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Garden Route

(66.4 km)

This water-rich area of Friesland has more to offer than just water. The route takes you through beautiful nature reserves, gardens, forests, and landscapes. Along the way, there are various opportunities to take a break and enjoy the surroundings or relax at a terrace.

Gardens and forests
You'll pass by the largest elm garden in Europe, the Heemtuin at the Mar en Klif visitor center, and the Butterfly Garden in Lemmer. After Sloten, you'll enter the beautiful landscape of Gaasterland. Here, you'll be surrounded by various forests, including the Bremer Wildernis, Lycklamabos, and Bos Elfbergen.

Bell-cots
You'll also encounter several bell-cots along the route. These are structures of thick wooden or iron beams in which one or more bells are hung. You'll find almost 30 of them in the entire Southwest Friesland region.

E-bike route
The rout…

This water-rich area of Friesland has more to offer than just water. The route takes you through beautiful nature reserves, gardens, forests, and landscapes. Along the way, there are various opportunities to take a break and enjoy the surroundings or relax at a terrace.

Gardens and forests
You'll pass by the largest elm garden in Europe, the Heemtuin at the Mar en Klif visitor center, and the Butterfly Garden in Lemmer. After Sloten, you'll enter the beautiful landscape of Gaasterland. Here, you'll be surrounded by various forests, including the Bremer Wildernis, Lycklamabos, and Bos Elfbergen.

Bell-cots
You'll also encounter several bell-cots along the route. These are structures of thick wooden or iron beams in which one or more bells are hung. You'll find almost 30 of them in the entire Southwest Friesland region.

E-bike route
The route is 63 km long and therefore very suitable for e-bikes. You can start the route at the VVV Waterland in Friesland in Joure, or at the VVV in Lemmer or Oudemirdum. If you find the route too long for a day trip, consider turning it into a two-day trip by staying overnight along the way. Our website offers various options for booking accommodations.

Ferry
You'll cross the water once with a ferry. Bring cash with you just in case. 

Sights on this route

1

VVV Joure

The VVV shop in Joure is located in a beautiful monumental building on Midstraat 99. At this unique location you will find the Museum Joure next to the VVV with a coffee room, an antiquity room and the museum shop De Witte Os.

VVV Joure
2

Joure (De Jouwer)

Joure is the village without city antics.

Visit Joure

Joure (De Jouwer)
3

Park Heremastate

Park Heremastate is a park around house Herema State.

Park Heremastate
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4

Iepenarboretum

In Joure, along the old road to Sneek and at the exit of the A6 Joure-West, you can find the largest elm garden (elm arboretum) of Europe.

Iepenarboretum
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5

Langweerder Wielen (Langwarder Wielen)

The Langweerder Wielen is located to the west of Joure.

Langweerder Wielen (Langwarder Wielen)
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6

Veerpont Woudfennen (Woudfennen)

Veerpont Woudfennen (Woudfennen) De pont halverwege de oversteek
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7

Langweer

Langweer is a true watersports destination. From this centrally located village in the Frisian lake area, you can sail in all directions.

Visit Langweer

Langweer
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8

Osinga State

The Osinga State is a stately house opposite the church in Langweer, consisting of multiple residential floors, tall windows, and an imposing entrance staircase.

Osinga State Osinga State Langweer
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Langweer Church

Several churches have stood on this site. The first was built at the start of the 13th century and destroyed by a fire in 1517. The bell tower church that stands here today was built in 1777.

Langweer Church
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10

Legemeer Bell Tower

The bell tower in the village of Legemeer stands in a graveyard surrounded by a canal. The bell tower we see today is a replica of the original bell tower built in 1720, which was destroyed by an autumn storm in 1972.

Legemeer Bell Tower
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11

Sloten (Sleat)

Sloten (or Sleat as we say in Friesland) is the smallest Elfsteden town in Friesland. This walled mini-city is also called sipelstêd (Frisian for onion city) thanks to the unique shape of an onion.

Visit Sloten

Sloten (Sleat) Sloten gracht
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11Fountains Sloten

The ‘Peewit’ shows a girl standing on the shoulders of a man. She holds a bird in her hand. Under the man’s feet a disheveled pile of buckets, jerry cans and barrels form the base of the fountain.

11Fountains Sloten
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13

Vaste Burchtkerk Fortress Church

The substantial tower of this church rises proudly above the Van Coehoorn forest, which is named after the strategist and fortress builder Menno Van Coehoorn, who is buried in a spectacular mausoleum in the church.

Vaste Burchtkerk Fortress Church
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14

Gaasterlands Streek Museum Eppinga Sate

Museum with an old 'farm ark' in a beautiful farmhouse.

Gaasterlands Streek Museum Eppinga Sate
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15

Bremer Wildernis

The Bremer Wildernis is located in Gaasterland, near Nijemirdum, and borders the Lycklamabos and Starnumanbossen forests.

Bremer Wildernis
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Lycklamabos - Nijemirdum

The ancient Lycklamabos is located in Gaasterland.

Lycklamabos - Nijemirdum
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17

Bos Elfbergen - Oudemirdum

Bos Elfbergen is the largest forest in Gaasterland.

Bos Elfbergen - Oudemirdum
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18

Fountain Church

The Fountain Church is a Dutch Reformed church in the charming little village of Oudemirdum. It was built in 1790 on the foundations of a 13th-century tuff stone church. The second nave on the north side of the church was added in 1926.

Fountain Church
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Oudemirdum

Oudemirdum is a charming village located amidst the forests of Southwest Friesland in the Gaasterland region.

Visit Oudemirdum

Oudemirdum
20

Mar en Klif Visitor Center

In the visitor centre, you will discover many aspects of National Landscape Southwest Fryslân

Mar en Klif Visitor Center
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Heemtuin - Mar & Klif

Visitor centre Mar en Klif has a beautiful, small botanical garden.

Heemtuin - Mar & Klif
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22

Sondeler Leien Nature Reserve

The Sondeler Leien nature reserve is in Gaasterland. The small inland lake here probably formed when the waters of the former Zuiderzee broke through the dikes.

Sondeler Leien Nature Reserve
23

Sondelerleien - De Sondeler Leijen - Vogelkijkhut

Rietvogels en weidevogels.

Sondelerleien - De Sondeler Leijen - Vogelkijkhut
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24

Lemmer Beach

Lemmer Beach (also known as Lemsterstrand) is on the east shore of Lake IJsselmeer.

Lemmer Beach
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Lemmer

Lemmer is the ultimate combination of beach, coziness, and UNESCO World Heritage.

Visit Lemmer

Lemmer
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26

Vlindertuin Lemmer

Butterfly Garden Lemmer is a ‘strúntún’ (wander garden) in an urban area.

Vlindertuin Lemmer
27

Eesterga Bell Tower and Graveyard with Mausoleum

The surrounding tall trees make it easy to cycle straight past. But it is worth stopping to see this listed bell tower and graveyard with a mausoleum.

Eesterga Bell Tower and Graveyard with Mausoleum
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Follega Bell Tower

The Follega bell tower stands in a small round graveyard. It has a four-sided dome roof and houses a bell that is 78 cm in diameter, which was cast by P. van den Ghein in 1596.

Follega Bell Tower
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29

Doniaga Bell Tower

The Doniaga bell tower stands on a raised graveyard surrounded by trees. The bell tower houses a swinging bell cast by Aernt Butendiic in 1460.

Doniaga Bell Tower
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30

Sint Nicolaasga (Sint Nyk)

Sint Nicolaasga is a village situated amidst the woods, the Tjeukemeer, and the Langweerder Wielen.

Visit Sint Nicolaasga

Sint Nicolaasga (Sint Nyk)
31

St Nicholas Church in Sint Nicolaasga

The Roman Catholic parish church in the village of Sint Nicolaasga is dedicated to Saint Nicholas of Myra. The church is a neo-Gothic cruciform basilica built in 1887 according to plans prepared by the Frisian architect Jan Doedes van der Weide.

St Nicholas Church in Sint Nicolaasga
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32

Dairy Scharsterbrug

In Scharsterbrug, a large dairy factory called the Maatschappij Hollandia was built at the end of the 19th century.

Dairy Scharsterbrug
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33

VVV Joure

The VVV shop in Joure is located in a beautiful monumental building on Midstraat 99. At this unique location you will find the Museum Joure next to the VVV with a coffee room, an antiquity room and the museum shop De Witte Os.

VVV Joure
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