Ameland Island

The Island called Ameland, in the Frisian language known as Amelân lies in Friesland Netherlands between Terschelling and Schiermonnikoog. You can see this island when the weather is clear. From the west side of the Netherlands Ameland is the fourth so called Waddeneiland and the third island belonging to Friesland. The number of inhabitants is approximately around 3600. If you like sand dunes, Ameland is definitely a good place to visit. At the place Holwerd you can catch the boat of shipping company WagenBorg, the trip takes about 50 minutes. It is possible to go on foot, by bike or by car to Ameland, of course the prices differ from what vehicle you choose to travel with.

History of Ameland

Lighthouse AmelandWhen Ameland was first mentioned, it was in the 9th century. Although it is still unclear when the first inhabitants were found on this island, it is assumed that Ameland has been inhabited in the year 850. There are scriptures that are fictitious and which state that the Cammingha’s in 866 would have founded the monastery called Foswerd. This was probably only claimed by them so that they acquired rights on the island. Centuries later in 1287, this Wadden island was struck by a flood that later flooded the St. Lucia because this storm took place on the name day of Saint Lucia. Another name for this flood is the storm surge of 1287. During the storm a large part of Friesland was struck and partly by this storm also the Zuiderzee arose.

It is said about Ameland that it has been around here already 7000 years. Changes have always taken place. Regular boundaries of the Wadden and Salt marsh area have been moved. This island has a shallow surface and to a large extent it consists of a sandy shoreline. From the beach The dunes were blown up and the south Side formed a number of salt marshes.

Ameland is in the possession of four villages of which Hollum is the largest. In This village you will also find the oldest house of this island that was built in 1516. This place is 1 kilometre away from the largest beach of this island called Hollum Beach. The places Nes, Buren and Ballum follow thereafter. There used to be a fifth village called Sier, but it was lost in the storms. This village is now somewhere in the sea.

Nature on Ameland

AmelandThe Borndiep is located west of Ameland and is a sea cave between this island and Terschelling. The Oerd is a nature reserve located to the East of the village of Buren. In this area many birds live and through a number of gullies the seawater flows freely. There is enough space to cycle on bike paths. With a length of 100 kilometers you have enough to discover. The total beach length is up to 27 kilometers. On this island you will also find a small forest. Besides this all you can fully enjoy the dunes.

When you walk through the dunes you will already see the 55 meter high lighthouse. This tower was built in 1880 but had no name for a long time, until it was changed in the year 80 of the 20th century. Since that time, the tower has been named Bornrif. Because after the Second World War the lighthouse was given a new light that was weaker, the nickname of the Lighthouse, “schemerlamp” (table lamp). This lasted for only a few years because in 1952 a new and stronger light was presented in the place. With a staircase of 236 steps you can climb to the top of the tower and enjoy the view that is accessible for tourists since March 2005.

The culture of Ameland

Lighthouse AmelandAs is the case with Terschelling and Vlieland, this island also has its own language, which is still spoken today. While it is inside the provence Friesland does not mean that Frisian is automatically spoken here. A mixed dialect is spoken here, which is close to the dialect of the Frisian city. The citizens of Ameland speak Amelands and although all four villages on the island have their own dialect, they are all still easy to follow.

What you might find interesting to know is that these places are popular residences for artists. Since the year 1996 the Ameland Art month annually takes place in November. During this event, exhibitions are held throughout the island by artists from the Netherlands and abroad. They exhibit their photographs, sculptures, ceramics and of course paintings as well. When do you come to visit this beautiful island called Ameland?