Name: De Hoge Veluwe National Park
Location: The Netherlands
Date Established: 1935
Size: 21 square miles (54 square kilometers)
Did You Know?
• Private Beginnings De Hoge Veluwe National Park had its origins with Anton and Helene Kröller-Müller. In 1909 the couple began purchasing land, piece by piece, for a hunting ground stocked with animals like red deer, wild boar, and Corsican sheep (mouflons), They also launched a museum to showcase ways in which art and architecture can work in synchronicity with nature. But financial troubles plagued the couple and led to agreements that created the national park in 1935, though it remains managed by a private foundation.
• Small but Varied Though the park is relatively small in area it is home to a surprising diversity of habitats and inhabitants. Pine forests, heaths, grasslands, peat bogs, and sand drifts are commingled across the landscape and house dozens of threatened species, including the moor frog and the grass snake.
• Masterpieces on Display The Kröller-Müller Museum, which opened in 1938, is home to one of the world’s largest Vincent van Gogh collections, as well as other 19th- and 20th-century masterpieces. It also boasts one of Europe’s most renowned sculpture gardens.
• Underground Museum The Museonder bills itself as the world’s first underground museum. When moving through the exhibit visitors delve deeper and deeper underground, exploring all things subterranean from tree root systems to fossilized bones and, eventually, the center of our planet.
• Hunting Lodge Jachthuis Sint Hubertus, the magnificent hunting lodge commissioned by Anton Kröller-Müller and executed by the Dutch architect Berlage, is a centerpiece of the park. It is filled with museum-quality art, but also stands alone as one of the outstanding examples of architectural skill to be found in the Netherlands.
How to Get There
Parking is available for those arriving by car. Buses link the park to nearby train stations in Arnhem and Apeldoorn.
When to Visit
The park is open daily, year-round, but some attractions are not. The Kröller-Müller Museum is closed most Mondays. Jachthuis Sint Hubertus can only be visited on guided tour. The house is also closed on Mondays from November 1 to March 31.
How to Visit
The park is famed for its 1,700 white bikes, free for all to use and found near the park entrances and major attractions. Visitors can take and leave the bikes at will along some 27 miles (43 kilometers) of paths across the park.