Last Wednesday we went to Texel for the second time (last time was in April last year). We took the train from Leiden to Den Helder and then the 9:30 Teso ferry to Het Horntje on Texel. It was a beautiful day for bicycling around Texel: 30oC and sunny.
We rented bikes again from the huge bike rental place near the dock and were quickly on our way.
From Het Horntje we bicycled west along the water and then north to Den Hoorn and De Koog through the Duinen van Texel (‘Dunes of Texel’) National Park.
Our first stop was De Petten, a stretch of undeep water along the road with thousands of terns and other waders. Here’s a video of me biking and a view of De Petten:
A dozen old cars passed us here:
We made a short stop at De Geul, a large lake between the dunes in the south of Texel, and saw hundreds of Spoonbill and hundreds of Great Cormorants sitting on the shores of the lake. Some Spoonbill were heading out to feed.
After lunch in the very touristy town of De Koog we spent some time at Ecomare, which is a natural history museum, a visitor center for the National Park and a rehabilitation center for seals and birds.
At the rehabilitation center they take care of injured birds and seals that were brought there or that were found on the island. There was a large cage with eleven Gannets in it. Seven of these are permanent residents, while four had just arrived. The seven are kept there for newbies to more quickly get used to the place. One of the birds had an eye problem and the others had injured wings.
There’s a box at the entrance of Ecomare where people can put in injured birds if the center is closed. One of the people working there told us that they usually get a few birds in there every night!!!
Here’s a video of the seals and birds at Ecomare’s rehabiliation center:
We left Ecomare at about 16:00 and raced back to the harbor to catch the 17:00 boat back.