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Wild seal spotting on the Waddenzee, visiting orphaned seal pups at Ecomare, searching the woods for Texel gnomes, climbing the lighthouse and cuddling little lambs on the farm: as a child, you can have great – unplugged – fun on Texel.
There’s an art to sending a message in a bottle. If you want your message in a bottle to travel really far, make sure to weigh it down first with some stones so it flows along with the current. Need more tips? Find out more at Kaap Skil Museum, or at Flora, the museum of shipwrecks and beachcombers. And don’t forget to ask why only left shoes wash ashore on Texel.
Mostly sunny with the occasional shower? Not to worry! There’s always something to do – indoors and outdoors – at Landgoed de Bonte Belevenis. You can make paper, candles, bread or your own soap, but you can also watch demonstrations or visit the sheep, pygmy goats, miniature pigs, chickens, turkeys and rabbits in the garden.
Walk like a natterjack toad, run like a pheasant or glide like a harrier: the kids’ walk (1 km) at Ecomare allows kids aged 2 to 80 to experience the dunes as a plant or animal would.
The Sommeltjespad, a kids’ nature trail that teaches the youngest of nature lovers to explore their surroundings. Along the route (1.5 km), the kids try to spot Sommeltjes (Texel gnomes), animals living on Texel and other fun things. The Sommeltjespad is situated in De Dennen, on the south side of Pelikaanweg. Startingpoint: Pelikaanweg, De Koog.
At ice-cream farm Labora they make ice cream from fresh milk and cream, from cows which are allowed to graze in the stunning nature reserve De Roggesloot. At Labora, you can try all kinds of flavours: from Oma’s Appeltaart (Grandma’s Apple Pie) and Hoky Poky to strawberry sorbet.
At Schapenboerderij Texel, there are more than 25 different breeds of sheep to see. You can also gambol around in the hay, cuddle lambs on your lap, ride a pony and play with all the other animals on the farm.
Walk on the seafloor during a mudflat excursion and discover how impressive the Wadden area is. Led by an experienced guide, you study the uncovered seafloor. This may seem bare but it’s actually teeming with life: with a little bit of exploring, messing around with fishing nets or digging with your hands, you will discover lugworms, cockles, oysters and little sprinting crabs. Mudflat excursions can be booked via Ecomare.
Having a good old mess around with sand and salt water and using it to operate all kinds of mechanisms is something you can do at the Wadden water playground at Oudeschild marina. Here, you can also find a 32-metre-long pirate ship with ropes, nets and crow’s nest which you can climb and clamber to your heart’s content. Still not tired? Go wild on the 25-metre-long zip wire and giant swing.
Oysters, cockles, nuns, banded wedge shells and mussels: you can collect shells both on the North Sea beach and on the Wadden side and – very occasionally – you can also find remnants of prehistoric times. It’s a case of looking very carefully and being lucky.
Common seals have their young in the summer. Sometimes they get separated from their mums. These orphaned seal pups are taken in at Ecomare; cute orphaned seals can be admired here from the beginning of the summer.
You can climb the cheerful red-painted lighthouse in the northern tip of Texel. From the gallery, at 45 metres above sea level, you get to enjoy awesome views of the North Sea, Vlieland, the Waddenzee and Texel itself. In clear skies, you can even see Terschelling!
A trip on a prawner is a real experience, not in the least because you can spot seals in the wild along the way. At low tide, they lie in groups on the sandbar and at high tide, they sometimes swim around the boat all inquisitively.