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The Netherlands is a country with two capital cities. Amsterdam is the constitutional capital of the Netherlands, and the Hague is considered the administrative capital of the country.

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Country Background
The Netherlands is also known as Holland. In total, Holland's land area amounts to just 33,920 square kilometers, meaning that the entire country is a little less that two times the size of the U.S. state of New Jersey. Holland's natural geography is composed largely of flat coastal lowlands and a small, hilly area to the southeast, a situation that makes the country prone to flooding. In the Middle Ages, people built dikes to enclose the polders, which are areas below sea level. In this way, they could control the water levels and protect their homes and land.

The people who live in the Netherlands are referred to as Dutch. In the past, Holland had colonies in other parts of the world like Indonesia and South Africa. The Dutch East India Company was important in expanding the Netherlands trade routes. Holland also boasts famous explorers like Peter Stuyvesant and Dirk Hartog, who was the first foreign visitor to set foot on the continent of Australia. Most former Dutch colonies are now independent. Currently, the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba are still part of the Netherlands, though they are self-governing.

Windmills, clogs, and tulips are symbols commonly associated with Dutch life. Windmills were once widely used for grinding grain. Now the windmills are often used as homes or museums. The Dutch grow tulips in an exciting variety of colors to sell in domestic and international markets. Wooden shoes are another traditional symbol and a popular tourist souvenir.

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