Today I’ll explain something a bit different than usually to you. No routes around some country, no guides to see some town or city and no hidden and no-touristic places. Today I’ll show you impressions that I had, some interesting facts and some things that I’ve learnt about the country of the bikes, mills and tulips: The Netherlands.
After almost six months, I came back three days ago from this wonderful country and I should say that it was an amazing experience, but this is another story. When you’re living abroad, you realize that the usual and common things you always do and the once you think that are normal for everybody are not the once that others do. So you have to adapt to another culture and to another way of life, maybe changing some of your daily habits.
As a result you learn a lot, so today I want to explain all those things I’ve learnt during all these months to you, as well as everything that has surprised me and some other interesting facts about The Netherlands. You may know some of them, you may think some of them are fun or surprising. In any case, I hope some of them help you if you want to travel to The Netherlands or if you want to live there.
- I’ve learnt that you should always bring an umbrella (it could be also a raincoat) and sunglasses with you. You never know if it will rain cats and dogs or if it will be sunny both on the same day (or even at the same hour).
- Dutch people always greet shaking hands except if it is between relatives or close friends, then they give each other three kisses on the cheeks.
- The Netherlands is the windmills’ There are about 1000 windmills still working.
- I’ve learnt how to ride a bike, but not a normal one. Those ones that you have to brake going back with the pedals.
- There are bicycles paths all around the country. I know it’s a topic but everybody goes by bicycles and you can go wherever you want around the country with a bike.
- Dutch people need a swim diploma to prove they know how to swim. I’m not sure but maybe they need it because there’s water everywhere so everyone should know how to swim.
- You can’t pay with a VISA. In the 95% of the places they won’t accept this kind of card.
- Two-thirds of the Dutch people live under the sea level.
- The Bakfiets. The All the Dutch families have this kind of bicycles to bring the kids everywhere.
- If you believed that English people drink a lot of tee, then go to The Netherlands. They also drink tee every time of day: after having breakfast, before and after lunch, after dinner… and even better if it’s with
- There are dykes that keep the see away from the whole country to prevent floods.
- When students finish their final exams in the high school and they pass them, they hang out a Dutch flag and a school bag to show everybody that they have passed the exams. This always happens in June.
- They are so proud of their country and their King and Queen that they have an official day for them: The King’s Day (27th of April) and they always celebrate it drinking a lot and dressing in orange.
- Almost everybody in The Netherlands speaks English, but the interesting thing is that they don’t leant it (at school) until they’re 12 years old.
- I’ve learnt how to pronounce well Utrecht, Dordrecht, Kinderdijk and Zierikzee. I’m just kidding, I still don’t know how to say it.
I’m sure there are more interesting and different things about The Netherlands and the Dutch people so I encourage you to write down all those things that surprise you about this nice country, in the comments.