Discover Benelux, Issue 46, October 2017

Page 58

Discover Benelux  |  Tourism  |  Achterhoek Top Spots

Photo: Stan Bouman

Photo: Stan Bouman

Discover a region of culinary delights TEXT: BAS VAN DUREN  |  PHOTOS: STICHTING ACHTERHOEK TOERISME

Though made up of 12 provinces, the Netherlands has certain areas within these provinces that have an identity of their own. The ‘Achterhoek’ is one such area, nestled in the east of the province of Gelderland and known throughout the rest of the country as a region filled with farmers, castles and an accent that is quite unique. Though all of that may be true, there is much more to the Achterhoek than meets the eye. It is possibly one of the best destinations for gourmands, bikers and those with a soft spot for the arts. “Our region can be defined as ‘smallscale’ in the most positive sense of the word. Home to glorious landscapes, nature estates and national parks, the only big buildings you’ll find are the many castles that adorn the Achterhoek, not 58  |  Issue 46  |  October 2017

all open for visiting, but with their surroundings still well worth a visit. There are many small entrepreneurs in the area and a plethora of modest bed and breakfasts, holiday homes and hotels. You’ll find the ‘Achterhoeker’, as we call people who live here, to be honest and proud. They all have a shared sense of duty we call ‘naoberschap’ where we all look out for each other,” explains Marcella de Vos from the Achterhoek board of tourism. The culinary delights of this unique area are particularly worth emphasising. With its forest rich surroundings, the Achterhoek is known for its game that’s hunted in particular seasons like pheasant and hare in October. Thanks to such a varied vegetation, the flavour is quite special and can be enjoyed at over 20 restaurants in the region specialising in game. “Our

chefs in the region know all too well how to serve the dishes the best way possible. It’s possible to book arrangements for restaurants and hotels. Expect a good pairing of our home-grown wine with game for an authentic experience.” There are many hotspots in the Achterhoek that should not be left unvisited. “Our region is home to some of the best museums in the Netherlands. There’s Museum MORE that houses an impressive collection of Dutch realists and castle Huis Bergh that’s been transformed to a museum with works of Duccio and Bosch.” The towns themselves are worth a trip and if you want to go shopping, there are many historical towns to choose from such as Winterswijk. Web: