Stelling van Amsterdam
- Name Stelling van Amsterdam (SP9)
- Length of trail 135 km, 84 miles
- Length in days 7 days
- Start of trail Volendam
- End of trail Muiden
- Traildino grading LW, Light walk, countryside walk
SP 9, Stelling van Amsterdam: Forts around Amsterdam, Volendam - Muiden, 135 km
This walk takes us along a chain of 19th-century fortifications around Amsterdam. The purpose of this defense system was to flood the polders and thus create a ring of water around Amsterdam that would stop the enemy. It's a modern variant of the Hollandse Waterlinie. However, this line of defense – the Stelling van Amsterdam - never entered into force. Once finished, early twentieth century, the fortifications were obsolete and would not withstand modern weaponry.
Two reasons for choosing this walk. The first is that the 40 forts are often small and delightful nature reserves, beautifully surrounded by water and woods. Sometimes you can get in (one is a wellness centre!). Unfortunately, most are closed. The second reason is that the walk, by choosing this theme, follows paths that you would normally ignore. The result: a pleasant jumble of impressions.
Please note that the area of Amsterdam is very busy. You will be blown from the narrow lanes while distracted by low-flying aircraft. Most of the time you will walk through attractive moorland with plenty of water, birds, and quaint little villages. But the urban world is always near. You will develop a good taste for ugliness.
Check the Wandelnet website for updates; the route continues to be improved.