How to Deal with Loneliness During Erasmus?

Not Tinder.

But let’s take it more seriously. If you find it difficult to deal with leaving your close ones behind and building up new relationships from ground zero, loneliness can be a serious awry of your exchange.

When you are not easy with making friends in the beginning of the exchange, you might start questioning yourself, but many experience it, believe me. Meeting the expectation of others or the fear of missing out, if you do not join as many events as possible, can be an issue. Or you are just simply not fascinated with having shallow conversations with others, who are just as afraid to open up as you are. I have been in the same situation last year, and my thought was: “Everything is better than staying at home and doing nothing”.

In this article, I would love to present you some possibilities, which would have helped me last year to deal with being alone. For this, it is important to enjoy your own company, (I believe, me and I are really good friends 😀 ) and NOT TO BE AFRAID OF BEING ALONE.

Yes, this is the most important. You have no one to meet up with at the moment? Others invited you to an event you are not tickled by?  You might avoid feeling blue with the following useful(?) tips:

    1. Get a Museum Card. It is valid for a whole year, and if we consider that for ~60€, you have free entrance for almost every museum in The Netherlands, it is a fun deal. Especially for rainy days (whose high number is something I assume you are aware of). This can also help you filter the people you have common interests with.
    2. Cycle. I know it sounds cliché, but the fact that you can cycle between cities is awesome. As it is extremely hard to find classic escape destinations, such as mountains (LOL) or big forests, cycling can give you some headspace, it also allows you to pay more attention to yourself, which, trust me, you need.
    3. Initiate. The best way to share what you love to do with others is to organize it yourself. Whether it is a poker or board game night, a football game or yoga workshop, you can count on yourself. The people who are joining you are already open, which means you have a base to start your friendship on.
    4. Say what you want to say. Go beyond the “Where are you from” and “What do you study questions”. Do not worry about others not liking you. If you have a click with someone immediately, it will be more meaningful, than 10 other conversations about things you do no even care about.
    5.  Tinder. Meditation. Just 10 minutes a day. When you get to know yourself better, loneliness is much more bearable than you would imagine.

Continue reading “How to Deal with Loneliness During Erasmus?”


Desperately in need of a great present? These are the 10 best giftshops in Utrecht

When we get older it’s harder to find a gift for someone. What to give? Booze, a book or a giant birthday card (including sounds) – admit it, it’s a challenge every time. When we were kids it was so much easier. Just buy us some toys and cake and it was the Best. Birthday. Ever. But now? The only things we really need are money, a good night’s sleep and some comfort food. But unfortunately, these things are not so easy to wrap. Luckily for you we selected the top 10 of best giftshops in Utrecht when you’re totally out of inspiration.

We know, the official gift season is over. But the cold winter months always seem to be that time of the year when it suddenly is everyone’s birthday. So in case you also have a lot of those birthdays to celebrate: now you know where to shop the perfect gift.

The top 10 giftshops in Utrecht

1. It’s a present

Looking for an original birthday gift including a funny birthday card? This is the place to be. This small store is located in the city center of Utrecht and they sell the funniest and weirdest presents that put a smile on your face. Or even better: on the face of the birthday boy/girl.

It’s a present, Lijnmarkt 16.


2. Keck & Lisa

This is also a small store, located at the Zadelstraat near Mariaplaats. They sell the best gifts: from travel books till the cutest home decorations. You just want to buy everything.

Keck & Lisa, Zadelstraat 38.

3. Flying Tiger

You’ve probably already payed a visit to this amazing store. They have literally everything you need. Or things you didn’t think you needed, but hey, now you do. Wander through this store and you’ll find the perfect gift. Promise.

Flying Tiger, Oudegracht 118.

4. Beadies

If the person you need to buy a gift for is a girl, go to Beadies. Well, only if she really likes jewelry. They sell beautiful jewelry and accessories of good quality. Is she more into creating her own gems? Choose from all the different beads, chains, pendants, charms, stones and jewels to put together an original piece of jewelry.

Schermafbeelding 2018-01-26 om 19.42.47

Beadies, Oudegracht 193.

5. Sissy Boy

Sissy Boy sells clothes and beautiful stuff for your home. Or 12 square meter room. They have all sorts of decorations which will make your friend really happy. Plants, photo frames, candles, jewelry boxes, vases – you name it.

Sissy Boy, Oudegracht 124-126.

6. All the Luck in the World

This concept store will steal your heart: you can buy here the most beautiful necklaces, bracelets and other accessoires. And hopefully this gift will bring your friend ‘all the luck in the world’.

All the Luck in the World, Zadelstraat 15.

7. Things I Like Things I Love

Another concept store. You could never have enough of those. Beautiful clothes, pretty accessoires and cool interior items, that’s what they sell here. Literally all the things you like and love.

Things I Like Things I Love, Oudegracht 364.

Schermafbeelding 2018-01-26 om 20.07.01

8. Urban Outfitters

Not a very unknown brand, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be in this list. Urban Outfitters sells the coolest and quirkiest gear for your wardrobe, interior and overall lifestyle. And for your lucky friend, of course.

Urban Outfitters, Oudegracht 152-156.

9. Hema

Another famous store, but this place is as Dutch as you can get, so it needs to be in this list. Hema is the place you go for whatever it is you need. They. Have. Everything. That’s why finding a gift is an easy job around here.

Hema, Steenweg 59 (but there are many more).

10. Bijenkorf

Want a fancier gift? Go to the giant building of the Bijenkorf. You could wander around for hours and find a beautiful gift for your special someone. Especially during sales.

Bijenkorf, Sint Jacobsstraat 1A.

How to survive the Dutch weather? 5 tips and tricks

When you live in The Netherlands, you have little to complain about. You can bike where ever you want, you can find a coffee shop in basically every neighborhood of the city and you can celebrate several Dutch traditions like Sinterklaas. There’s only one thing… The weather. Whether it’s spring, summer, autumn or winter, it rains a lot in this country. In this blogpost we provide you 5 tips to survive the Dutch weather – because yes, that’s possible (kind of)!

  1. Check a reliable weather app before leaving your house

You definitely won’t regret downloading either the Buienradar or WeerOnline app. These apps show you when it will be raining or not. Check these apps before you leave your house or when you want to plan an outside activity. This is a convenient way to avoid walking or biking in the rain (unless it rains all day, of course).

  1. Buy a wind-proof umbrella

These umbrellas are not cheap, but they last for a long time and are made to protect you from rain and wind. Win-win!

  1. Complain about the weather to start a conversation with a nice Dutchie

Do you see a nice looking Dutchie and you don’t know how to approach him or her? Start talking (e.g. complaining) about the weather! Dutchies are used to complain about the weather, so this is a perfect ice breaker to start a conversation ;-).

  1. Wear the right clothes that protect you from rain

In shops like Hema and Action you can buy actual rain jackets and trousers, that you can wear over your normal clothes. This doesn’t look very appealing –  but hey, you won’t arrive completely soaked at your planned destination!

  1. Accept the shitty weather and stay happy!

Especially when we haven’t seen the sun in a long time, our mood can change immediately when we look outside and see the typical Dutch weather. Make sure to take enough vitamin D (not from the sun, but from a capsule in a jar) and try to stay happy. In the end, The Netherlands is a pretty cool country to live in!

How do you survive the Dutch weather? Leave a comment in the comment section below to let us know!

Procrastination for the nation: 7 ways to avoid studying


You know the feeling. You feel like you should be doing all sorts of other stuff in your life but instead you’re just sitting on your desk, studying… Deep down inside you know that there are so many more important things life has to offer besides studying. But what else can you do??Here are 7 ways to help you avoid studying and do the important things in life.

#1 Hang out with friends

The college years are supposed to be the best years of your life. You can’t be in social exile and have the best time of your life. So, get up, call your friends and meet them for coffee or a beer. Share the latest gossip and talk about your romantic conquests and/or failures. Listen to the stories, they tell you about personal difficulties with life and studying. You will recognize their problems and they will recognize yours. With these shared emotional problems, you will forge a friendship that both of you will cherish for the rest of your lives. After all: You will meet your best friends during your college life.

#2 Tinder

In the words of Lenny Kravitz: “Let love rule”! Everybody knows that love is the most important thing in life (definitely more important than good grades!)
Are you sick of seeing all your friends dating? Are you tired of the questions from your mom about when you finally will settle down with a nice boy or girl? Or are you just lonely? Take matters into your own hand and try this great app called Tinder! Nothing will get your mind of studying like swiping mindlessly through profile pictures of the opposite (or same) sex. If you are lucky enough to have a match, engage in awkward chattery, trying to make your match think you’re amazingly smart and interesting! If you have the cojones, ask them out for a date and let the awkwardness continue. Maybe he or she is just as emotional insecure as you and the both of you will fall in love! Kill two birds with one stone: Fall in love and avoid studying! This might be the best advice I have for you.

#3 Clean your room

If you finally have decided to study, take a good look in your room. You can’t possibly study in this mess! The best thing to do right now is clean that shit. Plus: You never know when you have friends or a lover in your room. You don’t want them to think you’re a disgusting little piggy. Save yourself the embarrassment and avoid studying by doing something responsible and hygienic.

*Important: You might think you’re ready with cleaning your room and therefor ready to study, but most people forget about all the other things to clean. Have you done the dishes? Have you ironed your shirts? Is all the hair out of the shower drain? No…? Get back to cleaning! You ain’t ready to study!!

#4 Netflix

When people tend to study a lot, they can forget a basic human right: Being up to date with all the latest Netflix shows.
As Nelson Mandela once said: “No man or woman, no matter what they study, should be afraid of spoilers because they aren’t up to date with Narcos, Riverdale, Stranger things or any other Netflix show because they had to study!”
After all, binge-watching is important for your personal development. You should be able to have and express your opinion about the social injustice that reveals itself in “How to Make a Murderer”. Developing your awareness of cultural masterpieces and being able to discuss this art is an important part of your time as a student. You simply can’t let this get in the way by something as mundane as studying.

#5 Shopping

Being part of the modern world means you have certain responsibilities. One of the responsibilities is that you help the economy grow by consuming. Consuming aka shopping will make you and others feel better. Buying nice clothes, make-up, colognes, fresh toothbrushes will make you more attractive and likeable. If you have enough food and drinks in the house, you can welcome any weary traveller with whatever they would like or need.
So, you can ask yourself at any time: “Do I have enough clothes and food for any occasion I can possibly think of?” Probably not. So, get out and spend that money! If you by any chance have all the things you need. You still need to get out and buy pens and notebooks to help you study. If you also have all of that. Think of something else you need, you can’t have everything yet! If you don’t have any money, you can always go window-shopping. (Dreaming is important!)

#6 Drinking

If you’re still stuck with studying and you can’t find a way to procrastinate studying. Have a beer, a glass or wine or any kind of alcoholic beverage. You will soon find the motivation to study to leave your body like a dying man’s spirit. Invite your friends over and have great drunk intellectual conversations. But be sure to not drink too much! Because remember kids: “binge-watching is cool, binge-drinking is for fools”.

#7 Write an article on how to avoid studying

As I am writing this important manual. I should be studying for my exams, which are pretty soon. But I feel like as a writer, you have to believe in your own product. Therefor I’m leading by example and avoid studying by writing this article. As I am writing my final sentences I am already contemplating how to avoid the books for the rest of today. Luckily, I have just written down several ideas so I’m good to go. If you yourself have any good ideas or Netflix recommendations, please put them down in the comment section.


6 Must see movies of 2018

New year, new movies! Make sure you don’t miss these 6 movies coming out this year.


Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Release date in the Netherlands: 11 January 2018
Genre: Drama

This movie tells the story of a woman, Mildred, who lost her daughter. Her daughter has been found murdered a few months earlier. Mildred is angry with the police, because she thinks the investigation isn’t going as quick as it should. To provoke the police, she places three billboards near her home. “RAPED WHILE DYING”, “AND STILL NO ARRESTS?”, and “HOW COME, CHIEF WILLOUGBHY” is visible on the big, red boards. The billboards cause a lot of anger with the other villagers, who harass Mildred and her son. In the meantime, the investigation goes on and Mildred still hopes to find her daughter’s murderer.


Black Panther
Release date in the Netherlands: 14 February 2018
Genre: Action

“Black Panther” is one of the many superhero movies from Marvel. What makes this movie different, is the mainly black cast. The story is set in ‘Wakanda’, King T’Challa’s home. In the movie “Captain America: Civil War”, we see T’Challa for the first time. In that movie, he’s just getting familiar with his ‘Black Panther identity’. Now, T’Challa has return home to Wakanda. As it turns out, he isn’t safe in his hometown, because two of his enemies are trying to take down the kingdom. He has to fight as the Black Panther to prevent a civil war.


Deadpool 2
Release date in the Netherlands: 1 June 2018
Genre: Action comedy

“Deadpool” is also based on the Marvel Comics. In the first movie, we can see how Deadpool acts more like a funny villain than a superhero. Despites his actions, Deadpool has a good heart and is most of all hilarious. The second movie promises therefore to be just as good for your funny bone.


Love, Simon
Release date in the Netherlands: 14 June 2018
Genre: Drama

“Love, Simon” promises to be a good and teachable movie. The main character, Simon, is secretly gay and in love. The problem is, he doesn’t know who he’s in love with, since it’s an anonymous internet crush. An even bigger problem is that the letters he sent to his secret pen pal, have fallen into the wrong hands. He’s blackmailed into being someone’s wingman to prevent his secret coming out.


The Incredibles 2
Release date in the Netherlands: 15 June 2018
Genre: Animation

This one is for the nostalgic people amongst us. Fourteen (!) years ago, most of the current students begged their parents to take them to the cinema to see “The Incredibles”. An incredibly funny and good movie. Now, the time of the second Incredibles movie has come. The starring superhero family exists of the extremely strong Mr. Incredible, his wife Elastigirl and their three kids who are also blessed with strange superhero powers. After battling a villain in the first movie, the family tries to balance their normal suburban lives with their superhero lives. But when another villain rises, they have to fully commit to save their selves and the world. Make sure you don’t miss this!


Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Release date in the Netherlands: 16 November 2018
Genre: Fantasy

As a big Harry Potter fan, I strongly feel this blog wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t discuss this movie. “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” is the second Fantastic Beasts movie. If you haven’t seen the first one, I suggest you plan a movie night with your friends, right now! It’s definitely worth watching. In the first Fantastic Beasts movie, we see Newt Scamander chasing all the magical creatures that escaped his even more magical suitcase. In “The Crimes of Grindelwald” Newt and our old friend Albus Dumbledore try their best to keep the dark wizard Grindelwald from getting followers.

The unraveling of 6 typical Dutch words (which don’t exist in English)

How many times have you heard people talking Dutch to each other, without having any idea what they are talking about? Probably one of the reasons why you didn’t understand anything is because the Dutch use a lot of words which don’t exist in English. After reading this article, you will know the meaning of 6 Dutch words which people use a lot in everyday conversations.


Although gezellig literally means cosy, for the Dutch this word represents way more than that. Dutchies use this word when they are having a fun, amicable and exciting time with friends or family.

Hè hè

This is a short exhalation that people mostly use when they want to express comfort, satisfaction or relief, for example after completing a busy day at work or a good work out at the gym.


Tasty food is commonly called lekker, but Dutchies use this adjective also when they see attractive people or well-made clothing. Even when they had a good night of sleep, they say ‘ik heb lekker geslapen.’


In English you would say borrel means aperitif, but it’s actually a word used for informal gatherings at bars (which could take place before or after dinner). On Fridays, many employers organize after work drinks at their offices known as vrijmibo (vrijdagmiddagborrel).


After the Dutch ate a delicious, filling meal they go ‘uitbuiken’. This literally means ‘outbellying’ in English, but Dutchies use this verb to express they need time to relax after eating a filling meal.

Op Die Fiets

This idiom barely makes any sense, because it literally means ‘on that bike’. But the Dutch use it in a way to say ‘Oh, now I understand how that happened’.

Which Dutch word appears the most strange to you? Let us know in the comment section below!

And the cheapest supermarket in Utrecht is…

We all want to spend the least amount of money possible while we do our grocery shopping, right? But it is not always the easiest task. You are bounded by what are the closest supermarkets, prices change all the time, and just one supermarket might have some products that are cheaper and some that are more expensive, when compared to others. To complicate things further, since lots of times supermarkets are franchises (they use the main house name and follow some rules, but each store is run independently and can decide on some prices), the prices can vary across stores of the same chain; usually things will be more expensive outside of the city, where competition is less fierce. On top of this, sometimes the absolute cheapest things are of really terrible quality, so, if you are like me and want to have a good price-quality balance, it can really be puzzling.

Chain supermarkets, like Jumbo and Albert Heijn, are nice because you can buy all your food in one go, both the fresh food, like meat and vegetables, and the dried and canned food, like rice and tomato. You can also find the brands you are used to. So, while markets and Turkish shops are sometimes better and, oftentimes, cheaper options, we will compare some chain supermarkets so you can make an informed decision the next time you have to decide where to go!


How can we compare supermarket prices?

When we compare prices across supermarkets, the easiest strategy is to compare branded products of the same size and type, for example how much a 33cl. can of Pepsi costs, and this can be a good indicator of how supermarkets fare against each other. However, there are a few caveats that we must look at. Firstly, most chains have the same big brand suppliers, and, since these are the products that are easiest to compare, they might cost the same across all stores where they are placed. Secondly, because not all chains, or even stores, sell the same branded products, it can get hard to compare them. For example, in one store you might find only Coke, and on another only Pepsi.

Finally, because these are usually the cheapest, the most interesting and difficult products to compare are house brands. This is hard for several reasons: since the producers and suppliers of house brands are usually different across chains, the quality and cost of production is different and how it translated into the final price is very unpredictable,  and it can also depend on how much the big brands are priced. For example, if there is a house branded rice and a rice of a big brand, even if the house brand is much cheaper for the supermarket, they cannot put their price much distinct from the big brand one, since people would either only buy the cheapest one because of that, or not buy it all because they would think it is of very bad quality. However, all chains face this problem and solve it in the same way, but my point is that it is very hard to assess the value of these sort of products.

Something that makes it extra hard to access how products from house brands compare between chains relates with what role these products play compared with big brand products, and there are three main roles. The first is to have one house brand and sensibly one alternative house product for each product, which is usually of medium quality, and is what happens, for example, at Jumbo (mostly) and Plus. You will find one Jumbo or Plus alternative to a specific type of rice, and by its side you will find the branded alternatives.

The second is to have more than one house brand for each product, of different quantities. This is what happens for example in Albert Heijn, where you find AH Basic products, normal AH products, and AH Excellent products. Although not all products have AH produce all three alternatives, many products will have at least two house options of different qualities, next to branded products. One example of a product that has all of them in AH is pizza. In Jumbo there are also some products that have two of them in Jumbo brand, and, looking at the difference in price, we assume that there are also two levels of quality, since it is not straightforward from the marketing.

The third is to have almost exclusively house products, like in Lidl, or unknown brands, like Aldi. These products tend to be a bit more expensive than medium quality house brands in other chains, because they are the only ones on sale, but also because of this they are usually of better quality.

This problem between chains is also very presents in fresh fruits, vegetables and meat, which might have different origins and there might be more than one option for each product.

There are particular ways in which you can get better prices from time to time: look at the promotions, which here are called “acties” or “aanbieding”. And in AH you can use your Bonus card to have those discounts.

This can be a good guideline for you if you wish to compare products and prices the next time you go shopping. We will give a small example to try to get an idea about which one, between Jumbo, Albert Heijn and Plus, is the best bet!


Let’s compare prices!!

We will compare house and branded products from different chain stores that can be found around the center of Utrecht, but we will look at the online prices (these prices were consulted on 06/01/2018). Of course we can’t compare all of them in store, so this is just a taste, and prices can vary per store! We will keep in mind that, for the house brands, we will use the middle quality brand in the case of Albert Heijn, an in Jumbo as well when applicable. For the fresh vegetables, fruits and meat, we will always choose the cheapest one available. We will not compare Lidl and Alsi because their prices are not online.

Let’s look at the following shopping list:

  • 1L Coke
  • Spaghetti
  • 6 medium eggs
  • 1Kg Tomato
  • 1 Lettuce
  • 1 Loaf Brown Bread
  • Frozen 4 Cheese pizza
  • 1L Skimmed Milk (fridge)
  • 1kg Chicken Breast

For the spaghetti, we will look at the house brand and at “Grand’Itallia” as an example of a branded product. For the 4 Cheese pizza, we will do the same but use “Casa di Mama”.

The coke costs 1,56€ in Jumbo, and 1,62€ both in AH and Plus.

The house brand spaghetti costs 0,61€, 0,74€ and 0,7€ in Jumbo, AH and Plus, respectively. From “Grand’Itallia”, it costs 1,13 in the first, and 1,2€ in the last two.

Now for a fresh salad. The kilo of tomatoes costs 2,16€, 2,18€ and 2,38, in the same order. The lettuce costs 0,95€ in the first, and 0,99€ in the last two.

For your breakfast, the loaf of bruin bread costs 1,09€ in AH, and 1€ in the other two, and the liter of skimmed milk costs 1,04€ in Jumbo, 1,07€ in AH and 1,06€ in Plus.

If you like that quick frozen pizza, this is for you. In the house brand, it costs 1,99€ both in Jumbo and Plus, and 2,15 in AH, whereas for the one from “Casa di Mama” costs 2,72€ in Jumbo, and 2,89€ in the other two.

Finally, for you dinner with friends, the cheapest kilo of chicken costs 8,49€ in Jumbo, 7,76€ in AH and 7,5€ in Plus.

The total shopping list would have cost you 23,2€ in Jumbo, 23,54€ in AH, and 22,98€ in Plus.

So, what is the cheapest supermarket??

If you look at how the prices of the products compare individually, Jumbo did better in all fronts. Albert Heijn seems to be consistently the most expensive supermarket. Plus seems to fluctuate between both, being sometimes as cheap as Jumbo, and sometimes as expensive as AH, only beating both on the meat.

It is very interesting though that the cheapest in the final bill was Plus. The key is the price difference in the meat, so beware of how supermarkets compensate the lower prices in some products on other products!

So, now you have some objective comparisons between these supermarkets. If I am being honest, this matches my own experience with these supermarkets, and I still believe that Jumbo is a good choice, but mixing them if you can is of course the best.

If you want other tips to save money during your stay, check out Robin’s article.

What do you find to be the best supermarket in Utrecht? Do you agree that Jumbo is the overall cheapest supermarket? Do you have other tips to compare prices between supermarkets? Share your thoughts in the comments!

2018 bucket list for your stay in the Netherlands

First of all, the JoCo wishes you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let’s make this year awesome!

Each year we say that we will start doing this or stop doing that. But let’s be honest, most of the time our big plans get dashed throughout the middle of January. That is why we came up with a bucket list for 2018, you really want to stick to!

Go to the Efteling

The Efteling is one of the oldest theme parks in the world. It is a fantasy themed park that features over 30 attractions spread throughout four different fantastical realms: Fairy, Adventure, Travel, and Alternative. Definitely worth a visit! 

See 8 windmills at one glance

The Zaanse Schans is famous worldwide for its eight historic windmills, which were built in the mid-to-late 16th century, and its 35 historical houses. You will even find the very first Albert Heijn among them! The attraction is easy to reach via public transport and free of entrance.

zaanse schans
ESN day trip to the Zaanse Schans in 2017

Explore Utrecht’s neighborhoods

Who says you have to go far to travel? Utrecht has way more to offer than the Oudegracht or the dom tower. So, take your camera and take a stroll through the different areas of Utrecht. You will find great cafes, restaurants, parks, street art and architecture all throughout the city! In the ESN Abroad magazine we are providing you with inside tips for each neighborhood. So check it out!

Go to an ESN cantus

Participating at a cantus is a Dutch student tradition you really don’t want to miss!  During this amazing night you will dressed up according to the theme, sing your favourite songs and drink like the Dutchies do! Afterwards you are going to have a great party at Poema! Sounds amazing right? Keep an eye on the dates on our ESN Utrecht Facebook page!
P.S. If you’re lucky, there might still be tickets available for next week’s Jungle Cantus!

Singing Lady Gaga at the ESN Halloween Cantus

Take a stroll through tulip fields

The Netherlands is famous for its tulip fields, especially those of the Keukenhof, which is the world’s second largest flower garden with approximately 7 million flower bulbs. It’s an incredible experience to walk through seemingly never ending flower fields and to discover all the different shaped and coloured tulips. The park is open each year from mid-March to mid-May.

Go ice skating

You probably already noticed that the Dutchies are crazy about their ice skating! They even have an event that is all about ice skating: De Elfstedentocht. With the help of ESN Utrecht you could tick of this point off your bucket list in no time! On the 10th of January, we will go to the indoor ice skating hall in Utrecht to have an amazing time on the ice. The best thing? The event is FOR FREE! So, head over to our FB page and hit that ‘going button’!


Go to a music festival

The Netherlands is known for its vivid music scene. There are many cool festivals, especially during the summer months, that belong on everyone’s bucket list. It doesn’t matter if you’re into house, techno, pop, rock, hip hop or indie – the perfect festival is out there! So, head over to this page to find your ideal match!

Celebrate King’s Day

On the 27th of April, the whole Netherlands is celebrating the birthday of King Willem Alexander’s birthday! During the day, people are allowed to sell things on the street without requiring a permit. Flea (‘free’) markets are held in parks and streets, with many people offering their unwanted possessions, music or other entertainment for sale. In Utrecht, the flea markets even start the night before King’s Day. So, put on some orange clothes and experience the Netherlands like never before!

Ever ask yourself where to take someone on a first date? Or how to impress your Dutch friends/crush with a funny saying?
The JoCo knows the answers!  So, keep an eye on our blog for more!

5 Facebook pages you should like

Scrolling aimlessly through my Facebook timeline is something I do more often than I would like to admit. Especially on lazy days, I can easily get lost in the world of memes and BuzzFeed quizzes. During all this ‘Facebook research’, I found some quite useful, funny and entertaining Facebook pages. Since I’m probably not the only one with this habit, I’m happy to share them with you!

  1. I know this great little place in Utrecht
    Utrecht is full of little, hidden spots that are definitely worth a visit. Since they’re hidden, it’s hard to find these spots on your own. Luckily, “I know this great little place in Utrecht” is a Facebook page that highlights bars, restaurants, museums and many more places, that you otherwise would have missed.
  2. Make that the cat wise
    We Dutchies have some pretty weird sayings and expressions, like ‘Make that the cat wise’, which means something like ‘I don’t believe a word you’re saying’. To Dutch people, saying like these sound completely normal and self-evident. Until they’re translated to English. On the Facebook page “Make that the cat wise”, you can find an endless amount of posts with Dutch sayings in English. So if you like to get to know the (weird) Dutch language a little better (or if you just want to laugh at us), you should definitely like this page!
  3. 1000 life hacks
    Make your time on Facebook useful by following the Facebook page “1000 life hacks”. What is the perfect remedy for chapped lips? How to fall asleep faster? How do you keep your bathroom clean without too much effort? This Facebook pages answers these questions and a whole lot of others.
  4. Must do travels
    “Must do travels” is a page with photos and videos made by travellers around the world. From snowy landscapes, to dry deserts, to light blue oceans, they all look very beautiful and might give you some inspiration where to travel next. If you like to travel and photograph yourself, you can also send your own photos or videos to the pages to get them posted.
  5. ESN Utrecht (Blog)
    Of course, the ESN Utrecht Facebook page and our own Facebook page, ESN Utrecht Blog, can’t be absent from this list. Like the ESN Utrecht page to stay up to date about the upcoming ESN events. On the ESN Utrecht Blog page, you can find links to all our blogs, so you never have to miss out on any blogs!

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