Many Dutch cities were built around canals. Alkmaar, Utrecht, Dordrecht, Leiden, Groningen, Leeuwarden and Amersfoort are cities with cityscapes that are characterised by graceful canals. Of course, Amsterdam has the best-known canals. The Amsterdam Canal District is on the UNESCO World Heritage List, and the city has even been nicknamed the "Venice of the North". Discover Holland from a different perspective and take a cruise through the canals.
The canals were constructed in the 17th century to enable development of new neighbourhoods surrounding the city centre. The canals were used for water management, transportation and defense purposes. Nowadays, the canals are mainly used for recreational activities. Motor boats, canal tour boats, pedal boats and canoes sail through the canals year round, and you can even skate through the city centre during those severe winters when the canals freeze over.
Beerenburg is a Dutch drink, made by adding herbs to jenever, with about 30% alcohol.
The original Beerenburg was made in the mid-19th century with a secret mixture of spices of the Amsterdam spice merchant Hendrik Beerenburg, to whom it owes its name. Soon local Beerenburg varieties emerged, each with its own recipe. These were, however, not allowed to use the name Beerenburg, which is why there are variations on the spelling, such as Berenburg and Berenburger.
Despite the Amsterdam (North-Holland) origin of Beerenburg, the drink became the most popular in Friesland, Groningen and Drenthe. Related to Italian amaro.
In the European Union, Beerenburg classifies as a spirit drink.
Ottenhome Heeg has for 27 years been the largest and one of the most reliable boat rental, watersports and events companies in The Netherlands.
Ottenhome Heeg BV – Total Boating Fun!
Sales en rental of the Polyvalk, Fox22, RiverCruise longboats and motor yachts. Thousands of boats found their way to happy customers, both owners and renters. Ottenhome Heeg has been synonymous with quality and service under our TOTAL BOATING guarantee.
Ottenhome Heeg Marina, beautiful, modern and above all, full of cheer.
Ottenhome Heeg has her base at the yacht boulevard in Heeg with 280 boat slips. The Ottenhome Heeg Sailors Club is a cozy cafe both for renters and marina customers and boasts a harbor facility will all modern amenities.
The Fries Museum is dedicated to Friesland and the Frisian people. Its activities revolve around the eleven cities that make up the province and the surrounding countryside. These include the Frisians' love-hate relationship with water, the search for what defines the typical Frisian character, and Friesland's place in the wider world. The freedom fighter Grutte Pier's sword; old costumes and clothing; treasures from the Frisian mounds; the legacy of Mata Hari, the exotic dancer who was executed as a spy at the end of the First World War; Gerrit Benner's paintings; contemporary visual art; and the film de Overval: together these objects tell the story of Friesland.
The Fries Museum was located on the Turfmarkt in Leeuwarden from 1881. Initially housed in the Eysingahuis the museum gradually spread to the surrounding buildings over the next 130 years. The museum has now relocated to Wilhelminaplein 92, in heart of Leeuwarden's city centre. The bold open-plan building has a gigantic protruding roof elevated 25 metres above the ground on robust steel and wooden columns, with an imposing glass façade adorning the front of the building. These are just a few of the most striking attributes of the new Fries Museum. The building was delivered on Monday, 11 June 2012.
Frysian Lakes: the holiday resort of Europe
The Frysian Lakes in the Dutch province of Friesland (‘Fryslân’ in Frysian) are dozens of interlinked large and small lakes and two former sea arms, the IJsselmeer and the Lauwersmeer.
The Frysian lakes are a worldwide unique holiday region with recreational sailing and cycling connections at all levels, hundreds of circular routes as well as 8-shaped ones, clean water and open sandy beaches. Nowhere else in the world does one see kitesurfers, cyclists, sailors, walkers and motorboaters intensely enjoy sunshine, wind and water as they do here.
The Frysian wetlands are an extremely affordable holiday destination. For instance, nowhere else in Europe can you rent this affordably a luxury dory, motor or sailboat: no need for a sailing licence up to 15 metres’ length and a top speed of 20 km per hour! And furthermore, mooring opportunities galore: in the towns and villages or in nature.
Amicitia Hotel, a beautiful family hotel in Sneek,
Situated near the A7 motorway and within walking distance of the City Center.
Our 35 comfortable rooms, are equipped with all comforts.
There is free wireless internet available in the hotel and restaurant.
And for what purpose you came to our hotel,you can always count
on the commitment of our enthusiastic and welcoming staff.
The hotel offers 25 comfortabele double hotelrooms, 1 room with facilities for disabled persons, 3 family rooms for max 4 persons,
1 honeymoon suite with jaccuzi and 5 theme rooms.
Jopie Huisman, The Rembrandt of Friesland
Workum (NL) - You do not have to be an art expert to be impressed by the work and the colorfull life philosophy of the Frisian autodidact painter Jopie Huisman. The world famous painter Rembrandt van Rijn would be, if Jopie lived 400 years ago, fascinated without any doubt about his artistic presentations. They are incredible.
And those who do not like art at all, but do like a juicy view on life centered by clutter and nature, individuals and culture, those people will also return satisfied after a visit to the Jopie Huisman Museum in Workum (Friesland, Nederland).
The recently renovated and with a museumcafé enriched museum, where is 2009 also three autodidact colleagues ’stayed’, collects, preserves and exhibits drawings, paintings and inspiration sources of the old iron and rag merchant who lived from 1922 until 2000. In addition to that the art domain offers a generous look into the exciting life of the hearty painter who clung to hand-rolled cigarettes, humor, art, music, interesting stories and tricks of - often famous - friends. Take your time otherwise you will be hardly able to take it all in!
The capital of the province of Friesland is a mixture of shopping areas, cultural highlights and an exciting nightlife. Leeuwarden boasts over 600 monuments! Enough reasons for you to get a map with walking tours at the tourist information office. Shopaholics must visit De Kleine Kerkstraat, which is one of the most charming shopping streets in the Netherlands.
The absolute highlights of Leeuwarden are:
Mata Hari: the life story of this extraordinary dancer and accused spy is presented in the Fries Museum,
Princessehof: discover the world of ceramics,
Oldehove: the Dutch ‘Tower of Pisa’,
Boomsma Distillery: learn more about traditional Dutch spirits.
The shipyard 'De Hoop’ was founded in 1693 by Juntien Reijnders, besides the than already existing sash lock in Workum. He gave orders to build a carpentry shed where in the time ships could be build. The yard was renovated in the 19th century and restored in the seventies of the 20th century. The complex consists of a house, a hillside barn, a timber yard and a slipway. During the yards’ existence mainly wooden fishing ships where build such as 'Boeiers, Blazen, Schokkers, Aken, Tjalken and Skûtsjes’.
In the beginning of the 20th century the owner at that time, Ulbe Zwolsman, expended the company with an iron yard. Here he build three coastal ships, the first iron ships of Friesland. Due to the fact that Zwolsman did not get permission to expend the yard and also because the sash lock could not be expended Zwolsman went back to building wooden ships. After the death of his son in 1973 who took over the yard in 1942 the whole complex was threatened to be demolished. The engineer and architect Reid de Jong, inhabitant of the lighthouse of Workum managed to avoid demolition. He developed a plan to renovate the buildings. The renovation took place in the years 1976 and 1977. After this the yard functioned as a reparation- and construction yard for historic ships. In 2009 the yard was expended with a 'Blazerhaven’, who is in use as a 'museum harbor’. In the harbor there is still the by Ulbe Zwolsman build blazer TX 11 for the fishers from Texel. The carpentry shed is, according to the Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, the oldest existing carpentry shed of West-Europe.
Sneek is situated in Southwest-Friesland, close to the Sneekermeer and is well known for its canals, the Waterpoort (Watergate, the symbol of the city), and watersport (Sneekweek). Sneek is one of the Friese elf steden (Eleven cities). The city is very important for the southwest area of Friesland (the "Zuidwesthoek").
Sneek was founded in the 10th century on a sandy peninsula at the crossing site of dike with an important waterway (called the Magna Fossa in old documents). This waterway was dug when the former Middelzee silted up. The dike can still be traced in the current street pattern and street names like "Hemdijk", "Oude Dijk" and "Oosterdijk".
Sneek received several city rights in the 13th century, which became official in 1456. Sneek was now one of the eleven Frisian cities. This was also the beginning of a period of blooming trade for the city that would last until about 1550. In 1492 construction of a moat and wall around the city began. In those days Sneek was the only walled city in Friesland. The waterpoort and the bolwerk remain today.
A tourist’s walking route from Sneek promotor Petra Miedema
SNEEK (NL) – On a Friday morning we take a short stroll with Sneek promotor Petra Miedema through the inner city that has been the commercial centre of Southwest Friesland since as far back as mediaeval times. The sun casts a glow on the prosperity that the city has never lacked.
At the city hall: ‘One of the most attractive rococo gables in North Netherlands. From the city hall on Marktstraat we proceed via Kleine Kerkstraat, de Leeuwenburg and the Suupmarkt to the Kleinzand.
‘If you really want to know why Sneek has traditionally been such a splendid watersports destination, you have to take a look at the Frisian Maritime Museum (Friesch Scheepvaartmuseum) on Kleinzand.’
Also at Kleinzand you can find the 140-year-old distillery Beerenburg Weduwe Joustra, which has been maintained entirely in its original style. As a visitor to Sneek this is something you don’t want to miss! Pure craftsmanship in a nostalgic ambience. ‘It's wonderful that something like this still exists’, Petra says.
Grootzand - Korte Pijpsteeg - Sint Martinuskerk - Korte Pijpsteeg - Grootzand.
We proceed via the shopping street Grootzand along the city canal to the water gate. ‘The last vestige of the old fortress Sneek. Do you see that the clock is five minutes fast? This is an old custom. The gatekeeper did that in order to have everyone inside without any trouble, before closing time!’
Via Waterpoortsgracht and Martiniplein (square) we arrive at the church Grote Martinikerk. ‘Here is the church knoll at the edge of the Middelzee where Sneek was originally founded.’ The church is used for worship as well as for classical concerts and exhibitions. It can be visited during summer.
Via Martini square and the non-opening bridge over Waterpoortsgracht, we leave the fortress and cross Stationstraat toward the train station. ‘The model train museum is housed in this lovingly restored building."
Museum Warkums Erfskip
The museum ''Warkums Erfskip’’ shows you the history of the city Workum and its surrounding.
The antiquary association ''Warkums Erfskip’’ founded on the 27th of december 1951 is managing the museum.
The museum which is situated in the Waag presents during the entire year historical exhibitions.
At the attic of the museum there is an exhibition about the life of Huijte Fookles, a skipper from the 18th century. In the hall downstairs there are paintings of the 18th century that have been produced in Hoorn. The pottery collection of the museum and an exhibitions about the ceramists can be seen in the 'Pottenbakkershûs’. The Pottenbakkershûs is situated right across the museum.
The Waag of Workum was build in 1650. It replaced a construction that was crumbling. The Waag is located at the marktplein 'De Merk’ besides the Sint-Gertrudiskerk. The Waag has a long shed on one side.
The building has a hipped roof with a dormer on each side with a stepped gable. At the corners of the roof there are four lions with a coat of arms above with underneath a satyr. On the facades there are also weapons, including the municipal coat of arms with the date 1650.
The building lost its function, and just like the Waag of Dokkum, had many different functions over time including being a police station. In 2007 the building was restored and has been used as an information office and covers the museum named above.
City of earthenware and old establishments
Workum is earmarked by the long main street covered on both sides by stately rows of historic buildings. While Workum is not situated on the coast, it nevertheless participated actively in the sea trade. This was made possible primarily through the wide canal named ‘It Soal’, which connected the city directly with the former Zuiderzee (Southern Sea, now the Ijsselmeer). You reach the lock on the border of Workum exactly two kilometres after leaving the Ijsselmeer along It Soal. The stately old houses along the dike reflect perfectly in the canal water. Right by the lock is the old ship yard De Hoop. Ships have been built and restored here for more than three centuries. The ship yard remains a going concern to this day, and with a bit of luck you can get permission to come and have a look at the yard in action.
Downtown De Merk
Merk is the Frisian word for market. It is obvious then that this was the commercial centre for ‘Workumers’. The development of De Merk was practical and well thought out. The city council building, the city waag (a building were the weight of commercial goods was audited) the church, and the buildings housing the former secular and ecclesiastical authorities were built close together. You will also find old hotels and hostels, and the homes of rich merchants and prominent local authorities.