Alle berichten van Wim Voncken

West Friesland, a camper ride and delicious ice cream

We cycle through Westfriesland to Hoorn and pass places such as Midwoud, Zwaagdijk, Blokker and Nibbixveen. Along the way we marvel at the many beautiful and well-maintained houses.

The film can be found on page Noord-Holland.

The Golden Age brought much prosperity to Hoorn. The prosperity from the period with the Dutch East India Company can still be admired in the pleasant streets and beautiful squares.

The film can be found on page Noord-Holland.

With the camper we drive on the D39 from St Hippolyte-du-Fort to Lasalle through the Vallée-de-la-Salingrenque. Hippolyte is also called the Gateway to the Cevennes.

The film can be found on page Occitania.

At the foot of the Pyrenees lies the at first sight deserted town of Saint-Martory. Its location on the Garonne once guaranteed prosperity. What remains is a beautiful castle and a circus wagon in which the Dutch Kim sells delicious homemade ice cream!

The film can be found on page Occitania.

‘Portils’, a devil, wine, a monestary and a cemetery

Foix is such a typical French town with a castle that overlooks the place. This town has had a hard time in the Wars of Religion. While walking you can enjoy the portils that here and there connect the houses on both sides of the street.

The film can be found on page Occitania.

We have already visited a bridge that was connected to a legend about a devil. During our bike ride through the Gorges-de-Hérault we passed another such bridge. The bridge spans the Hérault, in which or next to which many people seek entertainment.

The film can be found on page Occitania.

Our bike ride through the Gorges-de-Hérault went towards Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert. The town developed around the monastery founded by William of Orange. This beautiful town winds its way up through a narrow gorge.

The film can be found on page Occitania.

On our way back from Croatia we looked for a camper place in South Tyrol. It is located next to the station of Welsberg-Taisten. And of course we also went to see this place. The local cemetery turned out to have a very beautiful building.

The film can be found on page Trentino.

The D119 between Mirepoix and Carcassonne, both beautiful places that we have visited before, partly goes over the Route-des-Vins-de-la Malepère. You expect to drive through the vineyards, but we actually drove past them.

The film can be found on page Occitania.

Fortified towns, a camper route and a bike ride

On our journey from Bruniquel to Gaillac we passed the fortified town of Castelnau-de-Montmiral. This beautiful, high-lying town was founded in the 13th century. The beautiful medieval center, complete with pillory, is a feast for the eyes.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

The fortified town of Geertruidenberg has a characteristic market square. Almost 1,000 years ago, the market was the beating heart of a thriving trade center. Menno van Coehoorn turned the city into an important fortress within the Zuiderwaterlinie to stop the French.

The film can be found on page:
North Brabant

We move through the Tarn and take the D964 between Bruniquel and Gaillac. This area between the Aveyron and the Tarn is home to many towns and fortified villages, with an abundance of abbeys, vineyards and orchards. On the way we pass the beautifully situated fortress town of Castelnau-de-Montmiral, which we will of course also visit.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

We take the bicycle to make a tour of Walcheren from Gapinge over Domburg. On the way we pass nice small places such as Serooskerke, Oostkapelle, Grijpskerke and Sint Laurens, all villages with interesting facts.

The film can be found on page:
Zeeland

Port city, warring villages and departure from Israel

The town of Salers has been competing for years with Saint Cirq-Lapopie for the first place on the "Plus beau villages de France" list. The name of this town is also the name of a special breed of cow. The houses all look gray, which is not surprising. Because volcanic rock was mainly used for construction.

The film can be found on page:
Auvergne - Rhône-Alpes

The town of Saint-Cirq-Lapopie has also been fighting for the first place on the "Plus beau villages de France" list for years. The village is beautiful and high above the Lot, but was almost doomed. Until the mayor attracted artists who were allowed to live there for free. Under the condition that they would renovate the houses. And so it happened! The results are impressive.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

The Michelin Guide marks certain routes with a green stripe, which means that the route is rated as scenic. Of course we would like to assess this time and again. So this summer we drove the camper on the D19 (Tarn-et-Garonne) and D115 (Tarn) between Caylus and Bruniquel. From St Antonin-Noble-Val, this part of the route was called the Gorges-de-l'Aveyron.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

According to tradition, a certain Zierik once lived on the Ee. At a certain point that river became Zierik's Ee and eventually Zierikzee was created. This monumental city has more than 500 monuments and likes to call itself "the Pearl on the Oosterschelde".

The film can be found on page:
Zeeland

UNTSO's headquarters in Jerusalem is home to an international staff, including many local residents of Israel and the West Bank. Once a year, the Palestinian employees of this staff are happy to introduce their colleagues to Palestinian culture. Music, dance and culinary refreshments are presented on this Palestinian Day.

The film can be found on page:
Special

The mission is over and the journey home is imminent. Normally you take the plane back to Schiphol, but that does not apply to Wim because he has his private car with him. Of course, just like at the start of the mission, it can be transported again in a container, but there are also two other options. Driving overland from the Middle East was not possible because no other Dutch people could travel with them at that time. So the car was shipped (not in a container this time) and Wim was allowed to travel on the roll-on-roll-off ship. And hundreds of Fiat Doblo's are loaded along the way. A way of traveling over long distances that will also appeal to many motor home owners!

The film can be found on page:
Special

 

Medieval spa, Vechtdal town, desert and more!

In Bourgogne-Franche Comté lies between the Loire and the Charolais Bourbon-Lancy. This town, with beautiful half-timbered houses in the medieval quarter, has been known for the quality of the water since ancient times and is therefore a spa town.

The film can be found on page:
Bourgogne - Franche-Comté

We cross the Luberon by motorbike and pass beautiful towns such as Céreste, Reillanne, Viens, Saint-Martin-de-Castillon and Simiane-la-Rotonde. And we have also admired some places on foot.

The film can be found on page:
Provence-Alpes – Côte d’Azur

The unique Vechtdal town of Ommen is located on the Overijsselse Vecht. The place originated at a ford in the Vecht and received city rights in 1248. The National Tin Figures Museum is located here.

The film can be found on page:
Overijssel

With the camper we drive through Quercy in Occitania. The route runs on the N122 and D19 in the Lot Department. This is one of the routes that the Michelin map indicates as 'interesting for tourists'.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

One of the most famous deserts is Wadi Rum in Jordan. Here Lawrence of Arabia led Arabs in their fight against oppression. We cross this beautiful natural phenomenon by jeep and let the guide tell us the stories around Lawrence.

The film can be found on page:
Special

Living in Israel for a whole year does not mean that you have also been able to view everything the country has to offer. Fortunately, Israel also has a kind of Madurodam (= Dutch miniature town) with the name Mini-Israel where you can cross the country with seven-league boots.

The film can be found on page:
Special

France, the Netherlands, Israel and Jordan

Saint-Saturnin is a town of Puy-de-Dome, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, about fifteen kilometers south of Clermont-Ferrand.
The town has a modest role in French history. Two ladies of the local nobility became queen. Although the town is no longer in the "Les plus beaux villages de France" list, it is well worth a visit.

The film can be found on page:
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes

Saint Pourçain-sur-Sioule is named after Saint Pourcain. When Thierry, the son of Clovis, plundered the Limagne in 531, he met courageous resistance from Pourcain, a monk. A year later, the good man died, after which the Pope canonized him. Today the town is mainly known for its wine production. The white wines are among the best in France.

The film can be found on page:
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes

After the first corona lockdown period, we cycled a tour through Overijssel together with camper friends. In this part, Salland, we crossed the Vecht and the Regge. Our destination was Ommen, but on the way we also passed the protected village view of Vilsteren.

The film can be found on page:
Overijssel

In the Pyrenees is a col known from the Tour de France. When driving the road there are therefore many encouragement texts on the road surface. We drove an alternative route over this Col d'Aspin, which with its 1,489 meters is not very high. But when you arrive at the top you will be treated to a beautiful view of the surroundings.

The film can be found on page:
Occitania

During this Christmas season, a documentary about Jerusalem seemed appropriate. We let guides take us to the most famous places of the old city and hear the stories of the Al Aqsa Mosque, the Dome of the Rock, the Wailing Wall, the Via Dolerosa and the Sacred Heart Church.

The film can be found on page:
Special

During the summer vacation of 2006 my son Tom visited me during my UN mission. I went with him to Jordan where we visited a very special city. Hidden in the wasteland is a city that was completely carved out of the rocks. Petra was the Roman name for this Nabataean capital. The abandoned city was rediscovered in 1812 and has been a World Heritage Site since 1985.

The film can be found on page:
Special

And because of the upcoming Christmas, we would also like to bring Kribbendorp to the attention.

Last year we presented the first film that brings together two brothers' hobbies: Jo is the creative who builds a new nativity scene with a unique theme every year. Wim, who has video editing as a hobby, ensures that the village comes alive and that his brother can walk around in his own village.

And this year a nativity scene has been added again with the theme 'carnival'. The stable is for Jo's sister-in-law and her husband, who are both enthusiastic members of the carnival association 'de Winkbülle' in the city of Heerlen. The stable contains all the attributes that recall their participation in the parades in recent years, as well as the Blue Shut with the Smiling Donkey, the heraldic animal of the association.

Both films can be found on page:
Special

Capitals and bicycle tours

One of the most beautiful monument cities in the Netherlands is the capital of the province of Zeeland: Middelburg. We walk around this beautiful city built around the abbey, which also forms the center of the city.

The film can be found on page:  Zeeland

In 1964 and 1976, Innsbruck was the host city for the Winter Olympics. But even without these sports activities, the city is popular. In winter as well as in summer, many tourists know where to find the medieval capital of Tyrol. The city has numerous medieval buildings and the main attraction is without doubt the "Goldene Dachl".

The film can be found on page: Tyrol

In 2006 Syria was not yet in civil war and the capital Damascus could be visited. In the first part of the film about this city we visit the Suq Al-Hamadiye which is not only a large bazaar, but also a meeting place for the inhabitants of the city. Then we take a walk through the adjacent old town where artisans practice their trade on the street.

The film can be found on page: Special

The second part of the film about Damascus takes us through the most important sights. We take a look at the Omayyad Mosque, Al Azem Palace and Saladin's mausoleum. We conclude our visit to this lively city with a look at a beautiful hotel next to the airport, which is very modern in contrast to the rest of the city.

The film can be found on page: Special

With the help of the Fietsknoopapp we cycle a tour on Schouwen-Duiveland with the aim of a visit to Zierikzee. On the way we pass the nice town of Zonnemaire and of course we take the time to see that town.

The film can be found on page: Zeeland

Most tourists explore the Alps by hiking. But the electric bicycle nowadays makes it possible to reach great heights by bike. We almost came to the Potsdamer Hütte in the lovely Fotschertal. We completed the last part to the hut on foot.

The film can be found on page: Tyrol

Alm huts, a rock church, an exciting motorcycle ride and a mountain ridge

When we wanted to drive the Strada Panoramica delle Vette between Comeglians and Ravascletto in the month of June 2019, it turned out that the winter had not completely disappeared. Unfortunately snow blocked the road, but luckily we could still get to the Refugio Chiadinas. But even that part up turned out to be an experience. But it is not a route for beginners and certainly not for campers!

The film can be found on page: Trentino

During our stay in the Pyrenees-Orientales we were informed about a special church. In the village of Vals, a church has been built above the rocks, which can only be entered through a crack in the rocks. Unfortunately, due to the danger of collapse, part of the church has been closed.

The film can be found on page: Occitanië

Although without a camper, we have had a winter holiday in Ramsau am Dachstein this spring. We made a number of walks along mountain huts through the snow. Part 1 of these walks takes us along the Rösteralm and the Sonnenalm, where we were received musically.

The film can be found on page: Stiermarken

In part 2 of the hikes along mountain huts, we first take the bus, which takes us on a toll road to the base station of the Dachstein Seilbahn. From there we walk down past the mountain huts Brand-Alm and Dachsteinhaus.

The film can be found on page: Styria

The mountain range that crosses Israel from north to south has many faces. In these Judean Mountains you can visit all kinds of special places by car, by bicycle or on foot. In part 1 we drive through the Begin Park, we walk at Wadi Qumran and Wadi Oetalav and we cycle at Manhat.

The film can be found on page: Special

In part 2 of the film about the Judean Mountains, the mountain range in Israel, we cycle at Sataf, we ride through the Yehuda Desert, we hike at Fawwar and we use the four-wheel drive at Sodom.

The film can be found on page: Special

Monasteries, crosses and port sites

The Judean Mountains are home to many gorges. One of them, the Wadi Al Qelt, cools the visitors on summer days. And in the gorge is a beautiful monastery that can be visited after a long hike.

The film can be found on page: Special

Near Bethlehem is the Greek Orthodox monastery of Mar Saba which is one of the oldest inhabited monasteries in the world. When I visited it in 2006, only 15 monks were still alive. There were once thousands of them.

The film can be found on page: Special

From Cortina d'Ampezzo, the Tre Croci pass ascends to Misurina. How could it be otherwise, the name comes from three crosses that once stood on the height of the pass.

The film can be found on page: Veneto

Fažana, also known as the pearl of the west coast, is located on the west side of Istria. The small port is not only used by tourists. This fishing town is known for its sardines and mackerel. The town itself is picturesque.

The film can be found on page: Istria

"Brouw", as Brouwershaven is also called, is a quiet harbor town with a large and special church. Due to its location on the Grevelingenmeer, the place is popular with water sports enthusiasts.

The film can be found on page: Zeeland

There is only one place in Europe that had a strong economic link with Scotland: Veere. This city has grown due to the wool trade, which can still be seen in the beautiful Scottish houses on the harbor. Today it is a popular tourist resort.

The film can be found on page: Zeeland

Herod, a special garden, the Rhine and the Danube, and a small Zeeland town

Once the hill on which Breisach is located was in the middle of the Rhine. Today the river flows around it. The city with its mountain that overlooks the Rhine is a popular destination for tourists passing by cruise ship.

The film can be found on page: Baden-Württemberg.

With the campers we drove from Beuron to Simaringen in Baden-Württemberg. The route parallels the Danube, which has wrought its way through the Swabian Alb over the centuries. This beautiful part of the Danube Valley allows you to enjoy the steep chalk cliffs and special nature.

The film can be found on page: Baden-Württemberg.

Like many villages in Zeeland, Gapinge also consists of farms that once had their farm on leasehold. The entire village was once owned by the van Borsselen family and remained after that for a long time by noble families. Characteristic are the farmhouses with green and white shutters and the black and white barn doors.

The film can be found at page Zeeland.

In Gapinge is a beautiful round windmill, the Graanhalm (from 1896). The windmill can be visited every Saturday, at least when the blades are rotating. Until 1962, this mill, built with 120,000 bricks, milled commercially and until 1998 it was still running. In 2015 the mill was restored and reopened festively. Volunteers cherish the mill and are happy to explain. The visit is free, but a donation is appreciated.

The film can be found at page Zeeland.

From 37 BC to AD 4, Herod the Great ruled as parts of Judea as phasal king of the Romans. He had a predilection for Roman architecture, which is evident from the many structures he had erected during his reign. For example, he had the harbor of Caesarea constructed, complete with amphitheater. However, this fondness for the Romans did not make him loved by the Jews.

The film can be found on page Special.

Israel has many streams of faith that may or may not lay claim to certain parts of the country. The third largest stream of faith in the world has its international world center in Haifa. There they maintain the Bahai'i Gardens, a terrace garden full of pomp and circumstance. UNTSO organized an excursion to this beautiful garden for members of the staff. Wim turned out to be the only soldier among all civilian employees of the UN.

The film can be found on page Special.