Dutch Language Blog

A Day Trip to Texel Posted by on Jun 28, 2011 in Uncategorized

Photo Credit: Heather Tucker

Two weekends ago, I had the opportunity to visit Texel, an island in the Netherlands.  Texel is the biggest and most populated of the Frisian Islands.

The weather was not looking promising as we headed off for Den Helder, where we would take the double-decker ferry across to the island.  But our guide had assured us that the weather on the islands can be in complete contrast to the mainland.  The ferry ride to Texel only lasts 20 minutes but in those 20 minutes the weather did indeed change – still windy but almost no rain and even some sunshine.

Den Hoorn

Our first stop was the small town of Den Hoorn.  Small shops and unique houses lined the streets.  Sheep-filled fields were dotted around and the church was a natural photo stop.

De Slufter

From Den Hoorn we travelled to the nature reserve “De Slufter.”  The area is the result of an opening in a formation of dunes, which allows sea-water to flow in.  Attempts to close the opening were for some time unsuccessful and it was later decided to leave the opening open and keep the area as a nature reserve.  Access into the nature reserve area itself is only possible with a guide (although you can wander around the outskirts) and water-proof shoes/boots are recommended.

The Lighthouse





Photo Credit: Heather Tucker






After our walk around De Slufter, we rode to the North of the island where a red lighthouse and a windy, sandy beach awaited us.  It is possible to climb to the top of the lighthouse (a fee applies) but I decided to walk along the beach instead, collecting shells and spotting a crab.


According to an article by The Independent, Texel’s shores receive over 2,000 kg of sea-offerings a day.  Over 500 messages in a bottle, alone were on display in the main maritime museum once.  If you are into scavenging then Texel could be a great place for you.


We finished our trip in the harbor town of Oudeschild.  Fresh fried fish to eat and fishing boats to photograph were in no short supply.

Before my trip to Texel, I must admit that I did not know much about the island or just how much there is to do there.  The trip I went on only touched the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the number of activities, culinary opportunities and nature locations Texel has.  I encourage you to visit their website and have a look at the video below.

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  1. Caroline:

    Hi Heather,

    It’s nice to read about your trip to Texel!
    But I have to tell you and the other readers that Texel is the only Dutch island that belongs to the province of Noord Holland.

    All the five “big” wadden-islands belong to Friesland/Frisia. There are 9 smaller wadden-islands, without inhabitants, of which one belongs to Noord-Holland en 2 belong to the province of Groningen. The other six are frisian aswell.

    With Kind Regards,


    • heather:

      @Caroline Thanks for the extra information Caroline. Have you been to any of the other islands? If so, which ones would you recommend?

  2. Caroline:

    I have been on three of the islands: Vlieland, Terschelling and Ameland.
    All three of them are nice for their own reasons.

    Vlieland has only one village and for non-residents it’s not possible to bring their own car. On all the Wadden-islands it’s very common to rent a bike. Especially the people who like nature and quietness will enjoy Vlieland.

    Terschelling is a busier Island. Many youngsters have there first holiday without parents at Terschelling. They usually sleep at campings and party in one of the bigger villages of the island. But also older people can enjoy Terschelling. It’s a beautifull island for riding bike/horses or walking trips. Terschelling is famous for it’s cranberries and has the oldest lighthouse of the Netherlands, called the Brandaris. And also one of the biggest pole-explorers/merchant, Willem Barentz came from Terschelling. There is a sea called after him, close to Nova Zembla.

    And then Ameland of course. Actually I don’t know that much about Ameland. It’s not really famous for something. But you’ll definitelly enjoy being there. Riding bike, visiting the lighthouse from which you can see Terschelling. And there is a museum about the rescue-squad. The rescue-squad still uses horses to bring their boat(s) to the water. In 1979 all the horses got tragicly drowned during a rescue-operation. They are burried in the dunes, where you can also find a monument for the horses.

    Once more, I would definetely reccomend all three of the islands. You can also take a fast-ferrie from Terschelling to Vlieland and back, so you visit both islands at once.

    Looking forward to your next article!

    • heather:

      @Caroline Wow Caroline! You are an excellent source of information on those three islands. I now want to visit them all! I had heard a bit about the cranberries and was looking up some info on how they got there. Quite interesting. Thank you for sharing all that information!

  3. Errol:

    What a beautiful place, Texel! Such a pity I didn’t know about visiting it when I was in the Netherlands. Golden opportunity missed.