Groninger sandbanks

Paradise for birds

In the southeastern corner of the National Park are a number of former sandbanks. They now mainly consist of reed beds and grassy meadows. This is principally a paradise for birds. Access is limited. But you can get a good view of the various sandbanks from the Strandweg.

The Jaap Deensgat bird hide

With a pair of binoculars you can spy from this hide on all sorts of birds: ducks, waders and gulls. In August and September there are spoonbills and in the winter this is the peregrine falcon's realm. There is a lookout hillock hill near the bird hide. If you are patient and have a bit of luck you will also hear typical marsh dwellers such as the bearded tit, reed bunting or water rail and you will see the marsh harrier gliding over the reed beds.

Beautiful flowers

The verges alongside the asphalt path that leads to the hide are also worth closer inspection. Many purple orchids bloom there in May and June, while in August and September you will find the parnassia. These flowers attract butterflies, such as the common blue, the small heath and the peacock.


Part of this area is grazed in the summer by cattle belonging to local farmers. Also, every year in the winter, some of the reeds are cut. This is in order to keep the reed beds in top-class condition. And to maintain the special plants, the verges are mown at the end of the summer and all the plant material is removed.