Townwalk Willemstad

Willemstad is one of the eleven fortified towns along the Zuiderwaterlinie. Follow the junctions on an 8.0 kilometre walk and experience the special historical atmosphere of this town.

1 hour 45 minutes (8.0 km)

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Discovering the Willemstad defences
Willemstad is one of the eleven fortified towns along the Zuiderwaterlinie. Follow the junctions on an 8.0 kilometre walk and experience the special historical atmosphere of this town.

Willemstad has the shape of a seven-pointed star and is surrounded by five fortresses, of which Fortress Sabina is the most impressive. Through the centuries, the strategically located Defence Line of Willemstad was an excellent place to control shipping between Holland, Zeeland and Antwerp. The bastions and ramparts are still largely intact. You will be walking along the Volkerak and the beautiful Zwanenmeer (swan lake), after which you will enter the fortress via the Noordlangeweg road on the other side of Willemstad.

The town is one big monument. For example, there is th…

Discovering the Willemstad defences
Willemstad is one of the eleven fortified towns along the Zuiderwaterlinie. Follow the junctions on an 8.0 kilometre walk and experience the special historical atmosphere of this town.

Willemstad has the shape of a seven-pointed star and is surrounded by five fortresses, of which Fortress Sabina is the most impressive. Through the centuries, the strategically located Defence Line of Willemstad was an excellent place to control shipping between Holland, Zeeland and Antwerp. The bastions and ramparts are still largely intact. You will be walking along the Volkerak and the beautiful Zwanenmeer (swan lake), after which you will enter the fortress via the Noordlangeweg road on the other side of Willemstad.

The town is one big monument. For example, there is the monumental Mauritshuis mansion, the former country residence of Prince Maurits of Orange from 1623. The walk takes you past the churches Heilige Maagd Maria kerk and Koepelkerk. Relax in one of the charming cafés and restaurants on the lively marina. Finally you will stroll outside the walls over the canal, which will give you a different view of the ramparts. Relax in one of the charming cafés and restaurants on the lively marina.

Walk along the Zuiderwaterlinie in Brabant 
Discover the Zuiderwaterlinie (southern water line), the oldest, longest and most used waterline in the Netherlands. A unique chain of 11 fortified towns, forts and ramparts in Brabant, connected by the typical Dutch tradition of using water for defence.

Inheritance of an eventful past
For centuries the Zuiderwaterlinie served to protect the country against attacks. The waterline runs all the way from Bergen op Zoom in the south-west to Grave in the north-east of Brabant. Everywhere along the line you’ll find traces of an eventful past. Beautiful city monuments that are reminders of the time when soldiers still stood in front of the gates. Many of these monuments can be visited. Beyond the fortified towns you will find sturdy forts, ramparts, lunettes and redoubts. Provision rooms have made way for lively cafés and restaurants.

Zuiderwaterlinie footpath
The Zuiderwaterlinie footpath is a 290-kilometre walk and is marked out via the Brabant junction system, allowing you to walk from one junction to the next.

Sights on this route

Starting point:

Parkeerplaats bij knooppunt 52
Lantaarndijk
4797 SP Willemstad
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52
A
55
B
C
Fort De Hel
87
88
89
50
51
50
89
88
D
E
52

End point:

Parkeerplaats bij knooppunt 52
Lantaarndijk
4797 SP Willemstad
Navigate to endpoint

Story of the route

Starting point:

Parkeerplaats bij knooppunt 52
Lantaarndijk
4797 SP Willemstad
Navigate to starting point
  • Mauritshuis mansion
    Begin your journey of discovery in the Canon Room of the Mauritshuis mansion. Press the red button and bring the room to life! From the defences against the Spaniards to the conquest of the Germans. In this special room, young and old can experience the entire military history of this historical site with its fortifications and strongholds. After the Canon Room, visit the local history museum on the top floor of the Mauritshuis.
  • Fortress Sabina
    Special features of this fort are the Tour Modèle from Napoleon’s time, underground corridors and the large barracks that can now be used as a meeting location. Be inspired by Sabina: the largest and one of the most intact Brabant forts. Climb up the fort, see the casemates and find your way in! Fort Sabina is now also accessible by ferry ‘De Waterpoort’. For more information and sailing times visit www.waterpoort-rondvaarten.nl.
  • Waterbus
    Discover the Haringvliet river with a Waterbus! A lovely sailing route through beautiful countryside. The Waterbus calls at various destinations on the Haringvliet: Hellevoetsluis, Stellendam, Middelharnis, Willemstad and the natural island of Tiengemeten. During the summer months the Waterbus sails to Willemstad from Rotterdam, Dordrecht and nature reserve Tiengemeten every Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday. For the exact timetable, sailing days and mooring locations, please visit www.waterbus.nl. Order your tickets online.

End point:

Parkeerplaats bij knooppunt 52
Lantaarndijk
4797 SP Willemstad
Navigate to endpoint
  • 52
  • 55
  • 87
  • 88
  • 89
  • 50
  • 51
  • 50
  • 89
  • 88
  • 52
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