What do our hikers think of our tours?
“We truly enjoyed our trip to Delft. Everything you had arranged worked perfectly – nice hotel and excellent hikes! Well done! You will hear from us again.”
Fam. Berger, Denmark, Oktober 2017, Delft, City of Delft Blue
Photo by Edward
“Pre tour organisation. I want to thank you for quickly and efficiently organising my week in Voorne. I booked the tour only 7 days before the start date and I was not sure if I had given you enough time but within 24 hours you had booked all the hotels and had emailed me with all the details I needed. And the maps and instruction books were waiting for me at my first hotel in Rockanje. Also your instructions on how to travel from central Rotterdam to the first hotel were perfect.
The weather. The first days it was overcast with the occasional drizzle. This was perfect for me for two reasons: a. when walking the body generates heat. With no sun and the occasional drizzle I was nice and cool. It was quite windy on Tuesday as well …. I liked that. b. I can see that Voorne has quite a large population (and hugely more in the summer). With the weather like this most people stayed in their houses which meant I could enjoy the scenery all to myself (I am a bit greedy in this respect). I do like my solitude and I walked for hours without seeing anybody. The last day it was dry and sunny. This was a nice contrast to the previous days but it did mean many people were out walking their dogs and therefore I had to ‘share’ the scenery. Having said that I was able to strike up some interesting conversations with one or two local people. Also there was hardly anyone in the Quarkjeswater area and I had the bird watching platform with the binoculars all to myself for over half an hour.
The instructions and maps. The instruction booklet and large scale maps are very, very good. I did not get lost once. There were one or two places where I hesitated for a minute or two until I was sure which way to go. The preamble for each day giving an insight of what I would be walking past or through was very informative.
The hotels.They were all very good even though they had contrasting styles.
The sites. The tour went through very interesting and varied natural and made landscapes and the scenery was constantly changing. Natural landscapes included dunes, mudflats and nature reserves with an abundance of flora and fauna especially birds. The man made landscapes included walking along man made dunes, through an 18th century man made forest, beside huge lakes, across and old shipping canal and past the massive Haringvliet sluice which prevents the Netherlands from flooding. The tour also made sure you did not miss anything of interest in the historic towns of Brielle and Hellevoetsluis. In fact the tour of Brielle took about 2 hours from the time I arrived at its outskirts until I finally arrived at the hotel. My photos also include a beautiful sunrise at Hellevoetsluis, cormorants fanning their wings, many boats of various descriptions including what looks like a full size replica of the 16th century ‘Golden Hind’ in the waters around Brielle. And yet I have not yet mentioned my biggest thrill. On the outskirts of Brielle in a residential area there is a small pond at the side of a quiet road between the houses. At the edge of the pond right next to the road was a heron. At first I thought it was a stone model because it did not move even though I was only about 3 metres away. Then it suddenly dipped it’s head in the water to catch a small fish. It was obviously quite tame because it was not bothered about me. But I have never been so close to a heron before. Just after that a grandmother came by pushing a pram with her grandchild. I asked her about the heron and she said they are quite common in the area and quite tame.
About the Netherlands. As mentioned this was my first trip to the Netherlands and among the things struck me about the country. Polite people. I cannot speak a word of Dutch but nobody made me feel embarrassed at this inadequacy. Modern architecture. I loved the architecture in Rotterdam especially near the centre.”
Edward, United Kingdom, November 2017,Tour of Voorne
“The GPX routes were very detailed and precise. We enjoyed both days, but particularly day 1. Hiking from city to country was a great way to experience the Netherlands. We liked walking through the markets as it gave us a brief cultural experience of Rotterdam. The weather was good; it rained from time-to-time, but it was mostly fine. The sun came out on the second day and it was really nice to see blue skies. I don’t think there is much I would change about the hike. We liked the routes and we felt that for what we paid, the provision of these and the booking of a hotel was good value. The hotel was fine; I think the key here is that we were not disappointed and found that given what we paid for the hike, it was good value. We were not expecting luxury, but a comfortable place to sleep. The GPX files were very easy and accurate to use on Google Maps and it was the easiest way to guide us en-route. Thanks for the communication and assistance as we were making the booking. We will certainly recommend you to friends and family. Many thanks”
David and Gordon, Germany and United Kingdom, November 2017, In the footsteps of Erasmus.
“I walked the Green Heart of Holland a few years ago, and after seeing my photos of magnificent towns, villages, and the countryside of Holland, my wife informed me that I’m doing this walk again, with her. Rie and Peer suggested that we should walk it clockwise (the first time I walked it counter-clockwise), a very good suggestion. Another variation was the time of year, the first time I did it in April, and this time we did it in September. Those two factors made it almost seem like a different hike — different cycles of Nature and Agriculture, different weather, fewer tourists in towns and villages. But a few things remained the same, good hotels, a variety of options for food and drink, good support from Hike-In-Holland, beautiful countryside of Holland, walking mostly on bike and pedestrian paths away from car traffic. We stopped for local cheese at several small dairy farms, and had pleasant conversations with the locals (Everyone speaks English in the Netherlands). Some of the best coffee I had was in Holland, who knew??? Perhaps it’s because of their historical connection to Indonesia??? We had the best Indonesian food at a small hole-in-the-wall place in Gouda, just off the market square. Dutch Fish and Chips (they call it Lekkerbek) were delicious, as was Dutch Apple Cake (with whipped cream of course). Some Hema stores have a cafeteria (similar to Ikea’s) and they had a variety of traditional Dutch foods, my favorite was mashed potatoes with Endives, Garlic and Spinach. We used Locus Maps and OsmAnd apps for navigation (both have off-line mode that needs no internet connection), and the directions were 100% accurate. Great experience!”
Allen and Joanne, Ohio, United States, September 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“Thanks, we had a great time. The GPS definitely helped when we were having trouble finding our way.”
Patricia and Wayne, Vancouver, Canada, September 2017, Ancient towns and dunes
“Fond memories of my walk in Holland. It was clear Hike in Holland had planned the routes to be varied and interesting! And the accommodation was excellent. Foot trouble prevented me walking one day but Holland is easy to navigate and we hopped on a bus. Very pleasant way to see another side of Holland after the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam.”
Carolyn, Melbourne, Australia, August 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“The routes were nice, the hotels were very great, the food in all the hotels very very tasty and the people very helpful and friendly!”
Simone and Jurri, Germany, September 2017,Tour of Voorne
“Yes, hiking in Holland was wonderful!!! It was very beautiful and entertaining. The route was very well planned, and since I am very visual, I only relied on the map. We had a great time and got to know Holland very well. Thank you and hope to join you on another trip!”
Anna and Andrew, California, United States, August 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“My daughter Lucia and I have just come back home from our hiking through old towns and dunes. Everything worked out very well, including the – I guess unusual – wonderful weather, which stayed the all week long! Not a single drop of rain during our whole hiking! Your instructions are very detailed, and it was a great fun following both maps and instructions… it looked like a giant treasure hunt! The whole experience has been great! Your country is so beautiful and peaceful! We spotted birds, animals, amazing landscapes… Thank you!
Daniela and Lucia, Italy, August 2017, Ancient towns and dunes
“We completed our hike and everything went perfectly. The hotels were all very nice, and we really enjoyed the walking routes and villages along the way. “
Wini and Warren, Canada, August 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“We had a lovely weeks walking, discovering this beautiful part of Holland – very varied, with walking through parks, poulders, villages , sand dunes and the beach, and including visits to beautiful cities like Delft. Hiking in Hollands organisation was excellent, with comfortable and interesting walking routes, good hotels and effortless transfer of luggage. Would thoroughly recommend Hiking in Holland.” Photo by Maggi Stewart.
Maggi and Colin, United Kingdom, June 2017, Ancient towns and dunes
“We very much liked walking in a continuous circuit between interesting places with distances that suited us, walking on the grassy paths/tracks by rivers, along canals and through nature reserves. We liked the many birds, especially all the waterbirds with their chicks and the profusion of spring flowers. We also liked buying fresh bread and local cheeses for a picnic lunch each day and always finding a picnic bench/table in an attractive place just when we wanted a break. We thought there was a high proportion of walking on hard surfaces such as asphalt because parts of the route are on cycle tracks, pavements and small roads, which can be a bit hard on older knees and feet. We were also happy with the service provided by Hike in Holland. In particular the route notes, when combined with the maps, were very clear and we were never in doubt about where to go. The tourist information in the notes was sufficient. The hotels were welcoming, comfortable and well placed in relation to the route and the places of interest. Our luggage always arrived safely at the right place and on time.”
Andrew, Jocelyn and Janis, United kingdom, May 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“Thank you for organizing such a beautiful visit. Each day was really lovely, and we saw so much of your beautiful country. Your directions were excellent, but it helped to have both the hand held maps and the GPX. We only got lost once. We were very lucky with the weather, obviously. We like the Belvedere, and the Witte Brug was nice as well. The Utrechtse Dom was functional, but its location was great. Gouda is a pretty city, and we had time to see the St. John’s Church, whose stained glass windows were spectacular. The Krimpenerwaard is a special place. The birds were fantastic. We never stopped enjoying seeing them. I’ve never seen so many swans in my life. All the little bird families were extremely cute. Being in the polders is impressive, and one has a lot of admiration for the people who were able to create such wonderful land–back in the 1100s! The houses and farms everywhere were picturesque and so well maintained and clean. It was a pleasure walking through so many great places. Thank you again for showing us such a beautiful part of it. We thought you had done a very thoughtful job in the way you planned all the hikes and put us on the prettiest routes. Thank you for all the time and effort you took. We hope Hike-in-Holland is enjoyed by many people. “
Ted, Washington DC, May 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“There are many companies providing cycling trips in the Netherlands, but there are limited choices if you are looking for a self-guided walking or hiking trip in Holland. Last year I booked a walking trip with Hike In Holland. They have several hikes of different durations and routes. Their services include booking hotels, transferring luggage, providing maps and directions including GPX files for smart phone GPS apps. The trip, Green Heart of Holland, was a success. They booked nice hotels in nice locations, walking directions and GPX files were accurate and easy to follow, and the routes were interesting and enjoyable. They were very responsive when I contacted them by email during the hike. This year I booked the Dunes and Towns hike, and again I was completely satisfied with the walk, the hotels and the guiding resources. I didn’t use their luggage service as I carry my own backpack. The GPX files are so accurate that this year I didn’t even use the printed turn-by-turn directions and paper maps after the first day, next year I’ll ask for a digital copy of the directions as a backup for the GPX files. Last year I used Locus Maps Pro, this year I used OsmAnd. I set them up for voice notifications for direction changes, and occasionally confirmed by looking at the map on the device (you do have to download the map of Zuid Holland for offline use). They guide you on foot paths, bike paths, sidewalks, only minimally on cycling paths along roads. I feel the company provides good value and good product, and am planning to hike another one of their routes next year. I highly recommend using a smartphone GPS app of your choice, with it you always know where you are. Set it in Airplane mode to save battery, location services work when the phone is in Airplane mode, and the battery lasts all day.”
Alan, Ohio, April 2017, Ancient Towns and dunes
“We had a nice week, the weather was very good, the hotels too, the tour was very well organized. No blisters and no drop of rain !!! On the way we met some nice people,who were curious but further helped us in Cabauw: we got coffee in the parsonage, all the cafes were closed. The reception in the hotels was friendly and the suitcases were
on time at the next hotel. ” The youngest hiker of the group of 5 was 66 years old and the oldest 77 years!”
Annie, Germany, April 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
First satisfied customer of the season 2017: “We enjoyed our walk in Holland and, as you say, we were pretty lucky with the weather. The accommodation everywhere was good. We were made to feel welcome and our luggage was there on our arrival. Breakfasts were good too. We enjoyed excellent meals in local restaurants. The instructions for the walk were very detailed and very helpful.” Chris form the United Kingdom, thank you so much for your kind words!
Christine, United Kingdom, April 2017, The Green Heart of Holland
“I did really enjoy this little hiking trip. A perfect way to fill in an unexpected free weekend in Holland. There was always something interesting to see like the architecture of the city and the many homes that line the route. I always knew it but the number of canals really brought home how wet The Netherlands are! I also liked very much the farms and farm animals I saw. The directions were quite clear and I made few mistakes which was good because my fitness is not so good and having to make a longer trip to get back to the correct path would have been very uncomfortable. An observation, not a complaint, the grass tracks were sometimes quite high with grass which in the damp weather made for wet feet which was not so good. The hotel was nice and comfortable. The food was ok for dinner and very good for breakfast. The lady serving breakfast was so nice and friendly, it made for a great start to the day. Thanks to you and the team for a really excellent time. I would recommend you highly to my friends and family.”
Stephen, Australia, Oktober 2016, In the Footsteps of humanist Erasmus
“We enjoyed the hiking trip very much. The daily hikes are well selected and had a good length. My favorite hikes were day 4 and 5. The gpx files were very helpful. We didn’t use the maps or the booklets. We have done several hiking trips before and were never provided with gpx files by the other organizers. We enjoyed staying at the small hotels in the Dutch towns and were very happy with all the rooms we stayed in. Due to the hot weather, AC’s in the rooms would have been nice but we understand that this is not so common. Our favorite place was Ijsselstein which we thought was a nice little town. We found an excellent Spanish restaurant close by (and also enjoyed the AC in the room to cool off after the heat). Luggage transport was flawless.”
Petra and Suraj, Switzerland, August 2016, The Green Heart of Holland
“Hello Team of Hike in Holland, we have had great hiking days, it was beautiful and we have had a lot of fun!”
Marion and Christoph, Germany, August 2016, Ancient towns and dunes
“We enjoyed this trip very much. The hotel was very nice, hotel location was exactly right, nice people, the room was clean and a tasty Breakfast Buffet.
The routes are beautiful and with lots of variation. The desciptions are clear. We only consulted the map only twice. Thank you for this trip.“
Tineke and Ger, Netherlands, August 2016, Scheveningen; beach, sea, dunes and the city
“The routes were mostly very quiet and the view was always charming. The route descriptions were perfect,. The maps were perfect too. The hotels were really nice and charming. In Schoonhoven, it has a lot of personality, we really liked it. In Lekkerkerk, it was really nice too. In Gouda, the room was smaller, but very close to the center, and there is much more to do and see in Gouda than in the previous towns, so it was fine. No other remark, except that this was unexpected, charming, and very enjoyable.”
Damien and Pauline, France, August 2016, Polders and rivers
“Our week in the Green Heart was beautiful. Nice small towns, different types of accommodations and many spring green. Beautiful walks in an exuberant Dutch spring.”
Theo: Nederland, May 2016 about The Green Heart of Holland
“We had a very enjoyable hiking holiday. Your maps and instructions were very good, your chosen routes were very enjoyable, the transferred baggage was always waiting for us at the hotel, and the weather was excellent. Altogether a memorable experience. Thank you”.
David and Micheline: Canada, May 2016 about The Green Heart of Holland
“We loved our trip – the itinerary was thoughtful, the route descriptions and maps were excellent, and the hotels were comfortable. Yes, we did have a couple of days of bad weather when we were walking along the North Sea, but we managed to find buses on the two occasions when we became soaked and too cold to continue (and we still got in 4 hours of walking on each day before we quit!). The maps you provided were perfect for the trails we were to follow.”
Naomi and Corey, Portland, United States, April 2016 about Ancient towns and dunes
“I would like to thank you for all you did to make it such a pleasure. The hotels were clean, pleasant, and convenient; luggage transfers were handled flawlessly; maps and route descriptions were accurate and clear. I think what I appreciated the very most was the planning that went into the route. You did an amazing job of making sure each day was different and that we experienced the very finest and most interesting there was to see. The route worked extremely well.”
Corey and Naomi: Portland, United States, April 2016 about Ancient towns and Dunes
“Rie, thank you for your help with this hike. This was a very pleasant and well organized hiking holiday. I enjoyed the routes you selected, your hotel choices were good. And you arranged for good weather half the time 😄”.
Allen: Ohio, United States, April 2016 about The Green heart of Holland
“The tour was pretty, the route descriptions are vey good. And the organization was also good. The
hiking paths are mostly asphalt, which is very hard on the length of track. But overall, it was much appreciated. Thank you!”
Anett und Heike: Germany, April 2016 about Polders and Rivers
“We are growing fond quickly of Dutch people and Dutch food”.
Michael with daugthers, California, United States, April 2016 about The Green heart of Holland