Lauwersmeer National Park
Lauwersmeer National Park is obviously renowned for its birds. From the bird hides, birdwatchers can observe the thousands of migratory and water birds, with the impressive sea eagle as a bonus. Nature lovers can enjoy this new wilderness, where rare orchids and parnassia grow on the former seabed and Highland cattle and Konik horses graze on the extensive grasslands. A unique area that is easy to explore thanks to a network of walking and cycle routes and from the water. But there’s more! Kite surfing, wind surfing, sailing or just relaxing on the beaches. Fun and educational activities for children and their parents. On the other side of the dyke is the Waddenzee, a Unesco world heritage site. Sail out from Lauwersoog harbour and harvest your own oysters, go seal watching or go mudflat hiking. And then eat freshly and sustainably caught fish in one of the fish restaurants in Lauwersoog or Zoutkamp. And Schiermonnikoog National Park at only 45 minutes by boat away. Three special countryside areas so close together is a rarity! And so amazingly nearby.
All about birds
The Lauwersmeer is a real wilderness with rough grasslands where geese spend the winter, reed beds with nesting places for bitterns and bearded tits and mudflats which are home to the waders. All of these birds can be observed from close by from bird hides near the Jaap Deensgat and Sylkajút in the south of the Ezumakeeg, for example. Every first Sunday of the month at around 1.30 p.m., the ranger gives a talk about the birds in Activiteitencentrum de Bosschuur in Lauwersoog and explains exactly what you can see in the area at that moment. Or book a photo boat trip which will take you past the areas with most birds.
Walking with the ranger
Birdwatchers and country lovers can really enjoy the Lauwersmeer. The impressive birdlife, the big grazers and young leafy forests which are home to deer, foxes, hares and rabbits. Want to know more about the area? Book a Struintocht (walk) through the wilderness around the Lauwersmeer in August or September, led by a ranger.
There are cycle paths all over the area leading to the loveliest spots, with many gorgeous panoramas and always that spectacular Groningen sky above you. In the Ballastplaatbos or the Kollumerwaard, for example. Meetings with Highland cattle or Konik horses are a definite possibility. The cycle path over the Ezumakeeg is also highly recommended. And it’s lovely cycling in the Marnewaard military training area alongside the National Park too. The area is sometimes closed when the shooting range is in use, but this is always clearly indicated. The ultimate tour is obviously around the Lauwersmeer, a total of 45 kilometres. Combined with stops for drinks on a terrace or some lovely fresh fish, this is a wonderful day out.