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family life in or around hilversum

family life in or around hilversum

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Old Apr 22nd 2010, 7:35 pm
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Default family life in or around hilversum

hi there,

We are making the move to holland in 2011, i'm irish and hubby is dutch. At the moment we are looking around hilversum. Its so hard to make a decision about which area to live in. We have two kids 4 and 8. I would really appreciate any information on family friendly areas to live in, what are the international schools like? Is there a nice area to live in thats within cycling distance of the schools? Is there a good expat community in or around hilversum. whats the daily commute like to schiphol? Are there many clubs with stuff for the kids to do (soccer etc).

I would really appreciate any information

thanks in advance, faeiry
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Old Jan 9th 2011, 1:20 am
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Default Re: family life in or around hilversum

Hilversum is a nice and afluent area of Holland. Having worked as a mediator in childcaer I do know there is quite an expat community in that area as NIKE has an office there and they employ loads of people from abroad.
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Old Jan 9th 2011, 2:30 am
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Default Re: family life in or around hilversum

oooh the OH wants to live there someday....

it is the media capital of the Netherlands; the downside is that housing is expensive and there are some who say that crime has risen there. Sounds a bit like Los Angeles It is part of het Gooi and my understanding is that there are still enough trees to constitute what's considered a forest in a very tiny, overcrowded country.

Commute to Schipol? At what hour of the day? Dutch traffic jams are legendary.
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Old May 26th 2011, 2:33 am
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Default Re: family life in or around hilversum

HILVERSUM: We (wife, 3 y old daughter and I) have lived in Hilversum for 5 years. It has a fair-sized expat community due to Nike's presence. They have about 1500 staff of which at least 50% are expat (one thousand five hundred), my wife being one of them. Hilversum is totally surrounded by forest and although it is at the centre of Holland, there are several large lakes and rivers within short cycle distances. We've chosen to live in the town centre after initially living in the suburbs and find it more convenient to getting out/about (bicycle/train or car). Hilversum is in the Gooi area, which comprises a handful of villages, of which one is the most affluent/expensive in Holland (Blaricum). Its neighbour is equally expensive Laren. Hilversum borders with Laren. By Dutch standards it is a medium-sized town, but has a lot to offer for its size.

Housing comprises mostly of 2/3 story terraced style houses from the 20/30s. There are several upmarket areas where the houses are predominantly freestanding villas. The closer you move to the outskirts (forest areas), the larger/more expensive properties become. The town centre which is car-free is compact and shopping comprises 2 main high streets that cross each other at the centre. It is serviced by 3 train stations and lies next to the main highway between Amsterdam and Utrecht. From central station (Hilversum) to Schiphol takes 30 minutes by train and there are several direct trains running between these two stations at peak times. There are also direct trains into Amsterdam. Shopping in MOST Dutch cities is on par offering the same high street brands. Grocery shopping is improving as the Dutch have begun to recognise convenience foods and are now more open to international influence and food brands. Hilversum has a fair mix of national grocery chains that offer reasonable competition to each other. It has market days on Wednesday and Saturday (just off town centre), offering a large selection of fresh produce, fish, poultry, bread, cheese, flowers, clothes and bric-a-brac. It’s a fairly festive place to live with frequent festivals and its cafe-culture is quite vibrant.

Things to do for kids: During summer I take my daughter to “the beach” at least twice weekly. There is the option of two situated at lakes, both are 18 km from our house. The one has a lawn-verged boardwalk of over 1km (great for practising bike-riding or kite-flying. There are plenty of play grounds situated in most neighbourhoods. The library is a nice place to get-together with a pleasant café and (ok) English book selection for kids. Bicycle trips into the forests (or on foot) or fields are easily accessible within walking distance depending where you life. Both forests and fields are criss-crossed with cycle and walking paths. There’s a children’s farm just off town centre and on the outskirts at a local nunnery there is a large playground in the forest which is very popular (with those whom know about it). Hilversum also has loads of cinemas for its size.
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