Em Dashed - Tales + Fails from a Backpacker Turned Foreigner in the Netherlands besides amsterdam Archives - Em Dashed

besides amsterdam

From Dalfsen to Ommen: A Day in the Overijsselse Vecht Valley

Vecht river with grassy banks on either side, and two flags in front of a small wooden shed on the right bank

Look, I know I talk a lot of shit about living out here in the Dutch countryside — but there are some definite upsides.

If you get a chance to visit the east of the Netherlands, I highly recommend you spend some time in the valley along the Overijsselse Vecht river (an area called the “Vechtdal” in Dutch). It’s filled with picturesque features like green meadows, small forests, grazing livestock, old-fashioned windmills, tucked-away castles, cosy hamlets, and more. CONTINUE READING

15 Things That Happen When You Live in a Small Dutch Town

Being a foreigner in this part of the Netherlands means that, every time I come across something new or unusual for me, I can’t just label it a “Dutch thing” or a “small town thing.” Some are one, some the other, some are both. Some are probably neither, but it’s hard to be certain (I might write a blog largely devoted to existing in foreign countries, but I never *actually* claimed I was worldly). CONTINUE READING

Weekend in Valkenburg, the Netherlands: Caves, Castles, and a Day Trip to Maastricht

Weekend in Valkenburg + Maastricht, Netherlands

Look: you could visit Maastricht the easy way — by which I mean, go to Maastricht and stay there in the city, like a chump your standard visitor.

Or you could take advantage of this opportunity to do something a little bit wild — by which I mean, choose instead to stay in the lively and atmospheric village of Valkenburg, only 10 minutes from Maastricht by train. (Note: your defintion of wild may or may not differ slightly from mine. Also, what happens in Valkenburg stays in Valkenburg, unless of course, you write about it on your blog later. Moving on.) CONTINUE READING

Provincie Overijssel: What to See and Do in the Eastern Netherlands

What to See and Do in Overijssel, Netherlands

Raise your hand if you’ve heard of Overijssel, the Netherlands before.

Anyone?

Well, it’s a good thing I’m here.

Overijssel is a province in the east of the Netherlands, and it’s been my adopted home for the last two and half years. One of the reasons I started this blog was to share this region with the rest of the world; and it’s high time I gave a proper introduction. CONTINUE READING

Summer 2016 Wrap-Up

Summer Wrap-Up: Netherlands + Minnesota -- Em Dashed

This past “summer” in the Netherlands was pretty much what I’ve come to expect after two years.

It was cold. It was cloudy. It was wet. I grumbled and pouted and questioned nearly every day why I had chosen to live in such a godforsaken place, which I can only assume means I should get my Dutch passport in the mail any day now. (“Je bent één van ons. Veel sterkte.”) CONTINUE READING

Besides Amsterdam: Travelers Share Their Favorite Places to See in the Netherlands

Besides Amsterdam: Travelers Share Their Favorite Dutch Spots

Amsterdam: I’ve always known it’s the most popular Dutch city by far.

But until I moved to the Netherlands, I didn’t realize just how often it manages to eclipse the rest of the country. I live 1.5 hours away in a completely different province — but people hear “I live in the Netherlands” and they assume my kitchen window overlooks the Herengracht. (Because, yes: in addition to residing in Amsterdam, I’m also a millionare. Did I not mention that before?) CONTINUE READING

The Nijmeegse Vierdaagse (Walk of the World) in Nijmegen, the Netherlands

The Nijmeegse Vierdaagse (Walk of the World) in Nijmegen, the Netherlands

Like most reasonable people who have recently committed to renting an apartment, and who have a multitude of tasks ahead of them (including but not limited to: installing new appliances, painting till their arms fall off, eviscerating dust bunnies, and constructing furniture from plastic nails and hopeless dreams), we decided to do literally none of that, and go away for a couple of days last week instead. Because, you know. Priorities. CONTINUE READING