Stavoren

Stavoren

Stavoren is the oldest of the eleven towns in Friesland province. It was founded around the year 900 on the shores of a waterway and received town rights from Holy Roman Emperor Henry V in 1118.

The city maintained important trading relationships with the countries around the Eastern Sea and became a member of the Hanseatic Union in 1385. At the end of the Middle Ages the town declined. The harbour slowly filled with sand and Stavoren also lost its significant role in grane trade. On this fact the legend of “het vrouwtje van Stavoren” (the lady form Stavoren) is based, the story of a rich trader’s widow, who in her overconsciousness dared to refuse a giftcargo of grain. This was the cause of her downfall.

Although Stavoren is the oldest city of Friesland, there is not much left of its former glory caused by floods, wars and economic deterioration. This is opposite to other Zuiderzee cities like Hoorn and Enkhuizen. Yet you still find a lot of the Zuiderzee atmosphere in and around the old harbour where the fishing ships and the brown fleet are moored. In the museum ‘ ‘t Ponthús’ the fabulous past of Stavoren is brought back to life (opening times from 1 PM to 5 PM).