Hoorn: city of monuments
Hoorn is buzzing! This historic city with its unique waterside location is a living monument. Over the years Hoorn has retained its international character. Hoorn's 72,000 inhabitants, representing around 80 different nationalities, live in the old city centre and the districts built around it. In Hoorn, young and old coexist happily. This goes for both the people and the buildings. Modern architecture is carefully blended into the historical townscape. Hoorn is a compact, complete town with a good location. Next to the A7 and with a direct rail connection to Amsterdam and Schiphol, Hoorn is practically on the doorstep of the Netherlands Randstad area. Set in rural surroundings on the shore of the Ijsselmeer, Hoorn is a great place to live and work and spend your leisure time. The beating heart of West Friesland. Hoorn has a rich past. In the Golden Age, Hoorn was as one of the six bases of the Dutch East India Company, a prosperous and powerful trading town. This prosperity can still be seen in the historical town centre with its atmosphere of bygone eras. Listed buildings are an integral part of everyday life, providing space for shops, offices, museums and homes. The former Oostereiland prison complex is an extraordinary site, with future plans for a mix of housing, workplaces, culture and bars and restaurants. Beyond the town itself, the former villages of Westerblokker and Zwaag boast many historical treasures. After Amsterdam and Haarlem, Hoorn is the third monument city in North Holland.
Hoorn: residential city
Over the past few decades Hoorn has developed into an attractive residential town with 72,000 inhabitants. From the 1970s onwards various districts grew up around the historical town centre, each with its own character and facilities. The modern Westfries Gasthuis provides hospital care for the whole region. The high priority given to educational facilities for young people is reflected in a complete range from nursery to university level. All types of primary schools can be found in the residential districts. For further and vocational education Hoorn fulfils a regional function. Hoorn is constantly developing and is currently building the latest district, Bangert & Oosterpolder. In this district, close to the former villages of Zwaag and Westerblokker, the new construction follows the centuries-old structure of the village ribbon development. The architecture is being carefully integrated into the landscape and the original setting, to create exceptional residential districts in Hoorn.
Hoorn: shopping city
Hoorn's atmospheric, diverse shopping centre attracts many tens of thousands of visitors each year. It's a great place for special shopping. Small, intimate boutiques, stylish home and interior shops, unusual gift shops, markets, unique art and plenty of lovely shops selling antiques and curiosities. In addition to the popular shopping area in the centre, the various districts also offer a variety of easily accessible shops with good parking facilities.
Hoorn: city of museums
Over the years, Hoorn has collected many old and new treasures. These can be found in its seven museums, of which the West Frisian Museum is the oldest. The building itself, an exceptional example of Renaissance art, is well worth a visit. Close to this "old giant" is the most recent museum acquisition: the first poster museum in the Netherlands, with a changing display of advertising placards and posters through the ages. The Museum of the Twentieth Century, located in one of the few remaining cheese warehouses in Hoorn, has a motley collection of objects from the past century. A special museum is the Hoorn-Medemblik Museum Steam Tram with the most intact remaining local railway in the Netherlands. Hoorn also has the Toy Museum, the Cape-Horners Museum and the Turkey-Netherlands Museum. All the museums in Hoorn are within walking distance of each other in the old town centre.
Hoorn: city of culture
Hoorn has a flourishing cultural life. The Het Park theatre and congress centre provides a stage for innumerable national musical productions. The theatre offers visitors a diverse range of shows. The city is buzzing and bubbling elsewhere, too. The Hotel Mariakapel is a special art exhibition venue. The hotel attracts artists from all over the world who work, exhibit and stay there. Hoorn is famed among lovers of early music for its Early Music Festival. In the field of pop music and youth culture, the Manifesto pop and culture centre has an extensive programme. Every year the Karavaan Festival opens the summer season in Hoorn with a stunning spectacular. More and more visitors from outside the city are also finding their way to the Karperkuil for its atmospheric harbour concerts. An absolute high point is the Hoorn Fair. With its 80 different attractions it is the best urban fair in the Netherlands and attracts droves of fair lovers every year.
Hoorn: sports city
For sports Hoorn has a regional function, with its flourishing clubs and good-quality facilities. There are also plenty of indoor and outdoor sports facilities in the residential areas for those who are not members of a club. Hoorn has an athletics track that is suitable for national competitions and football clubs that play at the highest level of amateur sports. The two swimming pools, one of which is covered, are open to both clubs and private individuals. The latest acquisition is the De Westfries ice-rink, located in the De Blauwe Berg recreational area. With this broad range of facilities it is not surprising that Hoorn has produced several great sportsmen and women.
Hoorn: harbour city
Over the course of the centuries Hoorn harbour has played a major role in the nature and development of the city. Once the harbour was the departure point of the Dutch East India Company, later the fishing fleet found a home port there and, at present, Hoorn harbour is a favourite port of call for water sports. Many old sailing ships also frequently call into Hoorn for sailing excursions and water holidays. For many of the water tourists who come to the town each year, the cosy old harbour, with its characteristic Hoofdtoren tower is the landmark of Hoorn. In addition to the inner and outer harbour, there are the Grashaven and Vluchthaven harbours. The tiny Karperkuil harbour houses a water sports club. In the Schelphoek, a new marina is being built. With 800 berths, the 'Marina Kaap Hoorn' will meet the great demand for mooring places. For young people there will be a section where they can learn to sail and train for competitions.
Hoorn: working city
With around 3,000 businesses and 30,000 employees, Hoorn is the hub of West Frisian business life. Hoorn has various office and industrial zones that together accommodate a large variety of business activities. Many shops and companies have been established here and grown into flourishing concerns with clients far beyond the region. Business service provision is on the up in Hoorn. As service providers for small and medium-sized businesses, these firms are a welcome addition. With its excellent location on the A7 and good rail connections to and from Amsterdam and Schiphol airport, Hoorn is an easily accessible workplace on the doorstep of the Randstad region.
Hoorn: city for recreation
Hoorn has a wide range of recreational facilities. The town centre has dozens entertainment venues, bars and restaurants. In good weather it is nice to spend time on one of the numerous terraces in De Roode Steen and in the harbour. The De Blauwe Berg recreational area offers even more contemporary recreation and entertainment facilities. In addition to the modern ice rink that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year, in the near future there will be a large cinema complex with some 8 screens and a dance club. Local residents and visitors can also enjoy the parks and recreational areas spread throughout the town.