It sometimes takes some searching, but they do exist, the paradises of our country: From the unknown Boekesteyn to the world-famous Keukenhof flower garden. Hiking enthusiasts can endlessly enjoy stylish ponds, romantic bridges and vistas, special animals and flowers. The surprising beauty of park forests can even outshine unspoiled nature and provide inspiration for your own garden. Take the time and go wandering around in one of the parks below.
Like other ‘s-Graveland country estates, Boekesteyn Estate was founded in the seventeenth century by wealthy Amsterdam merchants who then settled here permanently. The beautiful park forest with its many photogenic views owes its name to the many beech trees in the area. These beech trees can also be found along stately avenues that lead through the park. ‘Book’ is the Old Dutch name for beech, but besides beeches you will find many more beautiful things in this surprising part of the Netherlands, such as tulip trees, colorful rhododendrons and azaleas in the spring, and dazzling foliage and striking fly agarics in the autumn.
What also makes the park forest so special are the spectacular water features, ponds, romantic bridges, numerous benches and the pleasant atmosphere. Foxes, squirrels, buzzards, deer, owls, woodpeckers, bats and even snakes, yes the harmless kind, can also be found there. Naturally, a number of beautiful walking routes have been set out and there is a visitor center (Association of Natural Monuments) near the parking lot. The southern part of Boekesteyn consists of meadows and fields where draft horses and cattle graze.
Address: Noordereinde 54 – 56, ‘s-Graveland (between Hilversum and Kortenhoef)
The hilly Kronenburger Park is the pride of Nijmegen, once so catchily sung by Frank Boeyen who turned it into ‘Kronenburg Park’ , but that did not diminish the attention paid to the park. The park, laid out in the English landscape style, was created around 1880 according to a design by the Belgian landscape architect Lieven Rosseels. The park, which is embedded in a very urban environment, is dominated by the Kronenburgertoren, also known as the ‘powder tower’. This tower was part of the Nijmegen city walls and served as defense of the city for centuries. In the middle of the park, in the depths, there is a jewel of a swan pond that was originally part of the oldest harbor. An aviary and animal camp are also part of the park.
Kronenburger Park has large height differences and that is why a waterfall has also been created that brings oxygen into the pond and makes the park more attractive. The St. Jacob’s Tower on the south side completes the whole. Together with the other remains of the city walls and defenses, the city garden has the appearance of a castle garden. However, it was not always all roses and moonshine in the park: In the eighties it was a hangout for drug addicts and prostitutes, theme in the well-known song by the Frank Boeyen Group. Fortunately, the park is safe again thanks to major renovations and it is now a striking city park with allure, even in the pouring rain, as Frank sang.
Looking for happiness in Kronenburg Park…”