Queen Beatrix reopens miniature town Madurodam

The miniature town of Madurodam has been officially reopened by Queen Beatrix, after a large-scale renovation that lasted six months and cost eight million euros.

Madurodam, which this year marks its sixtieth anniversary, says one of the aims of the renovation was to meet the wishes of a new generation of visitors. As a result, they now can engage with several Dutch monuments in a hands-on way.

Madurodam was opened in 1952 by Queen Beatrix, who was also appointed the miniature city’s first mayor. On 21 April, she reopened the renovated miniature park.

The new Madurodam features a walk through three areas: water, cities and innovation. The park has 30 interactive points, video screens and a larger playground and serves as an ode to the Netherlands.

Visitors can now open and close a storm surge barrier to save a village from flooding, make a plane take off from Schiphol airport, or load and unload ships in the port of Rotterdam. More than 50 models were upgraded and six new ones were built, including Het Loo Palace, the flower auction Flora Holland and the windmills of Kinderdijk.

The park hopes it will draw 730,000 visitors annually in 2015. Currently the park attracts 600,000 visitors a year and 1 million visitors more than ten years ago.

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