"Alphen, the city in our neighbourhood" Alphen aan den Rijn by tompt
Alphen aan den Rijn Travel Guide: 27 reviews and 100 photos
Although Alphen aan den Rijn is not very big, for the people living in the north east corner of Zuid-Holland it is the city to go shopping. We call it just Alphen. The aan den Rijn part just states where it is located, on the banks of the river Oude Rijn. And we already know that......
The municipality Alphen aan den Rijn has 70 660 inhabitants and an area of 57,68 km² of which 2,52 km² is water. Besides the main town, Alphen, it also has the small villages Aarlanderveen and Zwammerdam in its borders.
The website of the municipality is: http://www.alphenaandenrijn.nl/ it is in dutch only.
Alphen has some great tourist attractions:
- Archeon, an archaeological themepark. It has areas where the live in the netherlands in the prehistory, roman period and middle ages is simulated. The buildings are from that dates and people live like they would have in that periods.
- Avifauna, a birdpark with species.
- Wet and wild, a water themepark at the Zegerplas. Here you can do waterskiing on a cable, without a boat.
- windmill de Eendracht, a windmill from 1898. Open to the public every saturday afternoon.
- the windmills of Aarlanderveen, the only working 4 step windmills in the world.
More info at our Aarlanderveen page.
More info on tourism in Alphen aan den Rijn: http://www.vvvhetgroenehart.nl/ (in dutch)
A short history:
The area around Alphen aan den Rijn was already inhabited 2000 years ago.
In the roman period the castellum Albanianae was at the spot where you now find the towns centre. The romans built the first bridge over the Rhine. From the roman emperor Claudius (41 - 54) the roman army was located here at the north border of the roman empire.
In 1122 the old Rhine was dammed at Wijk bij Duurstede. The river that flowed through Alphen was no longer the main route of the river Rhine. That is why it is called Oude Rijn (Old Rhine). It never flodded since.
The name Alphen is almost certainly coming from the castellum Albanianae, which means settlement at the white water.
Some historic information about Alphen at the website of the historic society:
After the old church burnt down in 1916 they built the Adventskerk in 1920-1922, the design was by architect Kuijper.... more travel advice
Maybe the most beautifull church in Alphen, in the 18th century it was already called the splendour of Rijnland. The... more travel advice
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