This year we celebrate 200 years of Kingdom of the Netherlands. Between 1813 and 1815 foundations were laid for the Dutch Kingdom and tentative steps were taken towards creating a democracy. The Netherlands became a kingdom with a constitution, Senate and House of Representatives.
The original Kingdom of the Netherlands included not only our country but also several old colonies such as the Netherlands Antilles. These countries were integrated into the kingdom in 1954 and in 1986 Aruba became the first autonomous country within the kingdom. In 2010 the Dutch Antilles were dissolved completely, leaving Curacao and Sint-Maarten also as autonomous states. This means that there are now 4 countries in the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which are: The Netherlands, Aruba, Curacao and Sint-Maarten. It is not surprising that the 200 year celebrations will therefore be very culturally diverse.
Throughout the country 6 events are scheduled over a 2 year period (from 2013-2015). On Saturday 30 November 2013 the celebrations will start in Scheveningen. Prince Willem Frederick’s arrival on the beach will be re-enacted in a spectacular way. Over 400 extra’s in traditional dress are to be present on the beach to add to the overall atmosphere. King Willem-Alexander and queen Maxima will be attending the celebrations and the Kingdomconcert that is scheduled at Concertgebouw in Amsterdam in the evening.
Although the official celebrations do not start until November 30, the University of Amsterdam is already exhibiting a specific part of the ‘Bijzondere Collecties’ (Special Collections) called “Dutch Atlas: the Dawn of a Kingdom”. Central to this exhibition is the Atlas itself, which shows how the kingdom took shape with the help of 600 different maps.
For more information about the celebrations go to