About Stavoren & Friesland

The historical Stavoren was granted city rights between 1060 and 1067, making it the oldest city in Friesland.

It is mentioned in early texts as the burial place of the early kings of Friesland, including the first Christian king Adgil II (d. 730), who was a son of Redbad, the last pagan king who lived from about 670 to 719.

Stavoren began to lose population and trade in the late Middle Ages after a sandbank formed outside the harbour, blocking ships from entering and exiting. The appearance of the sandbank is the topic of the Dutch Renaissance folk-tale of the Lady of Stavoren (See the photo of statue of the Lady of Stavoren on the home page).

Stavoren is one of the towns of the Hanseatic League. The League was a commercial and defensive confederation of merchant guilds and market towns in Northwestern and Central Europe started in 1157.

The free and privileged Hanse Towns became the asylum of commerce, and the retreats of civilization, when the rest of Europe was subjected to the iron sway of the feudal system, and the Northern seas were infested by “savage clans and roving barbarians.”

The Hollanders were defeated by the Frisians in the Battle of Warns at the Red Cliffs in 1345.

In 1657, the entire town was submerged in a great flood.

There are numerous notable towns and sites nearby. Europe’s smallest fishery harbour is Laaxum, where two brothers are the last remaining of a line of fishermen going back to the 1500’s.

Also nearby is the beautiful town of Hindeloopen

The world’s oldest working planetarium is the Eise Eisinga Planetarium in Franeker. The Planetarium Room is the centrepiece with a model of the sun with the 6 planets turning around it.

The Kazematten Museum is the location where 225 Dutchmen stopped 17,000 Germans during WW II. It is situated right at the Afsluitdijk that separates the North Sea from the Ijsselmeer.

Our Wednesday trip is a tour of the Frisian capital Leeuwarden We will visit:

The Frisian Museum:

The Ceramics Museum:

We will travel to Leeuwarden by train leaving from the Stavoren Train Station.