Around the Hanseatic Cities (part 12)
Baarlo, Kessel, Venlo
Venlo, beautifully situated on the Maas, had everything it took to become an important Hanseatic city. Already in the Middle Ages, trade was brisk and Venlo became at least as important as Cologne. However, it was not until 1481 that Venlo joined the Hanseatic League. The cycle route takes you to the municipal boundary of Venlo, but if you cross the bridge at junction 11, you cycle into the inner city. This is certainly worthwhile! You will see the pleasant city harbour, many characteristic buildings and a large basilica. The Romerhuis and the City Hall are the oldest buildings in the city. They both date back to the Middle Ages.
With its five monasteries, Steyl is also called the Monastery Village. All year round, a ferry sails from Steyl to the castle village of Baarlo. In this small village, you will find no less than four castles. The historical buildings in the middle of the quiet rural surroundings make the village a popular place for tourists. Alongside the Maas, you cycle a beautiful part towards the next Limburg village: Kessel. This village was important in Roman times. When an outdated church was demolished in 1869, a Roman tri-god stone was discovered. The gods Minerva, Hercules and Juno were depicted on it. A Roman iron helmet was also found. In short, Kessel is a village with a long and rich history. As you cycle through the village, you will see several interesting sights that tell the village story.
Also nature is not missing in this route. You will cycle through the Heldense bossen and you will come across shifting dunes and fens. Together with beautiful stretches along the river Maas, this is a wonderfully varied cycle route!
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