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Deer in de Hoge Veluwe
Deer in de Hoge Veluwe | © Ahah123456 / WikiCommons
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The Best Things to Do in the Hoge Veluwe National Park, the Netherlands

Picture of Tom Coggins
Updated: 10 May 2018
De Hoge Veluwe National Park lies almost in the centre of the Netherlands and covers many different natural landscapes, ranging from rolling dunes to ancient forests. Due to its stunning geography, cultural landmarks, and accessible location, the park ranks among the most popular day trip destinations in the the Netherlands.

Wildlife watching

Countless furry, feathered, and scaly critters live in de Hoge Veluwe, including many European mammals like wild boar, mouflon and red deer. These larger species tend to roam around the park in small herds and have thrived in the region for generations. Hundreds of birds and reptiles also inhabit de Veluwe’s diverse landscapes, making the park an absolute haven for wildlife watchers.

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A deer in the park | © Bart van Dorp / Flickr

Market

On the fourth Saturday of every month (except December) dozens of farmers, artisans, and food merchants sell their wares at a charming, outdoor market in de Hoge Veluwe. There’s always an enormous selection of products on sale at this market, ranging from fresh, locally-produced meat to organic cosmetics. The market is free to enter for anyone that’s already paid the admission fee for the Veluwe and takes place on a large plaza on the northern side of the park.

Houtkampweg 9c, Otterlo

Kröller-Müller Museum

The Kröller-Müller Museum owns the second largest collection of original Van Gogh paintings in the world, including many of the artist’s most famous creations such as his sombre masterpiece, At Eternity’s Gate, and an early version of the Potato Eaters. The museum was founded by German art collector Helen Kröller-Müller in 1935 and was built on her family estate in the centre of de Hoge Veluwe. Kröller-Müller was one of the first figures to champion Van Gogh’s work and collected pieces created by many other famous artists over her lifetime, which are now housed inside the museum. Aside from displaying artwork inside its galleries, the museum also exhibits modern and contemporary sculptures outside in its expansive garden.

Kröller-Müller Museum, Houtkampweg 6, Otterlo +31 318 591 241

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The entrance to Kroller-Muller Museum | © Gerardus / WikiCommons

Museonder

Visitors must descend underground in order to enter this fascinating museum in de Hoge Veluwe. There are many intriguing items to discover once inside the museum’s subterranean halls, including the fully-preserved root system of an ancient tree (which hangs from Museonder’s ceiling) and the skeletal remains of prehistoric land mammals that once lived in the region that what would become the Netherlands. The museum centres around an extensive permanent display and regularly hosts temporary exhibitions that dig deeper into the Earth’s natural history.

Museonder, Houtkampweg 9c, Otterlo +31 800 8353628

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A preserved root system of a 135-year-old tree hangs above Museonder’s main gallery | © Richard Broekhuijzen / WIkiCommons

Jachtslot St. Hubertus

In 1915, famed Dutch architect Hendrik Petrus Berlage designed a stunning country home for the Kröller-Müller family in de Hoge Veluwe. The resulting building ranks among the most celebrated examples of early 20th century architecture in the Netherlands, and features many elements that are commonly associated with Berlage’s work such as symmetrical geometric patterns, a high steeple-like tower, and expressive red-brick motifs. This stately county residence was eventually given to the Dutch government, then partially converted into a historic museum. It is possible to join guided tours around the lodge several times per day and learn more about its fascinating history.

Jachtslot St. Hubertus, Apeldoornseweg 258, Honderloo +31 800 8353628

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Jachthuis Sint Hubertus | © I, China Crisis / WIkiCommons

Biking

De Hoge Veluwe and biking go hand-in-hand and the park features over 40 kilometres of well-kept cycle paths that trail through its dunes, forests and heathlands. Thankfully for anyone who doesn’t own a bicycle, the park has a simple bike sharing system that’s free of charge for visitors. There are several storage facilities spread around the park that collectively house 1,800 white bikes. These bicycles can be picked up and used then returned without any hassle.

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A cycle path in de Hoge Veluwe | © Gewoon / pixabay

Hiking

Hikers in de Hoge Veluwe can follow nine different marked routes around the park that cover specific areas and themes. For instance, the Landscape Path trails past many of the park’s main historical landmarks, then onto the vast, sandy dunes of de Pampelse Zand. Whereas the Berlage Path begins at Jachtslot St. Herbitus then runs alongside the large pond south of the lodge. Hikers can also chart their own courses through the park and discover its rugged, stunning landscapes without the aid of set routes.

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Dozens of footpaths trail through de Hoge Veluwe | © Jiří Komárek / WikiCommons