10 Reasons to Stay and Study in Netherlands
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If images of cozy cafes or shimmering canals have captured your imagination, maybe you should consider your dream of visiting the Kingdom of the Low Countries and turn it into a reality by studying abroad in the Netherlands.
There is more to the Netherlands than meets the eye, which is why we are excited to showcase the top ten reasons for international students to choose the Netherlands as their number one study abroad destination.
1. Prestigious University
Looking for a study abroad destination that offers you the opportunity to study at one of the best universities in the world? Look no further than the Netherlands!
The Netherlands boasts one of the oldest and most reputable higher education systems in the world. With so many universities in the Netherlands ranked highly in the world, it is no surprise that it is one of the most popular study abroad destinations in Europe.
On top of that, Dutch universities offer friendly tuition fees, a variety of English language programs, and a great student life.
2. Open-Minded Society
Dutch people go about their daily lives with a “live and let live” attitude that can be seen in the diversity of their environment. Tolerance has become an integral building block in Dutch society.
As a result, multinational restaurants, gay bars, brothels and coffee shops live in peaceful coexistence in the same neighborhood in cities across the Netherlands. As an international student, this may seem strange at first, but you will quickly see that instead of generating crime, the Dutch liberal legalization policy has created a safe space for people to live their lives.
Studying abroad in the Netherlands will, therefore, give international students the opportunity to open their own minds to the lifestyle choices of people around the world.
3. Competitive Economy
Upon reaching graduation, most students have one main goal — finding a job. It is important, especially if you live and study abroad, to think about your job opportunities after completing your studies.
After experiencing life in the Netherlands, many students can’t help but want to stay for good, so they make it their mission to find work after their studies. Fortunately, with one of the most competitive economies in Europe, finding a job is not only possible, it is a possibility!
After becoming an agrarian country, the Netherlands is now a center for modern technology and startups. The Dutch government also promotes innovation and new talent by offering visas to foreigners with marketable skills, making the Dutch workforce one of the most diverse.
4. Language-Savvy People
Did you know that Dutch is the closest language to English? As English’s closest relative on the Germanic language tree, Dutch is easier to learn for English speakers than Italian or French. Both languages borrow vocabulary from the other and are grammatically similar in many ways.
But, if learning a language isn’t your goal, don’t worry. The Dutch speak English in one of the highest non-native professions in the world. You will also find many options when it comes to studying programs in English.
That being said, as savvy language learners, many Dutch also speak a third or fourth language! Because of the Netherlands’ proximity to Belgium, France and Germany, many Dutch also learn French or German. So, don’t be shy, and put your language skills to the test!
5. Cycling Culture for Life
Another great benefit of studying abroad in the Netherlands is your cheap and easy access to transportation. Just bike there!
With an extensive network of bike paths and plenty of places to store and lock your bike, the Netherlands’ infrastructure makes it easier to cycle to your destination than driving or using public transport. This is also another way for the Netherlands to embrace sustainability and protect the environment.
On top of that, out of respect for bikers on the road, there have been some serious cycling accidents, making it one of the safest ways to travel too. So get on your bike and go!
6. Healthy and Active Lifestyle
The Netherlands ranks among the healthiest in the world.
Of course, this is due in small part to the widespread cycling culture across the country. However, the Dutch also value sport and other forms of physical activity. As an international student in the Netherlands, you will have many opportunities to join other students in a group or team for sports or just exercise.
Physical activity and social aspects combined make for a great mental space to face the challenges of studying and living abroad.
7. Foods to Die For
It’s surprising that the Dutch diet is filled with saturated fat. Cheese, butter and meat abound on every table in Holland.
A step inside a Dutch pastry shop is also likely to have you drooling. Stroopwafels, pancakes, tart apples and licorice are Dutch favorite snacks. No study abroad in the Netherlands is complete without at least trying poffertjes, small powdered pancakes, or oliebollen, the Dutch version of donuts.
If pastries aren’t your thing, there are plenty of other delicious treats to try! Bitterballen is among the most popular bars or party snacks. These small meatballs are breaded and deep-fried for a delicious, crunchy delicacy.
8. Golden Age to Pine Over
If the names Rembrandt and Vermeer sound the bill for you, then you should know about the Dutch Golden Age. Paintings like The Girl with a Pearl Earring cast a shadow on the minds of millions around the world because of their popularity and historic significance in the art world.
But it’s not just Vermeer’s paintings that are easily recognizable. Maybe you’ve also heard of Vincent van Gogh, the painter of one of the world’s most famous paintings, Starry Night. While studying abroad at the University of Amsterdam, you will have more than enough time to discover all that Dutch art has to offer. Start with the stunning Van Gogh Museum to brush up on your post-impressionist knowledge.
9. Travel Destinations to Discover
In the Netherlands, international students can discover some of the most beautiful and unique cities in the world. Stroll along the canals of Amsterdam, visit the harbor in Rotterdam or observe the beautiful architecture of The Hague.
No matter where you choose to study, the Netherlands is perfectly located for you to explore all that Europe has to offer! It’s easy to find bargains and weekend getaways to Italy, Poland or even the UK. Many Dutch cities are also connected via train to bustling European cities such as Brussels or Cologne. So you can take advantage of your study abroad experience in the Netherlands by not only seeing what the Netherlands has to offer but also seeing all there is to see in Europe.
10. Be Yourself
Not only were they tolerant, the Dutch were also receptive. You can feel free to be who you want to be. You will realize with the freedom to do so, you will also want to reach higher to discover your full potential. Dutch people are honest and open communicators. At first, many international students to the Netherlands found this too advanced. However, soon the direct communication style revealed its benefits.
You’ll always know where you stand with the Dutch, and as long as you’re also open and direct, you’ll quickly find that you have a new group of lifelong friends. Many students who study abroad cite making friends and connections as one of the most rewarding aspects of the study abroad experience.
So what do you think? Are you ready to take on the challenge and embark on an amazing journey to study abroad in the Netherlands?
Then, when you’re ready, check out our research abroad and discover many international programs looking for new international students like you!