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Wikipedia | Google | Google Images | FlickrMadurodam is a miniature park in the Scheveningen district of The Hague in the Netherlands, where you can indulge in your inner giant and see sights of the whole country within a day in 1:25 scale. A popular destination since it opened, Madurodam is always on every tourist’s list when visiting the Netherlands.
Madurodam’s StoryMadurodam got its name from George Maduro , a Jewish-Dutch resistance fighter who fought against the Nazi occupation at the height of World War II. He was captured and was transferred to Dachau concentration camp, where he died of typhus in 1945. After his death, his parents met with Mrs. B. Boon-van der Starp who came up with an idea for a miniature park modeled after Bekonscot in England. They donated money to build the park to serve as a memorial to him. Thus, Madurodam, the little city with the smile, came into existence.
Running the TownThen Princess Beatrix of Netherlands became the mayor of Madurodam on July 2, 1952. She held the position till Beatrix became the queen of the Netherlands. Since then, students from The Hague schools nominate peers to be part of the youth council, which in turn, elects a mayor amongst their midst. The youth council is also a member of the spending committee of Madurodam, which support charities of Madurodam.
Enjoying the TownVisitors of Madurodam are greeted by the sight of a boy, Hansjie (or Hans) Brinker plugging the hole in the dike near the entrance of the park. Hans Brinker is a fictional character in the novel, The Silver Skates, by Mary Mapes Dodge. The story goes that the boy saw the hole in the dike and put his finger in the hole, preventing the leak from getting bigger and thus saving Holland from a flood. He stayed there all night until the elders of the village found him and fixed the hole. Inside Madurodam, you can try out yourself how well you can mend the leaks in a dike. Get ready because this wall has more than one leak.
Everything of interest in Holland is in Madurodam, in great detail and in 1:25 scale. Gulliver or Godzilla would feel at home with the town. Whoever you are, the urge to stomp around and take a closer look at the miniatures is strong. The people of Madurodam, called Madurodammertjes, are busy going about their lives, even changing their clothes to match the season.
Windmills dot the landscape of a section of the town, a salute to the ingenuity of the Dutch people 600 years ago when most of the land was below sea level. Try your hand at managing the floodways and canals to let your boat reach the other end of the canal.
A replica of the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol sits near the center of the park. The busy airport is well represented by major airlines, with a couple of jumbo jets moving around by themselves (helped behind the scenes by magnetic fields and computers), getting ready to take off or unload passengers.
Ships of all kinds all ply the waterways of Madurodam. The busy port of Rotterdam is no less hectic here in Madurodam. Cargo ships loaded with crates are busy sailing past. Huge cruise ships explore the town. There are places in Madurodam where you can play with the ships: unload and load cargo at the docks, pump the tugboats to spray an oil tanker on fire, and work the canals.
The flowers of Netherlands are famous worldwide and 45 million flowers are being shipped daily all over the world. In Madurodam, explore the history and richness of Dutch flowers in miniature with flower farms displaying a rainbow of tulips, and a mini flower auction. You can test your prowess at bidding at the auction.
Holland is known for their cheese and an homage to cheese making can be seen at Madurodam. Little Madurodammertjes deliver cheese on hand-held platforms, some to the little market nearby for consumption.
How good are you at details? Nothing in Madurodam is left to chance, from the sunbathing woman on the roof to the mannequins on display at the stores to the football match played out on the pitch. Stroll around Madurodam and check out more of the sights: visit the canals of Amsterdam, the Royal places of Het Loo and the Peace Palace; the Rijksmuseum, attend Armin Van Buuren ’s concert in the park; watch a parade walk past the National Parliament, the Dom Tower that towers over the town of Madurodam; and many more Dutch landmarks. A short film accompanies almost every bit of interest in Madurodam on its history, sometimes told through the lives of Madurodammertjes. The park is now very interactive, with different activities related to different exhibits.
Getting ThereMadurodam is open daily though it is best to check their hours as they change with the season. Visitors can take the public transport to Madurodam by first taking a train to The Hague. Then take Tram 8 or 9 stops directly in front of Madurodam. Bus 22, which goes to Duinzigt, is another option, but remember to get off at Plesmanweg.
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Author: patricia16. Last updated: Apr 21, 2015