Bike Tour Day 4 - Dordrecht to Willemstad

We are creeping our way out to Zeeland and the westernmost Dutch islands.

Julie on the Moerdijk bridge Julie on the Moerdijk bridge

The day started with a ride through the Biesbosch nature reserve, a beautiful wetlands area shouldering the Hollands Diep. It was quiet and scenic, but we noticed more grazing land and tilled farming than we did wildlife like we’d been seeing the prior two days. After exiting the Biesbosch it was time to cross the massive Moerdijk bridge, strategic enough that the Germans captured it with paratroopers in 1940 then blew it 1944.

Our lunch spot near Klundert Our lunch spot near Klundert

We made our way to one of two “star fort” towns we would be visiting that day, the cute village of Klundert. In the 16th century William of Orange built a series of fortified towns to protect against Spanish incursion from the south. In Klundert the remains are the star-shaped moat, and a few fortified dikes. We had lunch at one of them!

Pony friend Pony friend

Next to our lunch spot we befriended some ponies who were very happy for us to fetch some sweeter food from the surrounding pasture; most were also pleased with some scratches behind the ears.

In the Willemstad museum In the Willemstad museum

Our day ended in the splendid fortified town of Willemstad, part of the same fortress line as Klundert. Willemstad also has an active marina, and it looks like a lot of folks like to bring their sailboats in and moor for a bit to enjoy the town. There’s an excellent free city hall museum (with good English descriptions!) that talks about William, his son and warlord Maurice, and the use of the town throughout the centuries. So many of these small towns have such high quality museum pieces like this.

Weather was great again this day, if a bit cooler. We are finding it easy to cover the requisite miles each day, and having the e-Bikes certainly helps when faced with headwinds and climbing over bridges and dikes.