Skating on a frozen canal near the windmills at Kinderdijk in the Netherlands
© Lourens Smak/Alam
'Winterpret' on ice
These skaters in the village of Kinderdijk in the Netherlands are embracing 'winterpret’, a Dutch word that means 'winter joy' or 'winter fun’. Whenever temperatures drop low enough, locals take to the ice and skate on frozen canals. These waterways were built centuries ago, along with pumps, dykes and the windmills pictured here, to protect the village of Kinderdijk from flooding by diverting water from the land. It's an important job, since Kinderdijk, like much of the Netherlands, lies below sea level. Nowadays a modern water management system with pumping stations does much of the work while the windmills maintain an iconic Dutch scene. In 1997, the Kinderdijk windmills were designated as a Unesco World Heritage site.