Netherlands, Nijmegen

Discover the Netherlands: Field Trips to Amsterdam, Utrecht and Nijmegen

when 1 August 2016 - 5 August 2016
language English
duration 1 week
fee EUR 390

In this course you will discover the Netherlands from various perspectives. You will get a thorough introduction to Dutch culture. Both the “official culture” represented in famous museums around the country as well as the day-to-day culture. The history of the Netherlands will be covered: from Roman times (Valkhof in Nijmegen), via Middle ages (Dom Tower in Utrecht) to the Second World War (Anne Frank Museum in Amsterdam). This course is not a theoretical course. Local Dutch students from Radboud University will be your hosts during the daily field trips to three important cities in the Netherlands: Amsterdam, Utrecht and Nijmegen. Your personal experience is at the heart of the course.

In Amsterdam you will learn about the impact of the Second World War on the Netherlands and its devastating effect on the Jewish population by visiting the famous Anne Frank museum. We will also visit the main historical and archetectural highlights of the city, including a boat trip through the famous canals which symbolise the “Golden Age” of the Netherlands in the 17th Century.

In Utrecht you will climb the highest church tower in the Netherlands. Utrecht was, and still is, the administrative centre of the Catholic Church in the Netherlands. The only Dutch pope came from here. Deep underground you will visit the archaeological remains from Roman times to late middle ages. You will visit the famous wharfs and cellars of the Old Canal, that are unique in the world in this scale.

Nijmegen is the home city of Radboud University and is the oldest city in the Netherlands. You will learn about its rich history, such as the old Roman fortifications at the former northern border of the Roman Empire. A visit to the Valkhof Museum will elicit this ancient history as well as show off an important collection of pop and other contemporary art. The impact of the Second World War is still visible as the city was at the front line in 1944 for quite a while You will also explore Nijmegen, competing to be first in an exciting race. You will experience some less well known but very special spots of the city and engage in some typically Dutch activities! Last but not least you will also visit the Africa Museum, an excellent establishment where the architecture and lifestyle in Africa is shown in detail.

As well as exploring the city, you will encounter Dutch culture by tasting Dutch cuisine, learning about the Dutch language in a workshop and playing Old Dutch Games. You can get a real Dutch experience by going to visit the beaches at the Nijmegen riverside. The river Rhine enters the Netherlands close to Nijmegen, it not only provides some spectacular sights but is also the most important waterway for cargo transport between the Rotterdam Harbours on the North Sea and the Industrial Ruhrgebiet in Germany. You will be introduced to the famous Dutch tradition of Sinterklaas, which is the subject of a heated debate due to the element of Zwarte Piet (Black Peter). We are looking forward to hearing your outsider’s view during this discussion. Moreover, you will also learn how to ride a bike, a distinct neccessity in the Netherlands. Once you have learnt how to ride safely, we will have a nice biking tour in the charming country side. To finish off this extensive programme you are invited to join the Radboud Summer School social programme together with all other participants and course leaders. This includes a BBQ at the Radboud Campus, a cruise on an authentic Dutch Pancake boat (“all you can eat”), sports activities, a pub quiz and a guest lecture from of one of Radbouds internationally renowned professors.

After these five days, you will understand what it means to be a true Dutchie!

This course is designed and offered by Dutch students from the Nijmegen branch of AEGEE. AEGEE is a European wide student organisation to promote knowledge about European diversity and cooperation between European students. The Nijmegen branch is very active; it organises lectures, language workshops, professional field trips in the Netherlands for international students and various informal activities.

Course leader

Renée van Schaijk

Target group

All students at undergraduate (bachelor’s) level who are interested in learning about Dutch culture and history in an experiential way are welcome to the course. The programme is fully packed and includes a lot of travelling, walking and biking. You must be willing and able to actively participate in this intensive programme. The course is strongly recommended to students who will enrol as degree student or exchange student in the following academic year.

Course aim

After this course you will be able to:
- Explain the most important facts about the Dutch culture and history: Roman history and the impact of the Second World War
- Explain the highlights of Dutch cuisine and Dutch traditions that still live on, including the recent debates.
- Find your way around Amsterdam, Utrecht and Nijmegen, and introduce other people to their most charming and interesting places
- Speak some basic Dutch sentences
- Ride a bike in the Dutch countryside

Fee info

EUR 390: .
EUR 195: Housing (optional)