Welcome to Marken

a site about History tourism costumes and the people

Bienvenue à Marken

Marken Island

In 1957 Marken was an Island in the Gouwzee. In 1991 Marken belongs to the munacipality waterland in the dutch province of Northern Holland. There are proximatley 1800 people and its known throughout the world for its unique monumental wooden houses narrow streets, fishing harbour and colourfull costumes. This is now a major tourist attraction.


The people

Marken is devided into serveral neighbourhoods. Originlly the neighboorhoods were separate mounds. At the peak of the period, there were 27 mounds, which together formed the island of Marken.

In 1957 Marken became a peninsula when the island was connected to the main land. But it never lost its charme and character.

Marker wapen

Marken Coat of Arms

"From glaze with a moorkop of gold". On June 26th 1816 the supreme council of nobility was issued to the Muncipality.

The Coat of Armsshows a blue sheild with a moor in gold.

The Marken Crest was merged in the muncipality Waterland and was no longer used until it started a new life in 2014.


Flood Disaster 1916

On the 13th and 14th January 1916 disaster strikes. A storm surge drives the sea level in the Suydersea while excessive melt water in the major rivers from the interior of the Netherlands also puts pressue from the Suydersea. As a result, in some plces, the leveis broke through. Marken was also hit by the floods. 16 people died and many more were left homeless.

Infopunt in de haven

The Flag is out!

2016 the flag is 200 years old

Would you also like to buy a "Marken flag"? Or would you rather like a "Marken Coffee Cup" or "Marken Boat Flag". These are all available at the Information point in the harbour building. Intrestered but can't go to Marken? You could send an email to: info@gemeentemarken.nl

Information Point

Open Thursday – Sunday 12.00 thru 16.00

The information point can be found in the harbour building at number 19C.

The "Waterland Foundation for Information" (SPW) runs this this tourist information point. Volunteers from Marken, who would like to help, could contact Janine Klein via: janine@onswaterland.nl

Marken History


Year 0: Markaland

In the begining of Marken History, it was situated on the edge of a bog, where the land ran into the water of "Mare Flevo".Marken or Markenland, is probably derived from the word "mark", in the meaning of "boundry".


1000: Minig

In the 11th century the actual mining began. About 1000 AD. the Island of Marken did not exist yet. Along streams and peat bog on the highest humps, the people began to create new villages. Often the water was mostly explored.


1164: Island Marken

On 16th thru 17th of February 1164, the St. Juliana Flood ( also named Juriaan Flood ) exceeded the North Sea coast. Extensive damage was caused. Also "Markaland" (Marka Country) of Waterland was separated by St. Juliana Flood and became an island: "The Island of Marken" was born.

Norbertine monks

1235: Monks

In the year 1232 the Norbertine monks of Hallum, located on the other side of the Suydersea in East Friesland, obtained Marken as a gift from a group of believers. They founded a sanctuary, Mariahof, at the location which is now known as the "Kerkbuurt".

1345: William IV

The monks were expelled, by William the Fourth of Holland, in the spring of 1345.

Their property was confiscated. The land was surveyed and the etate meassured. On the 23rd of July it was formally laid adopted in the charters over land ownership.

1500: Werften

Since the fourteenth century there were many more floodings.

The inhabitants decide to raise land mounds and rebuild their homes on top. "High and dry from the water". The mounds were called yards, in dutch "werven"

1600: Water Vessels

In the 17th century the Mrken people developed their own water vessels.

Initially used for fishing, later as a trading ship for the transport of live fish. The Batavia Yard in Lelystad started construction of a replica in 2015.

1700: Horse of Marken

The lighthouse, "The Horse of Marken", built in 1700, was originally built as a square beacon. This was one of the Suyderzeese Fire Beacons; Besides "The Horse of Marken", there are: "The Ven" and "Lighthoue Durgerdam". In 1699 it has been decided to use the three lighthouses to mark the route of the Wadden Sea to Amsterdam.

1825: Goudriaan

Early 19th century Marken was part of the plan of King William I, to build a canal to improve shipping access to Amsterdam; "the Canal of Goudrian".

The canal would cut Marken in two, from the southwest to the northeast coast

1916: The Flooding

1916 : 13 and 14 January: Disaster strikes.

A storm surge drives up the sea level in the "Suydersea", while excessive melt water in the major rivers of the Netherlands, creates fooding from the opposite side.

1932: Closure Dike

The disaster lead to the construction of the ajor causeways: the closure dike named: "Afsluitdijk" and the "Suydersea Works". The plans for the reclamation of the Suydersea became real.

The four islands: Wieringen , Urk, Schokland and Marken would thereby function as natural barriers.

1940: Flevoland

In 1940 drainage and embankments started, whih lead to creation of the future 12th province: Flevoland. (Flevoland creation ended when it as officially established on 1 January 1986) One part of the "Suydersea" was the "Markerwaard", from which the first part of the dike between Marken and the mainland was created.


On October 17, 1957, at 13:11 hours, at a temperature of 14 degrees, with a weak sun and moderate southwest winds, the embankment between the mainland and Marken was opened by the Seawall 1.6 km.

The "Island of Marken" became a peninsula.

1976: Flevoland

The construction of the Houtribdijk or "Markerwaarddijk"strts in 1976. The dike connects Lelystad with Enkhuizen ( N302 ).

As a result, the "IJsselmeer" was separated from the "Markermeer". In 1986 Netherlands officially got its 12th province; Flevoland.

1991: Waterland

Marken was a separate municipality until 1991. From January 1, 1991 Marken, again became part of the municipality "Waterland"

2016: Coat of Arms

Since the merger of Marken in the municipality Waterland in 1991,the Marken Coat of Arms was no longer used. However, in 2014, the flag was re-introduced and is hanging out all over Marken. The flag is available at the Information point in the harbour building.


Photo + Film





Commemoration of the Flooding of 1916

January 13 thru 14 1916: Disaster strikes. A flooding in the "Suydersea" A storm surge drives up the sea level in the Suydersea , while excessive melt water in the major rivers of the Netherlands increase interior pressure on the dikes. The dikes break through. Many people die.




Marken Coat of arms 200 year old

The Marken Coat of Arms has been granted by the High Council of Nobility to the then municipality of Marken on June 26, 1816. Since the merger of Marken in the municipality Waterland in 1991,the Marken Coat of Arms was no longer used. However, in 2014, the flag was re-introduced and is hanging out all over Marken. The flag is available at the Information point in the harbour building.


Sijtje Boes

Marken has been a tourist attraction, for at least a century. The beautiful Marken costumes have contributed to this. When you came to Marken in the 30s, you would run into Sijtje Boes. She talked to tourists and showed them around in an authentic Marken interior. Of course she also arranged that there would be an opportunity to buy souvenirs. Sijtje Boes is being named "the founder for Dutch Tourism". She died on April 10, 1983 (87 years). Her former home, now is a prmanent tourist attraction and the souvenirs shops are in the same street.

Other Souvenir shops

Klompenmakerij (Clog maker): Kets 50
Folkloric fabrics: Buurt II no 5
Ma Korving: Clothing and Antiques: Rietland 4

Marken Museum

The Marker Museum is made up of six historichouses in the old town of Marken. These houses look identical like a home of a Marken fishing family, who lived there until mid- 1932 In the museum you will find a collection of historical Costumes, paintings by Reinier Peijnenburg, (born 1884) and work of the Marken artist Jan Moenis (1875 -1953). Besides this you will find hatboxes, wooden shoes and schoolbags.

Kerkbuurt 44-47 - 1156 BL Marken


April-November: 10:00 -17:00
In Oktober 11:00 -16:00
Sundays: 12:00-16:00



There's only one parking area in the center of Marken town.

Parking coosts: € 4.55 per day (including tourist taxes for the driver).

For each additional passenger you pay € 0.55 per person

You can also park your car on the free parking area which is situated on the access road N518 to Marken. After a short walk (5-10 minutes) you would reach Marken town.

For permanent parking permits, please contact or visit the City Hall of Waterland in Monnickendam.

Food and Drinks

Restaurant Land- en Zeezicht
Hafengebiet 6, 1156 AL Marken

Hotel Restaurant Hof van Marken
Buurt II 15, 1156 BC Marken

Cafe Restaurant de Visscher
Harbour 22, 1156 AM Marken

Eethuis de Taanderij
Harbour 1, 1156 AL Marken

Cafetaria en catering de Verkeerde Wereld
Buurterstraat 20, 1156 AS Marken

Cafe Flying Sailer
Westerstraat 25, 1156 AD Marken

(Cycling) Tours

You can rent bicycles for touring around Marken and see the lighthouse up close. More information at Jenny and Corinne Fishe: www.dagjemarken.com

Or choose an existing cycle route on: www.nederlandfietsland.nl

Like to walk instead? There's a trail which would show you all of Marken. Length 7 km. The trail is marked with blue stickers with the name of the trail and a pictogram on it. Alternative routes are marked with yellow stickers.

You could also plan your own (cycling) route via: www.planjeroute.nl

Guided Tours

An exclusive guided tour around historic Marken leads you along all the best 'Neighborhoods' and unique spots, while the guide tells you the stories from the old days.

A tour could be combined with a visit to the Marken Museum and the Wooden Shoe factory. Here you will find a local traditional clog maker, who will give you an enthusiastic demonstration.

For more informaion about guided tours, visit or contact "Het Hof van Marken" or "Taverne de Visscher"


The Marken costumes are very colourful. Lots of "red colour"is being used. During the mourning only dark shades are being worn. The costume consists of a large number of separate components. All parts are hand made and the individual parts are fixed to the base costume using pins. Old family pieces are carefully preserved. All garments are individually finished with tires and rims and all have their own meaning.

Costume details also may indicate a certain age or a special occasion. There is everyday clothing, the Sunday costume, and costumes for different celebrations.

Horse of Marken

The "Horse of Marken" (built around 1700) is one of the Suydersea beacons and now a lighthouse.

The lighthouse, "The Horse of Marken", built in 1700, was originally built as a square beacon to mark the Suydersea route from the islands in the North through Amsterdam.

The current lighthouse is a National Monument since 1970

Website Links

Facebook, Pinterest

The Facebook and Pinterest pages especially do show the photo history of "Island Marken". A look back from the year "0" to the present.

Google+, You Tube

Google+ and You Tube do show all "Marken Films". The oldest one is from the end of 1899. Suggestions for a link? please Let us know.

Other Marken Web-links

Here the Marken Anthem. A summary of "well known" people from Marken companies or agencies and individuals is listed below.

Voormalig eiland in de Gouwzee