The distinctive nights of Zeeland
You’ll spend overnight stays of some exception in Zeeland. Your gilt-edged options include a night in a castle. Or a refurbished bakery shed. Or how about the water tower of Vlissingen? No other view quite like it. The evidence that Zeeland is a land of contrasts is all around you: the rugged sea, the soft fruits of summer. And these particular places to stay.
Let the sounds of the waves wash over you, as you lie amidst the peace and quiet around you. It is quite something to sleep in a beach hut in Zeeland. When you wake, the endless sea unfurls before your very eyes, the white horses dance on the horizon. When the sounds have ebbed away, and you raise that last glass of wine to the prodigal sunset.
Castle Westhove in Oostkapelle
You can see that Westhove was once a mighty castle. In the Middle Ages it had a bailey courtyard and main keep, with moats, walls, bridges, gates and towers. All that remains now are the bases of some towers, and some walls. Impressive it is, still. Part of it is occupied by a hostel, with rooms in the new main building and the two coach houses. Two terraces offer a fantastic view of the dunes nearby. Kids love it here.
The Vlissingen water tower
Another of the town’s towers is the old water tower, built in 1896 – and recently restored. Just imagine staying here, the 360° horizon includes the multi-tasking island of Walcheren below. And there’s more. Atop your tower lodgings, at a height of 36 metres is a unique lookout post. You can stay there with a group of up to 16 people. The beach and the boulevard are just a walk away
Slot Moermond, Renesse
You’ll recognise Slot Moermond from your dreams of the perfect castle. The splendidly broad driveway, the handsome moat. Dating from the 13th century, it stands majestically in a estate. You’ll stay in Landgoed Hotel, elsewhere in the grounds. The castle itself is reserved for special events.
Old prison tower in Vlissingen
Overlooking the boulevard in Vlissingen, the Gevangentoren is a relic of the old 16th century Westpoort gate. The tower is nicknamed 'Bomvrije', after the method of shrapnel-proofing a building. Upstairs is your luxury suite, a room with four views, fantastic vistas of the streets below and over the Westerschelde estuary. You are allowed outside to walk on the battlements, get some more views and pause a while to dream, perchance of far away.
The old farmhouses of Zeeland often had an outside bake house, used for bread and roasting meat, and heating water for the washing. Now a standalone holiday home and B&B, at the nicely restored Op ’t Hof Olmenstein farm you can stay in the bake house, and enjoy the large garden. On nice days, the tea garden opens and serves some great home-made cakes.
Also ‘in’ in parts of the Netherlands is Mongolian-style cooking. So too is overnighting, without the chill of the Mongolian highlands. At the Kunstwei ‘real outdoor’ campsite, you can overnight in the ‘Knoert’ tent – there’s only one. It’s the brainchild of local artist Rob Hebing, looking like an oversize Zeeland button (‘knop’) and inspired by the yurts of nomadic Mongolians. If ‘Knoert’ has been booked up before you, choose another creation like the Tipi, or the B-one outdoor box bed, dreamt up by another artistic son of Zeeland, Gertjan van der Hoev
Gypsy (traveller) wagon
All the fun of the farm at the Woutrinahoeve farm campsite. You’ll sleep in a real gypsy caravan, a holiday home on wheels, amidst the old fruit trees. What a thrill for the kids! Down the road, Stellendam is proud of its shrimps – we call them ‘hornet’ -- and its splendid fishing harbour. You’ll remember the beaches for a long time too: 25 kilometres long!
A mathematical monument, this one, called ‘’t Hof Acht is meer dan Duizend’. Named after the enigmatic statement that Eight is More than a Thousand, this farm in the pretty Zak van Zuid-Beveland welcomes you as their Number One. Its Wagenhuis building is available as a holiday home, for up to 11 people – and three horses, with fancy stalls. You’re just steps away from winding dikes, quaint villages, old polders and sunny orchards.
The Waterfront in Tholen
This B&B promises sound sleep, a good awakening and a safe landing. Its name paints a thousand pictures: Waterfront. The comfortable rooms looks out over the marina and the town of Tholen. The terrace is at the waterside. You can come by boat, you’ll have your own jetty. There are freshwater and seawater spots nearby for anglers, and bike routes aplenty.