Bergen, Netherlands


Bergen is a village and municipality in the Dutch province of North Holland. The municipality has 30,133 inhabitants (January 31, 2023, source: CBS) and has an area of 119.85 km² (of which 22.70 km² is water). The municipality is part of the Kennemerland cooperation region.

The municipality is a popular tourist destination, especially because of the beach and seaside resorts along the North Sea coast.

Since about 1900, Bergen has been an artists' village that attracts many painters, writers and architects. The Museum Kranenburgh in Bergen showed, among other things, a collection of works of art from this Bergen School. The Park Meerwijk villa district was built between 1915 and 1918 entirely in the style of the Amsterdam School. Prominent artists have lived on the Buerweg. In the summer months there are art markets around the Ruïnkerk on Thursdays and Fridays, there are music festivals (the Holland Music Sessions in August, Jazz & Sail in the first weekend of September), and the Kunst10daagse, which attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year in October.

Bergen is also home to the former home of Adriaan Roland Holst (1888-1976), the "Prince of Poets". He lived there, with a few interruptions, from 1918 until his death in 1976. Since 2002, the A. Roland Holsthuis on the Nesdijk has been occupied in turn by writers and poets, who often put the finishing touches to new work there.

There are two polder mills near Bergen, one is on the Meerweg and the other on the Voert. The one on the Meerweg is the Damlander mill from around 1700. The other mill is located on the outskirts of Bergen, in the Philistein polder near Het Woud. The mill is called Philisteinse Molen and dates from 1898.



In Egmond-Binnen Benedictine abbey; You can visit the church as well as an attached candle foundry, pottery and art exhibition.

Castles, palaces and palaces
Damlandermolen windmill
The Vuurtoren J. C. J. van Speijk lighthouse in Egmond aan Zee can occasionally be climbed in summer.

Egmond aan Zee: Museum of Egmond

Museum Kranenburgh, Hoflaan 26, 1861 CR Bergen, ​Hoflaan 26, 1861CR Bergen (NH). Tel.: +31 (0)72 5898927 . The museum for art from the period 1900 to the present by painters from the North Holland region is housed in a historic building with a modern extension. Outside there are sculptures in a small forest. The museum is barrier-free and offers guests a café and a shop. In addition to the usual souvenirs, pictures from local artists can also be purchased in the museum shop. Open: Tuesday to Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Price: Children up to 16 years free, otherwise EUR 10. Accepted payment methods: Museumkaart.

streets and squares
The shopping street of Egmond aan Zee and the Pumpenplatz ('Pompplein') are the scene of various music events and markets in summer.

The North Dutch dune area can be accessed from almost all places in the municipality (note entrance fees!), on foot or by bike. Some beach crossings are practically only accessible this way.

Egmond aan Zee (several crossings), Bergen aan Zee and Camperduin offer direct access to the beach. Hargen aan Zee and Schoorl aan Zee are not (residential) places, but only parking spaces for cars and bicycles.

In Schoorl there is a very special access to the dune area in the middle of the town: the over 50 meter high (and quite steep) climbing dune ('Klimduin') invites countless children (and adults!) to climb, run and dig sand.

At the 'Lichtjesavond' every summer, a large part of Bergen-Binnen becomes a 'total work of art': the properties, gardens and houses are decorated with thousands of candles, lanterns, etc. People celebrate late into the night in their own gardens or on the streets.


Getting here

By plane
About 30km away is Amsterdam with the international airport Amsterdam-Schiphol (IATA: AMS)

By train
Trains run from Amsterdam towards Alkmaar/Den Helder. Either in Castricum, Heiloo or Alkmaar you have to change to a bus or a taxi.

By bus
On the street
The A9 motorway begins north of Amsterdam and at the end turns into an expressway ring around Alkmaar. To the west of Alkmaar, arterial roads lead off to Egmond, Bergen or Schoorl.


Getting around

A good way to explore the municipality of Bergen is by bike. Tours are available through the dune area to Bergen aan Zee and Egmond aan Zee. But you can also enjoy the long sandy beach on foot with a walk from Bergen aan Zee to Egmond aan Zee.



Dutch cuisine is well represented with specialties such as pancakes ('Pannekoeken') and a variety of offerings (sandwiches) at lunchtime ('Lunch'). There are also many different international offers in the Bergen municipality area.

What stands out in terms of ambience are the beach pavilions built on stilts, usually found directly at the beach crossings. They usually offer hot food all the time, lots of places on the sheltered 'terraces' (few inside - make a reservation!) and surprisingly good food, even in the evening.



Holiday apartments and 'zomerhuisjes', the garden sheds that come with many houses, are popular (especially for families or small groups). The tourist organization VVV provides information.

1 Witte Huis, Ruïnelaan 15, 1861 LK Bergen. Tel.: +31 (0)72 5812530, email: Hotel with 37 rooms in the middle of the village of Bergen. All rooms with shower, toilet, flat screen and coffee machine. There is free Wi-Fi in the hotel and bicycles can be rented for a daily fee.
2 Hotel-Restaurant Marijke, Dorpsstraat 23-25, 1861 KT Bergen. Tel.: +31 (0)72 5812381, email: The 4-star hotel consists of several buildings and small houses. The complex has a total of 85 hotel rooms. There is a restaurant and a bar. Bicycles and electric bikes can be rented. There is a charging station for electric bicycles and covered bicycle parking spaces.



Bergen is already mentioned in documents from the mid-10th century. But the name then only concerned a neighborhood around a church, where the Ruin Church now stands. Bergen was surrounded by neighbourhoods, which are now part of the village: Westdorp, Oostdorp, Oudburgh and the later Saenegheest/Zanegeest. Zanegeest is the only one that is now referred to as a neighbourhood, and this was also the case with Oostdorp until the mid-twentieth century. until this was expanded to include the Tuindorp district.

According to many, Zanegeest takes its place name from the Eucharistic Miracle of Bergen of 1421, where (according to legend) during the infamous St. Elisabeth Flood, the church inventory of the drowned church of Petten washed up safely and the seawater that had penetrated into the washed-up tabernacle later turned out to have changed to be in clotted blood. The place where the inventory washed ashore has since been called Sacramentsdijk (now Zakedijk) and a chapel was built in honor of the Blessed Sacrament, which was destroyed by the Protestant States troops during the Eighty Years' War. Nevertheless, until the mid-1960s, a silent procession was organized in May to commemorate this miracle. This custom was revived in the early 21st century.

The Ruin Church was built in the 15th century on the site of an older church. In the Middle Ages it was the largest church in the province of North Holland. In 1574, during the Eighty Years' War, the church was plundered and burned down. However, the church was later partially rebuilt.

In 1799, during the Second Coalition War against revolutionary France, a British-Russian army invaded the current province of North Holland. A battle took place near Mons on September 19 (the Battle of Mons) in which the Allies were defeated by the French-Batavian troops. The Russian Monument in Mons commemorates the battle. The Battle of Alkmaar on October 2, 1799 also mainly took place near Bergen and is therefore also called the Second Battle of Bergen.

The Alkmaar - Bergen aan Zee tram line ran from 1905 to 1955. A steam locomotive from this line, NS 7742 nicknamed Bello, was installed in the middle of the village as a static monument from 1960 to 1978. The locomotive was then restored and made operational again on the Museum Steam Tram Hoorn-Medemblik.

Dune fire
On April 14, 2010, a dune fire broke out in the dunes between Schoorl, Bergen and Bergen aan Zee. The northeasterly wind of force 4-5 drove the fire towards Bergen aan Zee and threatened the village. The built-up area was therefore compulsorily evacuated. The four hundred residents of Bergen aan Zee were housed in the nearby De Beeck sports center. There were also several major fires in this neighborhood in 2009. These previous fires were probably lit, it is not certain whether the April 2010 fire was also lit.


Nature and landscape

Bergen is located near the Maas at a height of about 12 meters in the winter bed of this river. A ferry service across the Maas leads to Vierlingsbeek. Due to its low location, expansion of the town was not possible, so Nieuw Bergen was founded. The Heukelomse Beek flows between these two places.

Bergen has four carnival associations: C.V. The Erdmennekes and J.C.V. De Belhamels from Bergen, and C.V. De Sukerpinnen and J.C.V. De Bietjes from Aijen.

The Erdmennekes
The Erdmennekes is the carnival association that originated in (Old) Bergen. The association takes part in the parade of the neighborhoods (Old) Bergen and (New) Bergen.

The Belhamels
De Belhamels is the youth association of De Erdmennekes, for the youth from Bergen. It was founded during Christmas in the year 1963. The association participates in the procession of the neighborhoods (Old) Bergen and (New) Bergen.

The Sukerpinnen
The Sukerpinnen is the carnival association that originated in the former village of Aijen. The association participates in the procession of the districts Aijen, (Old) Bergen and (New) Bergen.

The Beets
De Bietjes is the youth association of De Sukerpinnen, for the youth from the Aijen district. The association participates in the procession of the districts Aijen, (Old) Bergen and (New) Bergen.



Board of Mayor and Aldermen
For the period 2014-2018 there was a council of B&W based on a coalition (8 of the 15 seats) of CDA, VVD. The mayor comes from the CDA as well as one of the aldermen. The other alderman came from the party of the VVD. From the 2018 elections, a council was introduced, to which an extra alderman from the Progressive Combination has been added.



A Kleverland dialect is spoken in Bergen. This dialect has many features in common with Brabant and Limburg and is therefore regarded as a Brabant-Limburg transitional dialect. Bergs is closely related to Venrays, Genneps, Land-van-Cuijks and the plateau of Kevelaer and the surrounding area, but shares less characteristics with Horsters and the dialects in the Mich quarter, which are much more southern in nature.

Siebengewalds is again more northern in nature and has many similarities with Groesbeeks.


Local broadcaster

Bergen also has its own local broadcaster. The media activities of the broadcaster fall under the broadcasting license of the BAVLOS (Bergense en Arcen en Veldense Local Broadcasting Foundation). Maasland Radio is the name of the radio station.