Jeep Safari through Oostvaardersplassen

The most beautiful natural landscapes can emerge in the most unexpected places. The Oostvaardersplassen are a clear example: originally intended as an industrial area, it is now a vast marshland with reed lands, wild sedge fields, and countless lakes and pools. Join a jeep safari and see how thousands of birds, red deer, and other big grazers like heck cattle, and wild horses all live together here.

Experience the mating-season – the time when red deer seek a partner – in a unique way with the mating safari. An exceptional opportunity to witness the fascinating mating ritual of red deer.

Oostvaardersplassen - paarden
Photo: Ellen van den Doel
Oostvaardersplassen
Photo: Ellen van den Doel
Oostvaardersplassen - grasland
Photo: Ellen van den Doel

Man-made nature below sea level

The world’s biggest man-made nature reserve can be found in the province of Flevoland between Almere and Lelystad. The area resulted from the reclamation of the Flevopolders and is relatively young. The original plan was to realize an industrial area, but because there was no immediate need for it, the marsh land was seeded with reeds and left alone. Nature took possession of the new land and evolved into man-made nature in what was once an inland sea. 

Starting point for exploration

You can enter the Oostvaardersplassen area through two different access points: Natuurbelevingcentrum de Oostvaarders in Almere and Buitencentrum Oostvaardersplassen in Lelystad. Both are the perfect starting point to explore the Oostvaardersplassen.

Spot a sea eagle

If you join a jeep safari through the world’s biggest man-made nature reserve, you might spot the very rare sea eagles that have been breeding here since 2006. Or perhaps you’ll see an inventive fox catching prey in the middle of the day. Whatever the case may be, it is an impressive tour of a marsh area that feeds thousands of birds and is managed by countless large grazers. Experience how every season has its own dynamics and surprising developments. 

There is also a photo safari in spring and summer. From May through mid-September, you will be shown the most photogenic scenes every Friday morning from 09:00 to 12:00. During mating season, from late September to mid-October, the safari starts an hour earlier, from 08:00 to 11:00. 

Spotting the wildlife from a birdwatching spot

On their migratory routes, tens of thousands of birds stop in the Oostvaardersplassen for a shorter or longer break on their journey, often to raise a new generation. Experience their search for food from a distance at one of the many bird-watching spots in the area.  

Niks missen? 

Trek je stevige stappers aan en ontdek de Oostvaardersplassen te voet. Volg Wandelroute Zeearend (5 km) van Staatsbosbeheer en laat je door het gebied de Driehoek naar observatiehut De Zeearend leiden. Daar heb je ruim 2,5 km vrij zicht over de plassen en misschien spot je hém nog, de vliegende deur!

Liever per fiets langs moerassen, wilg- en vlier savannes en het stijlvolle bezoekerscentrum? Dat kan! En ook deze route (32 km) belooft een prachtig uitzicht. Vanuit de observatiehutten die je passeert kun je namelijk moerasvogels en grote grazers begluren.