The Netherlands is a European Country with a coastline facing the North Sea, that is sometimes referred to as Holland. The Netherlands shares a border with Germany and Belgium. One of the most unique and charming attribute of The Netherlands are the series of canal systems that surround Amsterdam and other towns. The history of the canal system does not involve a romantic purpose but was necessary because Amsterdam and other towns were located below sea level and were prone to flooding. Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Nijmegen, Den Bosch, Delft, Bruges, Antwerp were all built facing the north and had to survive the fury of the North Sea. The canal system helped with controlling the constant flooding and provided a method of transportation. Another icon of the countryside of the Netherlands are the dramatic windmills and the landscape is dotted with over 1,000 windmills that once helped pump the water off of the land and back into the North Sea.