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17 Amazing Places In The Netherlands That Aren't In Holland

The Netherlands and Holland are the same, right? Nope, Holland is just a combination of two provinces. And there's so much to explore in the remaining ten!

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1. Castle 'De Haar'

Flickr: Bernt Rostad

Province? Utrecht

Where? Haarzuilens

The biggest castle of the Netherlands was built in the 14th century. This majestic structure endured riots, struggles, wars and even a tornado but still stands firm.

2. The white city

Flickr: sjdunphy

Province? Limburg

Where? Thorn

A paradise for both painters and photographers. Most of the buildings in the city centre, including the large abbey, are painted white. Thank the French for that.

3. 'Little Venice'

Flickr: bertknot

Province? Overijssel

Where? Giethoorn

Hire a small motor boat or canoe to discover the channels of this authentic Dutch village, which are the main transportation roads. Most houses are built on small islands, only accessible by boat or narrow bridges.

4. Kamp Vught

Flickr: FaceMePLS

Province? Noord Brabant

Where? Vught

One of the three concentration camps in The Netherlands and the only SS-base outside of Germany. Over 31.000 people were held captive in this camp, which is notorious because of the deportation of 1666 children to German destruction camps.

5. Holy refuge

Flickr: SofiaK.

Province? Limburg

Where? Valkenburg

The old marl and limestone quarry's have long protected the citizens of Valkenburg against the big bad outside world. One of the caves even became a chapel when the French occupied the Netherlands.

6. Capital of the North

Flickr: Bert Kaufman

Province? Groningen

Where? Groningen

This city is so awesome they named the whole province after it. Climb the 300 feet high Martinitower and wander around the historic city centre. Groningen is often called the best student city in the Netherlands. So: dress up and party all night!

7. Where the liberators lie

Flickr: fratef117

Province? Limburg

Where? Margraten

8301 American soldiers have found their final resting place at the Netherlands American Cemetery and Memorial. During the Second World War, these war heroes fell during the liberation of a country that wasn't even their own.

8. De Veluwe National Park

Flickr: Nolleos

Province? Gelderland

Where? Large area of the province

Nope, it's not the Kalahari Desert. De Veluwe's terrain varies from large sand ground to dense forests and purple colored moorlands. Prepare for a safari; you can spot elk, wild boar and otters amongst many other wildlife.

9. Rivertown

Flickr: Ben Kempner

Province? Limburg

Where? Maastricht

The oldest river in the world, the Meuse (Dutch: Maas), dominates the view of this city, which earliest settlements were built by the ancient Roman Empire. The city holds some of the oldest buildings of The Netherlands, including the Saint Servaasbridge, which was built in 1280.

10. Prehistoric Pebbles

Flickr: melalouise

Province? Drenthe

Where? All across the province. Pictured: Borger

The Dutch's personal ''little'' Stonehenges are located in the northern province of Drenthe. These 'Hunebedden' have been built over five thousand years ago and served as ancient burial sites.

11. Ship ahoy!

Flickr: jochemberends

Province? Flevoland

Where? Lelystad

The Netherlands used to be a mighty sea conquering, colony founding nation. A replica of the Batavia, one of the East Indian Company ships has been built at the harbor of Lelystad. Another ship is being made at the Batavia Wharf, which also serves as a museum about the Dutch Golden Era.

12. Island of peacefulness

Flickr: James.Stringer

Province? Friesland

Where? Schiermonnikoog

The only cars allowed on this island are busses and emergency vehicles. The main way to get around is by bicycle. Apart from a biking paradise, Schiermonnikoog is also a great place to go to the beach. Some of the beaches are over a kilometer broad, which makes them appear in the list of broadest beaches in Europe.

13. Defence against the greatest enemy

Flickr: Martin Terber

Province? Zeeland

Where? Between the province's peninsulas

Water has always been the Dutch's most formidable foe. After the Great Flood of 1953, which engulfed almost the entire province of Zeeland, the Dutch wanted to permanently defend themselves against the water. The Deltawerken were built to contain the everlasting danger of the ocean.

14. Fortified star village

Flickr: zyzak

Province? Groningen

Where? Bourtange

Founded in 1580 by William of Orange during the Dutch uprising against Spain, this village is one of the best perserved fortifications in the Netherlands. Take a stroll on top of the cannon manned walls and see what an 18th century Dutch village looked like.

15. Manmade animal paradise

Flickr: Astrid van Wesenbeeck Photography

Province? Flevoland

Where? Between Almere and Lelystad

Wild horses, oxen and elk roam free at this artificial national park. Access is limited in order to let nature run its course. Because of that, the park is home to a large variety of animals that are rare in the rest of the country.

16. Royal home

Flickr: High Profile Events

Province? Utrecht

Where? Baarn

Palace Soestdijk is the former residence of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands; the grandmother of current king Willem Alexander. Its beautiful gardens and extraordinary interieur make the palace a place no tourist should miss.

17. Typically Dutch

Flickr: bertknot

Province? Noord Brabant

Where? Willemstad

Another fortification, but waaaaaay more south than Bourtange, is Willemstad. Its name was changed in 1584 after the murder on William of Orange. It is one of the most Dutch villages you can possibly find. There's even a windmill!

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