If you can’t pass times at museums, restaurants, cafés and such in Tilburg, fear not — in times of coronavirus closures you can still explore the best natural gift of all: the outdoors, of which Tilburg has plenty to offer.
Just because life is a little different for the time being doesn’t mean it’s all bad. So we teamed up with our friends at Ticket to Tilburg to help you make that lemonade for when life gives you lemons.
Because what’s left to do in the corona era? It’s exploring the outdoors! Of course, you should do this only alone or with your quarantine buddy. Wash your hands before and after. Keep 1.5 meters distance from everybody else, and stay inside if you feel even the hint of a cough, cold or fever. Of course, make sure to follow all of the latest measures and take all the recommended precautions.
Why we love Tilburg
Tilburg is a student-friendly city that houses a booming cultural scene, many hidden gems, and you may even be familiar with things to do in Tilburg seeing as we can’t get enough. The city also just so happens to be in one of the greenest areas of the Netherlands — perfect for all you nature fiends out there.
So let’s take a look at what 013 has on offer if you’re looking to do some outdoors-y activities. We’re giving you a little overview, and you can head over to Ticket to Tilburg to find out the exact routes and more.
Take a trip to stadsbos013
With activities galore, Stadsbos013 has you covered for fun things to do with the kids. From mini-golf to a child’s farm, ice cream, flowers, hot air balloons, a 16 kilometre cycling route, and walking routes, you’re good to go.
The Oude Warande: an old but gold walking route
The Oude Warande is a 5.3 kilometre walking route in a baroque, star-shaped path that happens to be one of the best-preserved ones in the Netherlands. At the centre of the ‘star’ is a Grotto, a special meeting point that houses a glass pavilion. This ‘invisible’ structure was designed by the Australian artist, Callum Morton. Eight of the star’s ‘rays’ are mirrored in this glass structure.
If you keep walking past the grotto and onto the paths, you can also find a number of exotic trees, which is nice if you’ve got a thing for plants, such as we do.
And, if you’re looking for some nice running spots in the Netherlands, the Oude Warande is perfect.
During spring and autumn, the area is often used to display sculptures and art. As of now, the Lustwarande exposition is on display and, as we all know, art is good for the soul too.
The enchanting Wandelbos
If you enjoy Dutch music, maybe you’ve heard of the song ‘Neem je steeds mijn hart weer mee’ by Dutch singer Guus Meeuws. One of the lines goes like this: “I know a bench in the Wandelbos where the world stands still.” Well, luckily the Wandelbos is a real place, friends.
A walking route of 4.7 kilometres, the Wandelbos is known by many locals. Here, you can find extraordinary trees, such as giant redwoods.
The route is also super kid-friendly: somewhere in the area is a kids farm home to a pony, donkey, goats, deer, llamas, chickens, it goes on. A little further along the trail is also a playground, which makes the trail perfect for a family excursion.
The beauty that is Heiderpark
While journeying along this path you might encounter a serene lake overlooked by trees that reflect upon the water when the sun is nice — if that’s not photogenic enough for you, we don’t know what is.
In this area of Stadsbos013, you may see some wildlife too — such as the Siberian ground squirrel that has made its way from the old zoo in Tilburg to the park and if you peek closely enough into the pond, you can see pool frogs, salamanders, dragonflies water plants and some exotic birds.
On weekends, Rugby matches are also held in the area, making it the perfect place to spend a lazy Saturday or Sunday.
Time to meet the Spoorpark!
And while we’re describing parks and tranquil places, might as well tell you about the Spoorpark, which opened last year.
The park is built upon an old railroad yard, and has been dubbed the Central Park of Tilburg. There are plenty of activities to do here for kids and adults alike (though they may not all be open given coronavirus, but good to keep in mind anyways for when things die down a bit).
The regal Moerenburg (and its surroundings)
The Moerenburg landscape park, also referred to as the ‘Royal Landscape’ or ‘gateway to the Green Forest’ can be found at the outskirts of Tilburg.
Here, you can take a walk, sail even, check out some of the cafes, sunbathe by the Rauwbraken beach or just ogle at some of the drop-dead gorgeous spots.
Moerenburg walking route
If you take a trip along this 5.6 kilometre route you’ll be able to check out open meadows, ponds, farms, and perhaps even spot some rare plants and animals.
The route is actually named after one of the first stone houses in Tilburg, built around 1320, which you’ll encounter at the beginning of the route.
In general, you’re in for a real treat if you decide to make a trip to some of Tilburg’s nature sites — there’s plenty to choose from. Really, all you have to do is pick a path and you can’t go wrong.
Tilburg has much to offer in terms of nature, making it the perfect place to for a weekend getaway and well, in these times, practice isolation. All these paths are great for hiking, picnics and quality time with the fam. They are also utterly photogenic, so family photo, here you come.
And we’re DUTCHreview so there’s also a cycling route
You can also take a longer route of 19.4 kilometres if you’re down for a bike ride through the vicinity of Moerenburg.
But regardless of whether you choose to bike or to walk, you might stumble across a couple must-see spots in the area (which can go on your to-feast-at-list when this pandemic is over).
Cafe Zomerlust has a hundred different beers on offer, a lekker lunch menu with vegan options galore, a perfect stop after your walk/run/bike ride.
There’s also Arbie’s Beachhouse, decorated with beach chairs for you sunbathers out there. There’s also a play area so your kids stay busy while you soak up the sun.
More fun in Tilburg
Once things are back to normal, there’s plenty of other stuff you can do in the city culture-wise.
Regardless of which path you choose, make sure to head over to Ticket to Tilburg for details about hitting this green city.
Stepping through Tilburg
There is another way to get around Tilburg: taking a city step. A fun way to get around the city, this e-scooter is not allowed on the roads anywhere in the Netherlands, except in the southern city of Tilburg (what a wild city). It is a “special moped” where you have two brakes and stand upright to ride it.
You can take a tour of Tilburg with these steps (see what we did there). If you want to know what is covered in this very cool tour and how much it is, we have all the information on taking the e-steps around Tilburg.
And if you are totally new to Tilburg, check out our video! At the end, we check out the Oude Warande and there are some beautiful drone shots of Tilburgs impressive nature.
Have you visited Tilburg? What’s your favourite outdoorsy thing to do in the area? Do you have other tips for walking and cycling routes in and around Tilburg? Let us know in the comments!
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in May 2020, but was fully updated in March 2021 to bring you the most up to date information.
Feature Image: Evelien Oerlemans/merktilburg.nl