Variable walk through woods and dunes, along canals and a cormorant colony
The Amsterdam Waterleidingduinen is one of the largest dune areas in the Netherlands. It consists of alternating dune landscape, coniferous and deciduous forests, quiet lakes, drift sand areas, swampy valleys and canals. You can fully enjoy peace and quiet and you can deviate from the paths to stroll through the dunes. The dune is 3400 ha (5 km wide and 10 km long). The drinking water for Amsterdam is being cleaned up here.
Difficulty: Easy walk
Length: 6.7 kilometers
Duration: 1.5 hours
Marking: green posts
Starting point: Entrance Zandvoortselaan
Catering: Pancake house ‘De Duinrand’ at the entrance
Admission: Day tickets 1.50 euro Parking 2.00 euro.
You follow the green posts from the entrance. The first part coincides with the yellow route. You go through a forest with deciduous trees and pine trees and pass one of the highest dunes of this area: the Tonneblink. After the splitting of the yellow route the path goes in the direction of the Pan van de Houtpoort. Then you go over the Van der Vliet canal, where you can enjoy a beautiful view on the dam. After this you go through a fairly flat dune curve in the direction of the Renbaanveld. Here is home of a coloniy cormorants, which often fly to the sea to forage. Then back to the entrance via the green posts.
The Amsterdamse Waterleiding duinen
In this area of the dunes around Zandvoort the water is being purified for the capital of our country, Amsterdam. There are channels and water wells everywhere. You will find special flora and fauna around it.
While there was not enough water in Amsterdam and water in the canals and ditches were polluted and not clean, the dunes had too much water. In the end it was Jacob van Lennep and English engineers who built the canals in the dunes. It turned out to be a great success. So great that even the groundwater dropped considerably and the dunes fell dry.
Due to the drought and the demand for clean water, a new way had to be found. The dunes are now artificially supplied with water from the river Rhine. The filtered Rhine water thus penetrates to the dried-up dune valleys.