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Schouwen-Duiveland is a clear expression of Zeeland, or ‘Land-on-Sea’. Surrounded by the North Sea, the Oosterschelde National Park and the Grevelingen lake, it is a maritime marvel. To its south-west, the Oosterschelde flood barrier, and over to the east, the flood disaster Watersnoodmuseum, are incredible monuments that portray their strong relationship with the sea.


Paula Hanse

Policy advisor Leisure & Economic affairs

“We are the first generation to experience climate change and the last to do something about it” (Barack Obama – 2016).

This quote reflects exactly the urgency of the problem. As a municipality, we no longer want to contribute to global warming. That is why we are working hard to be completely energy neutral by 2040. Both energy savings and sustainable energy will be deployed.

Eric Caspers

Strategic advisor / group programming

“As a real scoutsman I’m inspired by the statement of Lord Baden Powell, founding father of the world wide Scouts Movement: “Leave the world a little better behind than you have found her.” Another great quote of him: “We must from a ‘what can I get’ to a ‘what can I give’ attitude.” Principles that contributes to a better world for our children and grandchildren. To keep up a solid and sustainable eco-system from a perspective of preserving natural but also environmental and societal values is the challenge of my generation in order to pass the world along in a way our children deserve.”

Visitor Management

Visitor management is key to the sustainability of the destination. It entails the regulation of activities and visitor flows in order to avoid negative and support positive impacts. In Schouwen-Duiveland, the use of the Zeelandpas and periodic surveys by the Knowledge Center for Coastal Tourism, allow to periodically investigate the impact of tourism on the destination. In addition, site managers exercise supervision to monitor the impact on nature reserves and in public spaces and, if necessary, to take measures to reduce the impact.


Interested in knowing more about how Schouwen-Duiveland takes action to become a sustainable destination? Click below to find out more

Nature and Sustainability
In Schouwen-Duiveland, you can find the biggest National Park in the Netherlands and the greatest forest in the province of Zeeland.
Read more here
Environment and Climate
The Delta Works is one of the most revolutionary hydraulic engineering projects in the world.
Read more here
Culture and Tradition
The Strao event only takes place on Schouwen- Duiveland and dates from 1643.
Read more here
Local life
DID YOU KNOW? The Oosterschelde lobster is a unique and isolated species that needs to be fished sustainably.
Read more here
The Netherlands has the most Green Key certificate holders worldwide.
Read more here


Get to know Schouwen-Duiveland‘s green offer. Click here to find out all green businesses and activities available in this destination.

Sustainable Schouwen-Duiveland

Nature protection

There are many projects that enhance the experience of nature and accessibility of nature in Schouwen Duiveland.

The Oosterschelde is the largest National Park in the Netherlands. It is a unique and dynamic nature reserve. Thanks to the alternation of ebb and flow and the presence of salt and fresh water, thousands of species of birds, plants and animals live there, including seals and porpoises!


You’re allowed to collect mussels, oysters and periwinkles from the stones in the tidal zone but no shellfish such as crabs and lobsters may be caught or taken. Not even in small quantities!


Nature & wildlife experience

Apart from the National Park, management plans have been established for almost all Natura 2000 areas, for example, the Kop van Schouwen which is a Natura 2000 area in the ‘dunes’ category on the west side of Schouwen-Duiveland. Since 1978 the area has been designated as a protected natural monument and since 1988 as a state natural monument. Parts of those areas are fully or partially closed off for species protection and to avoid disturbance.

Natural resource protection

Schouwen Duiveland’s municipality is truly engaged with nature protection and conducts a lobby if nature values ​​are compromised. A recent example is a lobby with fishing as a result of the wrong bank of the bank in the Oosterschelde, as a result of which bottom life on the banks has disappeared. Rijkswaterstaat is now going to repair this.

Invasive alien species

The Japanese Oyster, native to the Pacific coast of Asia, is considered an invasive species and provincial plans to prevent its spread have been implemented. Nevertheless, recent investigations discovered that the competitive Japanese oyster is facilitating the return of its Dutch cousin, the Flat Oyster which nearly disappeared last century – only one island population in Lake Grevelingen survived!

This recent research revealed that Flat oysters predominantly use shell fragments from Japanese oysters as settlement substrate.


For a good nature experience in line with the versatile landscape of the island, it is nice to be able to enjoy quietly. For this purpose, special ‘viewer’ benches have been placed in various places overlooking nature.

Landscape & Scenery

The municipality attaches great importance to the preservation of landscapes and landscape beauty. A landscape vision has been drawn up for the countryside. New initiatives are tested against the vision, but the landscape beauty is also looked into by, among other things, maintaining the darkness, avoiding light pollution.

Public transport

Transferium Park and Ride (P+R) is the smartest and most responsible way for drivers to park their car on the outskirts of Renesse and take the many public transport lines to discover Shouwen Duiveland’s nature and beaches as well as the history such as the bunkers in the Kop van Schouwen. This system encourages both visitors and residents to explore the nature reserves and beaches on foot and by bike at the same time avoids excessive traffic. Moreover, free parking areas are available on the outskirts of Zierikzee so visitors are led from here to the center on foot.


The municipality has subsidized the purchase of electric scooters that are used by tourists.

Soft mobility

One of the main sustainable objectives of Schouwen Duiveland’s municipality is to promote bicycle use, starting by updating the junction system in line with the ambitions of the Province of Zeeland to become a 5-star cycling province. Moreover, in 2013 a network of 300 kilometers of footpaths on the island was realized.

All walking and cycling routes on the island can be requested via the website of VVV Zeeland

Waste separation

If you’re traveling to the Netherlands, just remember this bin color code:

  • GREEN bin for the biodegradable waste 
  • BLUE bin for paper collection
  • YELLOW bin for the plastics
  • RED bin for the household chemicals, batteries, etc..
  • GREEN containers for clothing


There are ‘return and earn’ machines stationed in all supermarkets; simply place your bottles and cans one by one on the slot, and the system calculates the pant value you get with each one. Get money for recycling!


Schouwen Duiveland’s is working on the energy transition to be energy neutral by 2040, meaning that all energy that is needed will be is generated within the municipality boundaries in a sustainable and/or renewable way.

Climate Change information

To know more about Climate Change and its effects, there is the Watersnoodmuseum, the national knowledge and remembrance center that tells the story of the Flood of ’53, about the reconstruction, about the Delta Works and stories about water safety.

It also includes an exhibition on climate change and possible effects with an explanation of what you can do yourself, virtual reality gadgets to simulate this and testimonies of elderly people that experienced the disaster.

Cultural heritage conservation

Schouwen Duiveland’s municipality owns more than 1,200 national and municipal monuments. Of these, national monuments are the most important, followed by the 9 museums on the island.

Managing tourism impacts on culture

With the development of tourism, investments have been made in the quality of cultural heritage, to open it up, to eliminate congestion problems, to focus on environmental improvement, etc. The latest investments, particularly in completing the National Ecological Network, are now being made. With regional products and events, the attention for the local identity has increased enormously and this is an important part of the tourism-based product of Schouwen Duiveland.

Intangible heritage

The towns, villages, monuments and landscapes on Schouwen-Duiveland tell many stories. Stories of ordinary people who have created buildings and worked and the land. But also stories and traditions of special events that have taken place over the centuries and special people who have lived on their island. These mostly unique stories make them who they are today.


The unique intangible heritage of this island is Strao which dates from 1643 and takes place in the six villages on Schouwen in the period February-March. Horses and their riders head for the beach to rinse the horse’s legs after the winter all dressed in traditional customs. Find more information here.

Promoting local products and services

Schouwen Duiveland’s municipality has recognized a number of regional products: Oosterschelde lobster, Oosterschelde Mossel, Oyster, Krukels and Mesheften. There is also sea vegetables there. Seacoral and sea lavender grow on the border between land and water. Formerly food for poor people, nowadays a true delicacy! Find more about Schouwen Duiveland’s local products here.

Get involved!

The initiative “I have a link with Schouwen-Duiveland” seeks to promote Schouwen Duiveland in terms of living, working and staying and seeks to involve residents, visitors and workers in many of the events that take place in the island. All the actions are available on this website.

If you are more interested in nature, the environment and sustainability, the NME Center offers courses, organizes excursions and carries out activities in Schouwen-Duiveland, you can check their events here.

Emergency numbers:

The Netherlands country code is +31

In case of real emergency, please use 112. This number is is the emergency number for fire, police and ambulance throughout Europe.

Lost or Found Something?

In this case, go to, register what you lost and see if it is found. Always do a theft online declaration via in case of theft or visit the policiebureau. If you have found something, use the same website, if no one comes to collect the object after one year, you can keep it.

All certifications or recognitions that are mentioned on the map are listed here, learn more about them:

The ” Green Key” certification

Green Key is the international quality mark for sustainable companies in the leisure and leisure industry and business market. Companies with a Green Key quality mark do everything they can to save the environment without sacrificing comfort and quality for their guests. They go one step further than the normal laws and regulations require.

More information about Green key here

The ” ECEAT ” certification

European Centre for Ecological and Agricultural Tourism is the leading European organisation in the field of hundreds small-scale accommodations and tourist services all over Europe, offering sustainable quality of tourist services and approves their contribution to local communities and protection of the environment.

More information about ECEAT here

The ” Blue Flag ” certification

The iconic Blue Flag is one of the world’s most recognised voluntary eco-labels awarded to beaches, marinas, and sustainable boating tourism operators. In order to qualify for the Blue Flag, a series of stringent environmental, educational, safety, and accessibility criteria must be met and maintained.

More information about Blue Flag here

The European Environment Agency (EEA) is an agency of the European Union, whose task is to provide sound, independent information on the environment. The EEA aims to support sustainable development by helping to achieve significant and measurable improvement in Europe’s environment, through the provision of timely, targeted, relevant and reliable information to policymaking agents and the public.

More information about EEA and the state of bathing water here


The EerlijkWinkelen Foundation aims to show consumers the way to stores that sell fair trade, organic and/or second-hand products. The attention for sustainability and the range of sustainable products is growing in cities.

More information about EerlijkWinkelen Foundation here


Zeker Zeeuws Foundation

Zeeuws Streekproduct is an independently recognized regional quality mark that guarantees that a product is truly Zeeland. This means that it has been grown, cultivated, fished or produced with Zeeland raw materials in Zeeland. Moreover, this has been done in a sustainable manner, with respect for the environment, people and animals.

More information about Zeker Zeeuws Foundation here


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