Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Featured City - Emmen

Emmen can be found to the north-east of The Netherlands. A fusion of several small farming and peat-harvesting communities and which date back to the Middle Ages, in the province of Drenthe

With 108,000 residents it is the most highly populated city in the area. It also accommodates the highest concentration of industry in the northern Netherlands with over 4,500 businesses. Emmen also devotes the highest number of hectares to glasshouse horticulture of any other municipality. The Schoonebeek gas fields are very close and the textile and electronic sectors are well represented.

Emmen is also both nationally and internationally renowned as an open, green city. An abundance of room has meant that with the use of clever landscaping the suburban areas border on heather covered land, sand dunes and woodland. Saxon farms and nine ancients’ graves show just how long this area has been inhabited.

The zoo, Dierenpark Emmen, is considered on of the finest zoos in Europe. Built in 1935 and totally renewed in 1970 it has a large collection of animals that live in a carefully reconstructed habitat according to vegetation, climate and elevation. The oldest animal in the zoo is an elephant, Annnabel, who arrived at the zoo forty years ago at the age of two. The zoo attracts 1.5 million visitors every year and is open all year round.

Admission is € 17,00, children from 3-9 years € 15,00. More information can be found on their website (in Dutch) Dierenpark Emmen

The centre of Emmen is lively and filled with modern and diverse shopping areas as well as cafés and restaurants.

Culturally there is a diversity of things to do and see, for example theatre, artistic exhibitions and festivals. There is also a walk or cycle route, that with the guide book 'Beelden in Emmen' (Images in Emmen) in hand, takes the visitor past all the art works, and statures that can be found around the city. The guide is available for € 6,50 from the VVV Emmen (tourist information).

© Alison Day
First published in the Connections magazine #13 Autumn 2006
Webstore: Alison Day Designs

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