Groningen to host Dutch royal family on King’s Day

Groningen to host Dutch royal family on King’s Day

This year, on King’s Day in the Netherlands, Groningen will host the Dutch royal family for the first time since 2004. Last year, the Dutch royal family was hosted in Tilburg.  

King Willem Alexander, Queen Máxima and their children, along with Princess Margriet and Pieter van Vollenhoven’s sons and their wives, will be present. During their visit, extra attention will be paid to the problems that the gas extraction has caused for the province.

King’s Day 2018 in Groningen

King’s Day in Groningen will not only revolve around the topic of gas extraction; the Dutch royal family will also have the chance to see many of the good things the Dutch city of Groningen has to offer during their city tour.

This year, there will be no grand parade in Groningen. The parade usually allows the Dutch municipalities surrounding the city to present themselves. In Groningen, the city shares its name with the surrounding province and it is therefore not necessary to explicitly present the connection between them.

The city tour for the Dutch royal family will begin at 11am and finish at 1pm. During the tour along a 1.200-metre route, the many facets of Groningen will be presented and several stops will be made.

Starting at the Prinsenhof and finishing at the Vismarkt, the programme includes highlights such as a football clinic by Ronald Koeman, a performance by the Noord Nederlands Orkest, a presentation by entrepreneur Ben Woldring and a performance by musician Arnold Veeman and the Noordpool Orkest. 

Groningen earthquake attention

During the tour, the earthquakes, which are a result of the drilling for gas in the province, will be addressed. Locals will be able to share their experiences with King Willem Alexander. The Dutch king has made private visits to Groningen multiple times to speak to those impacted by the earthquakes.

Groningen is the youngest city in the Netherlands, with the average age of its residents being around 36. It is also a city of the future when it comes to innovative energy production. Therefore, this part of the programme will have an additional focus on the future of energy extraction and the young, innovative companies who are already excelling in sustainability and the transition to new forms of energy.

Thousands of visitors to the Dutch city

Last year, during the King’s Day celebrations in Tilburg, more than 150.000 people visited the city. This year, around 60.000 to 80.000 people are expected to celebrate the King’s birthday in Groningen.

Normally, around 50.000 people celebrate King’s Day in Groningen and on the city tour route, there is enough space for 30.000 people. Because of the limited space and the number of expected visitors, certain parts of the city will be cordoned off.

Take a look at the tour route (in Dutch).  

Mina Solanki


Mina Solanki

Completed her Master's degree at the University of Groningen and worked as a translator before joining IamExpat. She loves to read and has a particular interest in Greek mythology. In...

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