Climb the Duivelsberg (Devil’s Mountain) or put on your snorkel and dive under water in the Ooij. Stroll along the banks of the River Waal or step onto a Segway to visit the geese. Whatever you do and with whom – family, friends or the ranger – the scenic beauty of the Nijmegen region will amaze you with its versatility, vastness, meandering rivers and rolling hills. And it is always close by. You can walk straight into the Ooij polder from Nijmegen. Around the Hatert and Overasselt fens, you might find yourself face to face with badgers, stoats and see as many as 80 species of bird. At Heerlijkheid Beek you can’t miss the thickest tree in the Netherlands. And you really should visit the Mookerheide nature reserve in autumn, when the landscape takes on the colour of royal purple.
Water, wind and animals have free play in the partly German, partly Dutch nature reserve of Gelderse Poort. Over the years, that has helped to create a rugged river landscape with dunes, grassy plains and ponds. This is a place to go off the beaten tracks. Pull on your boots and go into the water meadows. Beavers, badgers and ospreys have preceded you, as will some 150,000 geese in the winter. Close to the place where the Waal and Rhine rivers split is Rijnstrangen, a vast river swamp which is home to rare birds, fish and plants.