can easily be done in Dutch and in English without any problem.
If you want to learn more about the history of the Netherlands, there are plenty of museums you can visit in Amsterdam. There are history museums, art museums, science museums and much more. You can even walk through the human body in steps at "BODY WORLDS Amsterdam."
Whatever your interests are, you can always find something you like in Amsterdam.
Like New York, Amsterdam is a city that never sleeps. With multiple bars, cafes, and rooftop parties, the nightlife is always exciting. One of the benefits of having so many different cultures in the Netherlands is that it brings with it different styles of music, from jazz to techno to pop.
Another reason to visit Amsterdam is that the city center is small enough that you can see all the popular spots in a day and do it all on foot. If you don't like walking, there are many other options for getting around the city, such as by bus, subway or bicycle.
The Netherlands is known for its many bike paths and the cyclists who ride on them. In Amsterdam, you see them everywhere. Whether they are in bike racks, people are walking with them or riding them, from city bikes to racing bikes. You see little kids riding them, and even the elderly still cycle regularly in the Netherlands.
Cycling is one of the main ways of getting around in Amsterdam. There are even plans to make Amsterdam a bicycle city. This would mean that no more motorized vehicles would be allowed in the city.
Something else that has made people interested in traveling to Amsterdam is the world-famous red-light district. When you walk through this famous neighborhood, you will see prostitutes behind large windows trying to lure you in.
Because of this neighborhood, along with its many coffeeshops and nightlife, Amsterdam is also called "the city of sin."
Amsterdam has many more trades that make the city worth visiting. The ones mentioned above are just a few to give you an idea.
Rotterdam is known in the Netherlands from the past as a working-class city. The city is located in the province of Zuid-Holland and is situated on the river Maas. Rotterdam is a real port city and an important link in the trade of goods for all of Europe.
Rotterdam is also a great city to visit and has an awful lot to offer tourists. Below I will explain what Rotterdam is famous for.
As mentioned above, Rotterdam is known for its import and export of goods through its port. It is one of the most important ports in the world and is currently even the largest port in Europe.
The Port of Rotterdam imports about 325 million tons of goods per year. This is not only meant for the Dutch market but is distributed further through Europe via cargo ships, trains, and trucks.
The port of Rotterdam is of great importance to the Dutch economy and is also one of the reasons why the Netherlands is so rich.
The Erasmus Bridge is one of the main highlights when visiting Rotterdam. The bridge is the second largest bridge in the Netherlands and connects the northern and southern parts of the city by crossing the river Maas.
The design of the bridge is very special and attracts many lovers of architecture to the city every year. So make sure you visit this bridge when you are in Rotterdam.
Another popular highlight is the Euromast Tower, a watchtower built in 1960. It has a height of 185m, you can climb it, and once at the top, you can enjoy the beautiful view of the city.
At the top of the tower, there is also a restaurant, from which you can enjoy the beautiful view of the river and city during your dinner or lunch.
The city center of Rotterdam is also absolutely worth visiting. Many cafes and restaurants serve different types of cuisines. Rotterdam is also known for being multi-cultural, so the food is delicious, and there is plenty of choices.
Besides eating out in the center, there is also a lot of architecture to see in Rotterdam. There are also many interesting museums to be found in the city. Of course, the city also has enough to offer for the real shopaholics!
So Rotterdam is definitely a good city for tourists and worth visiting. Check out the following article to learn more about this city.
Utrecht is a beautiful city located in the middle of the Netherlands. Because of the city's central location, it is a real connecting point. For example, Utrecht station is the busiest station in the whole of the Netherlands, but daily almost 900,000 passengers.
But in addition, it is also a beautiful city to see with an awful lot to offer. Below you can read about some of the things Utrecht is known for.
The center of Utrecht feels very different from the other cities in this list. It feels a bit like a big village, which makes you feel safe and relaxed in the center of Utrecht.
The center is not too big and is connected by small bridges over the beautiful canals. It has many picturesque stores and restaurants, and cafes that are located along the canals.
Utrecht is highly recommended for those who want to walk through the city quietly and do not like the extreme crowds.
There are many students in Utrecht; they make up 8.5% of all residents. This makes Utrecht one of the largest student cities in the Netherlands. This is quite logical since the city has no less than 21 educational institutions.
When you walk through Utrecht, you also see an awful lot of young people in the city. Utrecht is also the most youthful city in the Netherlands. The average age of the inhabitants is about 35 years old.
The Dom tower is a church is the center of Utrecht. It is the highest church tower in the Netherlands. Climbing 465 stairs and going up 112 meters (367 ft), you get a spectacular view of the city.
The Domtoren is one of the city's biggest tourist attractions for a reason, and I definitely recommend you check out the church during your visit to Utrecht.
Utrecht has the best of both worlds. If you like to alternate between city life and nature, Utrecht has both. Just outside the city, you will find the Utrechtse Heuvelrug, which is a beautiful nature reserve. There are many cycling and walking routes that take you through this beautiful piece of nature.
Does Utrecht seem like a beautiful city to you, and would you like to visit it? Then check out our Utrecht travel guide!
The Hague is a versatile city and is also known to and visited by many tourists around the world. It is a very important city for the Netherlands, as the parliament is located here. It also plays an important role internationally, as the International Court of Justice is located here.
The Hague is especially famous for being the administrative and royal capital of the Netherlands and the seat of government. Here all political decisions are made. When visiting The Hague, it is possible to visit and see the place that carries so much knowledge and responsibility in the Netherlands.
The Hague lies on the west coast of the Netherlands. This makes it one of the only larger cities in the Netherlands that is so close to the coast. This makes it a great city to visit if you want to spend a day in the city and then enjoy the beach.
The beach near The Hague is extremely popular, and especially in the summer, it is quite crowded. But also in the winter months, it is great to get a breath of fresh air on the beach after visiting the busy city.
If you are interested in the royal family, then a visit to Paleis Noordeinde should be on your to-see list. This is where the king of the Netherlands works.
You can visit the gardens of the palace, and if you're really lucky, you can also take a look inside. However, they only open the doors to visitors a few times a year. So you'll have to find out exactly when this is if you want to go in.
If you want to understand Dutch architecture, entertainment, and design, Madurodam is worth a visit. Madurodam is an amusement park that shows different parts of the Netherlands in a miniature version. You can walk through the park and see how people live and work in the Netherlands.
If you ask a Dutchman what the Netherlands is known for, he will certainly mention some famous painters. It is something that is obviously part of the country's history and also definitely something that the Dutch are particularly proud of.
In addition, these world-famous painters also ensure that many millions of tourists come to the Netherlands every year. Many of the masterpieces of these painters can be admired in museums in the Netherlands. As a result, many art lovers visit our country.
Below you will find four of the painters for which the Netherlands is known.
Rembrandt is perhaps the most famous Dutch painter. He was an artist who created paintings with a lot of detail and made paintings with different themes. The most common were religion and allegorical themes. His most famous painting is "the Night Watch," which is displayed in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
When you think about famous Dutch artists, one of the first people to come to mind is, of course, world-famous painter Vincent van Gogh. He made some incredibly popular artworks in his reasonably short lifespan, and his whole life was devoted to art.
He created many artworks in many genres before his tragic death in 1890. His death remains a mystery to this day, as nobody knows whether it was suicide or murder!
Johannes Vermeer is a symbol of the Dutch Golden Age, he was a prominent artist during the 17th century, and his legacy lives on right up to this day and for many more years to come. He is famous for works like "Girl with a Pearl Earring" and his works have sold for millions all over the world.
He is definitely among the greats of realistic painting and definitely belongs in the top 4 most famous Dutch painters.
Mondriaan is an artist who will forever be recognized as one of the greats for his incredible simplicity. He was a Dutch artist and is widely regarded as one of the pioneers in abstract and simplistic art.
His primary colors and simple rectangles have conquered the world over the years, and that’s why he has rightfully earned his spot among the most famous Dutch people of all time!
All four of these painters are, of course, world-famous. However, there is no one of the four that is more popular than the others. It always ultimately comes down to a matter of taste. Rembrandt, Mondrian, Vermeer and van Gogh are all crucial to Dutch history.
Fortunately, you can see that the Netherlands appreciates its well-known painters when you visit various art museums throughout the Netherlands.
Check out our top 5 best art museums in the Netherlands to find out which museum you should go to!
Coffeeshops, of course, is one of the things the Netherlands is known for. Of course, we are not talking about a cozy little store where you can have a cup of coffee.
The first coffeeshop in the Netherlands was opened in 1968 in the city of Utrecht. This made the Netherlands an absolute pioneer in the sale of soft drugs. It also caused huge numbers of tourists to come to the Netherlands to smoke weed. Something that was considered impossible abroad.
Today, many coffee shops can still be found in the Netherlands, and many tourists still come to Amsterdam every year to experience a real Dutch coffeeshop.
However, it is true that the Netherlands has long ceased to be a pioneer in the legal sale of soft drugs and has been overtaken by several countries. Still, coffeeshops and the Netherlands will forever be connected.
Click here if you want to know exactly what a coffeeshop is in the Netherlands.
The Netherlands is world-famous for its DJs. Despite being a small country, it has been running at the top of international electronic music for many years. In the past decade, Dutch DJs have also won the award for best DJ in the world several times.
Some of the most famous DJs from the Netherlands can be found below.
Armin van Buuren is one of the pioneers of the DJing world, and we are proud to call him Dutch! He has produced many incredible worldwide hits over the years, and even now, at 44 years old, this incredible DJ is showing absolutely no signs of stopping anytime soon!
His hits have gathered a large army of fans around the world. Therefore he is one of the DJs the Netherlands is known for.
Martin Garrix is one of the younger DJs on this list, and at just 25 years old, he has already done incredibly well for himself. Despite his young age, he has already had a very successful career, becoming globally famous back in 2013 with his hit Animals.
Since then he has released multiple global hits and his audience has only been growing. He is a true fan favorite, and for all the right reasons! It looks like Martin Garrix will have a bright future ahead of him, as he still has many years left in the industry!
DJ Tiësto, aka Tijs Verwest, is a well-known name in the international music industry. He has earned his place among the best in the business, and he is surrounded by other famous Dutch artists at the top! Tiësto has produced several global hits, and he has scored collabs with some of the biggest artists throughout his career.
Like any country, the Netherlands is known for certain types of food and dishes. Although Dutch cuisine is not very highly recognized internationally, there are definitely tasty typical Dutch dishes to be found.
Food, of course, is also part of a culture and can sometimes even symbolize a country. Below I will tell you what food the Netherlands is known for.
I will not cover cheese below, as I have already talked about it extensively in this article.
A snack that sometimes results in funny looks from foreigners is herring. The funny looks are because Dutch people love to eat this fish raw. It can either be eaten with bread and onions or simply on its own.
There are some regional differences in how the herring is eaten as well. Each year, plenty of Dutch people look forward to the new herring season, and when asked how the herring tastes, most of them will respond with ‘even better than last year.’ This is a bit of a tradition.
Another tradition is that the first keg of herring each season gets auctioned off for charity.
This is a typical Dutch sweet that gets eaten with tea or coffee a lot. But to be honest, it can be eaten at any moment really, I speak from my own experience.
Stroopwafels are delicious round waffles like cookies with syrup in the middle. It can be eaten warm, some people like to put it on top of a cup of tea so the syrup will get more fluid, but most Dutch people eat it cold though.
You regularly hear that Dutch people who live abroad miss stroopwafels the most of all Dutch sweets.
Especially during the cold winters, the Dutch like to eat "stamppot." This dish comes in several forms and shapes. The ingredient all of the different variations have in common is potato. Then vegetables get added, like kale or carrots and onion. All of the ingredients get mashed together, and some gravy is added, along with meat.
Hutspot is one of the most popular forms of stamppot. This dish consists of potatoes, carrots, and onions. It is often eaten with a sausage or beef brisket.
A popular Dutch snack that often gets eaten in the afternoon is the bitterbal. Bitterballen are small balls filled with meat. Those balls get breaded and fried. Oftentimes bitterballen get eaten with mustard on the side.
Bitterballen can be served on their own, but they can also be served as part of the "bittergarnituur", which is a bowl of mixed snacks. Bitterballen are very common on birthdays and in pubs.
The Netherlands is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. The country is famous for its diverse culture, high human values, etiquette, and polite and humble people. Although Holland is a small country, it offers many things to foreign visitors and tourists.
Visiting the Netherlands allows people to see the picturesque tulip fields, explore the windmills, beaches/coastlines, taste beers, eat cheese, world-class water management systems, Delftware, windmills, tulip fields, and millions of bicycles.
Again, I must say there are hundreds of places to visit in Holland and thousands of things to explore and see in this beautiful country. I hope this article helps you understand "what is the Netherlands known for".