The Netherlands welcomes many tourists and foreigners to live, travel and work every year. There are many legends about the Netherlands that every tourist passes on. However, the following five things are myths foreigners have misunderstood about the Netherlands.
Myths 1: The Netherlands is Amsterdam and Holland
This is a common mistake. Even foreign artists performing in the Netherlands make this mistake.
Country called: Netherlands (Nederland)
Holland is the name of two essential provinces during the Golden Age. The name Holland has stuck and is used today for tourism and marketing reasons.
And the capital of the Netherlands is Amsterdam. Amsterdam may be very famous and associated with the Netherlands. However, Amsterdam is neither a country nor a region.
Myths 2: Dutch people always smoke weed.
You might be forgiven for thinking that a country that tolerates or turns a blind eye to purchasing cannabis (it’s actually five grams or less) has to travel in perpetual euphoria. But here it is. According to United Nations figures, only 5.4% of Dutch people used cannabis at least once in 2010. In the US, this figure is as high as 24%. All the coffee shops in Amsterdam are primarily for tourists.
Myths 3: Tulips from Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Today’s tulips are so famous in Amsterdam and the Netherlands that people around the world think this country is the home of tulips.
Initially, these flowers did not come from Amsterdam but from Turkey.
The pretty, pointy little tulip was introduced to the West in the 16th century. The Dutch immediately began mixing and matching businesses like no other, making them very rich and making the Netherlands the home of tulips. The tulip mania broke out in the 17th century with the exorbitant price of bulbs that, in one case, brought in about 3,000 members of the guild or the annual income of a wealthy merchant.
Myths 4: Dutch people speak the same language as German.
Don’t say this to a Dutchman.
Dutch shares the same family name as German and many similarities. But learning Dutch doesn’t mean you’re learning German.
Myths 5: Everyone rides their bike, all the time.
This is true, but not entirely. There are indeed many bicycles, more than there are people. But if I needed to get from Amsterdam to Drenthe, I wouldn’t think about going by bike. That will take all day.
Because the Netherlands is relatively small and packed with people, bicycles are often ideal. But other modes of transport are still used all the time.