Travel to Northeastern Netherlands – Episode 555

categories: europe travel

Travel to Northeastern Netherlands (Podcast)

Hear about travel to the Northeastern region of the Netherlands as the Amateur Traveler talks to Rachel Heller from about her adopted country.

You likely have been to Amsterdam if you have been to the Netherlands, but Rachel makes a case for why you should also visit some of the out of the way parts of the Netherlands like Groningen (where she lives) and Friesland. Rachel says, “It’s beautiful up here. That’s basically why you should go. It’s beautiful. It’s very flat but very green. You’ll certainly get away from the tourist crowds if you come up to this part of the country.”

We also talk about the difference between Holland and the Netherlands as we guide you to parts of the Netherlands outside of Holland.

We start in Amsterdam as so many trips to the Netherlands do, and Rachel has some suggestions of things we should see there like 15 small museums that you might miss including the Church in the Attic and the Red Light Secrets Museum of Prostitution. The museum of prostitution is more about education than titillation. She also recommends some places to see near Amsterdam after you pick up a car for a road trip like the beautiful tulip at Keukenhof Gardens and the Hoge Veluwe National Park.

But then Rachel draws us to the northeast where we visit Leeuwarden which is designated as the 2018 European Capital of Culture. Leeuwarden is in Friesland, where you will hear people speak Friesian in addition to Dutch. Unlike so many cities in the Netherlands, it did not receive as much damage during the war.

Leeuwarden has its own leaning tower. The old center of town is filled with winding roads and beautiful red brick buildings. Don’t miss a visit to the gardens of the almshouse or a stop at the Canal House Museum,

Outside of Groningen, Rachel suggests a tour to some of the small country churches which date back to the 1200s. “There are these lovely medieval churches. Every town in the Groningen province had a church. The church would be built on a raised bit of land. They would build this bit of land to raise their church up a bit or its what remains from an earlier battlement of some sort. These churches go back to the 13, 14th century, so they are Romanesque. Some of them were redone in the Gothic period so they have Gothic elements as well.”

Rachel also guides us to the old star fortress of Bourtange built by William (the Silent), Prince of Orange when the Dutch revolted from the Hapsburgs in the 80 years war.

Along the way, each tells us some tips for buying cheese, the pleasures of the Stroopwafel and the joys of finding a pancake house on a ship.

Get off the beaten path in the Netherlands and you will be glad you did.

subscribe: rss feed | Apple podcasts

right click here to download (mp3)
right click here to download (iTunes version with pictures)

Show Notes
1001 Travel Tales on iTunes
Small Museums in Amsterdam
Red Light Secrets Museum of Prostitution
Canal House Museum
European Capital of Culture
Oldehove (leaning tower)
Fries Museum
churches in Groningen province
Groninger Museum
List of Dutch cheeses
Bourtange (star fortress)
Eighty Years’ War
William I, Prince of Orange
William III of England
Keukenhof Gardens
Hoge Veluwe National Park
Kröller-Müller Museum
Zuiderzeemuseum Enkhuize
Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates
Groningen walking tour


Ihad dinner with Nir from Travel to Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe, Zambia) – Episode 371 when I was in Jerusalem

Decide where to go in 2018 by joining Amateur Traveler trips

Please take our listener survey

November 2017 – India Amateur Traveler Trip

Traveling Soon? These useful links will help you prepare for your trip.
Travel to Northeastern Netherlands (Podcast)

Share this:
Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

One Response to “Travel to Northeastern Netherlands – Episode 555”

Nick MacNeill


An excellent guide to a relatively unknown area of the Netherlands. I like the guest’s honesty and enthusiasm especially. I have found the Dutch to be very helpful and friendly even in the big cities. It is true that flowers are everywhere. Gardens are well tended and somewhat more ordered than say in England, though that will not be to everyone’s taste.
Finally, some of the stronger older cheeses are eaten with a sweet mustard sauce. It sounds bizarre, but it is delicious .
Well done Chris for a great interview. Dank U Weil!

Leave a Reply

Tags: , ,