Drenthe


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Fishing with a net

We went cycling with some friends in Drenthe, the ideal province of the Netherlands for this purpose. Actually, we always thought Drenthe was a bit boring, just because cycling is just about the only thing you can do here.. 

Our first stop was at the National Park Dwingelderveld. We were here last year, and we did an tour along land art in the forest. We really enjoyed this. And although it was supposed to be there only last year, we noticed at least some of the artworks are still there.

A little stream (without water)

At the visitor center of Natuurmonumenten, the children try to catch little water animals, in order to find out more about them. After the slides in the visitor center, we went for a walk (it is hard to break old habits). The sheep in Drenthe are a special race, with horns and long tails. They keep the grass out of the moorland, so the heather can grow here.

A special breed of sheep

Aardbeien, grondwespen en kloothommels

Along the sand path the digger wasps were pointed out to us. In the lower circle is one of those wasps, the higher circle shows a hole. The wasps disappear in those holes, probably the entry to their nest. 

Flowers in the fields
We had seen them already in Poland, but now they are (back) in the Netherlands: fields with flowers between the wheat. This field is owned by Natuurmonumenten, one of the big nature organizations in the Netherlands.

Purple fields

We found out it is not so easy to make pictures when you are cycling. Especially when the weather is not really great, so you keep your camera in the bag to prevent it from getting wet. This picture is of the moors near Staphorst. For people who really know the Netherlands: you are right, this is not in Drenthe but in Overijssel. The cycling route in the south west part of Drenthe (the part we did) goes through bits of Overijssel and Friesland, the northern loop enters Groningen. But still, about 400 km of the 460 is in Drenthe itself. 
One night we stayed in Frederiksoord, one of the colonies in Drenthe. These colonies were built for poor people from the cities. They got a house and a piece of land and were supposed to work as farmers. Only few people managed to earn a living as a free farmer, the rest of them had to work for other farmers.

Frederiksoord

Moorlands in Appelscha

Near Appelscha (right, in Friesland) lies the Drents-Friese Woud (Forest of Drenthe and Friesland). You can find here forest, sand dunes and moorland.

We found out there is a lot to be seen in Drenthe, nature as well as culture. And even when you are not yet 50+, you can go there cycling or walking. Only be alert for the Fietsvierdaagse (four days of organized cycling), because Drenthe will be crowded with people.

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