Every year on the 30th April the Dutch go completely bonkers, celebrating the queen’s birthday. Or at least on the birthday of the previous queen, Juliana. When Queen Beatrix came to the throne, she kept the official celebration on her mother’s birthday.

So do the Dutch celebrate with pomp and ceremomy?

No, the entire country turns into one giant flea market where everyone pulls up a piece of pavement and sells all their useless junk, and everyone has a fun, social time.

This year in Almere, the festivies started on Friday night already, with a rather spectacular fireworks display to start things off with a bang.

We managed to pick up a lot of good bargains today browsing the stalls, and even went home with a new pet hamster – we bought a cage for next to nothing from a stall, and then needed to stop at a pet shop to actually fill the newly boight cage.

All in all, it is a day that sees a gezellig crowd paying tribute to their Queen in the way they do best.