On the map, right in between Belgium and Germany, is a small country known as Netherlands. In terms of Area, Netherlands is larger than the state of Maryland but smaller than the state of West Virginia. The name in itself means low-lying country, and it stays true for Netherlands as well. A country that is the top choice of many for life and work, the introduction for the Netherlands doesn’t end there.
Area: 41,526 Sq. km
Amsterdam by Liam Gant on Pexels
National Anthem: Wilhelmus
Government Type: Conversational Monarchy where the monarchy has limited powers and all the powers are vested with the Ministers.
Official Language: Dutch
Other languages: English, French, German
Religions: Catholic 23.6%, Protestant 14.9 %( includes Dutch Reformed 6.4%, Protestant Church of the Netherlands 5.6%, Calvinist 2.1%) Muslim 5.1%, others (including Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish are 5.6%), none 50.7%
Ethnic Groups: Dutch 76.9%, EU 6.4%, Turkish 2.4%, Moroccan 2.3%, Indonesian 2.1%, German 2.1%, Surinamese 2%, Polish 1%, other 4.8%
Climate: The climate of the Netherlands is hugely influenced and impacted by the surrounding North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. The summers and deemed cool, and winters are moderate. With a small area within the country, there is little variation expected in the climate from region to region. There is a dry period in the year that starts in April and ends in September. It is accompanied by zero or minimal rainfall. The rest of the year, there is rainfall throughout. The country has four seasons. Winter is from January to March, followed by Spring from April to June, then summer is July to September and autumn is October to December.
Netherlands is a breezy country, and an umbrella along with a sweater should be carried all year long.
Expat Population: 200,000
Taboos: Dutch people are very proud, and they consider their way of dealing with everything the most accurate and correct one. So, telling them the opposite has high chances of being not received well by the Dutch. The country and its people are also quite open-minded as they were the first ones to accept and legalize gay marriages. Similarly, they are also very open-minded with religious diversity. Direct and confrontational are two things that define Dutch people. Another thing to be mindful of is to respect and honor an agreement. The Dutch take their agreements quite seriously, even it is just a plan to meet somewhere for coffee. Don’t come up with traffic or cold as last-minute excuses as it would not be well received.
Dutch clogs by Skitterphoto on pexels
Cultural Behaviors: With being direct, there are a few other terms that define Dutch people. These terms include modest, tolerant, entrepreneurial, and self-reliant. The Dutch are also hardworking people that take extreme pride in their cultural heritage, music, rich history, and involvement in international affairs. It is customary to shake hands with everyone when meeting. An interesting fact to note is that the Dutch introduce them with their last names and not their first names.
The Netherlands is ranked at 8 in the Human Development Index. This ranking is based upon good scores in different areas of life like life expectancy, education, average life longevity, income, and Gender Development Index (GDI).