From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
City and former municipality
City Hall
City Hall
Flag of Bolsward
Coat of arms of Bolsward
Coat of arms
Location of Bolsward
Coordinates: 53°04′N 5°32′E / 53.067°N 5.533°E / 53.067; 5.533
Country Netherlands
Province Friesland
Municipality Súdwest-Fryslân
 • Total 9.42 km2 (3.64 sq mi)
 • Land 9.11 km2 (3.52 sq mi)
 • Water 0.31 km2 (0.12 sq mi)
Population (1 January 2007)
 • Total 9,607
 • Density 1,055/km2 (2,730/sq mi)
  Source: CBS, Statline.
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)

Bolsward [ˈbɔɫsʋɑrt] (About this sound pronunciation , West Frisian: Boalsert) is a city in Súdwest Fryslân in the province of Friesland, the Netherlands. Bolsward has a population of just under 10,000. It is located 10 km W.N.W. of Sneek.[1]


The town is founded on three artificial dwelling hills, the first of which was built some time before Christ. Bolsward was a trading city with a port in the Middle Ages. The middlesea connected the port to the North Sea, but this connection was lost when the middlesea was reclaimed from the sea; a canal was then cut to the Zuider Zee.[1] The town is mentioned in 725, when it was situated on the middlesea.

As a trading city, Bolsward was granted city rights by Philip the Good in 1455. Bolsward was made a member of the Hanseatic league in 1422.[1] It was the center of the former municipality named Bolsward, before that was merged into Súdwest Fryslân.

Notable historical figures[edit]

Notable historical figures born here include:


Heamiel. A local festival of four days in June. This is an old traditional festival to celebrate that the farmers have harvested the hay from the fields. The name of the festival, Heamiel, is frisian for 'Hay meal', and is derived from the traditional banquet.

Bolletongersdei. Bolletongersdei is frisian for 'bulls Thursday'. Bolletongersdei includes a street market. Bolletongersdei is held on the first Thursday of October.

Simmerwike. A music festival of 4 evenings with performances, held in August.


Bolsward is one of the eleven Frisian cities in which the ice skating Elfstedentocht, an ice skating marathon, is held. Because the marathon depends on the thickness of the ice, it is not held on a regular schedule and can be somewhat rare.

Bolsward is also the host city for the yearly Cycling Elfstedentocht, an road bicycle racing tour.

Notable buildings[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°04′N 5°32′E / 53.067°N 5.533°E / 53.067; 5.533


  1. ^ a b c Wikisource-logo.svg Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Bolsward". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.