Tag Archives: Family

Translations of “Almere Deze Week” edition 18th of July 2018

Almere Deze Week is a weekly newspaper with local news for the inhabitants of Almere. It is published in Dutch. Below you find summaries of a selection of the articles of this week’s edition translated into English for the community of International Almere. All summaries have been translated with the permission of the editors of “Almere Deze Week”. The board of international Almere wishes to hank Courtesie (www.courtesie.nl) for their quick and accurate work to translate the summaries into English, so that the international community of Almere can be informed and feel connected with the city they live in.

The original articles in Dutch can be found in the hard copy version of “Almere Deze Week” and online via this link: www.almeredezeweek.nl. The page numbers behind the titles refer to the pages of the newspaper where the articles can be found.

Below you find summaries of 7 articles with the following titles:

  1. Water weeds make sailing almost impossible
  2. Many MBO College graduates already have a job
  3. Rabobank Almere extends sponsorship of Almere Haven Festival
  4. Treasure hunts in Almere
  5. ANWB AutoMaatje launched in Almere
  6. Almere Heritage Day needs volunteers
  7. Fun for kids at Lumierepark in Almere

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Water weeds make sailing almost impossible (page 1)

By Kirsten Thuis-Woudenberg

HAVEN – Almere resident Jan van der Klooster fears that sailing will soon become impossible if pondweed continues to grow in Almere’s waters at the current rate. “You can hardly sail through the rampant pondweed which, even when it grows at a depth of 3 meters, will reach the water’s surface. A wing keel, in particular, drags masses of pondweed along with the boat”, says Jan van der Klooster. “You also can’t use the engine, because the weed winds itself around the propeller shaft like lianas.”


Almere Haven. (Photo: Fred Rotgans)

Complaint

Sailors complained to the municipality. As a result, the berths were mowed this week. “It’s good that the moorings are now being mowed, but the municipality has waited far too long. Rijkswaterstaat planted the pondweed years ago in order to clarify the water and thus combat blue-green algae. But the cure is now worse than the disease. The municipality will have to find a way to eradicate this problem completely. Despite the fact that the harbor is now being properly dealt with, Gooimeer, Markermeer and IJmeer are still filling up with pondweed. Next to nothing is being done about this and it is still not clear how the weed will be removed.

Cancellations

According to Van der Klooster, the fact that only the navigation channels are mowed means that yachtsmen can no longer sail on the lakes. “To be able to sail, you have to be able to tack – to sail a zig-zag course to windward. The mowed channels are not wide enough for this. I’ve spoken to sailors who have cancelled their berths in Gooimeer, Markermeer and IJmeer, because you can’t sail in these areas anymore. They’ve moved their boats to Friesland. But won’t it be a disaster if we can no longer sail in the vicinity of Almere?”

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Many MBO College graduates already have a job (page 5)

Students at the MBO College Almere have graduated cum laude and received scholarships.

ALMERE – More than 900 students from the MBO College Almere and MBO College Poort received their MBO (secondary vocational education) diplomas last week. A few students received diplomas cum laude, having shown excellent command of theory, obtained good passes in the practical exams and received excellent work experience employer feedback. A large proportion of the students will continue their studies at the Flevoland ROC or move on to a university of applied sciences program. Many students will look for a job or already have one.


Five out of the eight cum laude students. (Photo: supplied)

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Rabobank Almere extends sponsorship of Almere Haven Festival (page 17)

ALMERE – This year, for the fifth consecutive year, Rabobank Almere will be the main sponsor of the Rabobank Almere Haven Festival. The bank will also again sponsor the Rabobank Havenkom Proeverij.

Nik Smit, director of Almere City Marketing and organizer of the event, presented the Almere Harbor Festival announcement poster to Ferry Huurman, board chair of Rabobank Almere, in the harbor on board the Almere botter, AM1.

(Photo: Roxanne Overdijk)

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Treasure hunts in Almere (page 17)

ALMERE – Stad & Natuur has arranged no less than four treasure hunts at attractive locations in Almere this summer.

Entrance to the treasure hunts can be purchased via the website www.stadennatuur.nl (click on ‘winkel’) or at the locations themselves.

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ANWB AutoMaatje launched in Almere (page 17)

ALMERE – ANWB AutoMaatje (‘auto-mate’) has now also been launched in Almere, thanks to the collaboration of the ANWB with VMCA, De Schoor and Welzijn (social welfare) in Almere. ANWB AutoMaatje is a national network of service points which enable volunteers from local organizations to use their own cars to transport less mobile fellow citizens, at their request.

Interested parties can register as volunteers at the VMCA. Participants pay a travel expense contribution of € 0.30 per kilometer calculated from the home address of the driver directly to the volunteer, plus any parking costs. The contribution must be paid in cash.

More information: www.vmca.nl/vrijwilligers

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Almere Heritage Day needs volunteers (page 19)

ALMERE – More than four thousand magnificent monuments in the Netherlands are open free of charge to the public on the weekends of 8 and 9 September. Almere will also be taking part in this year’s Heritage Day. The organization is looking for volunteers.

The Heritage Day organization is looking for volunteers who are interested in architecture and in the history of Almere, and who will enjoy welcoming and informing visitors on Heritage Day. For more information and volunteer registration please visit  www.almere.nl/openmonumentendag.

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Fun for kids at Lumierepark in Almere (page 19)

FILMWIJK – Stichting Multiculturele Organisatie Almere is organizing a children’s village in Lumierepark on 5 August, with a free market for children.

There will be several bouncy castles and a variety of performances. Whether singing, making music, dancing or doing acrobatics, young artists in the making will be able to make their first stage appearance on the day. Children can sell toys they’re tired of and clothes they’ve outgrown at the free market. And, of course, the money made can be spent on the spot – on new toys or sweets!

The stage performances will be a mix of shows put on by new talent and entertainment by established names. The children’s village will also observe Millennium Development Goals and children will have the opportunity to get to know each other. This year’s theme is, “We are Family”. The children’s village event will also focus on cultural diversity and will reflect the Almere community in its performances, workshops and market.

The children’s village will have an information stand staffed by volunteers, to provide information on children’s activities in Almere. There will also be an information table with leaflets on education and nutrition and samples of various products.

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Note: All of the above-mentioned articles were originally written in Dutch and published by “Almere Deze Week”, edition July 18, 2018. The summaries  were translated for International Almere by Courtesie International Business Affairs www.courtesie.nl

Our members recommend – Almere Veertje!

Special guest post by Katie Schmitt!

Our experience

My husband and I had the pleasure to be part to take a trip this year on Almere Veertje , and now I am eager to share our experience from a newcomer to Almere’s point of view!

The almereveertje website provides all necessary information, unfortunately exclusively in Dutch. So if you are still working on your Dutch language skills, my suggestion would be to opt for contacting the ferry staff via e-mail, or just give them a call. It won’t be a problem for the staff to answer your questions in English. Continue reading Our members recommend – Almere Veertje!

Member Recommendations – Festive Season Turkey and Goose!

We asked our members recently about where to find the best turkey, goose and poultry in Almere for the upcoming festive season – and here’s their best picks for you!

Hans v.d. Bor – On the market in Stad (Wednesday and Saturdays) (turkey and goose)

” I got a big turkey from the market in Stad last year” – Michelle 

 “I always get it from Hans in the Market” – Christina

Kalkoen Express
Poulier Slagerij j. Tromp (Purmerend) (turkey and goose)

“Tromp is awesome!” – Tanja

Kalkoen Bestellen
Poelier Rijlaarsdam Almere (turkey and goose)

“We got turkey legs and rollade here last year (also kipfilet) and it’s great quality too!” – Brenda

De Worstmakerij 

“There’s a great wholesale butcher in Lelystad, who’s dirt cheap and has the best pork belly! They do turkey too.” – Maarten

Don’t forget, you can still get turkeys from Albert Heijn and from Jumbo (frozen), and closer to Christmas you can also get them fresh in the supermarkets!

Kings Day by our Members …

April 27th is here and when you’re an international living in the Netherlands, it can seem like the whole country is going orange crazy … so International Almere is here to help you survive Kings Day in Almere, and some tips for if you decide to head out to the bigger celebrations in Amsterdam.

We asked our members for the best tips on where to go in Almere, personal experiences and stories, and survival tips so we could make a Guide to Kings Day in Almere and beyond!

Memories of Kings Day

Our members shared their experiences of Kings Day – the good, the funny, the cultural mishaps and the bad.  From childhood memories of selling toys, to broken down cars, relocation disasters and even those who were disappointed in the party, they told their stories.

When I was young me and my brother went to sit and sell stuff with my dad. We got up early (well, like 5-6 am) and drive to the city centre, which was not nearly as big as it is now. We would find a nice spot and sit there all day ’till about 5 on our blanket. We did this for years. But slowly the people started to realize that the early bird gets the best buy, and sellers started to realize they would have to come earlier to have the early birds scouting their stuff.. and to claim a good space. Because, Almere was getting bigger every year. Well, that resulted in today people starting to sell from the day before. And although it’s not allowed to sell before 6 pm on the 26th people usually start earlier than that. Petra (Netherlands)

Queens Day and I didn’t start off the right foot. Back in ’89 I was young, naive and came from the country of street- and community party’s. Any party held in public, whether it was the a public holiday, a 700th anniversary of the city, the annual fair of the fire brigade/men’s choir/local gymnastic society/ local church etc., came always with a) music b) beer (ok, in case of the church tea and coffee) and c) food. A LOT of food. Dozens of cakes and pies, “Schwenkbraten” (BBQ), Bratwurst ohne ende…You get the picture. Anyway, at my first Queens Day I left the house, excited to discover the Dutch way to party and try their specialties and found thousands of happy Dutch people drinking beer (Yay!!) and selling their old belongings (huh????). I went home, hungry and disappointed. These days we have Kings Day though, and I have to admit, it has it charms. Once I realized beer is a good companion with almost anything at Kings Day AND I found a charming Dutchman who introduced me to the real thing (Amsterdam), I started to enjoy it. Kings day has everything. From spontaneous street parties, to markets, to gigantic festivals. In Almere I love going to the Belfort Plein, enjoying the sunshine (if we get so lucky) and some music, In Amsterdam I love the market which is kids only at the Vondelpark. Utrecht is also great with lots of terraces, music and a relaxed day out. The fun is starting the evening before though, with Kings Night. In the city centre people start to sell their second hand goods and the first parties are getting started. My advice if this is your first Kings day? Go with the flow and enjoy. Just like the Dutch do! Doreen (Germany)

When i was young it was heaps of fun.. sitting there at 3am .. people was kind and had lots of laughs. My parents car even broke down on our way with all our stuff in ! People started helping pushing the car down to the mall. We’d take food and coffee with us.. my aunts and uncles was always standing next to us..so a whole line of family next to each other.. damn good times.. memories.. Katrina (Australia/Netherlands)

 I used to love Queens day in Hilversum, there was always a Kermis and loads of free activities for the children, bouncy castles, pony rides, face painting, lots of live music, it was always a fantastic day out. We loved looking what was for sale and getting a bargain. I have to say I was really disappointed when we moved to Almere as there really wasn’t that much on in comparison. Rachael (Australia)

Surviving Amsterdam

It’s said that you’ve never experienced Kings Day until you’ve been to one in Amsterdam.  And yes, we know that Almere is the place to be, our members have also given us their stories and tips for Kings Day in Amsterdam.

Jordaan is very nice on Kings Day! That’s near the Westertoren and Anne Frank museum area! Go early because it’s very busy there ! There’s very creative and funny people who do karaoke from out their window or more funny selling ideas and in the Elandstraat and the Eesterstraat, Noordermarkt & Laurierstraat are really easy to recommend!

 It is such an experience, Kingsday in Amsterdam! I really recommend it for that international feeling of togetherness, joy, and delightfulness, it always gives such a rewarding feeling that day  Internationalism and people from all over the world are like brothers it’s a genuine experience and gives hope (that’s my personal experience) for a better world it is possible Marita (Netherlands)

Survival tips for Amsterdam

  1. Go early
  2. Park legally – if you go to Amstel station and then bike or take public transport.
  3. Watch out for glass on the ground and wear closed shoes.
  4. Take small change for toilets and bargains!
  5. Take a litre of water
  6. If you’re going with friends, pick a meeting point for the end of the day in case you get separated
  7. Keep your personal items (phones, wallets) safe at all times.
  8. Wear orange!

November 11 is Sint Maarten!

November 11. In the evening children (with their parents preferably) go door to door with a lantern and get candy in exchange for singing Sint Maarten songs. The feast has gained popularity in the Netherlands. In the previous century it wasn’t celebrated everywhere, but somehow it did find it’s way to Almere quite early on. It’s the name day of Utrecht’s Patron Saint Martinus van Tours, and the origin is purely speculation. Continue reading November 11 is Sint Maarten!

Holiday Season Appeal – Can you help us?

It’s August, and being the busy little bees we are, we’re already planning ahead to December and our annual holiday festivities.

December’s holiday season is is a difficult time of year for our families.

Many do not have the opportunity to travel back to their home country, and often spend the holiday period alone, thousands of miles from their loved ones. We aim to try to alleviate this by hosting events aimed at keeping the festive spirit for everyone.

Every year, we plan 2 parties – one for the kids of the group, and one for the adults.  The kids party has magicians, crafts, gifts and a visit from Santa. The adults party is a sit down, 3 course dinner designed to provide a night of  relaxation and a festive atmosphere before the stress of the holiday period starts.

It’s increasingly difficult financially to put on these events, without eating into our reserve funds.

This year we are looking for a little help from all of you to spread our message and make our 2016 Holiday parties the best ones yet!

We are specifically looking for donations of raffle/tombola prizes, financial donations to help subsidise the cost of the children’s event, sponsoring a family in difficulty (financial, medical etc), or even just volunteer some of your time to help us organise the event, approach potential sponsors or be there on the day to help run an activity.

Ultimately, it all comes down to the amount of support we get as to how awesome the party is, and more importantly, how cheap we can put it on for.  We are a group of volunteers, and we very rarely call out for help – but this time we need you! If you can help us in any way – donations, financially or volunteering – click here and send a message through to us about how you can help us make 2016’s December events the ones to remember! (And don’t forget to share the message – the more people who see it, the more chances we have of people helping us!)

christmas appeal holiday webpage email

Don’t forget to register … Getting to know Poort is this week!

This sponsored post contains affiliate links to our sponsor – the Atlas of Amsterdam. 

It’s time for our annual photo hunt ! June 4th at 2pm – meet us at the bus station at Almere Poort and get to know Almere’s newest section – Almere Poort! (Sponsored by the Atlas of Amsterdam). This is a free, fun and family friendly event, but everyone is welcome to join in!

Continue reading Don’t forget to register … Getting to know Poort is this week!

Children

Multilingual parenting ideas that got thrown out of the window — Part Two

If you haven’t already, check out part one in this series here.
This happens to every parent. You wanted to breastfeed only to find that your milk didn’t come in. You wanted to co-sleep only to find that your child hates it. Or you hate it. You wanted to only give your child organic home-made food only to find that your child actually eats sweets. And so the list goes. It is just so normal and very human.
Here is part two of Olga’s confession.  She didn’t achieve everything that she had planned before having children as far as their multilingualism was concerned.  What has fallen by the wayside for you as a parent (multilingual or otherwise)?

 

Having everybody on board

I hoped that if I just were dedicated and educated- and persuasive enough, I could persuade everybody that what I’m doing is beneficial to my children. Little did I know that I would be dealing with some extremely unhelpful and judgemental people. Knowledge and dedication to the cause is not something I’m lacking but I’m too tired to waste my time with people who can’t help or support me even though I know that what I’m doing is right. Sometimes the best way to deal with these sort of people is to ignore their comments and advice, and not to try argue with them.

 

My high expectations

I set out on this multilingual journey with the utter conviction that my children will be poster children. After all, I am bilingual myself, and I for everybody to read and be inspired, and hence my children should act accordingly, right? Wrong. Again, I had to adjust my expectations to Klara’s slow speech and language development. But you know, it doesn’t feel like a failure. Instead, I am proud that my children speak all three languages. I am proud that they’re catching up and progressing. In fact, I don’t need to prove anything to anyone. I just need to make sure my children are fine.

 

Having a language plan

I can’t think of one instance where a plan proved useful. On the contrary, they fool my brain into thinking that I have done something when the only thing I did was actually writing things down. And while I can understand the usefulness of a language plan for some families, it wouldn’t work for us. We’re just trying to work out things for ourselves, and react accordingly to circumstances. It doesn’t mean however, that we don’t think about the future. Our choice of school proves it. The fact that I’m keeping to speaking to them in Polish proves it. Another thing plans do is that they make you feel like we have control over everything, and we don’t.

 

The idea that if I do things right, I would get the right results

I strongly believed that, just like in all things parenting, if you do things the right way, you will get the right results. And I believed that the same goes for raising multilingual children. Except, parenting isn’t mathematics. Sometimes you do all the right things and still get no results. You could do mistakes and your children could still turn out great. So, no, doing right things right doesn’t guarantee results. We are so desperate to believe that we can control how our children will end up, that we forget we really can’t. So, I can do my best, and hope for the best, but this is all I can do.

 

The idea that it would be easy and natural

I have long ago heard that being a parent- and especially being a mom comes naturally. I have read about the mother’s instincts that will tell me all I need to know about raising children. And you know what happened when I had children? My mother’s instinct proved to be very shy and didn’t tell me anything. I had to learn everything from the beginning. Of course, I spoke Polish to my children, but talking to them still felt weird. They didn’t reply, they didn’t answer, and talking like that just wasn’t my thing. It wasn’t natural at all to force myself to say, for the zillion-th time, “yes, this is a table”. Of course, it’s a stupid table! It wasn’t at all natural to me to change my way of talking so that my children can understand me. Argh! Sometimes I wanted to bang my head on the table. Luckily, now it’s getting better. Now I can finally talk to Klara more naturally. So I know it’s getting better, but I was in for a shock at the beginning.
 
 

[box size=”large” border=”full”]Welcome to Olga Mecking, a new regular contributor at International Almere, who is an expert in multilingual life in the Netherlands.

Olga is a Polish woman, living in the Netherlands with her German husband and 3 trilingual children. In the past, Olga has lived in several countries (including Germany, Canada and the Netherlands), and learned to speak 5, that’s right, 5 languages.

She studied German philology at the University of Warsaw, then followed by a MA in Media Cultures at the University of Bremen. Olga blogs at The European Mama and we recommend you check her out on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.[/box]

 

This post originally appeared on The European Mama and has been republished with full permission.

International School Almere, through the eyes of its students

A crucial element of the Middle Years Program curriculum at International School Almere is Community and Service.  Each student in the program undertakes a community oriented project which is aimed at providing a service to their community, to help the student to develop an understanding of their place in the world and how they can contribute to help make the world a better place.

We would like to introduce Aimee and Naomi, two MYP3 (or grade 8) students from ISAlmere who as part of their community and service project are writing a short series of informative articles for You, the International Almere community.

The first in the series is an article the two students have written together describing the school itself:

[box border=”full”]The International School Almere is a really friendly school. You will notice there are people from grade 7-12 who are friends with each other. In each grade everyone is really close to one another; it’s good to know there is always someone there for you.

At this school we have parties and we recently had a Christmas ball, one of the students was the DJ and a few other students were in charge of the lights. The student council and grade 10 decorated the halls and the drama room and helped set everything up.

There are school trips as well. The 7th graders go on an introduction camp to get to know each other more. Last year they went to Belgium and this year they went somewhere near Amsterdam. On the school trip last year, grade 7-9 went to Manchester, England and grade 10-DP 2 went to Rome.

Each year has a mentor. The mentors are there to help students and guide them through their education. Every week there is a mentor class where the students meet up with their mentor and talk about their issues.

Morning assembly is on Thursday. The students should be at school at 8:30 to attend morning assembly. During morning assembly we talk about issues involving the school, community and service, upcoming school activities and other things that the teachers have to notify us about.

At International School Almere, they require the students to do community and service and finish it by the end of the year. Community and service is about helping others in the community and not getting paid for your work. There are different amount of hours and requirements for each grade. [/box]

 

If you would like to know more about ISAlmere, please check out their website here.

Coming soon, Aimee and Naomi will tell us what it’s like to be an international teenager in Flevoland, which we can’t wait to share with you..

National Mom’s Night Out – Thursday 26 July

 

Motherhood is an around the clock job with little opportunities for a break. When you are an expat mom, finding a way to get a little “me time” can be that much harder because you may not have a good social network to support you. Going out on your own seems overwhelming, going out with your partner seems impossible (where do I find a babysitter I can trust?) and meeting up with friends requires that one of you organize an event. So what is a mum to do to get a break?

On Thursday, July 26th we are offering up a solution: International Almere, together with ABCDE Playgroup and Nomad Parents invites you to come out and join us for the National Mom’s Night Out at the Apollo Hotel in Almere. We have organized the time, date and location so all you have to do is show up. If you have some friends, bring them along! If you don’t know anyone, come and meet someone new!  This is a national initiative, with events happening all over the Netherlands at the same time.  We’ll keep things fun with great conversation, giveaways and goody bags.

You can find all of the details at: http://www.nomadparents.com and of course join the Almere Facebook event.

 

See you from 8pm, Thursday 26 July at Apollo (Koetsierbaan 2, 1315 SE Almere)!

A Day at the Zoo

 

On Saturday we went to the zoo….That’s my husband and his parents and you’re right, there’s a dog too, that’s Buffy, she’s our kid.  We went to Ouwehands Dierenpark in Rhenen.  The Netherlands has many zoos or Dierenparks as they’re called here.  Each one is just a little bit different.

Oudehands is one of the few that allow dogs in, for 2.50 your dog can spend a fun day out with you and you get 2 poop sacks to clean up any unexpected accidents, a good deal cause in the 5 hours we were there, Buffy only went once…so we even left with something for our money.

 

 

 

Buffy wasn’t too interested in most of the animals, but when she was, she could get a good look, most of the walls are low enough for a dog to look over or those glass petitions or open fencing for them to look through.  There are numerous water dishes throughout the park, we brought our own though which I think is always a good idea, so they have thought about  four footed needs as much as providing many choices for refreshment for the people which was average priced.

We were allowed in most of the buildings which is also nice…when she wasn’t we just took turns with waiting outside with her.  So we all could enjoy the whole park.

It’s  missing a few prominant animals, like rhino’s and hippos, but other than that, the zoo is beautiful, not too big that you had to run through it, we did it in 5 hours and did some back tracking to make sure we did see everything.  The enclosures are amazing and they’re currently building a HUGE primate building which will hold the big 5 in primates so we’ll definetely go back once that’s finished.

We hadn’t been to this zoo for several years which makes it worth taking a trip back.  Zoos are magical, or at least I find them to be, we get a glimpse into the average day in the life of animals, many of which are becoming endangered at an alarming rate.   As a “clicker” I love taking pictures and to be so close to reach out and touch some of the animals, petted a dier and a turtle, makes taking pictures of them a snap!

I can’t recommend enough going to the zoo, with or without your dog, below I’ve listed most of the zoos in the Netherlands and the star next to them means you can bring your dog.  So this summer vacation, if you’re not leaving the country, why not visit some zoos, there’s many to chose from:

*Ouwehands Dierenpark Rhenen

http://www.ouwehand.nl/Basis.aspx?Tid=168&Lid=222&Lit=TEKST&Stijl=02&Sid=808

Artis in Amsterdam

http://www.artis.nl/en/artis-royal-zoo/

*Dierenpark Amersfoort

http://www.dierenparkamersfoort.nl/english-information

Dierenpark Emmen

http://www.dierenparkemmen.nl/dierenpark-emmen

Blijdorp in Rotterdam

http://www.diergaardeblijdorp.nl/?lang=EN

Safaripark Beekse Bergen near Tilburg

http://www.safaripark.nl/

Dolfinarium is near Haarderwijk

http://www.dolfinarium.nl/en/dolphin/park_play/interactive_map.html

Taman Indonesia, near Giethoorn

http://www.taman-indonesia.nl/index.php?pagina=Home

Europa Dierentuin is now Dierenrijk in Eindhoven

http://www.dierenrijk.nl/

Gaia Zoo in Limburg

http://www.gaiazoo.nl/welcome

Overloon Zoo

http://www.overloonzoo.nl/

Owl dierenpark, not just owls, you can pet kangaroos here too, near Gorinchem

http://www.depaay.nl/nieuw/index.php

Wissel Zoo near Epe

http://www.wisselzoo.nl/

Burgers  Zoo in Arnhem

http://www.burgerszoo.eu/?ce=1