The Veluwe, a bench on the left in the grass with heathland and forest around it
Netherlands,  Road Trips

South Veluwe Road Trip: A Waterfall, Forests and Heathlands

If you want to admire the highest waterfall in the Netherlands, you have to drive the South Veluwe Road Trip. Next to the Loenense waterfall you’ll get to enjoy the beautiful nature of the Veluwe with forests, heathlands and pastures. This road trip explores a beautiful part of the Netherlands.

South Veluwe Road Trip

We followed the route set out by the ANWB, which you can find here in Dutch. There’s a map provided on the site. The following towns and cities are included:

  • Ede
  • Driesprong
  • Roekel
  • Otterlo
  • Hoenderloo
  • Ugchelen
  • Beekbergen
  • Apeldoorn
  • Oosterhuizen
  • Loenen
  • Eerbeek
  • Laag-Soeren
  • Dieren
  • Ellecom
  • De Steeg
  • Rheden
  • Velp
  • Rozendaal
  • Arnhem
  • Oosterbeek

Length: 87 kilometers/54 miles

Duration: About 3 hours.

Town by Town Itinerary

Another one-day road trip from the ANWB in the province of Gelderland. When you love to see the heathlands bloom or to see fall colors and toadstools, the Veluwe is the perfect area for you in the Summer and Fall.


The Ginkelse Heide, heathlands, nushes and trees. A clouded sky above
The Ginkelse Heide
Another image of the Veluwe, heathland with some trees
Another image of the Veluwe

Ede is an expanding town with a late Gothic church from the 15th century. The Ginkelse Heide and the Eder Heide are close to Ede. These heathlands both have a flock of sheep and a sheep pen. Planken Wambuis is a nature area on the Veluwe with forest, heathland and sand drifts.


A small village in between Ede and Otterlo.


Another small village you pass on the way from Ede to Otterlo. Lots of hiking routes in the forests on the Veluwe start here.


Otterlo is a town on the Veluwe. One of the 3 entrances to National Park De Hoge Veluwe is located here. The National Park has two museums, namely the Kröller-Müller museum and the Museonder. The town itself houses the Dutch tile museum.

The Veluwe, a bench on the left in the grass with heathland and forest around it
The Veluwe
Part of National Park De Hoge Veluwe, through the brenches of a tree we see heathland with bushes and trees, and a clouded sky
Part of National Park De Hoge Veluwe
Part of National Park De Hoge Veluwe, heathland with behind it forest
Part of National Park De Hoge Veluwe


It’s a town completely centered around tourism. There are some 15 campgrounds, vacation parks and hotels. One of the 3 entrances to the National Park De Hoge Veluwe is located in this town.


A town which has a lot of villa’s.


Another touristic town with a lot of vacation parks. It’s the starting point of the Veluwsche Stoomtrein Maatschappij (VSM), steam engine driven trains. In the Summer you can take a trip with a steam train to Apeldoorn, Loenen or Eerbeek.


Apeldoorn is a city in the middle of the Veluwe. It’s one of the oldest tourist places in the Netherlands. National Park De Veluwezoom and National Park De Hoge Veluwe are to the South of the city. Paleis ‘t Loo served long as the royal Summer palace. It now serves as a museum. There are more attractions in Apeldoorn such as Apenheul (zoo with only monkeys), CODA museum (art museum), Julianatoren (theme park) and Klimbos Veluwe (treetop adventure park).


A small village South of the city of Apeldoorn.


Loenense waterfall on a rainy day, one of 30 beautiful waterfalls in Europe, dropping down on 3 toers, man made, stairs going down next to it on both sides. Forest next to the stairs on both sides
Loenense waterfall

The town of Loenen is home to the highest waterfall of the Netherlands, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Europe. It’s a manmade waterfall, which is just a short walk from the parking lot.


There’s a monument in Eerbeek, De Oliemolen, a water mill that functioned both as oil mill and grist mill. The town has a large paper factory and is dependent on tourism.


Laag-Soeren is a town with an art school and a Kulturhus.


A town with a monumental town scape.


Ellecom is one of the oldest towns on the Veluwe.

De Steeg

Middachterallee, a road lined with high trees

Castle Middachten is a 17th century water palace. The town is a villa town. The Middachter Allee is a beautiful tree lined lane leading to the castle.


Rheden is a historical village, with a Gothic church partly from the 11th and 15th century. The Posbank is a hilly heathland area with a tea house near it.


A town with a geological museum and castle Biljoen.


This beautiful small town has the 14th century castle Rosendael.


A city with lots of great activities, such as Burger’s Zoo, Nederlands Openluchtmuseum (Dutch open-air museum), Park Sonsbeek, Arnhems Oorlogsmuseum (war museum) and Huis Zypendaal. There was heavy fighting around Arnhem in the Second World War, John Frost bridge and Airborn at the bridge are a remembrance from that time.


Oosterbeek has a large war cemetery. The Airborne museum at Hartenstein tells all about the battle at Arnhem in 1944.

Where to Eat

We drove this route in 2021 with a lot of rain and when there was still a lockdown. All museums and restaurants were closed. Due to restrictions only terraces where allowed to be used from a restaurant. Not a great place to sit down at when it’s raining. So we didn’t sit down anywhere or took something home.  

Where to Stay

Fletcher Hotel-Restaurant Klein Zwitserland, was our starting point to drive the route. It has restaurant De Kromme Dissel, which has a Michelin star.

Landal Coldenhove has a swimming pool, indoor play area and a mini golf track. It rents out cottages. Other great Landal vacation parks near the route are Landal Rabbit Hill in Nieuw Milligen and Landal Heideheuvel in Beekbergen. We’ve been to all 3 and loved them.

Two family friendly campgrounds in Hoenderloo are Camping ‘t Schinkel and Camping de Pampel. Both have a swimming pool, entertainment and are fun campsites in the Netherlands.

When to Visit

The route can be driven all year long. The heathlands turn purple halfway in August till about halfway of September. It’s a spectacular sight to see. In Fall, mostly in October, leaf peeping is a fun thing to do. Get out of the car and spot some toadstools.

Hiring a Car and Airports

We drove the route with our own car. When hiring a car, we have excellent experiences with Hertz, Alamo and Stern.

When arriving by plane before embarking on this road trip: Lelystad Airport is 67 kilometers/42 miles away and Eindhoven Airport is 89 kilometers/55 miles away. Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, located 93 kilometers/58 miles from the starting point.

This South Veluwe Road Trip is Beautiful

So now you know what the Netherlands has to offer in the waterfall department.   

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