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Winter in The Netherlands can be very cold. In fact, January and February are the coldest months of the year. While many of us might prefer a mild winter, the Dutch actually want it to be cold – really cold. But why, you ask? So the canals freeze, of course, which means that residents and visitors can ice skate on the canals!

Skating on canals is an iconic image for the country, but would you be surprised to know that for many years, it did not get cold enough for the canals to freeze? In 2014, the weather was the warmest on record, so no skating then. In 2012, in February, a deep-freeze hit the area that was colder than it had been for a decade, so the canals were open for skating. That year, even canal boats were grounded because of the ice.

This year, so far, it has been warm in Amsterdam, but there is hope that starting this weekend, the temperatures are going to be more winter-like. If all goes well, and the cold continues, skaters could be hitting the ice by February.

Check out our Facebook page for 2 great skating videos.

Whether you can skate or not, you can still enjoy a great cup of Dutch coffee. Get 10% off all Douwe Egberts coffee on with no minimum order.*

Please use coupon code DEJANSALE

 *Discount valid through 1/21/2015 on with no minimum order. This discount cannot be used with any other coupons or discounts. Not valid for discounted, special sale or case sale Douwe Egberts items.