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From Kasteel Vorden to the Sint-Pietersberg – Pieterpad long-distance hike part 2

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From Kasteel Vorden to the Sint-Pietersberg – Pieterpad long-distance hike part 2

Hiking Collection by Pauline van der Waal

13

Tours

67:23 h

162 mi

4,350 ft

Over a total of 26 stages, the Pieterpad long-distance hiking trail leads from Groningen in the far north of the Netherlands to Limburg in the south. In this Collection, we guide you through part two – stages 14 to 26 – of the route. You can find the previous stages in part 1, here: komoot.nl/collection/1034511/pieterpad-etappes-deel-1.

Opened in 1983, the Pieterpad owes its name to the start and finish point of the route – the village of Pieterburen and Mount Saint Peter. It is probably the most well-known long-distance hike in the Netherlands.

Part 2 of the Pieterpad kicks off at stage 14 from the town of Vorden to the village of Zelhem.
Although Vorden is situated halfway along the route, it’s an important milestone on the route as this is where the Pieterpad was officially opened. Today, you can visit a monument to Toos Goorhuis and Bertje Jens, two women who founded the Pieterpad. At the time, they felt that there were too few long-distance paths in the Netherlands and decided to change this themselves.

From Vorden, you walk through Gelderland, Noord-Brabant, and Limburg, sometimes even crossing into Germany. Along the way, you walk through typical Dutch landscapes of rivers, forests, and heathland, and also visit cities, villages, and tiny hamlets.

Each stage is on average 15 to 22 km (9.3 to 13.6 miles) long, sometimes a bit longer or shorter. You can always reach the beginning and end of the route by public transport, so you can park your car at the endpoint and travel back to the start or vice versa. Alternatively, you can leave your car at home and come by train or bus.

If you want to walk several stages, you can spend the night in a hotel, B&B, or campsite along the route. Keep in mind that there may be less on offer, especially in the smaller villages. It’s a good idea to choose and reserve your accommodation in advance.

If you choose to walk the entire Pieterpad, it will take you 26 days following these stages. Of course, you can also just walk a section of the route and complete it over several long weekends to complete your stamp card. If you don’t fancy walking the whole route, then you can just choose your favourite stage and go for a lovely day of walking.

On The Map

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Tours & Highlights

  • Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors
    Intermediate
    04:29
    10.9 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    175 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The fourteenth stage of the Pieterpad starts at Castle Vorden. Besides being a beautiful country house and particularly photogenic, Vorden Castle is also an important place for the Pieterpad. In 1983 the Pieterpad was officially opened at this location.The bronze plaque at the estate is a reminder of this. The Pieterpad was conceived and developed between 1978 and 1980 …

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  • Intermediate
    03:59
    9.77 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    150 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    Zelhem is a real country town, everything you need is there. Beyond the factory where milk is processed, you walk through an environment that is strongly focused on dairy farming. This is the farmland of this time with meadows, farms spread out and seas from corn to hamlet IJzevoorde next to Landgoed Slangenburg. The path runs along the moat of …

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  • Difficult
    06:18
    14.9 mi
    2.4 mph
    675 ft
    675 ft
    Ferry
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    From Braamt the path first starts to rise slightly and once in the forest you go up considerably against the flanks of the hills of the Bergherbos. This landscape has been pushed up by huge glaciers in the Ice Ages. A long walk, up and down through varied forest; beautiful paths, sometimes old smuggling roads. On the Hulzenberg you can …

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  • Difficult
    05:16
    12.6 mi
    2.4 mph
    425 ft
    350 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    From Millingen you walk into "The Netherlands-below-the-Major-Rivers".The river here forms a sharp boundary between different regions and different cultures. The first kilometers run through the floodplains of the Rhine. In earlier times the river could flow freely at high tide. The dikes were still weak and the residents built refuge hills, mounds. The older farms are on mounds, with the stables there.

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  • Intermediate
    03:47
    8.98 mi
    2.4 mph
    325 ft
    400 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    You leave Groesbeek through the forest of the Wolfsberg. Where the Pieterpad leaves the forest, you look out over flat fields. Many gliders, "gliders" with allied soldiers landed here during WWII. A model of it is slightly off the route. Between the fields you reach the beautiful Zevendal. It is wonderful to walk. Then the path climbs up hills again, …

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  • Intermediate
    04:39
    11.4 mi
    2.4 mph
    150 ft
    150 ft
    Ferry
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    The Pieterpad follows the dike of the Niers from Gennep. Then it continues in a southerly direction through former heaths and drifting dunes, such as the Gennepse Heide. This former NATO site has now been "returned" to nature. This entire area is intended for recreation with a large campsite and a bungalow park. After the crossing of the A72 motorway …

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  • Difficult
    05:56
    14.5 mi
    2.4 mph
    225 ft
    200 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The Pieterpad remains west of the Maas until Grubbenvorst. The river formed the landscape. After Vierlingsbeek the route follows the Molenbeek, a former Maas bed.After the hamlet of Holthees, the provincial border with Limburg is at Smakt. This is a well-known pilgrimage site around the Saint Joseph Chapel. The path then runs alongside the north-south railway line and bends …

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  • Difficult
    05:18
    12.9 mi
    2.4 mph
    175 ft
    200 ft
    Ferry
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    From Swolgen you walk into the forest. At first they are overgrown drifting dunes with heather remnants and then a bit lower you walk along another old Maasarm. Over platforms along still water and inaccessible swampy forests; a flat jungle where the beaver now has a nice place to live. You follow the former river bend to the meadows around …

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  • Difficult
    05:46
    14.0 mi
    2.4 mph
    300 ft
    300 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Venlo owes its existence to its location on the Maas. The city was the transfer point for goods that were transported over the poorly navigable Maas to Maastricht and Liège with other, smaller ships than those that sailed from Holland to Venlo. Now a new marina determines the face of the city. The center of Venlo, in 1944 on the Maas front between Gennep and Susteren, suffered badly from war violence.

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  • Difficult
    05:31
    13.4 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    For the time being the route runs through landscape formed by the Maas. Next to Swalmen is the proud Castle Hillenraedt. Everything here has to do with this castle, including the village of Boukoul and the farm Zuidewijk Spick, a little further on. Here the Pieterpad follows the old river courses of the Maas again to the place where the …

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  • Difficult
    06:00
    14.7 mi
    2.4 mph
    225 ft
    150 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The ruin of Montfort Castle was once a mighty fortress on the edge of a large swamp. This was mined in the last century. In addition to intensive agriculture, nature development now has more opportunities. This is a region where many well-known vegetables, leeks, carrots, beans, are grown "in the open ground". On mostly unpaved field roads you walk through …

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  • Difficult
    05:50
    13.7 mi
    2.4 mph
    700 ft
    625 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The Pieterpad starts to rise from the Medieval Market in Sittard. Beyond the ring road, the climb to the Kollenberg starts seven footfalls up to the Saint Rosa Chapel. On top of the plateau there is a beautiful view of the German hills. Then it goes down considerably and up again steeply to Windraak. Then the steep slopes of the …

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  • Intermediate
    04:34
    10.7 mi
    2.3 mph
    575 ft
    550 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    From Strabeek and Valkenburg the Pieterpad follows the Geul along a very beautiful "wild" stretch. The river can run its course; banks collapse, trees fall over in the water. The walkway along the river is elevated with the current far below you. Then again you walk low, next to the water, followed by a climb up, Berg. Just before Terblijt …

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    13
  • Distance
    162 mi
  • Duration
    67:23 h
  • Elevation
    4,350 ft

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From Kasteel Vorden to the Sint-Pietersberg – Pieterpad long-distance hike part 2