The Netherlands, also known as Holland, is a country in Western Europe.The Netherlands are the second largest exporter of food after the United States. This is because of their excellent climate, good soil and strong focus on intensive farming and technology. The Netherlands is one of the most tolerant countries in the world, with an incredibly high level of personal and social freedom. These conditions are why every year, thousands of international students head there to study abroad.
With over 412 people per square km living there, it has one of the world’s highest population densities.
One of their most well-known cities is the Hague. Located in the Hague are the Permanent Court of Arbitration, the International Court of Justice, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Court. Due to this, The Hague has gained the name “Legal Capital of the World‘.
The name, “Netherlands” literally means lower countries, which makes sense as only 50% of the total surface area of the country is above the sea level. The rest is all reclaimed land which is stopped from flooding by large dams. These large dams are considered a wonder of modern civil engineering.
The country is mostly flat with a few hills in the southeast and central areas.
Due to the location and geography, the climate of the Netherlands is quite mild. Its placement next to the North Sea ensures that the summer is warm and the winter is cool.
The Netherlands are also home to 20 national parks and hundreds of nature reserves, making it a great place for tourists to spend time. Certain rare species are only found here, making it of great interest to scientists and tourists alike.
The Netherlands have well-developed systems of transport. Their road and rail networks are among the densest in the world, with massive numbers of people travelling by car or by public transport each day.
Biking is one of the most preferred modes of transport. The density of cycle tracks nearly matches that of the road network.
Being a coastal country, the ports are also regularly used, with the Rotterdam port handling 440.5 million metric tonnes of cargo per year.
Due to the incredible scenic beauty of the Netherlands, there are a large number of tourists that regularly make their way here. The government goes out of their way to ensure that the tourists have great experiences, and provide them with tips on how to make the most of their time.
Up until the 20th Century, the Netherlands were mostly Christian, with other religions staying at 15-20% of the population. However, in recent years, religious sentiment has reduced to the point that nearly 68% of the population identifies as irreligious. Christians are still the majority religion, but they comprise barely 20% of the population, above Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. Due to the liberal policies introduced by the government, people in the Netherlands are free to follow any religion they like.
Religious activities are not enforced in educational institutions since the government guaranteed freedom of education. Any institution that follows general quality criteria receive government funding, which ensures separation of religious education from education in required topics.
Politics and Economy
The Netherlands are a constitutional Monarchy, led by their King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, who acts as the head of state.
Their economy is extremely strong, given their wealth of natural resources. They have one of the largest known reservoirs of Natural Gas, and their systems of mechanised farming are among the best in the world.
The economy highly prizes education, and as such, teachers in the Netherlands are among the highest paid in the world. The educational system here allows international students in at lower levels, which is a great thing for Indian students. Students can go all the way from high school to Graduate, Masters and Post Graduate level programs.
Due to the strong economy of the Netherlands, there are plenty of jobs available for qualified candidates. After graduating, plenty of people decide to work in the Netherlands and earn a living. Most commercial activities are undertaken in English, as it’s the International language of commerce, making it easier for foreign students to fit in.
One of the reasons for the strong economy is that education is a requirement for all children till the age of 16.
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