Lelystad was founded in 1967, years after the time of the VOC, and yet Lelystad has something to do with this time. This can be seen in Bataviastad, at the Bataviahaven and during the construction of ‘De Zeven Provinciën’, a flagship of Michiel de Ruyter. Furthermore, Lelystad has an annual event and that is the VOC day. The latter takes place in the spring. Lelystad is a young modern city, yet with a link to the seventeenth century. Source: AJEL, Pixabay
The VOC and Batavia
VOC stands for Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (old-fashioned spelling) and this was an overseas trading company between 1602 and 1799. This Dutch fleet had a monopoly on trade between the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands and the East Indies. The VOC tried to maintain its monopoly as much as possible and they did this aggressively. She was not so different from pirates in this. The people of the VOC were also involved in privateering. The only difference is that these ships received letters of marque from the state. That means they had official permission to hijack. Apparently the VOC still behaved well in this regard, because they have not built up such a warlike name as the West India Company (WIC). This is best known for the conquest of the Silver Fleet by Piet Hein.
Batavia was the headquarters of the VOC in the Dutch East Indies, where boats arrived to trade. Products that were not available in Europe were traded there, such as tea, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg and coffee. But items such as gold, silver and textiles were also traded. Batavia is now the capital of Indonesia and the name has been changed to Jakarta.
Source: AJEL, Pixabay
Since 1995, work has been underway at the Bataviawerf in Lelystad on the reconstruction of Michiel de Ruyter’s flagship De Zeven Provinciën. In addition to being a tourist attraction, the Bataviawerf is also a training center, where people participate in reintegration programs and are coached on their way to the labor market. At the shipyard you will find a forge, harness shop, carving shop, sail making shop and of course the unfinished ship. You can see the people at work in the various workshops and during the tour information is provided about the work in the various workshops. The tour is recommended, but not mandatory. Visitors to the shipyard can also visit the previously built VOC ship Batavia with the same ticket. This ship can be found on the other side of the road, in the Bataviahaven.
The VOC Day takes place every year at the Bataviawerf in the spring. This is a festive annual market where you can taste seventeenth-century delicacies such as waffle cakes, brown beans with bacon and hot soup. There are people dressed as seventeenth-century characters such as street urchins, merchants and musicians, but the skipper, sailors and surgeon are also present. Children can have fun with old Dutch games and of course the cannon will also be shot on that day.
Address: Bataviawerf – National Ship Historical Center, Oostvaardersdijk 01-09, Lelystad.
Shopping in Lelystad is not only possible in the center, but also in the fashion outlet Batavia Stad. The outlet center was built as an imitation of a fortified city from the Middle Ages, complete with city wall, city gates and bricks. After the expansion at the end of 2016, Bataviastad covers an area of 31,000 square meters. Bataviastad and Bataviawerf are built next to each other. There are not only clothing stores to be found. Jewelers, restaurants, terraces, kitchenware and home accessory shops and a drugstore can also be found there.
Address: Batavia Stad, Bataviaplein 60, 8242 PN Lelystad
The VOC ship Batavia is moored at the Bataviahaven. There are a number of restaurants and this port also wants to present itself as a real events port. Various water sports events also take place from this port and this is the arrival or departure port for various competitions. The national classic car day also takes place annually around the harbor (Bataviaboulevard). This is usually on Father’s Day.
If you would like to be immersed in the seventeenth century, you can visit Lelystad. Be sure to check the opening hours and dates of the planned events online in advance to avoid disappointment.