Who does not know the name TV bag? It is a handy mnemonic to remember the five Wadden Islands. Texel, Vlieland, Terschelling, Ameland and Schiermonnikoog. Maybe you’ve seen all five of them before or maybe you’ve never been there: the fact remains that the Wadden Islands are a perfect destination for a holiday close to home.
Why go on holiday to the Wadden Islands?
The weather on the Wadden Islands is usually slightly better than on the mainland and the coastline is in many a list of the most beautiful beaches in Europe. Each Wadden Island has its own charm and character. For example, car-free Vlieland is very quiet and there is a lot to experience on Texel. Ameland is a horse island and horse riding on Ameland is therefore a must. The islands of Terschelling and Schiermonnikoog also have a lot of beauty, fun and each their own sights, but this time we want to put the two most visited islands opposite each other. The two Wadden islands that have been very popular for years: Ameland and Texel. Which of the two is the most beautiful or the most fun to visit?
Ameland or Texel: the biggest difference between the two islands is actually the size. Texel is 170 km2 against Ameland with 60 km2.
Your holiday to Texel already starts on the ferry from Den Helder. It is a twenty-minute boat trip, then you are on the largest Dutch Wadden Island. There is plenty to do with seven villages and about 40 nature reserves. The island is blessed with miles of beautiful beaches and there is much to do for both young and old. Whether you are looking for adventure or just want to experience a peaceful nature holiday, Texel has it all. During your holiday on Texel, there is no shortage of nice restaurants and catering establishments, in De Koog young people even play the beast in summer. Many restaurants have typical Texel products on the menu, such as locally brewed beer or a Juttertje – a herb bitter, butter-tender lamb and of course fresh fish.
The wide dune area is ideal for a sporting activity. You can take a nice walk or bike ride, but you can also choose to view the island from the back of a horse. Of course you can also take a walk on the tidal flats from Texel, but hitting a ball on the golf course and skydiving are also possible. Do you prefer culture? Texel not only has seven villages, but also seven museums. Together they tell the story of Texel. About the former farm life on Texel, whaling, the war, marine life (seals). There is not only the largest beachcomber museum in the world, but also Galerie RAT in the historic center of Den Burg, where the imagination is stimulated with special sculptures made of washed up materials.
Texel is also a very nice holiday destination after the summer. Read more about late summer on Texel here.
Very close, yet far away! This is how it feels when you get on the boat in Holwerd and arrive on Ameland after a beautiful trip across the Wadden Sea. The ferry arrives after about 45 minutes in Nes, a nice village with cozy shops and beautiful captain’s houses. Close here is also camping Duinoord located where you can stay. The largest village of Ameland is Hollum with its houses from the 17th and 18th century. Here is also the striking lighthouse of the island. Bornrif is the landmark of Ameland. Buren is a wonderfully quiet village and the gateway to the nature reserve “Het Oerd”. If you prefer to spend the night in a nature reserve, ‘t Oerd is a better location.
Ameland is smaller than Texel, but also has nice authentic villages, beautiful nature, but above all a lot of sea and beach! The four villages, each with its own history and culture, have a pleasant city center with nice restaurants and cafes. Settle down for a nice lunch or reserve a table for a culinary evening out. Here too many restaurants have typical regional products on the menu, such as locally brewed beer or a Nobeltje – the typical Ameland cranberry liqueur, Ameland honey, rye bread and mustard, oysters and sea bass and Ameland lamb, beef, wild goose or dune rabbit. Where Texel has seven villages and seven museums, Ameland happens to have four villages and four museums. These four together tell the story of Ameland. About maritime history, agriculture and fishing, whaling and merchant shipping.
You can also undertake many sporting activities during your holiday on Ameland. The island is not large and therefore you can discover almost the whole island on a bicycle or mountain bike. Visit the lighthouse and climb to the top for a great view of the area. During the summer months, demonstrations with the horse lifeboat are given on a regular basis. As if you travel back in time, because during this activity you see how people used to lift drowning people out of the water. You can also kite surf, play golf or of course go horseback riding. There are several bridleways in the woods and on the beach so that you can discover the island on horseback.
Ameland or Texel
Nice villages, beautiful nature, excellent facilities and nice beach bars are well represented on both islands! Regardless of the season and the temperature, there is plenty to do on the Wadden Islands. From seal tours to mudflat walking and from mountain biking to culinary oyster tours. Texel and Ameland each have their own charm, nature, activities, accommodation options and inhabitants – and it is actually impossible for us to determine for you which Wadden Island is the nicest, most beautiful or most suitable. We hope that after reading this article you can better determine what you prefer.
Which island would you choose, Ameland or Texel? And why? Let us know in a comment at the bottom of this article. Thank you!