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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)


Greetings, and welcome to my thread :) A week ago I've been to The Netherlands for about 9 days, and this time I finally got to see the country better. I've been there before, but only to Groningen and Maastricht, which are both far from the "core" of the country, and were only short day trips.

As usual, I had some image of The Netherlands in my mind, and I was curious to see if it's going to be confirmed or not. I always saw the country as some kind of rich, advanced, high-tech, ultra-modern and clean peak of civilisation, a mix of Japan and Switzerland if you want. While this image is not utterly wrong, I found a place that was much more down-to-earth than I thought. Which is not bad at all.

However, I could not help myself comparing it to Belgium, which is probably the foreign country I know best and which, I thought, was the closest relative of Holland. And, compared to Belgium, I found a more crowded place, with the same smiling and civilised people, but more loud and energetic, and where cities are in a better condition. At the same time, though, I found less elegance and style as I did in Belgium.

I also think I noticed a contradiction between image and reality (I might still be wrong, though, I need more interaction): it felt to me like a place that is, indeed, liberal and tolerant, but were at the same time you are expected to be in line with everyone else and not stand out too much.

Anyway, I'm going to visit the country relatively often in the near future, and I'm curios to see if this first impression I got will stay the same in time.

This is the plan for this thread:

1. Utrecht
2. Amsterdam
3. Nijmegen
4. The Hague
5. Delft
6. Texel Island
7. Rotterdam and Kinderdijk
...

Like I said, I will be visiting again, and will probably expand this thread with each new trip.
Pics are coming soon :)
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Utrecht




Utrecht is the forth largest cities in The Netherlands, and one of the most important ones in terms of history. It lies at the limit between "dry land" and reclaimed land that lies under the sea level. For some reason, I always thought it was a big city. In fact, it's more like a mini-Amsterdam, with a few canals and typical Dutch houses :)

The Dom Tower (1382). The tallest church tower in the country.


And the nearby Dom Church
 
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