Amsterdam (Netherlands) Amsterdam [mmstərˈdɑm]) is the capital and largest city of the Netherlands. It has been the capital of the Kingdom since 1814. It is located in the province of North Holland in the West of the country at the mouth of the Amstel and EY rivers. Amsterdam is connected to the Nordsee canal with the North sea.
As of July 2018, the population of the municipality of Amsterdam is 857,713 people, together with the suburbs (city district) – 2.3 million inhabitants. Amsterdam is part of the Randstad agglomeration, which is the 6th largest in Europe.
The name of the city comes from two words: “Amstel” – the name of the river and “dam” – “dam”. In the 12th century, it was a small fishing village, but during the Golden age of the Netherlands, Amsterdam became one of the most important ports in the world and a major trading center.
The city is a place of concentration of various cultures — in April 2009, representatives of 177 nationalities lived here.
Amsterdam is also the financial and cultural capital of the Netherlands. It is home to the headquarters of 7 of the world’s 500 largest companies, such as Philips and ING Groep. The oldest stock exchange in the world is also located in the city center.
Greenpeace has its main office in Amsterdam.
Many attractions: the Rijksmuseum, the Vincent van Gogh Museum, the City Museum, the Hermitage on Amstel, and the red light district (De Wallen) attract about 4.2 million tourists to the city every year.
After the floods of 1170 and 1173, local residents who lived near the Amstel river built a bridge over the river and a dam, naming the village after the river “Aemstelredamme “(literally,”dam on the Amstel”). The earliest known use of this name is contained in a document dated October 27, 1275, which exempts the villagers from paying bridge tolls to count Floris V . This document mentions “Amestellamme” (people living near Amestellamme) . By 1327, the name of the village was transformed into “Amsterdam” (Aemsterdam).
Physical and geographical characteristics
Satellite view of Amsterdam
Amsterdam is located in the North-West of the Netherlands in the province of North Holland at the mouth of the Amstel river on the IJsselmeer Bay. The Amstel river, flowing through the city center, forms a network of canals and channels; in addition, the Nordse canal connects the city with the North sea, and the Amsterdam-Rhine canal-with the river Rhine, while being at an altitude of 2 m below sea level. Amsterdam is a highly urbanized city with a total area of 219.4 sq km and a population density of 4457 people per 1 sq km.Parks and nature reserves make up 12% of the city’s territory. The strong urbanisation of Amsterdam has almost destroyed the city’s natural landscape and landforms.
Amsterdam is located in a temperate zone, with a large influence of the sea. The city is dominated by North-westerly winds, often there are squally gusts and storms.
In winter, the temperature rarely falls below 0 °C, freezing occurs when cold air masses move from Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. Summer in the city is more often warm than hot. The average annual precipitation is 760 mm, with most of it occurring between October and March.
Climate Of Amsterdam
Indicator Jan. Feb. March APR. May June July Aug. Sen. Oct. Nov. Dec. Year
The absolute maximum, °C 14 16 21 27 29 32 32 34 28 25 18 15 34
Average maximum, °C 5,4 6,0 9,2 12,4 17,1 19,2 21,4 21,8 18,4 14,1 9,2 6,5 13,4
Average minimum, °C 0,5 0,2 2,4 4,0 7,8 10,4 12,5 12,3 10,2 7,0 3,9 1,9 6,1
Absolute minimum, °C -16 -14 -8 -4 -1 3 4 6 2 -1 -7 -14 -16
Precipitation rate, mm 62 43 59 41 48 68 66 61 82 85 89 75 778
Source: Amsterdam Climate data on the website “Worldweather.org”, weatherbase.com
Climate of Amsterdam (Schiphol airport) over the past 10 years (2009-2018)
Indicator Jan. Feb. March APR. May June July Aug. Sen. Oct. Nov. Dec. Year
Average maximum, °C 5,4 5,9 10,3 14,9 17,8 20,4 23,1 22,2 19,4 15,3 10,1 6,9 14,3
Average temperature, °C 3,3 3,3 6,6 10,4 13,5 16,3 18,8 18,1 15,6 12,1 7,6 4,8 10,8
Average minimum, °C 1,2 0,8 2,7 5,9 9,2 12,2 14,5 14,0 11,6 8,8 5,2 2,8 7,4
Precipitation rate, mm 65 44 36 33 57 50 83 105 75 73 75 71 766
Main article: history of Amsterdam
Map Of Amsterdam (1538)
The first documentary mention of the city dates back to October 27, 1275. The city owed its origin to a dam that protected the area from flooding. The origin of the city is recorded in its name (literally – “dam on the Amstel river”). By the 15th century, Amsterdam had become the largest commercial city in the Netherlands.
During the Eighty years ‘ war, Amsterdam’s largest rival port, Antwerp, was captured by the Spanish (1585), which led to a mass migration of Antwerp merchants and artisans and a huge number of Jews fleeing the Spanish Inquisition to Amsterdam. In the XIV and XV centuries, the city became a shopping center. In the sixteenth century, Jewish merchants brought diamond-cutting techniques to Amsterdam from Antwerp. In the 1960s, Amsterdam became the center of the European hippie movement. “Provo” and “kabouter” forced to fear law-abiding citizens.
Flag and coat of arms
Coat Of Arms Of Amsterdam
The coat of arms of Amsterdam shows three St. Andrew’s crosses (although the patron Saint of the city is considered to be Nicholas the Wonderworker), these crosses are also part of the flag. The three crosses of St. Andrew represent the three virtues of the city: valor, firmness, and charity. The city’s motto — Heldhaftig, Vastberaden, Barmhartig (“Valiant, resolute, sympathetic”) – was granted in 1947 by Queen Wilhelmina in recognition of the bravery shown in world war II. Folk tradition also links these three crosses to three threats to this city: water, fire, and an epidemic.
In addition to crosses, the coat of arms contains the crown of the Austrian Empire. In 1489, Maximilian I, in gratitude for his services and loans, granted Amsterdam the right to decorate its coat of arms with a Royal crown, which in 1508, after the coronation of Maximilian I as Holy Roman Emperor, was replaced with an Imperial one. In the seventeenth century, it was again replaced by the crown of Rudolph II. Lions appeared on the coat of arms in the XVI century, when the Netherlands was a Republic.
Financial district of Amsterdam — Zadas
Amsterdam is the financial capital of the Netherlands. It is one of the largest cities in Europe by the number of banks and corporations, after London, Paris, Frankfurt and Barcelona. Amsterdam is home to the headquarters of organizations such as ABN AMRO, Akzo Nobel, Heineken, ING Groep, Ahold, TNT Express, TomTom, Delta Lloyd Group, VimpelCom Ltd and Philips. There are still offices of some companies in the historical center of the city, but most of them are located on the southern outskirts.
The Amsterdam stock exchange is the oldest in the world and one of the largest in Europe. Located near Dam square in the city center.
The diamond cutter
In Amsterdam and its suburbs are placed of the enterprises of electro-technical industry and engineering. Aviation, shipbuilding, chemical and woodworking industries, and oil refining have been particularly developed. In addition, the city is a center of faceting and diamond trading.
The capital of the Netherlands is known for its light industry. About 50% of the turnover of the entire industry in the country is concentrated here. Food production is based on the processing of coffee, tobacco, cocoa, coconut oil, potatoes, grains and sugar beets.
Amsterdam is one of the most popular tourist centers in Europe. more than 4.63 million visitors from other countries visit it every year (according to 2009 data). Two-thirds of the hotels are located in the city center. Four-and five-star hotels account for about 42 % of all beds. The majority of tourists (74 %) come from other European countries. Among non-European visitors, the largest share is made up of US citizens (14 % of the total number of tourists) .
A coffee shop is a type of establishment (mainly in the Netherlands) that has a permit for the public sale of cannabis and its products. Coffee shops are regulated by the” Opium law ” and the Dutch drug policy. According to some estimates, the annual turnover of the marijuana trade only in the Central part of the Dutch capital reaches 100 million euros-primarily due to tourists.
In Amsterdam, a lot of people use bicycles. In 2006, there were approximately 465 thousand bicycles in the city. Their popularity is due to the convenience of movement, the relatively small territory of Amsterdam, a large number of special paths, flat terrain, and the relative inconvenience of using a car.
Amsterdam has a well-developed public transport system. The city has a metro system, traditional and high-speed trams, a bus network, and ferry services across the river EY. All public transport in the city is managed by the GVB (Gemeentevervoerbedrijf, a municipal transport company). Commuter buses connecting Amsterdam to the surrounding area are owned by other operators, such as Arriva and Connexxion.
Magnetic transport cards and travel tickets are valid for all types of urban transport.
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