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Visit the Netherlands’ 11 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Part 1

by Aoife O'Riordan

Dec 15, 2022

Lower Germanic Limes © National Image Bank / Kim Kaminski

Europe

The Netherlands Board of Tourism & Convention just launched a new website page dedicated to the country’s 11 UNESCO World Heritage sites. For the first time, visitors can access information from the official website about these different destinations to learn about what makes each of them unique and special.

 

Should your travels take you to the Netherlands in the near future, consider visiting one (or more) of these fascinating UNESCO World Heritage sites. Come back on Tuesday, Dec. 20, for more on the other six sites.

 

windmill

© Sjoerd Bracke & Cuno de Bruin

 

Droogmakerij de Beemster

Considered a masterpiece of land reclamation, this 17th-century site reveals how the Dutch reclaimed land in an area that, at the time, was still an inland sea. Using 43 windmills, the region transformed into fields of green, despite the land still sitting 3.5 meters below sea level. The windmills not only helped reclaim the land, but also turned it into fertile soil. After dividing the area into plots and renting them out to crop and livestock farmers, others soon flocked to the area, including rick merchants, whose mansions and manors remain today.

 

Van Nelle Factory

Located in Rotterdam, this factory, which became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2014, showcases the best of Dutch modernism. Originally a 1920s coffee, tea and tobacco factory, the architecture of the building set a precedent for future structures, heavily influencing modern architecture throughout Europe. A building in which light, air and space take precedence, the area continues to thrive with commercial activity.

 

Lower Germanic Limes

History lovers must venture to the Lower Germanic Limes, a place providing visitors with a glimpse into the region in Roman times. The Lower Germanic Limes mark the edge of lower Germany from the first to fifth centuries. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2021, the Lower Germanic Limes comprise structures marking the Roman Empire’s northern border, from fortresses and military bases to towns, roads, cemeteries, an amphitheater and even a palace.

 

Rietveld Schroder

© Iris van den Broek

 

Rietveld Schröder House

Designed in 1924 by Dutch architect Gerrit Rietveld, this house serves as an icon of modern architecture. The 3-D, asymmetrical house broke barriers in the world of design, all while paying tribute to the De Stijl art movement. Visitors can enjoy a one-hour tour of the property, in which they can see various pieces of Rietveld furniture, works of art and more.

Wadden

© Sabrina Gaudio

 

Wadden Sea

A UNESCO World Heritage site since 2009, Wadden Sea’s unique natural features makes it a popular site for many. In addition to being the site of the darkest sky in the Netherlands, Wadden Sea also serves as home to salt marshes, beaches, salt flats, dunes and millions of birds.

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