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Dutch holiday island Schouwen-Duiveland: Wine, Wind & Hiking

by Elisa Flitter Fever
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Recently we went to Schouwen-Duiveland for a Wine Weekend Getaway. For those who don’t know it: Schouwen-Duiveland is an island and municipality in the province of Zeeland with more than 34,000 inhabitants. About 70 km below Rotterdam. Schouwen-Duiveland, and in particular the North Sea coastline, attracts quite a few tourists every year (approx. 5.5 million overnight stays). And that is understandable, because Schouwen-Duiveland is beautiful! Moreover, the ring village of Dreischor has the best vineyard in the Netherlands!

Schouwen-Duiveland is a paradise for bird watchers and nature lovers Zeeland
Schouwen-Duiveland is a paradise for bird watchers and nature lovers

Weekend Getaway Schouwen-Duiveland

What can you do during a Wine Weekend Getaway at Schouwen-Duiveland? Our plan was as follows:

  • Friday afternoon: tour, wine tasting and dinner at Wine farm De Kleine Schorre
  • Saturday: cycling tour eastern part of Schouwen-Duiveland incl. Zierikzee
  • Sunday: little sightseeing in combination with walking in the western part of Schouwen-Duiveland

This article is divided into east and west Schouwen-Duiveland, the vineyard falls under east.

Did you know that… Schouwen-Duiveland once consisted of four islands? Schouwen, Duiveland, Dreischor and Bommenede.

Source: Wikipedia
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Schouwen-Duiveland East

Schouwen-Duiveland is very suitable to explore by bicycle, an excellent cycling network has been constructed. We rented two electric bicycles from Kastelee Tweewielers for €20 each. They came to Dreischor (where we were staying, I’ll come back to that later) to bring and collect them at no extra cost. Ideal!

We cycled counterclockwise from Dreischor to Zonnemaire, Brouwershaven, Kerkwerve, Zierikzee, Ouwerkerk, Oosterland and Sirjanskland. A nice round of about 45 km. See also the map at the bottom of this article.

An electric bicycle is a godsend at Schouwen-Duiveland. The wind here always blows slightly more than further inland.

The Aeolus flour mill of Dreischor
The Aeolus flour mill of Dreischor
Plompe Tower near Burgh-Haamstede
Plompe Tower near Burgh-Haamstede

Actually, we would have liked to join Bruinisse with this day of cycling. That also seems to be a nice town, known for its mussel farming. But it was already after 4 pm that we cycled in that corner of Schouwen-Duiveland, a bit of saddle pain… And the desire for a bitterbal with a drink on the terrace of Museumboerderij & Museumcafé Goemanszorg in Dreischor was greater haha.

Ouwerkerk also has an interesting museum; the Flood Museum (Dutch: Watersnoodmuseum) about the disaster that took place here in 1953. That must have been a really difficult time for the inhabitants of this region.

Cycling around the eastern part of Schouwen-Duivenland
Cycling around the eastern part of Schouwen-Duivenland
Town Hall in Brouwershaven
Town Hall in Brouwershaven

Ring village Dreischor

With less than 1000 inhabitants, Dreischor is not exactly a metropolis, but the picturesque village is worldly beautiful! Dreischor is a so-called ring village. In the middle is the 14th-century Saint Adrian’s church on a circular village green. In the ‘rings’ around it are the cute, authentic streets of the village.

Dreischor has a Protected Village View. The first ring has many monumental buildings and the ring around it many flax sheds. Dreischor once had a vibrant flax industry. On several houses you will find gable stones, which used to serve to identify the street and the house, from before the time when street names and house numbers existed. The medieval Windenburg Castle is located on the outer ring of Dreischor.

The Aeolus flour mill of Dreischor is located on the edge of the village, in line with the aforementioned Museum Farm & Museum Café Goemanszorg. Where we settled on the terrace for a bitterbal with a drink (open until 17:00). The Dreischor mill resembles its bigger brother, the Pannekoekenmolen De Graanhalm in Burgh-Haamstede from 1847 in the west of Schouwen-Duiveland.

Museum Goemanszorg Dreischor
Museum Goemanszorg
Frontward stone with three lambs Dreischor
Frontward stone with three lambs

Between Dreischor and neighboring village Sirjansland lies the Dijkwater, a polder landscape of approximately 180 hectares. It turns a beautiful purple in the spring because of the Harlequin plant, an orchid species. Bovendin is the Grevelingenmeer near Dreischor, popular with sailors and divers. There is even an actual Dreischor beach – complete with a bathing jetty.

Did you know that… Dreischor was the home of the oldest Dutchman for years? Jan Kip (1851-1958) was no less than 107 years and 241 days old.

Saint Adrian's church in Dreischor
Saint Adrian’s church
Monumental buildings on the inner ring of Dreischor Schouwen-Duiveland
Monumental buildings on the inner ring

Vineyard De Kleine Schorre in Dreischor

In the introduction of this article I already gave it away: the best wine in The Netherlands is made in Dreischor – as far as I am concerned personally. This is at Wine farm De Kleine Schorre, which is located on the edge of the village.

14 hectare vineyard including restaurant / tasting room. Highly recommended! Read all about it in the article Wine farm De Kleine Schorre in Zeeland: irresistibly delicious wine.

Cheers to the irresistibly delicious wine from Wine farm De Kleine Schorre
Cheers to Wine farm De Kleine Schorre

Accommodation Dreischor & surroundings

Dreischor is a nice, central place to stay on Schouwen-Duiveland. Wine farm De Kleine Schorre in Dreischor has a campsite with 23 free pitches and three super cute wine barrels. For more details see the aforementioned article.

Are the wine barrels fully booked, or would you rather stay somewhere where your breakfast is served? Then B&B Slotstraat is a good alternative. Less than a 10-minute walk from De Kleine Schorre, this cozy B&B is located in the middle of the authentic village center of Dreischor. A few years ago, B&B Slotstraat participated in the TV program Bed & Breakfast by Oproep Max on NPO. Our room had a wallpaper of the famous painting ‘the household of Jan Steen’ on the wall and a private patio.

Would you rather stay with your family in a nice holiday home on Schouwen-Duiveland? There are several beautiful holiday parks around the Grevelingenmeer or Grevelingen.

Wine barrel Rivaner with hot tub at camping De Kleine Schorre Dreischor
Wine barrel Rivaner with hot tub
B&B Slotstraat Dreischor
B&B Slotstraat

Monumental city Zierikzee

Zierikzee is the largest town in the eastern half of Schouwen-Duivenland. The town has a pleasant old center with nice shops and several good restaurants. This monumental city already received city rights around 1220, which is earlier than Amsterdam, Alkmaar and Delft, for example. The Nobelpoort, City Hall Museum Zierikzee, Sint-Lievensmonstertoren, Zuidhavenpoort and Noordhavenpoort are all pictures.

The Nobel Gate of Zierikzee Schouwen-Duivenland
The Nobel Gate of Zierikzee
Havenpoort Noord in Zierikzee
Havenpoort Noord in Zierikzee

De Zeeuwse Hemel has a beautiful terrace with old trees (and three attractive hotel rooms). The front is located on one of the pleasant shopping streets of Zierikzee. Gris Sec is the wine bar of Zierikzee, with the Auxerrois from De Kleine Schorre on the menu.

Not in the mood (or kitchen) to cook, but also not to go out for dinner every night during your Wine Weekend away at Schouwen-Duiveland? Via Thuisbezorgd you can also have a meal delivered to (for example) Dreischor, such as delicious sushi from De Zeeuwse Schatkamer from Zierikzee. Yum!

City Hall Museum Zierikzee
City Hall Museum Zierikzee
Zuidhavenpoort Zierikzee Schouwen-Duivenland
Zuidhavenpoort Zierikzee

Culinary enjoyment at Schouwen-Duiveland east

In addition to Tasting Room De Kleine Schorre, Dreischor has one restaurant that is open for dinner, called The Bookkeeper. Unfortunately it was closed for holidays when we were there.

According to the Zeeland locals we spoke to, the following restaurants – in addition to the ones I have already mentioned above – are culinary recommendations near Dreischor. Zierikzee is also a 10-minute car ride from Dreischor.

  • Restaurant De Proeverij in Zierikzee
  • Brasserie Kaoie in Zierikzee
  • Brasserie Maritime in Zierikzee
  • Restaurant De Brouwerie in Brouwershaven

Unfortunately, we now had too little time to personally verify all these restaurant tips. Good excuse to come back to Schouwen-Duiveland again. And then immediately score a new load of wine at De Kleine Schorre of course!

Terrace of De Zeeuwse Hemel in the center of Zierikzee
Terrace of De Zeeuwse Hemel in Zierikzee
Culinary enjoyment at the Tasting Room of De Kleine Schorre
Culinary enjoyment at the Tasting Room of De Kleine Schorre

Schouwen-Duivenland West

The next day we drove by car to the western part of Schouwen-Duivenland. There we climbed the so-called Plompe Toren. After a climb via the spiral staircase, you have a beautiful view from the 23-meter high brick building of, among other things, the delta works Neeltje Jans (Oosterscheldekering). You can also order white wine from De Kleine Schorre on the terrace of Proef Zeeland (Taste Zeeland), which is located in the middle of the delta park. Delicious with your fresh fish.

Nearby Brouwersdam is a well-known spot for spotting bioluminescence (sea sparkle) on a warm summer evening. Badhotel Renesse and Grand Hotel ter Duin in Burgh-Haamstede also serve wine from Wine farm De Kleine Schorre. Great!

Walking at Forestry Westerschouwen

On the advice of the forester who had breakfast with us in the morning, we went to the Forestry Westerschouwen. With 330 hectares the largest forest in the province of Zeeland. There we walked the yellow Schuilhuttocht (Shelter tour route) of 8 km (5 miles).

The yellow route takes you past two beautiful, small forest lakes. The walk was a bit harder than expected, especially because of the warm weather. But it was well worth it! Tip: take enough water with you in summer, because walking through the loose sand makes you thirsty.

Forest lake on the yellow route in Forestry WesterschouwenBurgh-Haamstede Schouwen-Duiveland Zeeland
Forest lake on the yellow route in Forestry Westerschouwen

Beaches Schouwen-Duiveland

Just like in North Holland, you can easily reach one beach on Schouwen-Duiveland by car, while the other beach is a bit more remote. Then you first have to take a long walk through the dunes, before you end up on the beach. There are different types of beach; wide and narrow, quieter and busier, many or few facilities, etc. For example, natural beaches, family beaches, (extreme) water sports beaches and naturist beaches. Something for everyone!

For those who feel like it, after the above-mentioned forest walk, you can go straight to the beach of Burgh-Haamstede. The path to the beach is directly at the roundabout at the Beach Westenschouwen parking lot (see map below). Or skip the forest walk and just laze on the beach all day long. Whatever you want?! It is less busy here than, for example, at Renesse, which is located on the northwest side of Schouwen-Duivenland.

Natural beauty of Schouwen-Duivenland

No fewer than four Natura-2000 areas are located in Schouwen-Duiveland, at least partially. These are Grevelingen, Oosterschelde National Park, Krammer-Volkerak and Voordelta. In addition to the nature around the Grevelingenmeer, there are 22 other nature reserves on Schouwen-Duiveland, including the aforementioned Westerschouwen Boswachterij. In short, plenty to see and discover. We will come back again!

Enjoying all the beauty that Schouwen-Duiveland has to offer
Enjoying all the beauty that Schouwen-Duiveland has to offer
Brouwershaven Schouwen-Duiveland

Map Wine Weekend Getaway Schouwen-Duiveland Zeeland

This map includes places and spots mentioned in this article (and more). This one is ‘smartphone friendly’; you can easily use it via the Google Maps app. Click the icon at the top left to open the menu and see the categories. To adapt the map to your own preferences and interests, (de)select a category. Via Google Drive you can copy the map to your own My Google Maps account.

More Wine Weekend Getaways

For more Wine Weekends Away suggestions there is a book called 12X Wijn Weekendje Weg in NL, which I love. Wine farm De Kleine Schorre is also included in this and the book is also for sale in the shop of the wine farm. Unfortunately the book is not available in English (yet), only in Dutch.

I hope this article will inspire you for a pleasant (Wine) Weekend Away to Schouwen-Duiveland. Perhaps you have additional tips or a pressing question? Feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of this article.

Interested in more inspiration for a Wine Weekend Getaway in The Netherlands? Then read the article Wine Weekend Getaway: 11x stay at a Dutch vineyard.

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Last Updated on 10/18/2022 by Elisa Flitter Fever

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1 comment

Jennifer 11/18/2022 - 13:55

Love to read this article and all the things are well described. Thanks a lot for share

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