Recently I went on a road trip with srprs.me. A fun experience: unexpected and to a lesser known place. Gelderland is a huge province in the Netherlands, but for Belgians, it’s not a very well known place. I am more than happy I finally got to visit this region, as there are beautiful nature domains to discover. In no way we had to idea it would be a Gelderland road trip.
DAY 1: Where are we going?
With srprs.me the trip and experience are more important than the destination. Which I really like. So me and Hamza jumped into our car, only knowing the general direction we had to go to. Our map said we needed to go to Wijchen, near Nijmegen. I tapped the name in the GPS and saw the route we had to take. The road trip to Gelderland had begun.
Baarle-Hertog, the only Belgian island
The route would take us past Baarle-Hertog. A little bit of Belgium in the Netherlands. If you look at it on the map, it’s literally an island of Belgium, surrounded by a see of the Netherlands.
In Baarle-Hertog (and Baarle-Nassau) we crossed the border a couple of times as a joke. There are several places to eat, so we chose to lunch at the Pannekoekenbakker. They have all kinds of pancakes there, even savory ones.
A quick stop at Tilburg
Tilburg is a small city in the Netherlands. A typical one. It’s always fun to stroll through the streets and watch the typical Dutch houses. The repetitive and rhythmic houses in the streets are ideal for a quick photoshoot. During our stroll through the city, we stumbled upon a small shop. Small, but it immediately caught my eye.
De Bierbrigadier is a shop where you can buy all kinds of beer. Standard ones like de Koninck or Leffe, but also special ones. The shop-owner is a kind and interesting person, who can tell you all about beer. Looking for a special something? Or need some help with choosing? Ask him, and he will be more than happy to help.
I limited myself to 5 bottles. One of which was brewed with lobsters and crustaceans.
Staying at Lochemse Berg
After our visit in Baarle-Hertog and Tilburg, we headed in the direction srprs.me sent us. In Wijchen we learned we need to go a bit further to Barchem. Barchem is a small municipality in Gelderland. At the church in the village center, we opened the envelope with our check-in information.
A quick and delicious dinner at Restaurant ’t Elf uur in Gorrsel and we were ready for bed. At least I was, Hamza went for a (couple of) wine(s) in the hotel lobby.
DAY 2: Gelderland road trip to Gelderland hike
After a nice breakfast in the Lochemse Berg, we decided to walk around the domain. There is a belvedere tower and more than enough woodland to discover. It a fun and steep walk, ideal to get you started for the day.
Afterward, we drove to Gorrsel again, where we decided to head into the heath there. The Gorrselse Heide is a beautiful landscape. There is enough variation in the views to keep the hike interesting.
I know, it’s a road trip in Gelderland. But it’s not all about sitting in a car. You have to go out and see things! In Lemelerberg we did a very long hike. One that took us to every corner of the area. Okay, I’ll admit, we got lost a bit. Probably because Hamza wasn’t paying attention, definitely not my fault.
The landscapes in Lemelerberg vary from woodlands to heath, to dunes. It was very cold and windy during our trip in March, so make sure to bring a warm coat with you. It is worth the cold though, as the views and nature are stunning. Get down on the ground to witness small plant life and mushrooms. Or try to walk tall between the huge trees!
Dinner in Zwolle
In Zwolle, we did a bit of strolling, mainly in search of a good restaurant. After weighing all our option, we decided to go for Italian food at La Meridiana. Hamza took some kind of pasta, and I went for the most tender lamb I ever had.
DAY 3: we don’t want to end the Gelderland road trip!
The last day we hiked into the Deelerwoud. It’s a free alternative to the beautiful Veluwe. Deelerwoud is a vast piece of natural land. Again with woods and heath. The description in the nature magazines and website stated that it’s virtually impossible to hike here and not see wildlife. We decided to take a chance and went in.
It really didn’t take long before we saw a big bovine next to the road. Walking around freely, we could’ve petted it if we wanted. We didn’t since these are wild animals and not your average milk-cow. During our walk, we found more small groups of these Scottish highlanders. The descriptions really didn’t lie!
Soon again, because of all the impressions and views, we were lost again. After a while, we decided to take the same road back. We then discovered we past a sign somewhere and finished the walk. Tired but happy, we got back to the car and drove home. The road trip to Gelderland is one I will long remember.
Do you have experiences in Gelderland? Let’s talk about them in the comments below!