With its rich mix of nature, wildlife, culture and an abundance of fine dining options, the picturesque Veluwe region is one of Holland’s most rewarding destinations, offering something to inspire all the senses. After exploring the untamed landscapes and wildlife, visitors can sample the produce from the area’s well-stocked natural larder of wild meat and locally grown ingredients at a range of culinary locations, from Michelin-starred restaurants to gourmet fairs.
- Encounter the varied natural landscapes and abundant wildlife of the Hoge Veluwe National Park.
- Taste the finest local produce in a choice of Michelin-starred restaurants.
- Taste your way through some of Van Gogh’s inspirations with a specially designed menu.
Wildlife in the Veluwe
The Veluwe is Holland’s largest continuous nature reserve. Featuring some of the country’s most remarkable natural landscapes of woodland, heath and lakes, it’s also home to a wide diversity of plant and animal species. A stroll or cycle through the Hoge Veluwe National Park normally rewards the visitor with a sighting of red deer or wild boar. Or for a more up-close- and-personal experience with the animals you can join a four-hour safari with a park ranger. Visit in the afternoon or evening to be in with the best chance of spotting one of the park’s ‘Big Four’: red deer, wild boar, mouflon (wild sheep), and roe deer.
Taste the Veluwe
Thanks to its high volume of producers and growers of organic regional products, the Veluwe is one of the most exciting culinary destinations in the country. Part of the region has even been labelled ‘Food Valley’ due to its concentration of agrifood companies and research institutes. You’ll find responsibly sourced wild meat like venison, boar and game on the menu all year round at restaurants such as Restaurant de Echoput. Or join the celebrations for the start of the game season at ‘De Wilddaggen’ (Wild Days) – a weekend-long culinary fair held every October in the village of Vierhouten. As well as wild meat, you can taste certified local products like honey, wine, beer, artisan bread and cheese. Just look out for the ‘Erkend Veluws Streekproduct’ stamp of quality for assurance that the product was produced locally using Veluwe ingredients. In 2021, the highly anticipated World Food Center opens in Ede, offering even more ways to experience and discover the agrifood of this unique region.
Michelin-starred restaurants and Starry Nights
The Veluwe is home to several Michelin-starred restaurants; the ideal way to round off an active day in the national park. Count the stars at acclaimed restaurants such as the sublime De Leest *** in Vassen, De Kromme Dissel * , which is housed in a 17th-century Saxon farmhouse in Heelsum, and the genteel dining room of the Het Roode Koper * country estate.
Many restaurants in the region also participate in a ‘Taste of Van Gogh’ dining program developed in Ede and supported by the Kröller-Müller Museum. This museum owns the second-largest collection of Van Gogh paintings in the world and is located in the heart of the Hoge Veluwe National Park. Taking inspiration from the artist’s works, the menus include ingredients featured in his paintings and are sourced locally from the Veluwe region. Look out for the special ‘Taste of Van Gogh’ logo to identify the restaurants taking part.
Editor's tip: After an invigorating day on safari in the Hoge Veluwe National Park, unwind at the Echoput hotel and restaurant, which lies amidst the royal woods of the Palace Het Loo. Famous for its wild game and paired wine options, the restaurant is the ideal place to replenish before bedding down in one of the hotel’s luxurious guest rooms.