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Exchange Students / Faculty of Economics and Business

About Groningen


Groningen is an attractive destination! It has been awarded 'Best student city of the Netherlands' (numerous times), 'Best city centre', "Best Bike city' and 'Safest City in the Netherlands'. In 2007 a European Commission Survey ranked Groningen as number one in terms of most attractive city in which to live!

Groningen is the capital city of the provence of Groningen in the Netherlands. With a population of 193,000, it is by far the largest city in the north of the Netherlands. Groningen is a university city: every fifth person in Groningen is a student, which gives Groningen the highest student population density in the Netherlands!

Besides being a student city, Groningen is also ahead in the areas of research, innovation and entrepreneurship: a city of talent.

Groningen is unique and different: a colourful and compact city where everything is within easy walking/cycling distance. The city has an intimate, friendly and vibrant atmosphere with cinemas, restaurants, theatres, pubs, museums and pedestrian shopping streets. At any time, day or night, there is always something to do, see or hear in Groningen.

Please make sure to check out GroningenLife! This website will inform you about Groningen from a student perspective: nightlife, sports, blogs, pics/videos and much more.

Ubbo Emmius, first Rector Magnificus
Ubbo Emmius, first Rector Magnificus

History of Groningen

The oldest document referring to Groningen's existence dates from 1040. However, the city already existed long before then: the oldest archaeological traces found are believed to stem from the years 3950 BC–3720 BC, although the first major settlement in Groningen has been traced back to the 3rd century AD. The original name, 'villa Cruoninga', was given in 1040 to a neighbourhood where the present city arose. In the thirteenth century Groningen grew into a strong trading city, which had an administration with legal rules and a system of jurisdiction which it laid down itself. The city was protected by a wall. In 1594, during the eighty years' war between Catholic Spain and the Calvinist rebels in the Netherlands, Groningen city and the Ommelanden were forced to join the Republic of the United Netherlands as a seventh province. This gave rise to the Dutch state as we know it today.

Read more about the history of Groningen, the city of Groningen and the province Groningen.

Goudkantoor (Gold Office)
Goudkantoor (Gold Office)


Originally a provincial tax office, this building was built in 1635. With its lavishly decorated façades, it was the last Renaissance style building to be constructed in Groningen. It was given the name of Goudkantoor in the 19th century when the “bureau of security for gold and silver” was located here, and it is now a café/restaurant.

Groninger Museum
Groninger Museum

Groninger Museum

The Groningen Museum is located opposite the main central station and is the most high-profile museum in the Netherlands. This is due not only to its striking design by Italian architect Mendini, but also because of varying exhibitions, including works by Russian painter Repin, American photographer Andres Serrano, and Dutch photographer Erwin Olaf. The permanent collection consists of a large assembly of porcelain and works by the Groningen artists’ collective De Ploeg. > Read more

Landscapes in Province Groningen
Landscapes in Province Groningen

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The Province Groningen

Groningen is a relatively undiscovered and unspoiled part of the Netherlands. It has kept most of its authenticity. It is full of little pearls - medieval churches, yeoman's mansions and historic old knolls that protected people against the water.

Wadden Sea The Wadden area extends from Den Helder in the Netherlands, as far as Esbjerg, Denmark. Nowhere in the world will you find such a vast, varied area, sculpted by the constant flow of tides. The area’s inhabitants have crusaded against the water for centuries, and this has changed the landscape from a natural to a man-made one, with terps, dikes, and farms. In June 2009 the Wadden Sea was added to the World Heritage List.

Beautiful churches Churches are important landmark elements in the Groningen countryside. With their austere architecture, modest interiors and famous organs, they testify to the province’s rich cultural past. > See more

Reitdiepdal valley The Reitdiepdal landscape northwest of Groningen owes its identity to the traces of 2500 years of habitation and struggling against the water. The area, including old villages such as Ezinge, Garnwerd, and Aduarderzijl, meandering roads, unique man-made landscapes and the Reitdiep, is extremely suitable for an active bicycle ride, starting in Garnwerd, for example. > Read more

See more from Groningen? Links
Google Streetview FEB Zernike Building, Museum/ Central Station, Academic Building
Webcams in Groningen Academic Building , Vismarkt
Tourism in Groningen Click here
Nature and landscape Click here

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Last modified:March 07, 2014 10:50