From music and art to history: the Westerkwartier region certainly has its share of wonderful stories to tell. Let us introduce you to ancient churches, monuments and special locks and sluices. See all this and more during a tour du Westerkwartier.  

Jazz in the Westerkwartier

Various locations – Those who are into jazz come to the right place in the Westerkwartier region. Each year, ‘Jazz in Feerwerd’ holds about eight concerts in the mediaeval church of the village of Feerwerd. Take in performances by well-known jazz musicians and new talents from the jazz and improvisation scene. Another wonderful option is De Gast in Zuidhorn, with its stunning gardens where the ‘Jazz te Gast’ festival is scheduled every two years. For a day, the entire village functions as the very centre of European jazz. And then there’s the Zomer Jazz Tour during the last weekend of August. Hop on your bike and cycle to mediaeval churches and barns in the Reitdiepdal, where you can take in concerts by wonderful impro-jazz artists from all over the world.  

Haringeters monument

Niekerk – Sculptor Harm Blanken created the Haringeters – Herring Eaters – monument in 1983 in honour of Menno Jeltema. In 1476, this Niekerk resident left behind a large area of land to the Pepergasthuis hospice in the city of Groningen. He did this, however, on one condition: every year, on the Wednesday prior to Easter, the hospice was to donate a barrel filled with herring to the poor of Niekerk. Although the obligation was bought off in 1979, the Menno Jeltemastichting foundation still honours the tradition. 

Read More


Aduarderzijl – The village of Aduarderzijl has a few special sluices that are really worth seeing. The one dating from 1400 was made from wood and used to discharge the water around the city of Groningen. This sluice was lost to the Martinmas storm flood that took place in the night of 12 to 13 November 1686. Today, the village features two sluices: a western outlet sluice (built in 1706) and an eastern sluice (1867). Those visiting by bike or on foot can take the Reitdiepveer ferry to the other side of the Reitdiep canal. The adjacent campsite is perfect for spending the night, and the rustpunt (rest point) there serves delicious coffee and tea.  

Read More

Waterwolf Monument

Oldehove – The Waterwolf pumping-station monument is located at the Reitdiep canal. One of the largest pumping-stations in the Netherlands, this electric storage basin pumping plant started its high-profile task in 1920: draining water from a large part of the province of Groningen and the northern part of the province of Drenthe. The Waterwolf is still in operation and certainly worth a visit. The nearby hamlet of Electra is also located by the Reitdiep canal, in the beautiful Nationale Landschap Middag Humsterland scenic area. Moor your boat in the harbour or enjoy a dip in the open-air swimming pool.  

Read More

A visit to the churches of Oostum, Midwolde and Fransum

Various locations – Stroll down ancient paths past equally old churches. The Westerkwartier churches in the villages of Oostum, Midwolde and Fransum were built – or partly built – in the late Middle Ages. Known for their storybook ambiance, they all feature objects of interest that are really worth taking in. The church in Oostum has a mediaeval bell depicting the seven apostles, and it is still operated. Then there’s the impressive and famous tomb of the former owners of the Nienoord manor in the church of Midwolde. Finally, the mediaeval pulpit of the church in Fransum is the only one made from bricks instead of wood. As you can see, all of them are certainly worth checking out.

Read More