Regional Culture



Along withclogs and tulips, windmills are probably the most well known images of the Netherlands. Many windmills were built in the Dutch Golden Age, the Seventeenth Century, to sustain the timber, paper and paint industries. Nowadays, the Netherlands still has over a thousand windmills. The Kinderdijk, where 19 windmillsare lined up along the water, is a UNESCO world heritage site.


The cheese market in Alkmaar is one of the most famous and typical of the Netherlands. There you can still see people in traditional costume carrying the cheese in an old fashioned way. Cheese is not only a tourist attraction though, as Dutch cheese is also exported world wide and is one of the major export products of the Netherlands.. An average of 560 tons of cheese is exported every year!

Modern Engineering

The Erasmus bridge in Rotterdam was built in 1996 and because of its beautiful, slightly curving lines, it is also called “The Swan”. It is 808 meters long and 139m high. Its striking modern design is not out of place in Rotterdam, which showcases a lot of contemporary architecture, skyscrapers and all, as the city’s medieval centre was nearly destroyed by bombings in 1940.

Revolutionary painters

Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) is probably the most famous Dutch painter, even though he only sold one painting during his life time and only became ‘big’ after his death. Possibly his best known paintings are his Sun Flowers and self portraits, one of which shows his ear notoriously cut off during a brawl with fellow painter Paul Gaugin (1848-1903). Van Gogh became really ill and after some ferocious and fast painting, he committed suicide a few years later. His paintings are now worth millions.

Modern Fashion designers

Viktor and Rolf are a Dutch pair of fashion designers who are renowned the world over for their theatrical shows and extravagant collections. They also create accessories and perfumes. Have a look at their website for a taste of their creations!

Modern furniture designer

Gerrit Rietveld (1888-1964) is a famous Dutch architect, graphic designer and furniture maker. He built a famous chair, painted bright blue and red, which has become an iconic example of “ De Stijl” movement. This movement attempted to design universal concepts, using straight lines and primary colours , aiming for simplicity and abstraction. Artists associated with “ De Stijl” are Theo van Doesburg (1833-1931) and Piet Mondriaen (1872-1944).


For more on the Netherlands, look at www.holland.com.

Now try our game to see if you can match them to their origin in either Flanders or the Netherlands.

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