Here I am standing on the old "Julianabrug" (Juliana bridge - referring to Princess/Queen Juliana) over the river Zaan,
with in the background the "Zaanse Schans" (Holland)
The Zaan is a small river in the province of North-Holland in the northwestern Netherlands and the name of a district through which it runs. The river was originally a side arm of the IJ bay and travels 10 kilometers through the municipality of Zaanstad ("Zaan City") north of Amsterdam, from West-Knollendam in the north to Zaandam in the south, where it empties into the IJ.
The municipality of Zaanstad and several towns along the Zaan are named for the river: Koog aan de Zaan, Westzaan, Oostzaan, Zaandijk and the city of Zaandam. The river also runs past the "Zaanse Schans", a village with historic windmills and houses. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Netherlands.