What do our hikers think of our tours?
“We were pleasantly surprised by the diversity in The Green Heart of Holland, despite being on holiday in our own country. Everything was arranged very nicely. Sometimes the hikes were a bit more intensive than expected, due to the uneven paths in some parts of the trips. However, we enjoyed our journey and would highly recommend it to anyone who likes a beautiful hike.”
Jochem and Luuk, The Netherlands, October 2020, The Green Heart of Holland
Hikingpath between Scheveningen and Katwijk
“Beautiful 2-day North Sea hiking package and screeching seagulls. There is a 17 km journey from Katwijk to Scheveningen through the dunes. and back over the beach 13 km. Very lucky with the weather, even a little sun now and then. Great hotel. It was our first encounter with Hike-in-Holland, but certainly not the last. Fantastic service and extensive information. and disclosures. Thanks again. Anne, Grace, Odilla & Sandra (and Claire). ”
Anne and hiking friends, The Netherlands, October 2020, North Sea and screaming seagulls
Lighthouse of Hellevoetsluis
”Beautiful walks through the beautiful nature of Voorne, with all the animals that go with it. It was very varied forests, meadows, dunes, beaches and villages. And everything was arranged, I did choose to swap my three-course menu a few times for a little less food, because it was good and tasty everywhere, but a lot. Since I was traveling alone, especially in Brielle and Hellevoetsluis, I was pleasantly surprised by the hospitality and friendliness. ”
Photo by Laura
Laura, The Netherlands, September 2020, Tour of Voorne
“Up the paths, and hike! That’s what we did, seven days along the New Dutch Waterline in September 2020. Well organized by Hike in Holland, with clear maps, working GPS tracks and a clear description of the routes. And – also very important – pleasant hotels that took the corona rules into account. Every disadvantage has its advantage, and “thanks to” Covid we had plenty of space everywhere: along the way at the forts, on terraces and inside the restaurants. The beauty of the set route is that you never walk the same road; the road to your hotel is different from the road from the hotel (the next day). We found the Leerdam-Gorinchem route the most beautiful.”
Fam. Van Eijk, The Netherlands, September 2020, Along The Dutch Waterline
“We enjoyed the four-day walking tour. We were not familiar with this part of the Netherlands and we were pleasantly surprised. A great diversity of nature in combination with the industry of the Maasvlakte, very surprising and special. We found this combination very beautiful and special, but everyone who is going to do this walk should know this. If you only think you will encounter nature, you will be disappointed. We have largely walked the walks with the GPS tracking, which is easy to follow, the paper version sometimes gives some confusion / question marks. The additional tourist information was fun and educational. The staff of the visited hotels were very friendly and helpful !! In any case, we can look back on a successful walking holiday. ”
Els and hiking friends, The Netherlands, September 2020, Tour of Voorne
“Good final day’s of walking, had lunch on the beach! Great trip, actually exceeded my expectations. Lucky with the weather, accommodations of high standard. Landscape delightful & varied. Overall very successful. May Thanks for all your help.”
Roger, Great Britain, September 2020, From Coast to Border
“Dear Rie and Peer, We had three wonderful days thanks to the good arrangement (and all the showers that stayed far away from us). After the first registration, communication with you was fast and very helpful. The directions were very detailed and (almost) always easy to follow, especially with the supplied maps. In addition, thanks to Peer’s efforts, I could still have put the GPS tracks on my Garmin and that was an extra helping hand now and then. The further information in the booklet was also nice. The routes were very beautiful. In the end, we did not do the tour of Gouda, because we had already seen a lot of the city on all entrances and exits and found the cozy market itself 😉 The staff took some getting used to in the hotel because they had only recently opened and had to work with the Corona rules, but they were very nice and helpful, the room was spacious and the hotel well located. It is a pity that the hotel in Oudewater was closed, I think the atmosphere would also have appealed to us. All in all, a good introduction to Hike-in Holland! And with this beautiful part of the Netherlands that was still unknown to us (South Limburgers).”
Constance and Leonie, The Netherlands, June 2020, Polders & Rivers
“Holland in February? Freezing weather, North Sea gale winds plunging temperatures to -30 degrees, 2 meter high snow drifts? Actually, nothing like that at all. I’ve walked/hiked many of the tours offered by Hike In Holland in Spring and Summertime, but this time my wife and I were looking for a February walk, and we chose The Estates of South Holland. For better or for worse, February is now Springtime in Holland weather-wise. Although we had a few rainy days (no problem with Gore Tex clothing), it was reasonably warm most days. And we were delighted to see many flowers in bloom everywhere we went: rhododendrons, spirea, heath/heather, snowdrops, daffodils, crocuses, even some tulips, and many others. Some trees and shrubs already had small leaves opening up. While this walk was centered in The Hague, Leiden and Voorschoten, there was also some walking in the rural/suburban areas between those towns. Rie and Peer selected paths that took us through a number of old Dutch estates with parks, gardens, manor houses, lakes and canals. Although the gardens weren’t as lavish and bright as they would be in Spring or Summertime, there’s also beauty in the Nature in other seasons. And dropping into a warm cozy Dutch teahouse or coffeehouse on a rainy day provides a greater jolt of pleasure than it would do on a warm sunny day (in my humble opinion).
Netherlands is uniquely architected for the enjoyment by walkers as there are walking paths or sidewalks from anywhere to anywhere. In many (most?) countries the road infrastructure is prioritized for cars and trucks, but in the Netherlands walkers and cyclists are given as much (and sometimes more) priority and consideration. Discovering a place on foot is very different from discovering it by bike or car — walking allows one to focus on surroundings, pause or linger to enjoy birds, trees, flowers, architecture, people you encounter on your path. Most things in Netherlands are built on a human scale (with the exception of a few monumental structures in the Hague), so as a walker you don’t feel overwhelmed by the man-made environment and cars. Almost no other place we’ve travelled shows more respect for walkers than Netherlands. For example, cars stopped for us at pedestrian crossings even before we showed any intention to cross the road (as opposed to Italy where cars aim and speed towards you as you step onto a pedestrian crossing 🙂 Also, hardly any other place is as friendly to English speakers as Netherlands (recently in France when I asked “Do you speak English?” the person responded, with a friendly smile, “Do you speak French?” :-).
Nature is always the focus of our walks, but in the Netherlands it’s also very interesting to see innovative architecture with both great artistic flair and brilliant engineering. I’m always impressed by the amount of collective on-going intellectual and organizational effort that went into the design, construction and operation of canals, waterways, bridges, dams and related infrastructure.
Hike In Holland selection of hotels was very good, convenient to the walking routes and in the good/interesting parts of towns for additional exploration, food/drink, etc.”
Looking forward to my next Hike In Holland walk: Coast to Border in April.
Allen & Joanne, United States, February 2020, The Estates of South Holland
“Thanks, we had a lovely walk despite the rain! We enjoyed the route – directions were easy to follow. Hotel was good.”
Harriet and Sophie, United Kingdom, October 2019, In the Footsteps of humanist Erasmus
“We very much enjoyed our 6 day hike through the Green Heart polders! The itinerary was excellent; we were happy that we had decided to add extra days in each of the towns we stayed in; the accommodations and food were all very good; and your walking directions combined pretty much perfectly with the GPS maps for error-free travel. Even the weather broke in our favour. Rather than the rain forecast for all the days of our walk, we got mostly clouds and almost no rain. All in all, it was a perfect trip for us Seniors— easy walking, very scenic countryside, and comfortable accommodations. And a wonderful introduction to the farm land and friendliness of the Dutch people. Thank you for putting together such a good trip for us.”
Elizabeth and Elizabeth, United States, September 2019, customized walking trip
“All is good with us and our travels. Despite the rain, which, thankfully, has been limited on our walking days, we have had a fine time strolling through the polders and the windmills of the Kinderdijk. All the accommodations have been fine. It has been a very successful week. So, thank you very much for organizing this part of our trip!”
Elizabeth and Elizabeth, United States, September 2019, Polders & Rivers
“The walk was lovely but quite different from part 2 which was a mix of nature and urban walks.”
Stuart, United Kingdom, September 2019 In the tracks of Market Garden Part 3
“Two lines just to comment that everything has been very good. You have a very nice country. The hotels have all been very correct and well located. We’ll probably be back in the future, and we’re sure to recommend to our friends. Just one detail, I would have preferred to have the usual temperatures in Holland for this time …”
Griselda and Jaume, Spain, August 2019, Ancient towns and dunes
“We really enjoyed the walking holiday! Everything went very smoothly, communication in all hotels was fine. In Hellevoetsluis it was noticeable that they were not yet familiar with the concept of ‘picking up luggage’, ‘offering 3-course menu’, ‘billing’ etc. Not that it was difficult for us but it was clear to them what to look for. The bathing hotel in Rockanje was our favorite so nice to be able to sit there twice. The walks were well balanced and the routes were also clear to us. Thanks for everything!”
Marlies and Michiel, Belgium, August 2019, Tour of Voorne
“Thank you for the welcome. We arrived home well and enjoyed the hike very much. It was really very varied and interesting. The route description we did not need, because we went to the GPS track, worked very well. We are thinking about spending the next holiday in Holland. Greetings and thanks again for the quick and competent handling of our holiday. “
Thomas and Susanne, Germany, August 2019, Polders & Rivers
Second World War Cemetry
“We have had a fantastic, impressive journey. We walked every day, didn’t have a single drop of rain and indeed started early on the warm days, around 7:45 am, so that we were ready around 12:30 pm. The routes were beautiful and clearly described. The hotels in general are more than fine. Now we are enjoy the memories with the photos at home. ”
Miriam en Peter, The Netherlands, July 2019, Market Garden complete
“We did enjoy ourselves. We got enough chances between the numerous rain showers to do lots of things. We drank a lot of hot chocolate the day it rained all day! My daughters both did big sections of the three walks you featured. And my Amsterdam daughter hopes to do the full walk into The Hague with her husband sometime in the future. We appreciated your attention to detail. We really liked the front patio at the Aquarius, and very much enjoyed having a glass of wine out there one afternoon in the sunshine.”
Janet with her daughters, Canada, June 2019, Scheveningen; beach, sea, dunes and the city.
Inside a Fort, photo by Allen
“Just completed my 5th walk with Hike-In-Holland, Along the Dutch Waterline. The Netherlands has become an old friend — we meet now and then, have a few beers, go for a hike, have a few beers, talk to folks we meet along the way, eat some cheese and Dutch apple pie, drink some beer — you get the idea. Dutch ingenuity didn’t fail to impress me again. I’ve already seen first-hand the enormously complex system of water management here. But I’ve learned something new — this complex system designed to enable people to inhabit the land could also be used for the opposite purpose — to make the land impassable by strategically flooding selected areas to stop invading infantries and cavalries. It worked several times in the past to prevent invasions of Holland, but the employment of aviation for making war made this elaborate system obsolete. Well, not quite obsolete because it’s a part of the impressive Dutch infrastructure for recreation and outdoor activities. I visited a few familiar towns, and a number of towns and villages new to me. If I were to do this again, I’d book an extra night in Utrecht, a town delightfully old and modern at the same time. The Dutch are masters of making contemporary architecture fit perfectly within the context of both history and landscape. Instead of sticking out like sore thumbs, modern buildings and structures appear very harmonious with their surroundings, like art objects upon the landscape. Of course, the hotels and food were excellent as I’ve gotten used to in the Netherlands; have I mentioned the beer yet? Navigation was very easy, did not lose the route even once by using the printed instructions and the provided GPS tracks with voice prompts. Didn’t even need the printed maps. My wife and I are doing the Estates of South Holland next. Wonder if they have good beer in South Holland….”
Allen, United States, May 2019, Along the Dutch Waterline
“Thank you for a wonderful vacation experience – we loved the walk and had many wonderful photos! Thanks again!”
Sandra and Joseph, Alaska, USA, Mai 2019, Market Garden part 3
“I had a great time! You did a wonderful job with maps and directions. I want to do another one in a year or two. Best way to see your country.”
Christine, USA, April 2019, hiked with 2 friends “Ancient towns and dunes”
“We were very happy with your organization of the tour “Ancient towns and dunes”!!! The location of the accommodations was always optimal. We also appreciated the room view with sea view in Scheveningen and Noordwjik. The route description was generally easy to understand for us and with the help of the map material well traceable. We have gained beautiful insights into the country and life in South Holland and recovered well.”
Anna and Elisabeth, Germany, Mai 2019, Ancient towns and dunes
Foto by Laura
“I thoroughly enjoyed my hike in the Green Heart of Holland. Your instructions were excellent, the scenery often magical, and the people were warm and friendly. From picturesque thatched and gabled roofs, whimsical yard art, manicured home gardens and long, easy walks along wildflower bordered canals and rivers, this holiday is one I will look back on with great fondness.”
Laura and Janice, Florida, USA, April 2019, The Green Heart of Holland
“We had a great time so far, everything was well organized and the accommodations were mostly great.” Due the historical heat, Anja and Linn from Canada had to abdon there hiking trip Along the Dutch Wateline. And the problem with one of the hotels was quickly and easily resolved.
Anja and Linn, Canada, July 2019, Along the Dutch Waterline
“We had a great trip. Thank you for your planning. What a marvellous and interesting country!”
Peter and Nancy, Canada, June 2019, The Green Heart of Holland
“We were pleased with the arrangements and very much enjoyed the experience. The Belvedere was a quite adequate venue. Decent breakfast, plenty of parking and available for dinner. Schoonhoven a delightful town with several good restaurants. The hikes were of a good length. At times the long “straights” on bike paths were a little boring. We realize this was necessary to reach the more interesting hikers only paths. We found benches for lunch etc. We found the scenery, people and general experience all that you predicted.”
Geoffrey and Adrienne, United States, May 2019, Criss-Cross through the Green Heart of Holland
“I had a very nice time and am now back at work. In general I thought to hotels were very nice and clean with a good warm breakfast before heading out for the day. I saw a lot of birds which was delightful. And I appreciated that you included some info on holidays that overlapped with my time in the Netherlands. I enjoyed the birds a lot so maybe a quick guide on the most common birds would be interesting!”
Jessica, USA, April 2019, Polders & Rivers (including Kinderdijk)
Photo by Jessica, a beautiful Snipe
“Thank you very much for organizing our walking holiday, Prinsenstad Delft. The walks are varied, the city walk through Delft and the walk to Scheveningen go through much of the built-up area and the Delftse Hout and Midden-Delfland walks go largely through nature. so much greenery in the busy Randstad.On the way of these last two walks there is little to no catering, so it is advisable to bring a packed lunch.We went every morning along the Albert Heijn in the Choorstraat, around the corner at the The route descriptions are generally clear, but on a few occasions we had to use the supplied maps We did not use the GPS tracks Hotel De Plataan in Delft is a well-kept hotel with a friendly atmosphere. is located on a nice square within walking distance of the center where there are enough restaurants. We enjoyed these 4 days. “
Ger and Tineke, The Netherlands, March 2019, Delft, City of Delft Blue
“We had wonderful days at Polders and Rivers. We are impressed by the excellent organization. The hotel Belvedère particularly appealed to us because of its great location. We both had a room with a view of the Lek , really very nice. We also had a very nice dinner there. The hotel in Lekkerkerk is ordinary, the room was very large, sitting room + living room, newly renovated, but minimalist in design. food and breakfast were just okay, but we found the Best Western in Gouda to be completely okay, we had dinner next door to the hotel, restaurant Lichtfabriek, good food, but quite noisy. The walks were beautiful too, seen so many birds, beautiful. “
Mieke and Andries from the Netherlands, walked Polders & Rivers at the end of March 2019, Polders & Rivers
“We really enjoyed ‘Tour of Voorne’. We found it a nice area for walking. As for the routes, the GPS tracks were very good. It was our first time to walk like this and it was very convenient. We have hardly used the maps and the booklet, only for some extra information. We were also very pleased with most accommodations. Something about the lunch packages. They are very generous. We always had enough of a package. “
Mieke and Andre, The Netherlands, November 2018, Tour of Voorne
“Back in Schoonhoven after a fabulous 8 days of walking. Thank you. Time to have a quiet celebration.”
Leanne and Tom, Australia, October 2018, The Green Heart of Holland
“In September I completed my 4th Hike-In-Holland walk, Market Garden Complete. The route follows WW2 route of the Allied invasion of the Netherlands, and there are many interesting historical landmarks along the way. But equally interesting was an opportunity to see more of the Netherlands, at walking pace, and enjoy its beautiful towns and villages, excellent accommodations/food/drink, interact with friendly Dutch people I met along the way, watch daily life on streets and in the countryside. Netherlands is an amazing country — it’s the second largest exporter of agricultural products in the world, the entire country (much of which is below the sea level) is engineered to manage water, which they do exceedingly well. Good thing about walking in late September is watching harvests of fruits and vegetables in the countryside, small market stalls along walking paths, town markets selling locally grown food. I was given gifts of new Apples and Pears from the trees by friendly homeowners harvesting from their front yards. Also helped myself to wild cherries, plums and blackberries along walking paths. This route goes thru many forests and nature preserves, and it’s very impressive how the Dutch make these green spaces accessible from towns and villages by walking and bike paths.
Because the land is mostly flat, the walk was very easy, the weather was perfect. I’m looking forward to my next walk with Hike In Holland.”
Allen, USA, September 2018, Market Garden Complete
“We absolutely LOVED the hiking trip in the Green Heart of Holland and have already been recommending it to friends here in Canada! Yes, there was the problem in Oudewater, but as you mentioned below, we found some very sweet people who took the time to look after us and we eventually got in to our hotel. And it would not have been so bad overall if it had not been pouring with rain for the hike that day, nor possibly if it had not been a Sunday as everything was so quiet in the village when we arrived.) We were so pleased with how efficient you have been in our booking, figuring out hotels for us, and answering any question we could come up with!
Even the method of payment for our trip was smooth and easily done.
Your help regarding Oudewater was immediate once you had received both our emails regarding the situation, as well as our phone call.
That was so very reassuring. Your directions to get to our first hotel in Schoonhoven, for the start of the trip, was very straightforward and on sign in, we were handed our envelope from Hike in Holland with all the rest of the info for the hike: maps, luggage tags, direction booklets. You even thought of plastic bags to put in our walking directions for each day! That was brilliant…(especially on Oudewater day!) We both really liked the tourist info that you gave us each day of the hike. It allowed us to make the best use of our stay in each village/town.
The hotels were all wonderful. Only comment would be on the Hotel in Gouda. The room was quite small..okay for one night, but a little tight for more than that. Yet, it’s location in the city was fantastic as we were so close to everything and the people working the front desk/breakfast were extremely friendly and helpful. So things balanced out. Lots of great memories that we have brought home with us.
We wholeheartedly endorse your organization! ”
Margaret and Mark, Canada, September 2018, The Green Heart of Holland
“I do think the best feature of your walking holiday is the care you have taken to provide variety in scenery, while keeping your walkers on quiet pathways away from vehicles and bicycles as much as possible – and you can quote me on that!”
Photo by Janet
Janet and Christina, Canada, October 2018, Polders & Rivers
“We really liked it. Nice routes with great hotels. We went for the first time with a GPS track and that was actually quite relaxed. “
Karin and Merel, the Netherlands, September 2018,Polders & Rivers
“Great trip. Thank you for perfect weather. Now raining but we are happily at our hotel having a cold beer. All Very beautiful. Particularly day 1 and 4. Many thanks for terrific organization. Not a hitch!”
Barbara and Ken, United States, September 2018, Polders & Rivers
“We liked the format and design of the holiday so we would like to book a holiday for 2019 for the Operation Market Garden part 3 in September 2019. We noticed that there is a large 75th anniversary around Veghel and Grave so we would plan to do the part 3 of the walk before hitting the parade. “
Stuart and Martin, United Kingdom, July 2018, In the tracks of Operation Market Garden Part 2
“Yes, we really enjoyed the hikingtour despite the heat. Everything was fine, the different hotels, the varied landscape, the good food in the evening and the great weather, although sometimes it was very hot in the afternoons. The Hotel de Plataan was a hit and no problem at all that we could not stay in Scheveningen, on the contrary! At the end of the hike we felt like coming home to our hotel now! At the Hotel de Vier Seizoenen in Lisse we also felt very well and enjoyed a rich breakfast on the roof terrace. The Best Western Hotel Leiden is centrally located, we have even managed to make a sightseeing tour by boat and so learned a lot about the history of the city of Leiden. In Zoetermeer the Hotel de Sniep was also impeccable and there we spent a wonderful evening in the middle of the city. Well, it was a wonderful hikingtour with Hike in Holland. We got to know South Holland a bit and saw the diversity of the dunes. The old cities invite you to linger, but we wanted to move on daily. We will certainly come back to visit more regions from the Netherlands. “
Waltraut and 6 Friends, Germany, July 2018, Ancient towns and dunes
“Thank you again for all you’ve done to make our holiday in the Netherlands such a success. We’ve found exploring your country interesting and enjoyable. I’m sure we’ll want to come back before along. In the meantime we’ll certainly recommend Hike in Holland to our friends.”
Cathy, United Kingdom, June 2018, Criss-Cross through the Green Heart
“We very much enjoyed our Hike in Holland. All in all it was a great experience.”
Ron and Joyce, United States, July 2018, The Green Heart of Holland
“We’ve thoroughly enjoyed our stay in Delft. The walks and maps you provided have been excellent and your guidance notes wonderfully clear. The walk around Delft itself was a great introduction to a city we didn’t know. You led us to many things we would never have found otherwise. We split the walk to Scheveningen. On one day we walked to The Hague and then spent the afternoon at the Mauritshaus and exploring The Hague. The next day we caught the tram to The Hague, walked to Scheveningen and enjoyed having plenty of time to visit the beach, the pier and the harbour area. The highlight was the walk south of Delft – lovely landscape in stunning weather. We saw many different birds (as you predicted) including a Stork, lots of wild flowers including some I didn’t know and a Brown Hare.”
Cathy, Unit Kingdom, June 2018, Delft, City of Delft Blue
“A really great the holiday was well planned and the routes were an excellent mix of dunes and polders linked by interesting towns each with their own character. This will vary from season to season but the wildlife was an added bonus.
The hotels were clean and well situated and occasionally quirky and luggage transfer was perfect.
Thanks for organising Rie, hopefully we will try another route next year.”
Chris and Marian, United Kingdom, June 2018, Ancient towns and dunes
“First of all, many thanks to you and Hike in Holland for the organisation of our walking holiday. We enjoyed it immensely and would not hesitate to recommend you to others. We can say again that we thoroughly enjoyed the walk. Thank you very much Rie and Hike in Holland for all your work in providing a wonderful experience.”
Mike, Sean, Bruce and Gordon, United Kingdom, June 2018,The Green Heart of Holland
“Each part of our trip was perfect! The directions were excellent (it must have taken you a great deal of time to work that out) as well as the luggage delivery and lodging. Thank you or for all of your effort. We thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the Netherlands and to meet some of the people who live here.”
Mark and Christine, Gainesville, USA, May 2018, The Green Heart of Holland
“We had a wonderful holiday. Everything was just right — comfortable hotels, lovely landscape and people, and easy to follow directions.”
Austin and Deider, Belgium, April 2018, Birdwatching in the floodplains
“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, Septembre 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