Cycle route across the Vrachelse Heide
Oosterhout, Dongen, Dorst
Sandwiched between the Markkanaal, the Wilhelminakanaal and Oosterhout is the Vrachelse Heide. Although the name suggests it is a large heathland area, it consists mainly of coniferous forest with remnants of heathland and drift sand areas here and there.
Archaeological finds indicate that people have lived here since 3000 BC. Only since the year 1000 did heathland form in this area, which was fully exploited by farmers. In the 16th and 17th centuries, so much so that the vegetation disappeared and drifting sands formed. The farmers decided to plant trees back, so that the dry sand would not blow into the villages. That is why you now find many deciduous trees among the coniferous forests, especially in the eastern part.
Go back in time yourself. Near Dongen, along the Wilhelmina Canal, there is an Iron Age farmhouse. Every Saturday afternoon (from April to October), life in the Iron Age comes to life here.
The Vrachelse Heide is home to a number of rare plant and animal species. For instance, the grassbell and heather purple grow here, and you might encounter the tree falcon, collared redstart, pied flycatcher and green and black woodpecker.
Besides the Vrachelse Heide, you will also pass the beautiful De Leemputten nature reserve on this route. In short, this cycle route is full of nature!
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