Orvelte Cycling Route

(41.5 km)
Managed by: Recreatieschap Drenthe

Drenthe’s Hooglanden offer many kilometres of picturesque landscapes with heath-filled hills and forests, populated by, among other things, Scottish Highlanders. Museum village Orvelte is not to be missed during this cycling trip. It’s one of the Netherlands’ quaintest villages. Be your own judge! A visit to Westerbork Memorial Centre, in which the tragic events of the Second World War are brought to life, is certain to impress. There are fourteen observatory synthesis telescopes close to the memorial centre.

With a total length of 41.5 kilometres, this route takes you past many of highlights that shaped the province of Drenthe.

The route starts in Orvelte (intersection 78). There are two large parking areas close to the departure point. They usually have sufficient parking space. Note! Orvelte is a car-free village. The cost of parking is €3 per day.

Navigation to P1: Wezuperweg-Zuideresweg intersection.
N…

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Drenthe’s Hooglanden offer many kilometres of picturesque landscapes with heath-filled hills and forests, populated by, among other things, Scottish Highlanders. Museum village Orvelte is not to be missed during this cycling trip. It’s one of the Netherlands’ quaintest villages. Be your own judge! A visit to Westerbork Memorial Centre, in which the tragic events of the Second World War are brought to life, is certain to impress. There are fourteen observatory synthesis telescopes close to the memorial centre.

With a total length of 41.5 kilometres, this route takes you past many of highlights that shaped the province of Drenthe.

The route starts in Orvelte (intersection 78). There are two large parking areas close to the departure point. They usually have sufficient parking space. Note! Orvelte is a car-free village. The cost of parking is €3 per day.

Navigation to P1: Wezuperweg-Zuideresweg intersection.
Navigation to P2: De Wiet-Holsdiek intersection.

The route follows the following cycling intersections: 78, 97, 90, 19, 49, 26, 27, 64, 60, 61, 69, 68, 67, 92 and 82.

This route can be shortened at the following cycling intersections: 97, 90, 26, 91, 99, 60, 85, 63, 69 and 92.

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Locations on this route

Start point : Zuideresweg
9441 PD Orvelte

Westerbork Memorial Centre

Oosthalen 8
9414 TG Oosthalen

Makkum

Makkum 40
9411 TK Beilen

Jantina Helling

Molenwijk 13
7854 PV Aalden
End point: Zuideresweg
9441 PD Orvelte

Directions

Start point : Zuideresweg
9441 PD Orvelte
  • Orvelte is well known to all lovers of Drenthe and/or the 19th century. A historically attractive village, it remained largely the same as it was in the 19th century until the sixties. In 1967 the village’s appearance became officially protected. The eight farms that stood there in the sixties were renovated and a number of “disappeared specimens” were replaced by farms from elsewhere, which were deconstructed at their original locations and rebuilt in the village. Surrounding the village of Orvelte, techniques “from yesteryear” are still applied daily. One of the old crafts still being employed is the use of real horse power to plough the fields.
  • Drenthe’s Hooglanden are characterised by forests and areas with sand dunes and heaths. Via Oosterveld, you cycle in the direction of Westerbork.
  • Westerbork is one of the largest villages in Central Drenthe. The village originally had four essen (an es is an area of high-lying farmland). Westerbork is a vibrant village with a large number of catering establishments surrounding its old brink (a central open space to be found in many of Drenthe’s sandy settlements). Westerbork’s Late Gothic church dates back to the 15th century, but the bottom part of the church has been there since the 14th century. The large bricks under the church tower are also referred to as kloostermoppen (a well-known type of medieval stone brick). This name originates from the reintroduction of brick constructions in the Netherlands by monks (so-called kloosterlingen) in the 12th and 13th century. You can also find Museum Restaurant De Ar here. This resting area with adjoining café/restaurant has museum interior as its décor. Visitors feel like they’re in an early-20th-century Groningen shop, and old South Holland cheese maker, or find themselves amid a dated collection of hairdressing accessories. In short, there is plenty to see!
  • Should you have enough time to spare, make sure to visit Westerbork Memorial Centre. Bringing to life the tragic period of the Second World War, this centre is certain to impress. There are fourteen observatory synthesis telescopes close to the memorial centre that are also worth visiting.
  • You continue your route from Westerbork towards Lieving. Nature in nature reserve Baarwelsleek is both beautiful and varied. The area has swampy forests home to black alders, willows, kingcups and meadowsweets—as well as providing a safe haven to a permanent population of roe deer among the area’s agricultural activities, a railway and the village centre. Its population of roe deer is the main reason the area is not accessible to the public; nonetheless, it is visible en route.
  • Lieving is a small Drenthe village under the shadow of Beilen. Via intersection 49, continue the Orvelte Cycling Route towards Bruntinge, heading in the direction of Holther Zand. Holther Zand is part of Scharreveld. Although, with its many bodies of water and curved terrain, Scharreveld has the appearance of a full-blown nature reserve today, this was still an agricultural region a few decades ago.
  • Bruntinge is one of the many place names in the region ending with ing(e). Mantinge, Garminge and Balinge are also among them. According to Drenthe’s encyclopaedia, these place names originated with the farms that were located there. The name Bruntinge originated with the farm Brunt. Today, Bruntinge only has two Old Saxon farms. There used to be a third, but it was deconstructed and rebuilt in museum village Orvelte in 1969. This farm is also known by the name Bruntingerhof.
  • From Bruntinge, you cycle via forest Mantingerbosch and Weiden to Meppen, Aalden and Zweeloo.
  • Meppen is a pristine brinkdorp (a village with a central open space to be found in many of Drenthe’s sandy settlements), home to loosely-arranged Saxon farms and many deciduous trees. Its surroundings used to consist of sandy soil and heaths for the sheep. In the centre of Meppen—and especially around its brink—farms seem to have been positioned entirely at random; they only appear this way however. Each farm had large doors called baanderdeuren (large back doors), through which carts could enter.
  • Aalden’s mill is on the south-west side of Aalden. This smock mill was built in 1891 after its predecessor had been burnt down during a heavy storm.
  • From Aalden, you cycle towards Zweeloo. Vincent van Gogh went on a day trip to this Drenthe village from Nieuw-Amsterdam in 1883. Here he was inspired by Zweeloo’s small Reformed church, which reminded him of the painting L’église de Gréville by Jean-Françoise Millet, which he had previously seen in Paris.
  • He captured the church in a beautiful sketch. While Zweeloo has now been overtaken by the 21st century, its former picturesqueness of the village’s 19th-century appearance can still be seen in the village’s brink.
  • Zweeloo is the last village on this cycling route. Via intersection 92 and 82, continue the route to Orvelte, where you can enjoy well-deserved refreshments and a delicious bite to eat.

 

End point: Zuideresweg
9441 PD Orvelte

Attributes

Trip/route

  • Route typing: Recreation
  • Route characteristics: ANWB track, Connecting cycle route
  • Administrator name:
  • Route obstacles: Bridge, On the road, Crossing secondary road
  • Signposted: Yes
  • Explanation marking:

Target group

  • Young peopleYes
  • PupilsYes
  • StudentsYes
  • AdultsYes
  • Senior citizensYes
  • GroupsYes
  • ChildrenYes
  • FamiliesYes

Cycling

  • E-bikeYes
  • Touring bikeYes