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Discover 5 beautiful places on IJsselmonde Island

By Lisanne van Beurden
July 19, 2022

Are you in Rotterdam for a weekend and do you feel like taking a nice walk or bike ride in nature? From the heart of Rotterdam you can easily reach IJsselmonde Island, a surprisingly varied and undiscovered area: the green backyard of Rotterdam!

Between the Oude Maas and the river Noord you will find beautiful, unique nature reserves here, from green oases full of birds and Scottish Highlanders to cozy villages, beautiful castles, old mills and dikes.

You can take a special story walk here with an audio tour or go on an adventure on your own. In this article we have listed 5 beautiful locations on IJsselmonde Island for you.

Ben je een weekend in Rotterdam en heb je zin om een mooie wandeling of fietstocht in de natuur te maken? Vanuit hartje Rotterdam ben je zo op Eiland IJsselmonde, een verrassend gevarieerd en onontdekt gebied: de groene achtertuin van Rotterdam.


Story walk Discover IJsselmonde

On Discover IJsselmonde  you will find a map on which 18 nature reserves are indicated, including associated stories. They teach you more about nature, the special history of the island and the flora and fauna you encounter there. You can listen to the fragments at home in advance, but it is even more fun to do so while walking, cycling or sailing.

Below we share five beautiful places on IJsselmonde Island!


1. Brienenoord Island

In Rotterdam itself you will find the beautiful, renovated Island of Brienenoord. The city and wild nature are nowhere as close to each other as here. When you walk around the Island you can hardly believe that you are still in the city, unless you look up at the famous Brienenoord Bridge or look out along the water at the skyline of Rotterdam.

You can walk around here freely through special tidal nature. Lush flowers, plants and trees grow all around you. There is a good chance that you will also encounter a family of Scottish Highlanders along the way.


2. Rhoon Castle

In the picturesque centre of Rhoon you will find a medieval castle. Rhoon Castle was built in 1432 and is surrounded by a moat. You can walk around in the castle garden.

There is a lot to see here, because the castle grounds consist of a pre-forest, a vegetable garden, pilot whales, a park forest, an English garden and a baroque garden with geometric lawns.

With a visit to the castle garden you imagine yourself completely back in time.


3. The Ruigeplaatbos

On the west side of IJsselmonde Island, in Hoogvliet, you will find the Ruigeplaatbos. About 20 years ago, a storm turned the park here into a desolate forest full of broken and uprooted trees. Nature was then allowed to take its own course. Successfully! The forest recovered and plenty of plant and animal species were added.

Part of the Ruigeplaatbos is left completely alone, the other part is grazed by a family of Scottish Highlanders. Along the river, between the high reeds, there is a beautiful decking path of almost a kilometer long, with beautiful views!


4. The Rhoonse and Carnisse Grienden

The Rhoonse and Carnisse Grienden are former willow plantations where nature now has free rein. Because the pilot whales are directly connected to the tides of the river, ebb and flow provide unique flora and fauna.

You can spot kingfishers and beavers here! Narrow paths lead you through the fairytale area between the willows and every now and then you are completely in contact with the water again, with beautiful views.


5. The Sophiapolder

On the east side of IJsselmonde Island you will find the Sophiapolder. After the dikes were breached here in 2011, nature was allowed to go its own way. This uninhabited natural island is a mecca for birds. You can spot all kinds of them!

On the island, a beautiful walking route has been constructed over dikes and decking, which is about 2.5 kilometers long. The Island can only be visited with the free ferry, which sails on Wednesdays and at weekends.


Have you become curious about the undiscovered island of IJsselmonde? Check their website for more information or follow the most beautiful cycling and walking routes on the Island!

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