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What do Germans want to see in the Netherlands

Tourism across the border

Fauve Othon on unsplash

A week ago, the NBTC (Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions) published their results from the data collection of visitors in the Netherlands during 2018. With a great surprise, I learned that German guests were one of the largest groups together with the Belgians that visited the country last year. 

Next month, the ITB-Berlin (International Tourism Börse) will take place and it would be interesting to know what Germans want. The fact that so many Duitsers visited their neighbors might be due to the proximity, the possibility for spontaneous trips by car or with a Wohnwagen that is why I went further into the research about where do these people go to or what exactly do they find schön in Holland.

In 2018, the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger published an article based on Facebook posts done by their readers after they were asked by the newspaper about their opinions on best places to visit in the Netherlands. The results are revealing. These are the locations expressed as the most beautiful and a must-see: 1) Epen, 2) Hoen van Holland, 3) Achterhoek, 4) Burg Haamstede, 5) Nijmegen, 6) Texel, 7) Noordwijk, 8) Hoorn, 9) Scheveningen, 10) Deventer, 11) Egmond aan Zee 12) Alkmaar, 13) Ouddorp, 14)Bergen aan Zee, 15) Cadzand and 16) Maastricht. The pattern to draw from here could be that many are locations close to the German border or these are attractions related to nature: beaches and water. Surprisingly no urban locations were mentioned. 

Another list of attractions published by several German bloggers depict the following attractions as the best places to visit in Holland: Dronten, Utrecht, Harderwijk, Zeewolde, or Groede. This pattern would indicate that the search for not so popular small areas became a trend by individuals.

Tripadvisor shows a rating list based on the stars given by the visitors to the attractions. It is important to consider that the statistic does not consider the number of comments, just the number of stars. The result is very different than what German media says, and I am considering here only the German posts. The best-rated attractions are: 1) Anna Frank house, the Jordaan area, the central station, the dam square and the Moco Museum in Amsterdam, 2) Escaperoon in Leiden, 3) Maastricht and the boekhandel Dominicanen, 4) Netherlands American Cemetery and Memorial, 5) Airborne Cemetery, 6) Panorama Meesdag, 7) Utrecht, 8) Kinderdijk, 9) Clara Maria Cheese & Clog Farm/ Amstelveen, 10) Huis Sonneveld/Rotterdam, 11) De Delfse Paauw/Rijkswijk. It is here again a pattern to see which is that in most of these attractions the entry fee is free and when there is a payment, visitors appreciated the most that these places generated feelings described as “beeindruekend”, “atemberaubend”, “bewegend” and “freundlich”.

In conclusion, what do Germans want? Nature, special emotions and short driving distances. And I ask myself, is this only a German wish or is this a universal wish to experience by anyone on tour?

More about attractions and German groups, contact me. Ich bin immer da.

[email protected]

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