As summer creeps closer with (some) promise of the pandemic soon coming to an end, many around the world are looking to their next holiday destination. In the Netherlands, of course, the urge for a tropical getaway is always strong given the country’s (clears throat) delicate weather. But, with travel restrictions still in place, maybe summer 2021 still is not the time for an international excursion to Ibiza, Mykonos, or the Dalmation Coast. Never fear, though, because what if we told you there is a tropical getaway in the Netherlands that can easily satisfy all your sun and sand staycation needs.
Yes, you read that right! Henschotermeer, nestled within the forests of the Utrechtse Heuvelrug in the North West of the country is just that. This unique recreational area is perfect for lounging, swimming, sandcastles, and some truly great cuisine options.
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The History of Henschotermeer
The lake is crystal clear water surrounded by sandy shores and nature trails. Its history dates back all the way to 1895. Back then, its creation was for practical purposes – to prevent roads and meadows from disappearing under the existing drifting sand. To do this, the sand drift was covered with sods and heather. Then, trees were planted between the sods. By the late 1930s, the “pond” had expanded to 3 hectares with an average depth of 30 cm. By the 1960s, this relatively unknown spot was developed into a 10,000 person capacity recreational lake and was completed in 1979. Now, Henschotermeer has a total area of 70 hectares, of which 13 are for swimming.
What To Do?
Henschotermeer offers a variety of leisure activities and cuisine options. Of course, swimming is an important one, but there is also a 2,500-meter path surrounding the lake. This path is perfect for joggers, runners, cyclists. You can even go off the path via various marked hiking and cycle paths. The sandy beaches are also perfect for sunshine activities like volleyball or a fitness boot camp. And, for the kids, there are various fun wooden playgrounds. One is even in the shape of a pirate ship.
With playing fields and hills on the edge of the forest, an island in the middle of the lake connected to the beach by two wooden footbridges, there is plenty to discover at this great tropical getaway in the Netherlands. Have you been? Tell us your experiences in the comments! And make sure you check out all our great getaway ideas. For example, the epic nature getaways of the Tilburg area or the always great Wadden Islands.
Note: When driving to Henschotermeer, make sure to download PayByPhone. It will help you locate parking zones and alert you to when your parking time is almost up.