Holland is located along the North Sea. It’s partly thanks to this sea that the Netherlands is better known as Holland. The North Sea offered great opportunities to explore and trade with the rest of the world. That’s how the two most western provinces, ‘Zuid-Holland’ and ‘Noord-Holland’, became very wealthy and well-known.
Today the North Sea is still of great economic importance. Along the coast there are many harbors with fishing vessels and cargo ships. Think, for example, of the port of Rotterdam, which is one of the biggest in the world and very much dependent on its connection to the sea. Finally, the North Sea is of great interest for the Dutch tourist.
The Dutch and the North Sea have a love-hate relationship. In the past, floods claimed many lives. Without the thousands of dunes, dikes, storm barriers and other water defense works, a large part of the Netherlands would disappear under water. Holland owes much of its economical strength to the sea, but the sea is also a threat that constantly has to be monitored.