If you are planning on coming to the Netherlands, you should visit Madurodam with your family. Madurodam is a well known amusement park in the Netherlands but it’s not just an amusement park. it’s a (Second World War) war monument built to honour and remember war hero George Maduro. Why do I recommend this park if you come to The Netherlands? First I want to explain the name of the park to you.
Madurodam is named after war hero George Maduro. He was born and raised in Curaçao until his 10th year.
His family then moved to the Netherlands and he grew up in Den Hague. After his school years he went to study law in Leiden but the Germans invaded the Netherlands in 1940.
He was a reserve officer in the army and helped protect the city against the Germans. After Holland surrendered, he was captured by the Germans and spent 7 months in jail in Scheveningen. When he was released he joined the resistance and helped allied pilots that crashed to escape to England.
George wanted to go to England to actively help fight the Germans but he was betrayed and put to jail in Germany by the Gestapo. In 1944 his jail was bombed and he got a chance to escape. When he saw hands sticking out from under the rubble he decided to help dig out his inmates.
This took time and he got arrested again by the Germans and sent to the concentration camp Dachau. After this his body got weaker and on the 9th of February 1945 he died. This was only 11 weeks before the camp was set free by the Americans.
George is remembered as a brave war hero that tried to help others. His parents wanted to honor their only son and keep his memory alive and so they donated the start-up capital and that’s how the park got the name Madurodam.
Now over to three reasons why you should visit Madurodam with your family:
1. It’s a fun day out!
Spread out over the park there are some fun activities for the kids to do. They can pump water and try to extinguish the flames from a ship, learn about dikes, spot trains, produce energy from windmills or play with water.
If all this is not enough, there are also 2 playgrounds in the park. One for the smaller children (Miffy) and the other for a bit older kids (Waddenzee).
So, in the worst case your kids will be in the playground and you can check out the park by yourself quietly and actually read and learn something yourself (this might or might not have been our experience). They also have a restaurant and a food cart that sells hotdogs and ice cream.
2. You get an overview of all of Holland’s well known spots
It’s so cool to see all those famous locations in one place. You get to travel to the best and most known of the Netherlands in one spot and see them up close.
I’ve seen the Scheepvaartmuseum in Amsterdam many times but I never realized their roof was made of glass until I saw it from the top at Madurodam.
3. Madurodam donates its revenue to charities for children
“Since 1952, Madurodam has been donating its revenue, between 600.000 and 1 million euro per year, to charities for children.” This information comes from here. So by visiting Madurodam you are also helping these children’s charities that they support.
And I am going to give another reason you should visit Madurodam with your family. Like I said, it’s a fun day out, where you get to see all of the best of the Netherlands, your kids can walk around and play or play in the playground and … (reason number 4) You also learn some history of the Netherlands/Dutch Caribbean. I didn’t know as much about George Maduro as I should and I’m really happy we’ve finally visited the park. If you need some more ideas what to visit when you come to The Netherlands then read this next article with some more tips. Until next time!