Dutch hidden gems promoted to save tourism industry

Dutch hidden gems promoted to save tourism industry

The Dutch tourist board has started a campaign to encourage tourists and locals to visit less-frequented beauty spots across the country in an attempt to spread post-coronavirus tourism.

You need to be here

With the launch of the campaign "You need to be here" (Hier moet je zijn), The Netherlands Board of Tourism and Conventions (NBTC) hopes to encourage people across the country to forego holidays this year, and instead spend time visiting places right here in the Netherlands. 

Jon Vranken, managing director of NBTC, said that the attempt to attract local and foreign tourists to so-called "safe" spots is an attempt to save jobs in the tourism industry in towns and cities across the Netherlands

The purpose of the campaign is to help entrepreneurs restart their businesses safely, and redirect focus from hotspots to hidden gems and unexplored destinations.

The campaign highlights spots such as the cheese market in Alkmaar and the historic centre of Zwolle. You can also get involved in the campaign using the hashtag #hiermoetjezijn to share your experiences and tips for places to visit. 

Sustainable tourism

With this campaign, the NBTC is attempting to restart national tourism, but in a new, more sustainable way. This attempt hopes to spread tourists more evenly across the country, to avoid overcrowding in Amsterdam.

Vranken has said that one positive of the corona-crisis was the opportunity to potentially reinvent Dutch tourism, while keeping the Netherlands liveable, lovable, and valuable to both tourists and residents.

He added that concerns about the spread of the coronavirus will mean people will look at tourism differently, and attempt to avoid large crowds. Fear of catching the virus, specifically when there is no vaccine available, will mean tourists will want to have room to manoeuvre and breathing space wherever they visit.

Tourism in Amsterdam

The campaign has been launched at a time when concerns regarding a return to pre-coronavirus levels of tourism are rising. The mayor of Amsterdam, Femke Halsama, and head of Amsterdam finance, Victor Everhardt, have warned against a return to high levels of tourism in the capital.

A recent petition put to the Amsterdam City Council to cap overnight stays in the capital has also surpassed 30.000 signatures, and the municipality of Amsterdam has introduced new regulations and restrictions on holiday rentals in the city centre. 

Before the coronavirus lockdown, there were an average of 55.000 visitors a day to the Dutch capital.

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

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