The beautiful landscape on Texel is an invitation to go hiking. We did a hike inland on Texel, a “Knapzaktocht”, which we enjoyed very much.
What is a “Knapzaktocht”?
The knapzak is a bag of provisions – in our case it was a well-filled bagback and “tocht” means something like march. So loosely translated, a hike with a well-filled backpack full of tasty provisions.
Hiking on Texel: the Knapzaktocht
The walk on Texel starts at Schapenbedrijft De Waddel (De Waddel Farm). This family-run farm specialises in sheep breeding. The sheep are on the pastures around the farm all year round. They are milked from May to October and the milk is made into cheese.
The family also runs a small farm shop. Here you can buy sheep’s milk cheese from their own production, meat products from their own slaughtering, homemade jam, mustard and soaps as well as other sheep-related products.
In the farm shop we also receive two rucksacks containing a snack for five hungry hikers. There is also a flyer with a hiking map and a translation into German. Then nothing could go wrong.
On the road with the Knapzak through the “Hoge Berg” area
The flyer tells the hiker that there are two tours of different lengths that can be walked. We chose a combination of both tours, which I traced on Komoot.
Directly behind De Waddel farm, a path leads between the pastures. Here we also discover one of the Schapenboeten, a sheep pen, so typical on Texel. The houses are very strikingly built. They have a sloping roof on three sides and a straight side facing east.
The construction method is adapted to the prevailing wind direction on the island. The wind usually comes from the west. The straight side is turned away from the wind and thus offers some protection. In addition, the door to the barn is also located on this side, so it can be opened easily even in strong winds. The Schapenboeten were built on the island from the 17th century onwards and are still used today for storing hay and fodder troughs.
As we walk between the fields, we can watch the sheep to our right and left. They graze, sleep and bleat and it is noticeable that there are quite different breeds in the pastures. The topic of sheep will accompany every Texel holidaymaker and we also plan to take a closer look at the wool suppliers.
After a while we reach the viewpoint Hoge Berg – the High Mountain of Texel. Don’t worry, it’s not a mountain tour, the mountain is a whole 15 metres high! Hoge Berg is the highest point of a terminal moraine that runs from Oost to Den Hoorn and is also called the old land of Texel. Here you will find the traditional tuinwallen (small ramparts, some of which date back to the 16th century) and gullies, which are protected and must be preserved as a cultural landscape.
Picnic between sheep
Here we also find a place for our picnic and unpack our Knapzaks.
Our eyes grew bigger and bigger, it was really hard to believe what delicacies were waiting for us in the backpack. We discovered homemade food from the farm shop in numerous small and large tins.
The freshly baked bread smelled tempting. There was homemade sheep butter, medium old raw sheep cheese, cold cuts of sheep meat and pork, a plum / lilac berry jam with cinnamon and cardamom and a bottle of water.
The sun peeked out between the clouds and so we were able to enjoy our picnic among the sheep in the slightly warming autumn sun.
Way back to De Waddel
Freshly strengthened, our walk on Texel continued. After the sheep, some horses now greeted us from their pasture.
After leaving the paths between the pastures, we followed the roads past typical houses of the island – which I would have moved into immediately – and finally reached our starting point. We handed in our now empty backpacks at the farm shop.
The hike with picnic was a nice experience. If you want, you can of course walk your own route, the flyer is a suggestion that can be done well (without a break) in 1-2 hours. The route is typical for the island and offers nature and relaxation, a time out that you should treat yourself to.
Schapenbedrijf De Waddel
1791 LJ Den Burg
The Knapzaktocht was an item on the programme of a press trip to the Dutch island organised by VVV Texel. VVV Texel .