Camping & mobile home holidays in Holland & Netherlands
Savings of up to 20% on European family holidays in the school summer holidays 2018
with Al Fresco Holidays
Campsites we feature in Holland:
The 4*Beekse Bergen campsite is a beautifully designed parc with covered pools, water slides and a fun park, nature trail, safari park and a lakeside beach.
The 4* Koningshof campsite is an excellent parc kept to a high standard and is a great site for cyclists and also for visiting the Dutch bulbfields. Camping Koningshof is within easy reach of both Amsterdam and Rotterdam
Holland and the Netherlands are essentially the same though it can be confusing if you aren't into geography so we will try and explain:-
Between 1588 and 1795, the area currently representing the Netherlands was the Republic of Seven United Netherlands. The republic was conquered by French troops in 1795 and became the Batavian Republic. Napoleon appointed his brother Louis as king in 1806, turning the country into a kingdom. The Netherlands remained a kingdom after Napoleon’s defeat. At that time, the area called “Holland” made the biggest contribution to the entire nation’s economy and wealth. As such it became the commonly used name to indicate the entire country.
The terrain in Holland lends itself to cycling because it is so flat there and, roughly one third of the country is below sea level but over the years the Dutch have devised an extensive system in place that keeps the country safe so through a complex system of dikes, pumps and sand dunes along the coast, the Netherlands stays flood free.
Having sorted that out we can turn to the sort of holidays which are popular in Holland, and they are of course of the camping and mobile home variety - mobile homes being by far the most popular.
Flower growing is one of the big industries here and everywhere you go there are bulb fields which add colour to the world.Holland is a lovely country with some seriously interesting cities to visit such as Amsterdam and Rotterdam. It is also world famous in the diamond cutting and selling trade. This little country has borders with Belgium and Germany and it also faces toe North Sea.
There are also some wonderful museums here for history and art lovers: the Rijksmuseum, the museum of the Netherlands with masterpieces from the Middle Ages to the 20th century, the Van Gogh museum - Vincent van Gogh being the nineteenth-century Dutch Post-Impressionist painter whose work had a huge impact on twentieth-century art.
The Anne Frank House/museum in central Amsterdam is a museum with a murky history and is the house where Anne Frank hid in her secret annex during the 2nd World War. It was here she wrote her diary. Certainly this must be worth a visit.
Holland is noted for having splendid beaches and the Dutch coastline offers unlimited opportunities for water sport fans, nature lovers and beach fans. The beaches of the Netherlands can be divided in three groups: the Wadden Islands, the coastline of the provinces North-Holland and South-Holland, and Zeeland.
All in all then, with Holland being so near to the UK isn't it time you decided to have a camping holiday there?
The waterways of Amsterdam
The best and easiest mode of travel in Holland is via one of the waterways. You could try a trip on one of these canal boats which pass through charming scenery with tree lined canals where there are old houses to see, arched bridges and old historical sites of great interest. We suggest you take a guided tour of these waterways as opposed to going it alone because that way leads to disaster!
There are three main waterways which form concentric circles around Amsterdam and some bright person worked out that if you take a trip on all three you will pass 1550 monumental buildings, which should be more than enough for any history buff we believe.
TheHerengracht waterway round Amsterdam is one of the main waterways in this neck of the woods and, whilst the the Emperor’s canal, and Prinsengracht, The Prince’s Canal, the Keizersgracht or Emperor’s canal, and Prinsengracht, the Prince’s Canal, are undoubtedly beautiful it is Herengracht, the Gentleman’s Canal, that has earned its reputation as the most elegant canal of all in Amsterdam. It travels down what is called the “Golden Bend,” where the wealthiest people in the city have taken residence in stunning double wide mansions complete with inner gardens and coach houses.
Other waterways of interest are the The Oudegracht, or Old Canal which runs through Utrecht and which offers a unique experience to view where wharves were built as a second street along the waterline and where cellars have been converted to restaurants and cafes right on at the water level, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to dock and dine.
The Reguliersgracht in Amsterdam which was dug in1658 is another superb example of Dutch engineering, and this one will take you down the famous Seven Bridges of Amsterdam, one of the most photographed and most beautiful views of the city. These bridges are illuminated at night, something which draws romantics seeking the perfect ambience.
The Dorpsgracht flowing through Giethoorn where you can feel truly at peace with the world as you let it float by, totally peaceful with no traffic noise as you float past spectacularly green scenery, wooden arched bridges, and thatched cottage farmhouses. A trip down this canal has been likened to being transported back in time.
The Oude Delft which is probably the oldest canal in the whole country and a boat trip down this picturesque waterway will guide you past the Oude Kerk (the Old Church) whose famous brick tower leans over the waterway.
Food & drink in Holland
Dutch cuisine is supposedly unique and distinctive, and which embraces traditional culinary customs and ingredients. Traditional Dutch cuisine is usually relatively simple and most dishes feature potatoes - aardappel - as the main ingredient. Ahh, so that's why the Dutch are a "stocky" race of people
A traditional winter dish is Stamppot, a stew consisting of meat, potatoes, and vegetables, which are prepared and then all mashed up together. Now I have never had a stew like this as we normally have our veg unmashed.
Popular stews feature kale or sauerkraut with smoked sausage and fried bacon; hodgepodge with potatoes, onions, carrots, and pork rib meat; or rib of beef with stewed potatoes, apples and black pudding.
The city of Leiden celebrates their victory in 1574 over the Spanish invaders. The anniversary is 3rd October and it is an annual gathering during which the Leiden citizens celebrate with large amounts of white bread and herring, and even larger amounts of something called hutspot which is a colourful mashed potato dish. It's no longer just eaten on the 3rd of October, but is an extremely popular evening meal during the cold winter days.
Hutspot is traditionally served with klapstuk, a piece of braised beef, but sometimes will also be eaten with a typical Dutch meatball.
October is traditionally known as the wine month, but there again many people enjoy a good golden-coloured beer at any time of year, Octoberfest or not.
A little research has shown us that, as in England in the middle ages, there was hardly any clean, fresh drinking water available. In many areas herbs, spices and alcohol were added to the water and the mix was called beer. Even small children drank beer in those days though the alcohol content was far lower than it is today.
Everyone and anyone was able to buy beer in the Middle Ages, but few people could afford to buy wine, a luxury product then, and even the wealthy were unable to afford wine if times were tough and so would have had to change from drinking wine to drinking beer.
The climate in the Netherlands/Holland, is too cool and damp to produce good quality wine, but the Dutch have been very active in the European wine market through the centuries, with their geographic location perfectly positioned as a prime merchant port for German and French wines.
In addition, the Dutch have heavily influenced the production of South African wines. When the Dutch settled in South Africa during the 17th century they established many wineries throughout the country, and also the KWV, a massive wine co-operative in 1918 and which became the regulating force in the South African Wine industry.
So wine is not a major Dutch export at all, but to offset that Holland/Netherlands gradually began to produce gin, a product for which the country has since become well known. Apparently this spirit was quite cheap and easy to make as the juniper berries don't need to be ripened which makes the process much quicker. The end product was then exported to other countries, especially to England, where it became known as "Mother's Ruin" because anyone could buy a bottle of this potent drink for mere pennies - and they did!
Jenever (Juniper gin) has had a resurgence in the last decades, coinciding with the popularity of classic cocktails with versions that have either never been imported outside of Holland, or haven’t been since the time of the Prohibition, are finally making their way to liquor shelves in the US and around the world.
Last update: 11.10.2017
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