Man and woman sitting on wooden bench in the water Lauwersmeer
© Marleen Annema via VisitWadden
Category:Explore the Dutch national parks

Lauwersmeer National Park

Before 1969, this area still had an open connection to the sea. For fear of flooding, a dam was built, turning this salt marsh area into panoramic freshwater wetlands with reeds, forests and large bodies of water. The open water, grasslands, broad-leaved forests, orchid fields, shallow ponds and thick reed bushes make Lauwersmeer into a natural habitat for birds.

  • Lauwersmeer National Park is well known for its huge wealth of birds.
  • Spot the imposing sea eagle from one of the bird watching sites.
  • You can explore Lauwersmeer National Park on foot, by bike or by boat.
  • Lauwersmeer National Park is a beautiful nature reserve covering 6,000 hectares.
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9976VT Lauwersoog

Birdwatching around the Lauwersmeer

Bird watchers can indulge at the Lauwersmeer National Park. The curlew, great crested grebe, lesser white-fronted goose, barnacle goose, spoonbill and whinchat are some of the bird species typical for this area. Different vantage points and bird watching facilities make it possible to observe the birds as they go about their business without disturbing them. Lauwersmeer is both a breeding ground and a refueling station for the annual bird migration. This means you can spot birds all year round.

On foot, by bike and by boat

Couple on bikes looking out over Lauwersmeer

Lauwersmeer can be explored while hiking, cycling or boating. There are routes of varying distances, to delight both the nature lover and the sports enthusiast. Besides some protected areas of the Lauwersmeer, there are plenty of water bodies for canoeing, surfing, sailing and motor boating. Around the Lauwersmeer National Park, you will find many places appropriate for a weekend.

Dark Sky Park Lauwersmeer  

National Park is one of the world's Dark Sky parks. At these parks, it is really dark at night and visitors are welcome to experience the darkness and watch the stars. A Dark Sky Park in Holland is special because Holland is one of the world's most light-polluted nations. Around the Lauwersmeer National Park, you will find many places appropriate for a weekend of camping out in the nature. 

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