Biesland Dagen

This afternoon, we enjoyed a fantastic outdoor event called Biesland Dagen.  It’s organised annually by Vrienden Van Biesland and is held in an area just outside Delft.  For us, it was really convenient, it’s not far from our new home at all. About a 15 minute cycle and we were enjoying the beautiful countryside of the Biesland polder.

It feels quite strange…but quite wonderful…living between two substantially sized cities – Delft and Den Haag – and yet having such expansive farming and nature areas so close by.  This event showcased that, with a large number of activities happening today (1 September 2012) and tomorrow (2 September 2012) spread out over a few locations:

Biesland Dagen map

You can download the Biesland dagen map and the whole programme here (in Dutch).

We dropped our eldest daughter nearby for a school friend’s birthday party, so it was my husband, youngest daughter (3) and I who spent about 2 delightful hours exploring points 1, 2 and 3 on the map.

1. Hoeve Biesland

Hoeven Biesland

I learnt that “Hoeve” is a word for farm and this is quite a large one!  You can actually visit here year round apparently to buy produce and they have a website as well – Hoeve Biesland English Summary.

We had a fantastic time with the many activities there today.  At the entrance, was a talented woodcarver making creations with a chainsaw.

Next we watched two sheepdogs working hard to herd these very wooly sheep from the paddock to the  pen and back again.

Sheepdog

Isabella got up close and personal with some new friends.

Isabella and cows

We enjoyed some delicious, fresh, healthy produce samples and bought a few things to take home from EkoPlaza.

ekoplaza

Isabella made a few more friends:

horse

rooster

pony

Then she took a “magic flying carpet ride” behind a gorgeous draft horse, which cost us a grand total of 50 cents!  I’m disappointed it was only for the kids….how much fun does this look?

carpet behind horse

 

draft horse

magic carpet ride

While I was waiting, I talked to a lovely lady about Happination (human and horse) who offer riding lessons for adults and children.  I also sampled a delicious cake from Firma van Buiten.

2.  De Halve Molen

I knew that translated this meant “half a windmill” but I wasn’t quite sure what that meant.  Was pretty obvious once I saw it!  It’s just the building part, without the sails on the top.  It was built in 1784 (!) and has played an important role in the history of this area.

Half a windmill

3.  Knorretje

I read in the programme that this is a daycare centre which every parent would love to send their kids to…I thought this was a fairly confident claim but saw why.  What a gorgeous countryside setting, overflowing with animals and nature!  While there we enjoyed some pancakes and Isabella had great fun in a model dutch village…

model dutch village

…fishing for ducks….

fishing for ducks

….and how cool is the parking area…not a car in sight! That’s the Nieuwe Kerk in Delft centre in the background.

bike parking

After laughing at a puppet show it was time to cycle back home, through this pretty landscape.  That’s the Hoeve Biesland from a distance.

biesland landscape

These are just a few of the photos I took, you can see the rest here:

[nggallery id=5]

I also have some video I hope to upload soon.  We are looking forward to the second day of the event tomorrow.  What a wonderful celebration of nature and the outdoors.

Update: Day 2 was just as much fun!  Will link to photos soon.  Also enjoyed:

Renee Veldman-Tentori

I’m a Dutch Australian who blogs about my Life in The Netherlands and Life in Australia.  Feel free to browse the rest of the Dutch Australian website or contact me.  If you’ve enjoyed this post, would love you to take the time to comment below or share.