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Meppel is a city in the southernmost point of the Dutch province of Drenthe. The city has a regional function for neighbouring Southwest Drenthe and the Kop van Overijssel. Meppel is the only city with a proper harbour in the whole of Drenthe. This harbour is officially the most land inward harbour of the Netherlands, as well as the biggest one of the Northern Netherlands.


Surrounded by water and located in the Reestdal is the cozy city of Meppel, the most southern point of Drenthe. The city, which counts over 32.000 citizens, is not one of the biggest of the Netherlands, yet it is surprisingly diverse for its size. Here you'll find anything from a large harbour with sea access to rural landscapes and from agriculture to modern technology. Meppel offers a cozy city centre which is great for shopping. The city is known for its events as well. The most notable of which are the Grachtenfestival and the Donderdag Meppeldagen, these are what makes the city worth visiting.

If you're looking for peace and quiet, however, Meppel may very well be a destination for you as well. The city is surrounded by scenic landscapes and offers many hiking and cycling routes. Aside from nature you can find medieval churches and limekilns.


In 1422, after being separated from the Kolderveen, Meppel managed to grow significantly during the Dutch Golden Age (17th century) by trading in peat. Meppel, then already a hub of waterways, managed to profit from the trade well that, due to the lack of roads, went mostly by water. The peat, produced in Drenthe, was shipped and sold to the rest of the Netherlands after having passed through Meppel. It was mostly this peattrade that made Meppel become the (then) most important city of Drenthe, as it was the only city that profited of only trade, instead of a combination of trade and agriculture. The welfare that this trade brought to Meppel allowed it to gain city rights in 1644, and regain them in 1809. Nowadays the many storehouses in which the peat was stored, remind of this glorious welfare.

The citizens of Meppel are locally occasionally referred to as Meppeler muggen (Mosquitoes of Meppel). This originates from folklore, in which the church tower of Meppel seemed to be on fire, as it was covered in a large cloud. This cloud, however, ended up being nothing more than a gigantic swarm of mosquitoes.

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

Meppel has a train station, 1 Meppel  IC  SPR , that services Intercity an Sprinter trains that service to Leeuwarden and Groningen to the north and Rotterdam, Den Haag, Utrecht, Zwolle and Hoofddorp to the south.

By car[edit]

Meppel is located by the intersection of the A28/E232 and the A32. The A28 connects the city directly to Zwolle, Amersfoort and Utrecht as well as Hoogeveen and Groningen. The A32 connects Meppel to the A7 and A31, which connect to the Afsluitdijk, and thereby make North Holland relatively close by.

Get around[edit]


  • The moats of Meppel: Though many of them have been removed, Meppel still has several moats to its name.
  • City centre: The centre of Meppel offers many shops and restaurants.
  • 1 De Drie Kalkovens (The Tree Old Limekilns). Old peatfired limekilns, renovated and partially turned into a restaurant.
  • 2 Drukkerijmuseum (Printing museum), Kleine Oever 11, +31 522 242 565, . Drukkerijmuseum (Meppel) (Q2264792) on Wikidata


  • Grachtenfestival
  • Donderdag Meppeldagen


The city centre has many characteristic streets, moats, squares and windmills and offers a large diversity of shops, amongst which you will find many large chains (in the Hoofdstraat mainly), as well as small boutiques (most in the Woldstraat).






Hospital Diaconnessenhuis[edit]

Isala Het Diaconnessenhuis is the hospital of Meppel. It is a subsidiary of the Zwolle Isala.

Go next[edit]

Meppel is just a hop away from the province of Overijssel, where you'll find cities such as Zwolle and Enschede. In Overijssel you will find small villages such as Staphorst as well, known for its classic clothing (which is worn amongst a decent amount of its citizens) and high numbers of religious citizens. But is also a nice place to start a visit to the town of Giethoorn with its canals. If this however, does not fit you, then larger cities such as Utrecht and Leeuwarden can be reached rather easily by train.

Routes through Meppel
UtrechtZwolle  S  N  WesterborkGroningen

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