Plateaux-Hageven | De Groote Heide

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Plateaux-Hageven

Plateaux-Hageven

Borders fade in the Plateaux-Hageven, a Dutch-Belgian nature reserve. Walk through forest and over heath and past fens and water meadows: a water system of the early 19th century! In spring you will find orchids here, and in autumn the meadows turn a lovely shade of purple.

Plateaux Hagen

There are several beautiful routes in and around this nature reserve.

The Hagevenpad (4.3 miles), near the Belgian border

A hiking trail in Belgium near the Hageven Visitors Centre that leads through the Belgian part of De Plateaux-Hageven. The route follows and crosses the Dommel river and passes lovely heathland and two bird watching huts. One particular highlight is the crossing of the Dommel via a suspension bridge!

Plateaux Hagen

The Panoramapad (4.5 miles), near Bergeijk

The 'yellow' route leads past most of the highlights of De Plateaux - Hageven. Part of the route even crosses the border with Belgium for a while. The walk leads straight across heathland, past fens and through forests. The starting point is the De Plateaux workshed of the Society for the Preservation of Nature in Bergeijk. For more information on the route, please go to their website.

Boundless nature: De Plateaux and Hageven

De Plateaux and the Belgian Hageven nature reserves form one contiguous area south of Valkenswaard, located between dry sandy soils and the valley of the Dommel river. You are more than welcome to enjoy the varied landscape on one of the many hiking trails.

De Plateaux is a partly forested heathland area. Next to the Belgian border you will find water meadows: meadowland irrigated with (calcareous) Maas river water by means of an extensive system of ditches and canals. You will walk along (cultural-)historical water meadows, hike through woodland and wander on paths flanked by heath and fens. And while following the twists and turns of the trails you just might cross the border without even realising it.

De Plateaux-Hageven is a mosaic of different types of nature. The side walls and summits of the dunes are the driest soils of the area. Nowadays the sand doesn't drift as much as it used to. Grey hair-grass and silver-tip haircap moss have mostly fixated it.

The Turfven is a remnant of a ring fen, an extremely rare fen type in which high moorland covers the surface of the water as a thick carpet. Due to the extraction of sand right next to the fen a second pool has formed that is connected with the original fen. For years both waters were used as fishing ponds, but since their purchase in 2004 the focus has shifted to restoring the high moorland landscape. The surrounding meadowland has been transformed into lean grassland, a favourite home for dragonflies and butterflies.

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