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Groningen is the most northerly province in the Netherlands. The capital of the same name is especially known in Groningen. The city of Groningen has a vibrant center. Outside the city there is beautiful nature. For example, you have Lake Paterswolde and the Middag-Humsterland National Landscape.
Groningen, the city
Groningen is a vibrant city with many events. Culture is alive in this city. The most famous landmark of Groningen is the Martini Tower in the center. The Groninger Forum was opened in 2019, this is an architecturally beautiful building where performances and exhibitions take place. Well-known events in Groningen are the Eurosonic Noorderslag Music Festival (ESNS) and Noorderzon. ESNS is organized every January and offers a stage for emerging bands and artists for four days. Noorderzon is a festival that is held in the summer. Noorderzon is a festival for art, creativity, theater, theater and music.
Bourtange is a fortified town in the north of Groningen, near the German border. The fortified town of Bourtange is built in a star shape. In this town you really go back in time and admire the medieval architecture, canals and dikes. The town has four museums, where you can learn more about the Eighty Years' War against Spain.
Pieterburen is of course known for the Pieterburen seal center. Pieterburen itself is just a small village with about 500 inhabitants. A day out to the seal center is interesting. The seal center feels special for every age. You can learn all about the problems facing seals here. A tip is to keep an eye on the seal center website. They regularly sail at sea to release seals. If such a trip is planned, you can reserve a place on the boat.
Nature in Groningen
One of the most popular nature reserves in Groningen is the Paterswoldsemeer. The lake of Paterswoldsemeer is on the border with Drenthe. The lake is especially loved by sailing enthusiasts. Another nature reserve in Groningen is the Middag-Humsterland National Landscape. The Middag-Humsterland landscape is the oldest cultural landscape in the Netherlands. Many artists were inspired by the views that can be found here. The nature reserve is located above the capital of the province. It is a farming landscape of fields, ditches and ancient villages. Groningen is great for walking and cycling.
The famous Pieterpad starts in Groningen. It is the most famous long-distance route in the Netherlands. It is a 500 kilometer long route from Pieterburen to Maastricht. The route is divided into 26 walking stages. In Groningen you can choose to do one of the first stages. The first stage starts in Pieterburen and ends in Winsum.
The Menkemaborg is a castle museum. The Menkemaborg is open every year from March to December. The castle museum is located in Uithuizen, in the northeast of the province. You can walk in the castle through spacious rooms and view the cabinet organ, among other things. The castle garden is beautiful. There is a tea house, maze, orchard and vegetable garden. The castle has been completely decorated by artists. So you can admire the castle with atmospheres from the 17th and 18th century. The Menkemaborg treasure house used to be a storage place for horses and carriages. Today, a pancake restaurant is located here.
Hortus Botanicus Haren
The Hortus Botanicus Haren is owned by the University of Groningen. It is one of the oldest and largest botanical gardens in the Netherlands. The Hortus Botanicus covers 15 hectares. There is a wild plant garden, a Celtic garden and a Chinese garden with an authentic Chinese tea house. More than 100 volunteers are committed to preserving the Hortus in Haren.
The Arboretum Notoarestoen is the life's work of notary Smit. The name Arboretum Notoarestoen literally also means notary garden. This notary garden is located in Eenrum, which is close to Groningen city. Since the death of notary Smit in 2002, a foundation has been set up to preserve and maintain his life's work. The notary's garden is about two hectares in size. The area of this garden is filled with 600 different types of coniferous and deciduous trees, from different countries. Furthermore, this garden is known for its unique rhododendron plantation. A number of very rare rhododendron species are present in the Arboretum Notoarestoen.
The coast of Groningen
You have beautiful views from the coast of Groningen. You can even look forward to the uninhabited Rottum. You can walk and cycle beautifully along the coast, you will pass picturesque villages and beautiful sea clay areas. The nursery of the North Sea can also be found on the coast. It has been decided that nature can take its own course. You can also visit the Dollard, where unique plant species grow.
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