The Hook of Holland (known to many visitors as simply ‘The Hook’, or to locals as Hoek van Holland), is a beautiful little harbour town in Southern Holland on the coast of the North Sea. The easiest way to reach it is on the ferry from Harwich (see all ferries to Holland here), and it’s a great base to explore the stunning surrounding areas, or even to start a European driving holiday.
This great town is of great historical significance. Due to its location, it was used by the Germans for strategies involving the harbour. However, it’s also a gorgeous place to visit for beach lovers. There is stretch of sand that runs from the Hook to Scheveningen, which is about eighteen kilometres away. It’s a great place to spend a few days soaking up the sun and sea. But be warned: one section of the beach has been chosen to be used by naturists, so perghaps it’s not for the fainthearted. Along this stretch of sand, you’ll also find a number of rolling dunes which are just waiting to be explored. Most of this area has designated cycle routes, so it’s great if you’ve decided to take your bike along.
If you’re using the town as a base to explore the area, try driving to local places on interest such as Delft and Naaldwijk, which are north east of town, or Maasslius, which is located in the south east. It’s also close enough to drive to Amsterdam, which is a more bustling city.
One of the most interesting trips to take during your stay is to the Maeslantkering. The Maeslantkering is part of the local Delta Works, which are various structures defending the Netherlands from rough seas and high tides. The Netherlands is below sea level, so steps have been taken to stop flooding. The Maeslantkering closes mechanically when the levels of water become precariously high. For more information about this fantastic structure, visit the Kerinhuis museum next door, which has free entry. It’s also worth spending a bit of extra money to do a guided tour, as you will be allowed to get right up close to the construction.
Another great outing is to visit the local Lighthouse museum, which was completed in 1893. It will give you a fascinating history of the local lighthouse, including when and how the optics were changed, and when the lighthouse was taken out of service. The kustverlichtingsmuseum was opened in 1982, when the lighthouse was officially named as a local monument.
For something a bit more cultural and up-to-date, go on an outing to the local Rock Art museum. There are some fascinating displays of guitars, including early models used by famous artists and musicians from Holland. There are further exhibitions on Dutch Rock and Beat music. You can also purchase vinyl from the museum.
From the Hook of Holland, Amsterdam is only a short journey away by car. Other interesting destinations include Wilhelmshaven, 198 miles away, and Paris, only 230 miles away.