Welcome to Elburg!
Centrally located, between the cities of Zwolle and Harderwijk, lies Elburg, a special and well preserved medieval town. Elburg is also known as 'the fortress of the veluwe' and many people visit its six hundred monuments and eight museums every year. Walking through the town itself, one imagines oneself to be in the middle ages. The old ramparts with the magnificent trees, the narrow alleyways, the cobbled stone pavements and wonderful views turn the fortress into an attractive piece of scenery, ideal for a lovely walk.
The history of Elburg dates back to the year 796. Between 1392 and 1396 the town has been completely rebuilt and since those days Elburg has got its current form. The design of the town is based on the principle of the golden ratio, something that is seldom seen in town planning. Thanks to this special principle the town has got its typical form consisting of a rectangular pattern of streets.
Trade used to be done over water. The location of Elburg was the result of a strategic choice. As early as 1367 Elburg has been part of the "Hanze". This commercial treaty still exists and it comprises some two hundred Northern European "Hanze-cities". Until 1932 the fishing town of Elburg bordered on the "Zuiderzee". The building of the big dike "Afsluitdijk, the lake "IJsselmeer" and the polders have increased the distance to open seas considerably. All kinds of occupations substituted the fishery of the old days. The old wooden ships which can still be found in the harbour, the "botters", keep the memory of the history of fishing in Elburg alive. People practising watersports have access to the harbour, which is just outside the old fortress, via the "Veluwe lake" and the "Dronter lake".
The municipality of Elburg borders on the "Veluwe" and has a lot of green and nature spots. Coming from the higher woods the landscape gradually changes into a smaller scale structure, characterized by wooded banks, ultimately turning into an open structure, consisting of meadows and eventually water.
The area of shifting sands, west of 't Harde, winding creeks through small scale farmers land and the small country roads are the perfect surroundings for cyclists and farmers. Old church lanes offer a chance to hikers to experience the landscape the way former generations did. Having arrived at the lake, the landscape mainly consists of reeds and water. This is the domain of numerous birds, among with some rare breeds.
Five small centres
Besides the town of Elburg and its new housing estates, the municipality of Elburg also consists of the small centres: 't Harde, Doornspijk, Hoge Enk and Oostendorp. Between 't Harde and Elburg you will find three beautiful country houses: Schouwenburg, Zwaluwenburg and Old Putten. Doornspijk also has its jewel: country estate Klarenbeek.
Next to the country estate of Zwaluwenburg you will find the A. Vogel gardens, where various kinds of medicinal plants and herbs grow. These are the basis of several homeopathic medicines. The only mill in the municipality of Elburg can be found in Oostendorp: flour mill De Tijd (the time), built in 1854.