A visit to the small city Montfoort can be combined with a 12 km long (3 hour) and marked hike along the river Hollandse IJssel and through pasture.
This hike takes you from Montfoort to the village Linschoten and back. In Linschoten you can visit the Leaning Church of Linschoten.
The hike is marked by the Dutch Touring Club ANWB.
Start and finish of the hike are officially in Montfoort, at the Castle. Look for small hexagonal signs attached to traffic signs or signposts with "Engherkade route" and two walking cartoons.
The first part of the walk, to Linschoten, is mainly through pasture. The last part of the walk, from Linschoten back to Montfoort, is partly over a asphalt road. As it is a walk with the same start and finish, you can also start in Linschoten (e.g. at the leaning church) and keep the most beautiful part through the pasture for the end. See the pictures for a map.
Montfoort itself is a pretty city with some monuments that are worth a short visit:
St Jan Church
St John the Baptist Church
Old Town Hall
Old City Gate IJsselpoort
Mill De Valk
Old City Wall
Since the walk is mainly unpaved, it can be wet and muddy after rainy periods.
If you want come by public transport, check http://www.9292ov.nl/. If you come by car, park near the Castle in Montfoort at the address below, or in Linschoten.
See my Montfoort page at the link below for more info.
When Montfoort got city rights in 1329, the city was fortified and a canal was constructed around the city.
The fortifications included 24 defense fortresses and a bastion on which the Mill De Valk was built.
Of the fortifications, only the Old City Gate IJsselpoort and a small part of the Old City Wall close to the Mill De Valk, along the provincial road and Achterdijk, remain.
The mill was built in 1753 by major Henrik van Utenhove.
It likely got the name De Valk (The Falcon) in the beginning of the 19th century, although it is unknown why it got this name.
When the mill was built, the farmers were obliged to bring their grain only to this mill. Other mills were allowed to grind other materials.
This monopoly lasted until 1822. The sudden competition made it hard to keep the mill profitable and it changed owners several times.
Consequently, the mill fell into disrepair and even has been used as a pigsty.
However, the mill has been restored. The restoration is still in progress and they want to make it fully functional again.
Close to the mill, a part of the Old City Wall can be seen.
Montfoort used to be fortified with a town wall, after it was granted city rights in 1329.
The IJsselpoort was built around 1375 and is the only remaining gate, the others were taken down in 1831 and 1862.
It is located along the river Hollandse IJssel.
The IJsselpoort is special because it is attached to the Old Town Hall.
In 1963-1965 the gate and town hall were restored. However, due to lack of information about the original buildings, it's present look must be quite different from the early buildings.
Parts of the Old City Wall can still be seen near the Mill De Valk.
In 1990, the Old Town Hall (Oude Stadhuis) was dated back to 1373, after taking samples of the wood.
Until 1993, the building was in use as a town hall.
Now, it houses a restaurant, see the website below.
Next to the restaurant, the old city gate "IJsselpoort" can be found.
The castle gave Montfoort it's name: Montfoort is derived from "Mont Fortis", meaning "Strong Mountain", referring to the castle.
The castle was built by the bishop Godfried van Rheenen in 1163. Around the castle, the village formed, which got it's city rights in 1329.
The French occupied the castle in 1672 for a short time. At their retreat, they blew up most of the castle.
Only the gate and the front of the castle remained.
The former castle now houses a restaurant.
The 12 km hike called Engherkade route starts here.
The church started as a chapel of Castle Linschoten and was built around 1400.
The church is called Grote Kerk (Big Church) or St Jan's Church.
In 1877 the tower was shortened because the church started to lean over.
This apparently did not help too much because the church is pretty tilted nowadays.
The present building of the Heilige Johannes de Doper Kerk (St John the Baptist Church) dates from 1923-1925.
A church from the 15th century.
In 1629 the St Janskerk was burned down after a big fire in Montfoort.
The church was restored in 1634.
When in Montfoort, stop
by the Molen de Valk, the
towns windmill ....
This molen is 250 years
old, and they are now
planning restoration ....