Day 13 – Voorst, Apeldoorn, Epe, Heerde, Hattem, Oldebroek, Elburg, Nunspeet, Harderwijk

Since some stupid stomach flu keeps me homebound this week, I used the opportunity to post an unposted trip: day 13, in the north-west of Gelderland. This trip dates from already quite a while back, 29 March 2013, when time was more abundant :)

Harderwijk

Started as a small settlement Herderewich, it gained importance in the thirteenth century after gaining town privileges. From 1648 through 1811 there was a university known for its promovendi such as Carolus Linnaeus. Nowadays Harderwijk is famous for the largest marine mammal park in Europe.

Although I drive through Harderwijk quite often to get to one of our favourite windsurfing spots, I have never actually been into the centre, which still accomodates some old architecture.

Harderwijk

Nunspeet

The name Nunspeet is derived from Nuwenspete which means “new reclamation”. The opposite is the village Elspeet in the same municipality, which means “old reclamation”.

Initially, the area was quite harsh to inhabit. In the 20th century they afforested the area, to avoid sand drift.

Nunspeet

Elburg

This is the third municipality in row directly connected to the Veluwemeer. For centuries the old town hall was located in the historical centre of the town. However, I couldn’t get there by bike, hence I only have this picture of this new poor-looking town hall. The heraldic symbol on the outside looks nice and shiny though.

There is a lot of sight-seeing to do in the centre, with old architecture and a large ditch around the town centre.

Although Jan Tuttel thinks that the El in Elburg and Elspeet have different meanings, he is not decisive. I think the reasoning of the INL is fair, with El referring to old (as for Elspeet), and burg to stronghold.

Elburg

Oldebroek

The name does not mean old pants (broek means pants), but broek is a variant of burcht, as we also saw in Elburg. The coat arms of Oldebroek is quite funny, as it’s been drawn  by a child:

Coat arms of Oldebroek. Click on the image to follow the source.

It depicts a silver shield with three alder leaves of vert.

Oldebroek

Hattem

Apparently, in 1989 Hattem was the only Dutch city to receive the European predicate “Best kept village”. Although I cannot find a true source for it. If you know of any, let me now.

It is without a doubt one of the nicest town halls I’ve visited so far. The aura, the colours, the only thing lacking is some steps :)

Hattem

Heerde

When I was taking pictures a squirrel appeared. I followed it for a while, but I lost it.

Heerde

Epe

The area around Epe, especially around Vaassen, contains celtic fields (raatakkers in Dutch) dating from the iron age. There appears to be a very active community that charts all historical events, and has a very detailed timeline of the municipality: http://www.ampt-epe.nl/historie.

Epe

Voorst

The name Voorst occurs in at least eight accountable places in the Netherlands, and in many more derivations (e.g. Voorsttonden). An English reader can recognise the English forest in Voorst. In the middle ages a forst or foreest was an area consisting of forest, fields and lands, especially in a hunting context. For a more detailed etymologic interpretation, see the same linked document.

Voorst

Apeldoorn

The last municipality is also the biggest. It comprises the village Radio Kootwijk. Named after the broadcasting station with the same name.

Apeldoorn


km: 250
km total: 2599
done: 9 (71)
to do: 344

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Day 13 GE

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Voorst: 52.236701, 6.109722
Apeldoorn: 52.215610, 5.963549
Epe: 52.349230, 5.986023
Heerde: 52.388646, 6.042876
Hattem: 52.474317, 6.069948
Oldebroek: 52.445966, 5.899551
Elburg: 52.441907, 5.855395
Nunspeet: 52.376737, 5.784068
Harderwijk: 52.351995, 5.622512
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Harderwijk
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Nunspeet
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Elburg
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Oldebroek
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Hattem
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Heerde
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Epe
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Voorst
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Apeldoorn

Day 16 – Opheusden, Buren, Tiel, Culemborg, Lingewaal, Geldermalsen, Neerijnen, Zaltbommel, Maasdriel

The next couple of posts will not be in chronological order. I’m a bit lagging with uploading the pictures here, and insert some random comment alongside of it. The pictures are always uploaded very quickly to the facebook photo album. They will also be posted here, but there might be a short delay. More like an apology for mainly the Google spider, all my favourite Russian spammers, and for the few human readers 😉

Today there was a fair in Nijmegen, and to avoid all the busyness, I decided to (almost) round up the province Gelderland, and head for the west.

Neder-Betuwe

First in line, the municipality Neder-Betuwe, located in Opheusden. Neder-Betuwe is also the name of the region. In Dodewaard, one of the towns, the nuclear reactor plant with a boiling water reactor has been decommisioned. Although it has been out of service for over 15 years, it will not be completely removed and demolished because they have to wait for the radioactive decay. With a 40-year waiting period of safe enclosure, the plant is expected to be demolished in 2045.

Neder-Betuwe

Buren

The town centre of Buren, is also called the “gemeentepaleis”, the town palace. According to the architects the design of the town hall is inspired by organic architecture. It costed almost 16m euro.

Buren

The town hall is indeed huge, but 16m euro? Decide for yourself. Besides that, the surrounding park costed an additional 2m euro.

Tiel

Although I didn’t take the effort to take pictures of the centre itself, I can really recommend it if you like old buildings and architecture. There are a lot of buildings with inner courts that you can look into, and the general atmosphere just feels historic.

On the other hand, the town hall is nothing like that 😉 You should see the contrast for yourself, with the buildings at the other side of the street.

Tiel

Culemborg

Culemborg, formerly known as Kuilenburg, was a free state where the laws of Holland were not observed. As long as the debtor remained in Kuilenburg, the creditor was not allowed to enter the city. The Dutch saying “naar Kuilenburg gaan”, going to Kuilenburg, means withdrawing oneself from responsibilities, or going bankrupt.

Culemborg

Yes, the the revolving door was indeed closed, and although the rest is just glass, they must have thought that protecting the entrance was sufficient :)

Lingewaal

Another municipality in the Tielerwaard is Lingewaal. The area is very sparsely populated and rural. The town hall is hidden behind a residential area.

Lingewaal

Geldermalsen

On my way to the town hall of Geldermalsen in the equally named town, I passed the village Acquoy. I was doubting how to pronounce it. Some research on the internet shows that I am not the only one. I too thought it would be pronounced the French way, but apparently it is ‘akkooi’, and not ‘akwoi’, and definitely not ‘akkwah’ (I don’t speak IPA 😉 ). The next thought was, what does it mean? At home I learned that -oy (and similar suffices like -ooy, -oyen, -au, and -auwen) often indicate the presence of a forest on a river bank.

Geldermalsen

Neerijnen

The town hall of Neerijnen is beautiful with its moat, and green surroundings. A environment worthy of a castle.

Neerijnen

And the obligatory self-shot.

Neerijnen

Zaltbommel

Similar to the town hall of Neerijnen, the municipal office of Zaltbommel is not reachable with the motorcycle. Although in the first case I could understand it in some way. In the case of Zaltbommel I was rather surprised as the office is on an industrial area.

An interesting historical fact about the city is in its name. Zalt-bommel means the salty orchard. It originates from the time where the sea would have influence on the saltiness of the soil, through the river the Waal, before the direct connection between the river and the sea was closed. However, fruit trees don’t grow in salty soil, so…

Zaltbommel

Maasdriel

Originally the name of municipality was Driel, but the Germans changed it in 1944 to Maasdriel, to avoid confusing it with Driel near Heteren. If you understand Dutch, this page has a nice argumentative etymologic breakdown for Driel.

Maasdriel


km: 235
km total: 3404
done: 9 (99)
to do: 316

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Day 16 GE

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Buren: 51.956366, 5.424756
Culemborg: 51.957021, 5.227756
Geldermalsen: 51.881842, 5.282036
Maasdriel: 51.771205, 5.337812
Neder-Betuwe: 51.933508, 5.630173
Neerijnen: 51.832746, 5.280540
Tiel: 51.885843, 5.434540
Zaltbommel: 51.799366, 5.257047
Lingewaal: 51.882455, 5.111625
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Neder-Betuwe
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Buren
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Tiel
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Culemborg
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Geldermalsen
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Neerijnen
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Lingewaal
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Zaltbommel
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Maasdriel

Day 12 – Mook & Middelaar, Gennep, Bergen, Beesel, Peel & Maas, Horst aan de Maas, Venray

This is a placeholder with only the pics. One of my favourite pictures so far is the last but one. If only I weren’t such a snapshit photographer :)

Mook en Middelaar

 

Mook en Middelaar

Gennep

 

2013-02-17 13.32.46_rot

Bergen

 

2013-02-17 13.51.16

Beesel

 

Beesel

Peel en Maas

 

Peel en Maas

Horst aan de Maas

 

Horst aan de Maas Horst aan de Maas

Venray

 

Venray Venray


km: 200
km total: 2349
done: 7 (62)
to do: 353

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Day 12

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Mook: 51.751023, 5.881201
Gennep: 51.830135, 5.921803
Beesel: 51.283682, 6.077667
Bergen: 51.603106, 6.049384
Peel en Maas: 51.329784, 5.978585
Horst aan de Maas: 51.454812, 6.053341
Venray: 51.529008, 5.976147
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Mook
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Gennep
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Beesel
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Peel en Maas
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Horst aan de Maas
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Venray
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Bergen

Day 10 – Oss, Maasdonk, Bernheze, Uden, Landerd, Grave

This post was promised a while back already. I can hardly believe this was the 31st of January.

Oss

A small city in Noord-Brabant is known for the Gang of Oss which is a turbulent period from 1888 through 1934 in which criminals committed many severe crimes. Over 160 people were arrested in 1934 were round up. Nowadays it’s not as bad.

Oss

Somewhere along the way I made these two pictures. The scenery might be basic, but that’s also one of the things about driving around, learning to appreciate it.

2013-01-31 15.26.40 2013-01-31 15.26.34-rot1

Maasdonk

A 2008 survey showed that majority of Maasdonk’s inhabitants were fine with the idea of removal of the municipality. In 2012 a proposal to merge with Bernheze was also dismissed. Other negotiations are still ongoing, but are not fruitful yet.

I think this is the first -donk municipality of more to come. A donk is a elevation in a boggy area. Maas- is obviously derived from the river, which is at the heart of the area, and which caused both prosperity and misfortune.

Maasdonk

Bernheze

Maasdonk is the result of a fusion of municipalities in 1993. Bernheze is only one year younger, and it initiality was named after its biggest town. Now, it’s named after a promoninent farm stead of the old days. Bern stands for born, which means as much as source, or water. Hese stands for woods. Seems to me like an accurate description of the area, even now.

Bernheze

Uden

We are not really used to earthquakes in the Netherlands, but in 1932, one of the heaviest earthquakes had its epicenter in Uden, and following the Mercalli intensity scale, it reached a level VI. Only in 1992 a stronger earthquake (VII) was observed in Roermond.

Uden

Landerd

Another fairly new municipality (1994). Although in itself it is not very known, for us mainly Zeeland is a famous place. Not because there is anything to do (except for visiting the town hall), but because it’s also the name of a province. So you can go quite far, in little time.

Landerd

Grave

One of the major pathways to get into Noord-Brabant. Or anything south of the Maas, for that matter. The municipality was formed in the Napoleonic time, concurrently to the founding of a fortified town Grave. Etymologically, Grave derived its name from graven (digging) or gracht (moat).

King Willem-Alexander uses the title Baron van de stad Grave en het Land van Cuijk (Baron of the city Grave and the land of Cuijk).2013-01-31 17.06.23


km: 95
km total: 2107
done: 6 (50)
to to: 365

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Day 10

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Oss: 51.764635, 5.524747
Maasdonk: 51.740388, 5.461692
Bernheze: 51.734512, 5.527058
Uden: 51.656569, 5.617202
Landerd: 51.696332, 5.673534
Grave: 51.760109, 5.734831
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Oss
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Maasdonk
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Bernheze
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Uden
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Landerd
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Grave

Day 15 – Doesburg, Rijnwaarden, Zevenaar, Duiven

Finally an update again! After having my motorcycle torn apart for weeks, it was good to have a proper ride again.

I had some issues with my clutch and incoming shaft of my gearbox. We had to remove everything, essentially only leaving the engine in its place.

So, town centers. It was a sunny sunday afternoon, and I was still recovering from some nights with little sleep, but there was also this anticipation of getting on the road again. There were some town centers nearby that I hadn’t visited before: Rijnwaarden, Doesburg, Didam, Zevenaar, and Duiven.

Since Rijnwaarden is difficult to reach, being in a corner between the river Waal and the German border, it seemed like a huge detour. And to avoid having to ride back and forth on the same route, I decided to visit the municipality Doesburg first.

Doesburg

Doesburg is one of the 16 hanseatic towns in the IJssel and South Sea area and later became part of the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands. Initially the place is called Duisburg, as the German city which is still known as such. The town center of Doesburg is apparently famous, or to say, the part of the town center depicted on the right of the picture is famous, most notably for its impressive wine stock. But there were people all over the place enjoying the weather and looking at me funny, so I took a picture of the current entrance.

Doesburg

Rijnwaarden

Then I went of to Lobith, where the town hall of Rijnwaarden is located. On the way I already saw directions to all other municipalities I was to visit. But I stuck to my plan :)

Rijnwaarden

Because of the responsibilities municipalities will have to bear the first of January 2015, there is a lot of discussion about a possible fusion. For Rijnwaarden this is no different. The political parties are looking at the possibilities of a fusion with Rijnwaarden, Zevenaar, Duiven, and Westervoort. One party (PvdA) wants to include Didam as well, however, that city is currently part of another municipality (Montferland). This soap is going to be continued.

Zevenaar

Next stop, Zevenaar. Not much to say about this town.

Zevenaar

Duiven

Now a town of which I rarely visit the centre, but only get to the peripheral commercial zone, since the nearest IKEA is located there. Duiven used to be a small and quiet town, until the board of province decided that it needed to grow, as to accommodate commuters for larger cities as Arnhem and Velp. Now, it is known as a sleeping municipality because everyone leaves to work in the morning, and returns in the evening.

Duiven

I also returned home in the evening, but fortunately not to Duiven.


km: 120
km total: 3169
done: 4 (90)
to do: 325

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Day 15 GE

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Doesburg: 52.015224, 6.133738
Duiven: 51.948659, 6.024744
Rijnwaarden: 51.860025, 6.119809
Zevenaar: 51.928452, 6.075839
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Doesburg
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Rijnwaarden
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Zevenaar
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Duiven