In June this year, we had a staycation and spent a week in the beautiful Dutch province Zeeland. During this week, we had such great weather and enjoyed the weather by hiking some amazing trails. In this article, I’d like to share with you five places in Zeeland which are perfect for hiking.
Zeeland is one of the 12 provinces of the Netherlands and is located in the southwestern side of the country. A part of Zeeland borders on Belgium. The province of Zeeland mostly is the place to be for a beach holiday. Zeeland offers some magnificent beaches, but the province is also rich of nature and culture (history). If you re travelling to the Netherlands, consider taking Zeeland in your itinerary!
Five places in Zeeland which are perfect for hiking
From Sluis to Retranchement
The places Sluis and Retranchement (en their surroundings) are amazing and varied for a hike. Both places are located in Zeeuws-Vlaanderen and during my time in Zeeland, I hiked a specific route from Sluit to Retranchement and back (a hike of approximately 16,5 kilometers). A route where you come across towns, city walls, grasslands, dikes and more.
If you’d like to hike this route yourself, you can find more information back on the website of Op Pad (Dutch website, click here). You need to download the SNP Route app on your smartphone and download the route through the mobile app, so you can navigate and hike the route. The hike is quite long, but not that hard as there are barely any heights (we’re in the Netherlands ;-)).
An extensive blogpost about this hiking trail can be found back here.
Veere and Veerse Lake
Veere and Veerse Lake are rich of hiking trails! Veerse Lake is a large lake and nature reserve which is the place to be when it comes to watersports. People go to Veerse Lake for surfing, canoeing, sailing, water skiing, diving and fishing. You can also rent a boat to go sailing on the lake with good weather.
Besides watersports, the Veerse Lake is also the perfect place for biking and hiking. There are several areas around the lake where you can start a hiking trail. Those trails are mentioned by an information sign or colors. There are trails in the Schotsman nature reserve, but also in the Veerse Forest and more places. The hiking trails combine a beautiful walk through the forest with magnificent views over the lake.
Would you like to read more about hiking around Veerse Lake and the trails I hiked? Take a look at this blogpost.
The town of Hulst
Hulst is a fortified city with a diversity of history, shops and cozy eateries (located in Zeeuws-Vlaanderen). In the past, Hulst was an important fortress and harbour town. You can still see this in the town walls and the gates which lead you to the center of Hulst.
The town of Hulst is the perfect place to hike when you’d like to combine nature with the liveliness of a town. You can have a really nice walk over the city walls and through the city gates from which Hulst is rich of.
Nature reserve de Manteling, located in Walcheren, is one of my favorite places to go hiking. It’s a beautiful and serene place where you can find forest and beach (dunes) combined in one area. In the middle of the Manteling, you can also find the impressive castle Westhove, which is currently an accommodation (Stayokay). De Manteling also is a nice place to have a picknick, which we did when visiting the nature reserve.
It’s worth it to combine a hike in de Manteling with a hike in Oranjezon, a nature reserve next to de Manteling. I haven’t been there myself, but I’ve heard Oranjezon is a magnificent place as well. De Manteling has, just like Veerse Lake, hiking trails which you can find on information signs or by colors.
The Groese Polders is a beautiful nature reserve where you can have a nice walk or where you can go biking. This nature reserve is located on the island Zeeuws-Vlaanderen. While hiking through the nature reserve, you come across a diversity of animals, like sheep, horses and cows.
The visit to the Groese Polders can be combined with a visit to Groede Podium, which is a former World War II military site turned into a woodland recreation area. Here you can check out the bunkers and call in at the visitor center, while there’s a hands-on playground and a farm park for children.
Are you still looking for a nice app where you can find hiking routes? Take a look at the outdoor app Komoot! On the outdoor app Komoot, you can find all kinds of trails for hiking, but also for other outdoor activities like biking, mountainbiking, cycling and running. The app provides trails in a diverse range of destinations which can be found on the homepage of the website. You can also use the app in other languages, but the destinations differ per language. You can download a route and use it offline during your hike, which is ideal! Furthermore, you can select the route on difficulty and the time it normally takes to hike / bike the route. During the route, you come across sights which are pointed out in the app as well.
These are my personal tips when it comes to places which are beautiful to hike in Zeeland. Do you have any other tips which you would like to share? Tell us more in the comment section below!