Activities

Island hopping: a holiday along the Wadden Sea

04 April 2022

A visit to one of the Frisian Islands (also known as the Wadden Islands) is of course a lot of fun but combining your visit to several of the Frisian islands is even more fun!

We have listed the hotspots per island for you. In addition, you can read how you can island hop in the North Sea. Read on and make sure you don't miss the hotspots during your visit to the Frisian Islands.

Texel

Texel is the largest Frisian Island of the Netherlands. The island can be visited by ferry from Den Helder. You can of course stay the night at Stayokay Texel. Below you find the best tips for your visit to the island.

Drinks at Strandpaal 21

The best beach club on Texel is Strandpaal 21. This cozy beach club is located near De Koog and is loved by locals and island visitors. From this hip spot you have a view over the Texel beach, and you can enjoy your drink. Try, for example, a delicious Texels beer. Strandpaal 21 is also the right place for a delicious lunch or dinner!

Surfschool Texel 🏄

When you're on the island, you want to enjoy the sea and the beach. You can do this by taking a dip or chilling out in the sun, but what is even more fun is to take a surf class! Surfschool Texel has more than 10 years of experience in teaching people how to surf. This great surf school offers group and private lessons. If you already have surfing experience, you can hire surf gear.

Meet seals at Ecomare

Did you not spot any seals in the wild during your visit to Texel? No problem at all. You will come across plenty of them during your visit at Ecomare! Ecomare is a nature museum and seal sanctuary. If you can't wait until your visit, you can already take a look at the seals using a webcam!

Drink coffee at the Texel Roastery

At Koffiebar de Texelse Branderij you can enjoy various fine coffees from different countries. The coffee is roasted in such a way that you can taste the origin of the coffee. Besides drinking a cup of coffee, the Texelse Branderij is also the perfect place to have breakfast or lunch!

Enjoy a Texels beer

On Texel you will find the famous Texels Skuumkoppe. It can be found on tap in almost every café or restaurant, but on the island itself it is just that little bit more special. The Texelse Bierbrouwerij is located in an old dairy factory and besides the Skuumkoppe, you can try a dozen other beers. So, it's nice to recover from a successful island vacation!

Island hopping: If you want to hop from Texel to Vlieland you can do so by boat. The crossing takes about an hour and starts at the Noordman in De Cocksdorp. In high season it is possible to make the crossing every day of the week. In low season the boat only goes on specific days. Attention! Vlieland is a car-free island, so you may not bring your car.

Vlieland

Vlieland is the smallest of the Frisian Islands, but definitely worth a visit while island hopping. If you come from the mainland, you take the boat from Harlingen to the island within an hour and a half. The best must-sees are listed below!

Horseback riding on the beach

As a horse lover you can have a great time on Vlieland with a beautiful ride with Manege de Seeruyter. For example, make a nice ride on the beach and through the dunes. However, to be able to do this you need to be an experienced rider. Not so experienced yet? Then it is still possible to make a ride, but through the forest.

Eating out on Vlieland

If you are looking for a nice place to eat on Vlieland, Plezant Vlieland is the right place! They use many delicious local products and find sustainability important. For example, the burgers are made from sustainable beef. There are also some vegetarian options on the menu. Besides dining, you can have a drink or a nice cup of coffee.

Taste the Vlieland Bunkercheeses 🧀

Deep under the highest dune of Vlieland is a bunker where drinking water used to be stored. Nowadays this bunker is used for ripening the organic Vlielander Bunkerkazen. The bunker is such a good place for ripening cheeses because of the high humidity and cool temperature. This is a special place to ripen cheeses. Brush up on your knowledge through a tour of the cheese bunker and enjoy a tasting of these special cheeses!

 

Island hopping: To get from Vlieland to Terschelling you use the ferry. This boat will take you to the other island within half an hour. In the high season this boat goes up and down several times a week.

Terschelling

Terschelling can be reached from the mainland by boat departing from Harlingen. The island consists for 80% of dunes, which makes it a beautiful destination you definitely don't want to miss during island hopping between the Frisian Islands. During your visit to Terschelling you can of course stay at Stayokay Terschelling, in one of the rooms with seaside view. Need inspiration for your visit to Terschelling? Find below the hotspots of Terschelling.

Go on an Eco Safari and discover Terschelling

Go on an Eco Safari and discover unique areas of untouched nature. During the safari you will go on a 2,5-hour journey where you will learn all about the history and culture of Terschelling. In addition, you will learn about the animals that live on the island. You can choose between a morning safari, where you start your discovery tour in the twilight or an afternoon/evening safari where you end your trip with a beautiful sunset.

Admire the Brandaris lighthouse

The Brandaris lighthouse is the oldest working lighthouse in The Netherlands. The lighthouse is still used to keep an eye on a large part of the coast. That is why you cannot climb it. However, it is a real landmark of Terschelling, and nice to admire from the outside. A fun fact, the lighthouse can be used as a wedding location!

Geniet bij Restaurant Pura Vida

We wrote about Restaurant Pura Vida before since it is such a nice choice if you are looking for a vega(n) option. On Terschelling you'll find two branches of this cozy restaurant. The menu is filled exclusively with delicious dishes. A real hotspot that you do not want to miss during your island-hopping adventure on the North Sea!

Visit the Shipwreck Museum

Pay a visit to the Shipwreck Museum! In this museum you can find various special finds. This is a diverse collection that includes bottle mail, the contents of washed-up containers and cannons. Inspired? From our hostel on the island you can even participate weekly in beach­combing and look for your own treasures!

Try the cranberry cake

Terschelling is one of the few places in the Netherlands where cranberries grow. Of course, you have to enjoy them during your visit! Hidden in the woods of West Terschelling you will find the cozy coffee and tea house De Bessenschuur. Here you can enjoy a cup of coffee with a piece of cranberry pie. In addition, it is the perfect place to learn more about cranberries by means of a nice exhibition or a visit to the adjacent cranberry field.

 

Island hopping: To travel from Terschelling to Ameland can be a bit more complex. This has to do with the fact that it has to be high tide. Only in high season there is a number of times a boat that you can take. This takes about 2.5 hours. Another possibility is to first travel back to the mainland and from the harbor in Holwerd take the boat to Ameland.

Ameland

Ameland is located east of Terschelling. From the mainland it takes you about 50 minutes by ferry to get to the island. The ferry service departs from the Frisian village of Holwerd. During your visit to Ameland, you will definitely want to take the following tips with you!

Drink an XL cocktail at Beachclub The Sunset

Are you looking for a nice spot to relax, bring a visit to Beachclub The Sunset in Hollum. Here you can have lunch and dinner and enjoy the beach at the same time. Feel like a drink? Try an Ameland "Beetje Blond" beer! This beer is locally grown and brewed in the Wadden area. Prefer something stronger? At The Sunset you can find a XXXXL cocktail, of no less than 1 liter. Perhaps it's a better idea to share these together!

Climb the lighthouse of Ameland

Pay a visit to the lighthouse. Unlike the lighthouse on Terschelling, this is a lighthouse how you imagine it. Complete with red and white stripes. You may admire this lighthouse not only from the outside, but also from the inside. It is a real challenge to walk all the steps to the top, but the view is definitely worth it!

Search for seals 🦭

From Ameland you can take the boat on a seal tour. The trip takes about 2 hours, and during the trip you look for seals in their natural habitat. During the search the skipper tells you everything about the seals. This makes this experience not only fun but also very educational!

 

Island hopping: If you've started island hopping on Texel and are going down all the islands then of course you can't skip the last island! We are talking about Schiermonnikoog. The boat doesn't go very often, so keep this in mind when planning to go island hopping. It takes about 3 hours to make the crossing to the last island. This way you make island hopping the Frisian Islands complete!

Schiermonnikoog

Schiermonnikoog is the easternmost inhabited Frisian Island in the Netherlands. The island has less than 1000 inhabitants and is car-free. Read on to find out what you shouldn't miss on Schiermonnikoog!

Admire the stars on Schiermonnikoog

The darkest place in the Netherlands is Schier­monnikoog. This island is also the perfect place for stargazing. Of course, you can do this with your eyes, but it's even more fun with a real telescope! The Schiermonnikoog Observatory organizes free viewing evenings, during which you can take a look through a telescope and enjoy the other planets in our solar system, for example. How cool is that!

Relax at beachclub De Marlijn

If you're looking for a nice beach club, then we recommend Strandtent De Marlijn. For a cup of coffee, lunch or dinner you are welcome. The menu has a choice of varying dishes, and there is something for everyone.

Blokart on the beach of Schiermonnikoog

Looking for a really cool activity? Then go blokarting on the beach. It is an exciting and challenging activity, but don't worry, everyone can learn it! With a little bit of wind, you can fly over the beach and what better way to enjoy the open air.

And, staying the night?

You can do that at one of the following top locations:

Stayokay Texel

Welcome to this super-friendly family hostel!

Whether you're travelling as a couple, with a group of friends or with the family: there's room for everyone and no one will ever get bored. The airy public areas are great for lounging around or challenging your travelling companion to a board game. The hostel is centrally located on the island and within walking distance of the lively centre of Den Burg. The hostel is surrounded by a large outdoor area which includes playground equipment and a sports field. The kids can let off steam while you kick back and order a local drink in our friendly bar after a day full of adventure. And you can stay the night in a private room (for the whole family) or a shared room.

Check out this hostel

Stayokay Terschelling

Arguably the most beautiful view of the island!

Overlooking the Wadden Sea and the bay of West-Terschelling. Drink your morning coffee here or have a a well-deserved drink at the end of the day. The recently renovated hostel is located on a dune, plus you're in the fun centre of town in no time. And with the Stayokay bicycle, you can be in the heart of the woods in a jiffy or cycle past meadows where sheep are grazing. Long live the island spirit! In our backyard, you'll find a playground for the kids and in the hostel there's plenty of nice places to relax for a bit.

Check out the hostel

Did you know that...

Stayokay is the perfect base for families? Choose a private room and sleep in one room with the whole family. Each room has its own bathroom and you can make your stay as comfortable as you like. For example, go for a lazy checkout, choose a discount package or add meals. Breakfast is already included!

We have different types of rooms: there is something for everyone. Would you like to know which room suits you? Check out the options.

All room types

A family holiday at Stayokay

Would you like to book a hostel with your family? Go on! There's always a great, easy-going atmosphere at ours and children are free to play to their hearts' content. Our family hostels have a large outdoor area so that no one will ever get bored!

Holiday with the family