Celebrating love in the lowlands

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we must consider ourselves lucky to be living in the Netherlands - a country where love and romance is appreciated and celebrated - in their own ways.

Even though Valentine’s Day is not as popular in Continental Europe as it is in the US, the following love-related factors make Holland quite an endearing setting for this global celebration of romance.

Tolerance & Open-mindedness

Let’s start with the fact that the Netherlands is famous for its tolerance and open-mindedness to many rather unconventional ideas about marriage and relationships - something that many people in other countries are sometimes envious of.

 The freedom to live together

For example, it is common for Dutch couples to live together for years and have kids before they finally decide to get married - or just live together without ever getting married. In contrast to many other cultures, this idea of just "living together" is acceptable and quite popular in the Netherlands. As long as love and commitment are there, marriage can come later or not at all.

 Same-sex marriage

Apart from the samenleven culture, the tulip land is also known for its open-minded approach to gay marriage. In 2001, the Netherlands was the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage.

Throughout the years, the gay community has received more rights and respect in the Netherlands, making the country famous for promoting the "freedom" to love.

Romantic places in the Netherlands

The Netherlands does not fall behind when it comes to romantic places.

or just simply the view of Den Bosch’s well-preserved fortresses?

With many such romantic sights to offer lovers, the Netherlands could undoubtedly be a great place to celebrate Valentine’s Day (if only February was a warmer month...!)

Flowers & Chocolates

Who doesn’t love flowers and chocolate? Among other things that can be described as quintessentially Dutch, flowers and chocolate are also two of the most remarkable specialties of the country. Needless to say, the Netherlands is one of the biggest chocolate - producing and flower-exporting countries in the world.

So if you think Valentine’s Day in this country would not be as festive as other celebrations, think again. With the freedom to love, endless supply of pretty flowers, tasty chocolates, and beautiful places to go, the Netherlands can make the 14th of February special in its own right.

Besides, what’s not to love about the day that celebrates love?

Ayu Mashita


Ayu Mashita

Former Lifestyle Editor of IamExpat, music enthusiast, social media aficionado and brand strategist in the making :)

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