Discover the Green Heart of Holland, a typical Dutch nature area with windmills, cows, cheese, farms and traditional crafts. Visit its picturesque villages, enjoy its vast nature reserves and its leisure lakes, which are ideal for water sports.
Do you feel like sailing, going on a sloop, power boating, wakeboarding, speed boating, skating, ice-sailing or do you want to enjoy the pleasure of swimming, then the Dutch Leisure Lakes area is the place to be! A wonderful and vast water area with seven sub-areas located between the cities Katwijk, Amsterdam and Utrecht in the Green Heart of Holland.
The Vinkeveense Plassen are close to Amsterdam, Utrecht, Amersfoort and Schiphol. Here you find some wonderful cycle routes through the Veenweidegebied (peat meadow area) and some walking routes along the lake. There are several diving locations in the lake, but it is also used for sunbathing.
Vlietland is a recreation area in Leidschendam Voorburg. It is close to Leiden, The Hague, Schiphol and Delft. The area distinguishes itself from the other Dutch lakes due to its connection to the coast, the presence of Roman history, the ‘living room experience’ it has to offer for the immediate surrounding areas and it can be easily reached by means of public transport.
The Kagerplassen form a varied water area with short passages, large pools and channels. The Kagerplassen are actually a small version of the Dutch Leisure Lakes area, with an intimate character, but ‘directed outwards’ at the same time. There are ample opportunities for wonderful cycling trips and there are lots of catering establishments on Kaageiland.
The Westeinder Plassen are a part of a vast area of over 10 km2 (3.9 square miles). The lakes are connected to each other through a network of little channels. Here you can enjoy swimming, sailing, windsurfing, rowing and power boating. There are about 50 yacht-basins along the bank of the Westeinderplassen. There are recreation areas as well in which small beaches have been constructed. The Westeinderplassen are rich in flora and fauna: fish, birds and (rare) plants. There are lots of small islands in the lake, which are mostly used for recreation. They can only be reached by boat. In addition to the private islands, there are also a few islands which are opened for public recreation. You can, for example, have a lovely barbecue on these islands.
The Loosdrechtse Plassen are located near Amsterdam, Schiphol, Utrecht and Amersfoort. You can still find the cultural history from the Golden Age. It remains an attractive area throughout the year, either for regular or water recreation. Cyclists can enjoy wonderful routes along the river Vecht and walkers can take a walk in the forests or through the heathlands. The ‘Strook’ offers opportunities for family fun and recreation. The Strook is a widened strip of land along the south side of the Loosdrechtse Plassen. Loosdrecht is the lake area with the largest bodies of water. Nevertheless, the boater will never get lost and there are no scary surges or strong currents.
The lakes of Nieuwkoop and Reeuwijk are close to Gouda, The Hague and Rotterdam. The surrounding areas of Nieuwkoop and Reeuwijk are Nature 2000 areas and this has consequences for water recreation and recreation in general. You are not allowed to sail faster than 6 km/h (3.7 mph) in Nieuwkoop. As a result, the lake is more interesting for anglers, birdwatchers and art admirers. In addition, Nieuwkoop calls itself the heart of the Green Heart. This is reflected in the highly developed cycling and walking facilities and the strong link with regional products in the recreational opportunities.
”Cheese from the “Green” Heart. A rich history of cheese-making and trading by farmers and country people. There are farmers who still produce and sell traditionally-made cheese. In Gouda, Woerden and Bodegraven for instance, the so-called cheese axis, the yellow gold is recognised as one of the most important tourist attractions. The cheese trade is also still flourishing. The cheese market in Gouda and Woerden, a cheese museum, cheese walks, cheese workshops, cheese tastings. Everything is present for the tourist so that they can see, taste and buy this delicious yellow gold.
All the areas within the Green Heart of Holland have their own character and feel. Every area is unique in location, landscape and cultural history. Combined, they make up the amazing landscape of the Green Heart, one of which is unique worldwide: the Peatland Polders. A low-lying grassland area west of Utrecht. The soil in these areas mainly consists of peat and are usually located at or above NAP (Normal Amsterdam Water Level). The lowland peat area has unique natural characteristics measured by national and international standards, both in terms of flora and fauna. The most important natural values can be found in the nature reserves, where you can also get a good picture of what the area looked like in the far and less distant past. However, you can also enjoy extraordinary natural scenery outside the reserves where you can walk and cycle. One of the Dutch lakes.
A daytrip to the windmill complex of Kinderdijk: unique & iconic water management A significant part of Holland is situated up to approximately 7 meters (23 ft.) below sea level. The Dutch don’t notice any of this though, because an incredibly innovative and intricate system of dykes, dunes, dams, sluices, mills and pumping-engines keeps the ever-rising seawater from flooding the land. Even during spring tide, the Dutch are safely guarded from being washed away, thank goodness for that… The most interesting site to visit is undoubtedly the unique collection of 19 authentic windmills from the 18th century, which are considered a Dutch icon throughout the entire world. In short, a wonderful and unforgettable day trip in the Netherlands for the entire family!
Schoonhoven is unique as a silver town. Ever since the Middle Ages, Schoonhoven has produced gold and silversmiths. In the current street scene, this is reflected in the old monumental silver workshops, silversmith homes and over 30 galleries, jewellers and studios. Here, the silversmiths and goldsmiths show both their traditional and their modern jewellery, consumer items and, above all, free silver arts.
Glass city Leerdam. Leerdam and ‘glass’ are inextricably connected. Leerdam is rightfully the 'glass city' of The Netherlands. From 1765 onwards, glassblowers provided the basis for the glass industry in Leerdam. Glass puts the city of Leerdam on the map and, at the same time, the city of Leerdam popularises glass. Wonderful objects are made manually in the glassworks at the Zuidwal, which is located in the centre of Leerdam. If you want to find out more about the production of glass, glass objects or its history, the glassworks, the glass museum, and the glass factory are definitely worth visiting.
Only a part of this website has been translated. 3500 outings can be found through the Green Heart of Holland website.
If you want to book or if you require more information about day trips, food & drink, overnight stays or about the various packages, you can contact us through our office:
Helpdesk: 00 31 348 – 745492
Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.