This article needs additional citations for
Images, from top down, left to right:
visitor center, beach
Location in Friesland
The island is 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) long and 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) wide and is the site of the Netherlands' first national park. The only village on the island is also called Schiermonnikoog. Just around 946 people permanently reside on the island, making the municipality both the least populated and the least
Roughly 300,000 people visit the island every year, staying in the 5,500 beds available in holiday homes, apartments and hotels. Most visitors, however, are day trippers (about 4,000/day in July and August alone), with the result that after the last ferry leaves at 7.30pm, calm returns to Langestreek, the village high street.
Thanks to the tidal current, the prevailing winds, and North Sea storms, the island is slowly moving to the south and the east. In the year 1250, it lay roughly 2 km to the north of its present position, and it then had a significantly different shape.
The earliest mention of Schiermonnikoog in writing dates from October 1440, in a document written for
During the Reformation, the monasteries in the northern Netherlands were dissolved. In 1580, Schiermonnikoog became the property of the
Around 1700, the population of Schiermonnikoog was divided among four villages or settlements. The largest of these was Westerburen, which had developed around the medieval buildings of the grey monks. In 1717 and 1720,
In August 1799, during the
In 1859, the Stachouwer family sold the island to John Eric Banck from
In 1892 Banck sold the island to a
During the War, the German Army heavily fortified the island as part of the
After the German surrender, the Germans on the island failed to accept the surrender, but the Canadian forces responsible for the sector that included the island did not attack them to force their surrender. After several weeks of negotiations the German commander did agree to respect the surrender and the German soldiers were evacuated to
After the War, the Dutch government confiscated Schiermonnikoog from Bernstorff on the grounds that he was German and owned the island during the war, making it 'enemy property'. In 1949 the island became an independent municipality and part of the Province of Friesland. Bernstorff died in 1987 and is buried on Schiermonnikoog in the graveyard of its Reformed Church.
On 1 January 2006 the eastern border of the island was moved eastward, farther into the former territory of the municipality of