Liberation route Bergen op Zoom

3 hours 20 minutes (40.0 km)

On this route, you will cycle through the landscape of the Battle of the Scheldt. The rolling hills separated the water-rich Zeeland from Brabant, the province that formed the access route to the Westerschelde for the Allies. This river was very important, because it gave access to the port of Antwerp. The Allied Sherman tank and the German tank moat are visible reminders of the battle on this route. As are the memorial graveyards in Bergen op Zoom, where fallen Canadian and British soldiers - as well as other Allied soldiers - found their final resting place.

The Liberation Route Brabant tells the story …

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On this route, you will cycle through the landscape of the Battle of the Scheldt. The rolling hills separated the water-rich Zeeland from Brabant, the province that formed the access route to the Westerschelde for the Allies. This river was very important, because it gave access to the port of Antwerp. The Allied Sherman tank and the German tank moat are visible reminders of the battle on this route. As are the memorial graveyards in Bergen op Zoom, where fallen Canadian and British soldiers - as well as other Allied soldiers - found their final resting place.

The Liberation Route Brabant tells the story of the liberation, but also shows what the Second World War was like for ordinary people who lived in Brabant at the time. Eight cycling routes, spread across North Brabant, lead you past the Brabant Remembers stories, the Liberation Route Europe audio columns, monuments and museums. Together they make the impact of the war on North Brabant clear, even all these years later.

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Take a look

Sights on this route

Natuurpoort Wouwse Plantage
Plantagebaan 227
4725 AC Wouwse Plantage
84 01 28 81 30 37 36

De Volksabdij & Brasserie Abdijbos

O.L.V. Ter Duinenlaan 199
4641 RM Ossendrecht
38

O.L.V ter Duinenlaan 199
4641 RM OSSENDRECHT
22 52 21 32 78 76 83 82 88 14 75 15

Canadian Cemetery

Ruytershoveweg 29
4622 RJ Bergen op Zoom
British Cemetery

British Cemetery

Ruytershoveweg
4623 RE Bergen op Zoom
16 17 84

Natuurpoort Wouwse Plantage
Plantagebaan 227
4725 AC Wouwse Plantage

Directions

Natuurpoort Wouwse Plantage
Plantagebaan 227
4725 AC Wouwse Plantage
  • War Monument Huijbergen
    This monument commemorates Huijbergen, a village in the municipality of Woensdrecht, the Second World War and its consequences. On the memorial stone two stylised bronze hands hold the municipal coat of arms. The monument, entitled Bevrijding (Liberation), is a symbol for the resistance, the liberation and the reconstruction of Huijbergen.

  • Flakstellung Buitendreef
    The Germans built eight bunkers around Woensdrecht Air Base, specially designed to protect the anti-aircraft guns against enemy air raids. The anti-aircraft guns were used to fire at planes on their way to Germany. Of the eight Flakstellungen, four have been preserved. Flakstellung Buitendreef is one of them.

  • De Volksabdij en Brasserie Abdijbos 
    De Volksabdij en Brasserie Abdijbos is an official Brabants Fietscafé; a Brabant Bicycle Café. In these bicycle cafés, cyclists are made to feel especially welcome! You can stop by for a delicious bite to eat or a refreshing drink, and make use of facilities such as a repair kit, bicycle pump and e-bike charging station. These bicycle cafés can be recognised by the hexagonal 'Brabants Fietscafé' sticker on the window.
  • Natuurpoort De Volksabdij
    In Natuurpoort De Volksabdij you will find an unmanned, atmospheric space with photographic materials and brochures about the Second World War. In this information centre, visitors can learn everything about the Battle of the Scheldt and the Brabantse Wal with sound fragments, video images and information panels.

  • Monument Reconstruction Woensdrecht
    The Woensdrecht Reconstruction Monument is a chapel built of brick. The chapel is two metres high and symbolises a new era of reconstruction, a desire for peace, and gratitude to the Virgin Mary. The text on the monument reads: ‘Woensdrecht dankt Maria’ (Woensdrecht thanks Mary).

  • Liberation memorial Woensdrecht 
    This memorial is a stone statue of a female figure with a wounded soldier. It reminds the inhabitants of Woensdrecht of the Canadian soldiers of The Royal Hamilton Light Infantry who were killed during the battle of Woensdrecht in October 1944. The lines 'We shall remember them' and 'May they always be remembered' call on visitors to never forget the ultimate sacrifice of these brave men. 

  • Sherman tank
    At the Onderstal in Woensdrecht you will find an original M4 Sherman tank, which was used here by the Canadians. The tank has been a monument on this site since 1978 and reminds the inhabitants of Woensdrecht of the heavy fighting that took place during the Battle of Woensdrecht. The number 52 on the tank refers to the 10th Canadian Armor Regiment.

  • Memorial Anton van Duinkerken
    On the Grote Markt square there is a statue of Anton van Duinkerken, pseudonym for Willem Asselbergs. Van Duinkerken was a writer and a leading scholar of Dutch and was considered dangerous by the German occupiers. In 1942 he was held hostage in camp Sint-Michielsgestel where he was imprisoned for eight months. After the war he was chairman of the Liberation Festivities in Amsterdam and he wrote several poems about the Second World War.

  • War Memorial Bergen op Zoom
    At the back of the Saint Gertrudis Church - the tower of which is popularly known as De Peperbus (the pepper shaker) - there is a monument in memory of the Bergen op Zoom freedom fighters and other war victims from the Second World War.

  • Liberation Memorial Bergen op Zoom
    The liberation memorial in Bergen op Zoom dates from 1955 and was made by sculptor Nicolaas van der Kreek. The female figure is making the V-sign with her arms, for 'Victory'. 

  • German tank barrier blocks
    By order of the Germans, concrete blocks were installed along the water of peat canal de Zoom as a tank barrier. After the last block comes Lincoln Bridge, which replaced the Bailey Bridge after the war. The Bailey Bridge was built by Canadian military engineers as a temporary replacement for the original bridge, which had been destroyed. The name of the current bridge refers to the Lincoln and Welland Regiment, which together with the South Alberta Regiment and the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders played an important role in the liberation of Bergen op Zoom.

  • Canadian Cemetery
    1119 soldiers found their final resting place on this cemetery. Most of these, 969, are Canadian soldiers. Half of the soldiers buried here died during the Battle of the Scheldt, between September and November 1944. The other bodies came from various municipal cemeteries and field graves throughout the western Netherlands. 

  • British Cemetery 
    This cemetery has 1284 graves. Most of the predominantly British casualties buried here are air force personnel who died over the Netherlands. There are also soldiers buried here who died during the amphibious landings on Walcheren in the autumn of 1944, mainly naval personnel. In addition, there are also some graves of soldiers who died during the First World War.

Natuurpoort Wouwse Plantage
Plantagebaan 227
4725 AC Wouwse Plantage
84
01
28
81
30
37
36
38
22
52
21
32
78
76
83
82
88
14
75
15
16
17
84

Attributes

Trip/route

  • Marked: Yes
  • Route characteristics: Theme route, Connecting cycle route