Cycle route along Utrecht Forts
Schalkwijk, Houten, Lunetten
A nice round trip in the historical surroundings of the river Lek. Around the river, several forts and works can be found that are part of the New Dutch Waterline. The largest national monument in the Netherlands with national landscape status that was used to defend Holland from enemy armies. In the 17th century, army commander Maurits van Nassau devised this ingenious system in which large stretches of polder were flooded to make it difficult for the enemy to reach Holland. The knee-high flooding of polders made it difficult for the enemy to reach the important Dutch cities both on foot and by boat. The defences were mobilised three times; in 1870, World War I and most recently in 1940. In 1951, the Nieuwe Hollandse Waterlinie was unofficially disbanded.
If you want to know much more about the Waterlinie, a visit to the Waterlinie Museum at the Fort near Vechten is a must. But also from a bicycle, you can enjoy the beautiful forts and the wide landscape along the rivers. If you pay attention, you will also see several old ammunition depots and the sluices and culverts used for inundation along the way. In short, an informative route that also pleases the eye.
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