Our ethos is very much focused on outdoor family holidays in beautiful nature. We are passionate about helping families to discover the real Holland and Belgium away from the famous cities and to embrace the beaches and dunes, the woodlands and national parks. We love the fact that our affiliate holiday parks really care about the environment and for them holidays are as much about interaction with nature as with protecting it. This green holidays ethos has been exemplified by Landal GreenParks who for the fourth year in a row have been voted as the most sustainable brand in the Netherlands in the travel and leisure industry by the Sustainable Brand Index.
We feature 24 of the Landal GreenParks holiday parks, all of which are located in the middle of nature, some by world heritage sites. They have recently been telling us about some of their green initiatives.
Protecting the Bees and Insects
Landal are very nurturing of the wildlife living on their parks and take care to protect it and allow it to flourish. They are adding beehives to more and more of their parks and placing them close to plants and flowers which bees can thrive on. On many of the Landal parks they have insect hotels with little holes for ladybirds, wasps, flies and spiders to live in. On some of their parks such as Coldenhove and De Lommerbergen they also have butterfly gardens where specific plants grow which will feed the butterflies.
Saving Wild Flowers
There are fewer and fewer wild flowers surviving in the Netherlands which in turn affects the bees and butterflies who need these for their nectar and pollen, and for the butterflies to lay their eggs. Landal GreenParks is supporting the flourishment of wild flowers by creating wild flower meadows at the holiday parks (like this one at Landal Het Land van Bartje) and adjusting their mowing policy to protect them. The Landal parks have cleared over 35,000m2 of ground for wild flowers.
Reducing the use of Chemicals
Landal are committed to reducing the levels of chlorine they use in their pools and are increasingly using salt electrolysis instead. Only a low level of salt has to be added (six times weaker than in sea water). On three of their parks they also use UV light to clean the pool water. Although all the Landal parks we feature have pools, they do encourage swimming in their lakes. A wonderful example of this is at Landgoed’t Loo where families can enjoy the large recreational lake and sandy lake beach. There is even a pully to go from one side to the other!
Landal are committed to not using poisonous weed killer. Instead hot water is sprayed on the ground to kill the weeds (although they recognise that some weeds are necessary to support the natural ecosystems).
Plant DiversityImage by Visit Brabant
Each park manager ensures that their park has a wide range of trees and plants which suit their particular region. This helps to create a unique environment on each park. Every year Landal commits to planting new trees in local forests and national parks to help sustain these beautiful natural areas. They work closely with the national parks, national heritage sites and regional environmental organisations. For example the General Manager of Rabbit Hill is a member of the Veluwe Fund and the General Manager of Port Greve in Zeeland is also very active in local protection initiatives.
On most of Landal’s parks they have petting farms where animals are looked after in their natural environment and children are allowed to stroke and interact with them. We love the little farm on Het Vennenbos where children can stroke the animals and learn about the feel of their different furs. Landal also supports local bird wildlife and uses bird friendly roof tiles. Some of the Landal parks are close to large bird colonies. The Lauwersmeer National Park by Esonstad is home to one of the largest swallow colonies in the Netherlands and the area is rich with bird life and other wildlife.
Supporting Local Producers
Landal ensures its on-park shops are stocked with local produce, some of which is sourced very close to the parks. A couple of miles from Landgoed’t Loo families can visit the local organic fruit garden and pick their own fruit and buy jam from the farm shop. On Beach Resort Ouddorp Duin you can visit the nearby goat farm which is a petting farm, playground, cheese factory and homemade ice cream farm all rolled into one!
Getting Close to Nature
Landal encourages families to explore the local woodlands and woodland trails. By Mooi Zutendaal in Belgium is a bare foot trail where families can connect with nature, feeling the different surfaces under their feet. On the holiday parks children can collect “discovery boxes” from the main reception which have questions and games to help children learn more about the nature around them. Landal wants to raise awareness of nature and their belief is that the more families experience and appreciate nature the more they’ll look after it. Landal makes an effort to try and bring the natural surroundings as close to the accommodations as possible. You will typically find large outdoor spaces to play and accommodations surrounded by woodland, sand dunes or on the water. In the Veluwe National Park locations you can often spot deer and red squirrels from your bungalow.
Landal has started converting some of its accommodations so they use a heat pump, solar panels and have interiors made from recycled or recyclable materials. Their aim is to make all of their accommodations sustainable and to build energy neutral houses. Landal’s ambition is to be completely climate neutral by 2030. The photo above is of Landal de Reeuwijkse Plassen which is the first ever sustainably built holiday park in the Netherlands.
All of the Landal parks featured on our site have been awarded the green key award which is the internationally recognised award for sustainability in tourism.
So there you have it. Landal parks are the most green and most luxurious holiday parks in Holland and Belgium. They have the perfect combination of having fantastic family facilities and being in the middle of beautiful nature, with the famous cities of Amsterdam, Utrecht, Antwerp and Brussels an easy drive away. You can go on one of these holidays safe in the knowledge that you are making a difference. And your children will love the freedom and everything there is to explore and discover!
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