Entry of Sinterklaas - Sinterklaas facts

A few more days and then the Saint comes back into the country. An exciting period for children! Sinterklaas is the largest and most well-known children's party in the Netherlands, with the highlight being Pakjesavond on 5 December. In Belgium, they celebrate parcel evening on 6 December.


The Sinterklaas celebration is based on the tradition of the Bishop of Myra, Saint Nicholas, who started in the third century AD. lived in Asia Minor.
The modern form of the Sinterklaas celebration probably stems from the picture book of Saint Nicholas and his Servant (1850) by the teacher Jan Schenkman (1806-1863), but the children's party has a much older origin.


The national entry always takes place around mid-November, on the first Saturday after Sint-Maarten (11 November).
Do not forget to put it in your calendar, because Saturday, November 17 is the arrival of Sinterklaas. So that's all right! This year he arrives in the North Holland municipality of Zaanstad in the village Zaandijk. Sinterklaas will be welcomed here by Mayor Jan Hamming. The parcel boat (Parcel boat 12) will dock at the port around noon. Is Zaanstad a bit too far away for you, then you can of course follow everything on the TV (NPO3). The broadcast starts at 12 o'clock!

Arrival in Belgium

In Belgium Sinterklaas always arrives in Antwerp, which is broadcasted directly on Een or Ketnet under the name He comes, he comes ... The entrance of the Saint.

Local entry

The local entries are usually the same afternoon as the national arrival, but in the south of the Netherlands and in Belgium often the following Sunday. Often he comes on horseback, but other means of transport are not uncommon.

Sinterklaas news

From November 13 the Sinterklaas news starts again. Every evening, until 4 December at 6 pm on NPO3. The Sinterklaas news is always exciting and fun for children to follow. Schools often take over the story line, so that it is still all for the children.
This year, the Sinterklaas news is once again in the hands of Dieuwertje Blok who will report extensively together with reporter Jeroen Kramer.

Exciting story

In the Sinterklaas newsreport is always an exciting story, backgrounds of the Sinterklaas party are highlighted, there are funny events and there is always a happy ending. Every year it is a nice preparation time until packet evening.
Do not you have time to watch the Sinterklaas news every night? On every Sunday there is a weekly overview with all the highlights of the week. That way you can stay a little bit.

Put on a shoe!

Keep in mind with the groceries, because every year the Saint will promise the children that they can put on their shoes and that will not be different this year!

Shoe presents under 10 euros! 15 tips!


In the Netherlands, the shoe is used from at least the 15th century. At first it happened in the church and was the proceeds for the poor. From records it appears that from 1427 in the Sint-Nicolaaskerk in Utrecht shoes were put on December 5, parcel evening. Rich Utrechters put some effort into the shoes and the proceeds were distributed among the poor on 6 December, the official anniversary of the death of Saint Nicholas.

16th century

From the 16th century there are descriptions of the shoe set by children in the living room. In the 17th century, painter Jan Steen recorded the Sinterklaas morning on two paintings. It is also easy to see what the children got in their shoe. In addition to toys, it was often different kinds of sweets such as gingerbread, cloves, pepernoten, breastplate, chocolate letters, chewy pumice and marzipan. These are centuries-old delicacies that were made in traditional forms. Chocolate milk and hot mulled wine were served as a drink. It is striking that especially boys found a roe or bag of salt in the shoe as a sign that they were too old to participate in the children's party.


In some places in the Netherlands, since the beginning of the 21st century, an exodus of Sinterklaas was held on 6 December. This is the case, for example, in Scheveningen and Hoek van Holland.

Video: 12 - 11 - 2016 Sinterklaas Intocht / Entry in Sneek

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