Gouda is the only city in the Netherlands that has a latin name, also in popular use. This is derived from the river the Gouwe (‘golden’) that flows here into another river, the Hollandse IJssel. At the end of the Middle Ages this city, that was founded after the extraction of peat, was the fifth largest city of the country. Gouda cheese, named after this city, was traded here for many centuries. However, the type and shape of this cheese are not protected. Therefore most Gouda cheese is made in cheesefactories abroad. If you want real Dutch cheese: in 2010 the EU did protect the name Gouda Holland. This cheese must be made in the Netherlands with 100% Dutch cow milk. The Gouda cheese market now only exists for tourists in the summer but the city is worth visiting anytime.
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