Katwijk, Valkenburg and Rijnsburg

Katwijk, Valkenburg & RijnsburgGemeente Katwijk

The municipality of Katwijk consists of the five centers Katwijk aan Zee, Katwijk aan den Rijn, Katwijk-Noord, Valkenburg and Rijnsburg, and it is the largest municipality of the Bulb Region with a total of more than 62,000 inhabitants.

In particular, the fishing village of Katwijk aan Zee has been able to maintain its identity well. The Katwijkse dialect (Katteks / Kattuks) is still spoken and contains many words from ancient Dutch from the seventeenth century and even from the Middle Ages such as skoe and skoe-e (for the Dutch word: schoen and schoenen, which means shoe and shoes in English) and skoere (schouders, which in English means shoulders). The name Katwijk may be derived from the Germanic tribe de Chatten, and wijk (which means: neighborhood) comes from the Latin word vicus, residence. In Roman times, the strategic location of the place was of great importance. The northern border of the Roman Empire lay along the Rhine. The name Catwijck is seen for the first time in documents from 1231. The municipality of Katwijk dates back to 1817 and shows a blue Andreas cross. St Andreas has traditionally been the patron saint of fishermen. The current view of the Katwijkse boulevard originates from after the Second World War. During the war, a 200m long strip of houses had to make place for the Atlantikwall (Atlantic wall). In 2006, the municipalities of Valkenburg and Rijnsburg were merged with Katwijk. Over time Katwijk as well as Noordwijk have grown into one of the major tourist attractions of the Dutch coast.

Valkenburg is a small village with about 4,000 inhabitants. The village is mostly known for the naval airport Valkenburg Airport (Vliegveld Valkenburg). In 2006 this airport was closed and since 2010 the musical 'Soldaat van Oranje' (Soldier of Orange) has been performed in the theater hangar. Around the Valkenburg Lake lies a narrow-gauge Railway (smalspoorlijn). From Ascension Day to the last weekend of September, you can take a ride with the steam train around the lake.

In 2006, Rijnsburg accounted for slightly less than 15,000 inhabitants. The village is especially famous for the Rijnsburgse Flower Parade (Rijnsburgse Bloemencorso) annually on the second Saturday in August and the FloraHolland establishment. It was not until the sixth century that there was a real village. The Frisians had settled there. In an ecclesiastical writing of the year 750, it is spoken of 'Rudolfsheim, now called Rinasburg'. In the year 975, Dirk II won the battle against the West Frisians and founded the Laurentius chapel. In the center of the ‘old’ Rijnsburg is the Wilhelminaboom. This tree was planted in 1898 in honor of Princess Wilhelmina's 18th birthday. During the occupation years 1940-1945 the tree was the symbol of opposition to the occupier. In the night of 31 August 1941 (Wilhelmina's birthday) the tree was decorated festively. A group of 30 random Rijnburgers were later arrested and imprisoned in the prison Oranjehotel (Orange Hotel) in Scheveningen. The occupant has tried to poison the tree a few days after, but it is still there today. The philosopher Baruch Spinoza lived in Rijnsburg between 1661 and 1663. The Spinoza House (Spinozahuisje) is one of the places of special interest in Rijnsburg. The late mayor of Amsterdam Eberhard van der Laan used to live in Rijnsburg.


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