Frequently asked questions

Questions about registration and starter pack

Registration for the Walk of Wisdom is done by making a one-time donation to the foundation. The foundation then provides the starter package. You decide when you leave and how you plan the tour.

The starter pack includes the route guide, a 99mm pin of the symbol of the route and the pilgrim’s lace: a shoelace with the bird ring attached to it with your unique registration number. On the shoelace you collect 11 bird rings with the names of the municipalities along the route as proof that you have walked the route.

You can sign up for one pilgrim, for someone else as a gift or for several pilgrims. Minor children pay less registration fee.

After registration and payment, you will receive the starter pack. On the basis of the route guide and the overnight addresses, you can plan your trip yourself. Tip: come to one of our (free) departure ceremonies: agenda.

In the Stevenskerk, a list of participants is kept of everyone who starts and finishes the Walk of Wisdom (our ‘big book’). To be written to this, you can report to the manager during opening hours when you return. Upon return, your pilgrim certificate will also be signed here, the missing bird rings will be replenished.

Church closed?
When the Stevenskerkkerk is closed, you can ring the bell at Stevenskerkhof 62. If no one answers, you can send an email to [email protected] to be added to the list of participants.

The Walk of Wisdom with just a route guide?

No, you can’t. If you want a nice walk, there are plenty of options in the Netherlands. We want the pilgrimage route to grow into more than just a walking route. The route guide is therefore part of the starter pack for pilgrims, which also contains the other characteristics of the tour.

Look at for beautiful walking routes, e.g. to the Streekpad Nijmegen on which the Walk of Wisdom is inspired and which follows a similar line around Nijmegen: link!

If you don’t want to pay shipping costs, you can choose ‘Pick up in the Nijmegen Stevens Church’ when registering.

Please note:

  • This only applies to starter packs for one pilgrim. Starter packs for multiple pilgrims can only be obtained by post. This is to keep it clear for the volunteers of the Stevenskerk.
  • You must then pick up the package within one week.
  • You will receive an email confirming payment. This is your proof of collection. You can show it on your phone.
  • Click here for the current opening hours of the Stevenskerk: link. Ask inside for manager Rens (usually present between eleven and four).
  • Church closed? Try to ring the doorbell at Stevenskerkhof 62.
  • The manager is a volunteer and sometimes has a grandpa day! Tip: first go to the Stevenskerk and register when it is there via your mobile. You will immediately receive a confirmation email.

In the pilgrim shop of the Flemish Compostela Society in Mechelen (B.) it is no longer possible at the moment.

Children have the wisdom! Or so they say. Therefore, children pay less registration fee when they run together with an adult. Look at the starter pack for two or more people via this link.

You can sign up as a group of two or three people via this link. For more than one person, please contact us: link.

Do you want to walk with a group of six pilgrims or more? Order multiple packages at the same time or contact us (link). Take a look at our digital overnight list for group accommodations. This list is included in the confirmation email of your registration if you arrange it via the website or ask for it at our pilgrim office on [email protected].

Own departure ceremony

In consultation, we can organize a separate departure ceremony for groups, a moment to mark the start of the tour together. For foundations, we do this free of charge if possible. For companies and private coaches, we ask for a contribution for the Valkhof Chapel and the musician and possibly. the master of ceremonies. The amount depends on the type of organization.

As a group, you can always join our monthly departure ceremony on every third Saturday, which is free of charge. Please contact us in advance due to a limited number of places.

Questions about route and accommodation

The route is marked everywhere with the exception of the Reichswald in Germany, where we do not have permission. However, you can also walk the route quite easily there thanks to the route guide with 34 detailed maps and point-by-point description.

Still afraid of getting lost in the Reichswald?

GPS on device or mobile

A GPS track is available for pilgrims. Don’t have one yet? Request this via [email protected] stating your registration number.
If you don’t have a GPS device, you can download the app gpx viewer (Android) or For this last app, ask for the separate GPS track in KML format.

Alternative route

B&B In den Elsen in Kranenburg has an alternative route through the Bruuk nature reserve. You will miss (large) parts of the beautiful Reichswald, but if you prefer, you can email the owner John for help: [email protected].

John also e-mailed us an overview map of the Reichswald, which is divided into numbered, rectangular plots (“Hunting”). You will often find white stones with those numbers in the forest at many intersections. If you’re afraid of getting lost, you can use this overview map to find your way back. You can download the map via this link: link.

Walk the route consecutively: that’s our advice! Then you can best get away from ‘the daily things’ and experience the pilgrim feeling of being on the road.

Of course, if you want to do things differently for whatever reason, you have to decide for yourself. Patricia Akkermans made a public transport schedule to go home by public transport at the end of each stage: link.

How do I plan my journeys?

We like to leave that up to the pilgrims themselves. It depends on your fitness level, temperament, the time you have, and the way you want to walk the Walk of Wisdom. Our advice: take it easy, then you will have more time for yourself and enjoy the surroundings more. For your information:

  • Especially the first 60 kilometers are experienced as very beautiful and varied, with un-Dutch height differences and absolute top nature reserves that you enjoy lingering in.
  • The first half is the toughest with quite a bit of climbing and descending on mainly unpaved paths. Few experienced runners would do well to plan carefully here. For example, plan short routes of 15 kilometers in the first few days. Or spend the first night in the Ooijpolder, directly from the center of Nijmegen. Then you’ll be on the road the next day. After 60 kilometers it flattens out and with paved sections.
  • Take a rest day halfway through and then stay somewhere for two nights to write, draw, loiter.
  • Including host families, there are many places to stay in Nijmegen and Ooij at 7 kilometers, at 11-17 kilometers (Ubbergen/Beek), 25-30 kilometers (Kranenburg/Reichswald), 50-55 kilometers (Mook/Malden), 63-68 kilometers (Hatertse Vennen), 80 kilometers (including the 18th century monastery in Velp), then spread out and again a lot around Beuningen (125-128).
  • At Laatste nieuws there is a public transport schedule for those who want to walk in étappes and return by public transport at the end of each journey.

A GPS track is available for pilgrims. Don’t have one yet? Request this via [email protected] stating your registration number. It also includes a GPS track in KML format if you don’t have a GPS device and want to download an app on your phone.

Pilgrims advise: the app gpx viewer or organic maps (Android and I-phone) or (Android).

Note: download or update and install the app before downloading the GPS track, otherwise it will not work. What can also help: download the track and then email it to yourself. Often you can open the track. It is now no longer a link to the file, but the file itself.

Can’t figure it out? We have a group on facebook ‘pilgrims of the Walk of Wisdom’ who are happy to help you. Here is the explanation of one of the pilgrims:

Another detailed guide on how to import the track into can be found here: link.

Overview of overnight addresses

The starter pack contains a route guide with addresses of B&Bs that sponsor us, including campsites and hotels along the route. A sponsored list of B&Bs can also be found on the site (link).

Do you want the full list including host families? In the confirmation email of your registration you will find a printable list of all addresses, including host families where you can stay for a voluntary contribution or rate friends on the bike.

Group accommodation

Are you looking for places to stay for groups? The full list also indicates where you can go with groups, based on experiences of coaches and other groups.

Short on budget?

  • Make use of the host families via the above-mentioned printable address list.
  • Join friends on a bike. For only €8,- you have a large stock of +- 75 host families on the route where you can sleep with breakfast in people’s homes for little money.
  • Another option: couchsurfing. This is free of charge.

Mail [email protected] stating your registration number if you do not have the confirmation email (anymore) to get the address list.

Spending the night on a small budget

  • Several sleeping addresses give discounts to pilgrims on presentation of their pilgrim shoelace. There are also special host families for WoW pilgrims. To do this, use the digital address list that you will receive after registration, including host families. Don’t have the list? Mail [email protected] quoting your registration number.
  • Join Friends on the Bike and Couchsurfing. There are +- 75 addresses of Friends on the Bicycle on the way and becoming a member is less than a tenner.
  • Go camping or pitch a tent at camping de But in Groesbeek and come back here every day. Private piece of forest and easily accessible by public transport until late in the evening (bus 5 Nijmegen-Groesbeek).
We are regularly asked whether it is best to arrange overnight stays in advance or during the walk itself. The answer is: this is a style difference! Some people like to have the security and peace of mind of an affordable place to stay while walking. The other person walks in confidence and freedom that it will be okay and wants to see where it ends on the day itself.
A few considerations:
  • In the summer and during festivals or holidays, the style of surrender and trust is sometimes difficult. All accommodation options are then fully booked. Check in advance if there are any busy events or festivals. In any case, pay attention to when the Four Days Marches is (July).
  • Pilgrims who arrange their own overnight stays while walking do so, for example, during lunchtime. Then they still have enough time to walk a little further or stop earlier, depending on the spot they find.
  • Always use our mailing list including host families.
  • become a member of Friends on the Bike or the free couchsurfing for a few euros. Then you have more options (at Vrienden op de Fiets about 75 families). Host families sometimes indicate that they would prefer you to book a day in advance, then they are prepared.
  • public transport around Nijmegen is good, you are close to a connection to the city in many places, where there will often be a place.
  • If necessary, ask an overnight address – sweet – if they can pick you up if you are stranded somewhere. An angelic service that they often provide in an emergency! Of course, you can’t demand it and a voluntary mileage allowance is neat.
  • You can also walk all night if you can’t find anything. No joke: one of our pilgrims did this and had a magical experience.
  • You can also set up a tent or caravan in a fixed spot and travel there by public transport at the end of the day. O Or they tip: camping de But in Groesbeek. A very quiet campsite that is easily accessible from Nijmegen Central Station every day until midnight by public transport (bus 5).
  • you can also book a B&B in Nijmegen for a whole week to feel at home while you’re out and about. Fly out and come back whenever you feel like it…

There are many campsites along the route, see our accommodation list. Do you want a camper or tent in a fixed place and always return to it? Tip: camping de But in Groesbeek. Very quiet campsite with its own piece of forest and easily accessible by public transport until late in the evening (bus 5 Nijmegen-Groesbeek).

To help you on your way, here is a brief overview (dated July 27, 2021)

List of campsites

  • Ooijpolder (route map 4): camping de Weijde Blick.
  • Duivelsberg (route map 6+7): mini campsite Wylerberg.
  • Groesbeek – Kranenburg (maps 8 and 9): various.
  • Groesbeek/Reichswald (route map 11 and 12): camping de Zoete Aagt and the Geuldert, the Diepen.
  • Hatertse Vennen (route map 18): camping Sint Walrick and the Eijkelaar.
  • Ravenstein (route map 23), NCC campsite.
  • Hernen (route map 25): campsite Zus en Zus.
  • Bergharen (route map 28): camping de Morgenster.
  • Winssen (route map 31): camping de Muk (slightly off the route).
  • Beuningen (route map 31): B&B de Sprokkeltuin, tent in the garden.
  • Interesting new: Slijk-Ewijk (route map 31, only if the foot ferry sails): camping de Camping.

A non-exhaustive list based on tips (update July 2020). Mail us for additions!

  • Ubbergen: the Elegast (former girls’ boarding school). Beautiful with pilgrim discount and organic breakfast-
  • Beek: hotel Sous Eglises, several separate rooms, also two people. With a popular café. Good experiences with previous groups.
  • Beek: Pastorie Beek, three double rooms each to be expanded with 1 extra bed, so 9 in total. Very nicely cared for with beautiful garden and dining space. Can accommodate even more guests through a friendly B&B and hotel Sous Eglises is just around the corner.
  • Groesbeek: glamping Bij Ons, just before you enter Kranenburg, at the former railway track, beautiful luxury pitched tents, tipis and wagons including bedding campfire options, nature reserve, owner arranges breakfast if necessary
  • Kranenburg: Rivendel, retreat center, in need of renovation according to some
  • Groesbeek: camping Zoete Aagt, at the end of Reichswald or near Jansberg/Plasmolen. Have a few beautifully maintained cottages/gypsy wagons and beautiful orangery for breakfast
  • Groesbeek: campsite on the lateral moraine, near Mookerheide, holiday home good experiences previous group
  • Mook: inn t Zwaantje, family restaurant/inn fourth generation, edge of the forest, luxury breakfast you can also eat and sit on a terrace, forest chapel under your own management, stop Walk of Wisdom,
  • Groesbeek at Zweefinn Malden, conference center De Poort, well cared for, in the middle of the woods, you can also eat there in the evening
  • HatertseVennen, camping de Drie Linden, also hikers’ cabins and group accommodation with its own kitchen, good experiences previous group
  • Velp, near Grave, 18th century monastery Avant Spirit/with the Capuchins, many good experiences beautiful own monastery forest, chosen as one of the three quietest places in the Netherlands in 2011
  • Herpen (near Ravenstein) Het Voorhuis Only from Monday to Thursday for 1 night, otherwise min. 2. nights. Out of the route, but pick you up if you indicate it in time.
  • Ravenstein, the Keurvorst city inn, the Walk of Wisdom stop, in the middle of the beautiful historic town with restaurant and terrace
  • Niftrik, hotel Hoogeerd, stop Walk of Wisdom
  • Hernen, B&B de Terp, near Hernen Castle, cordial owners

If you don’t want to come by public transport, but by car, you can park it for free in a few ways. The tips come from our Facebook group ‘pilgrims of the Walk of Wisdom’, a good place for the most recent info, tips and help.

  • Park your car at the Limoskazerne on the Groesbeekseweg in Nijmegen. From there 1.5 kilometers to the Stevenskerk or bus 5 to the center.
  • Nijmegen-Oost is the safest area of Nijmegen, you can park your car for a week in a number of places where there is no paid parking yet with little risk and by bus or on foot to the center (overview of pay zones).
  • Park your car at Ravenstein station and travel to Nijmegen by train.

The Walk of Wisdom with a dog

With the exception of three places, you can walk the route everywhere with a dog, although you will have to keep it on a leash in nature reserves during the breeding season (March-July). At the entrance of each area, take a good look at the sign of the nature manager. At route map 4, after leaving the Ooijpolder and crossing the pedestrian bridge, please keep your dog on a leash up to and including the Rijksstraatweg.

When you walk past meadows where cows graze, put your dog on a leash and clean up the poop. The feces of dogs can carry a bacterium (neospora) that causes miscarriages in pregnant cows, as a pilgrim you don’t want to be the instigator of that.

Exceptions for dogs

There are three places where you have to make a detour because the dog is not welcome:

  • Route map 3, at dot 7 you can’t go through the gate. Turn right here and take the first street on the left (Kruisstraat). At a fork in the road, keep left (Koudedijk) and go straight on at the crossroads. Here you come together with the route (map 4, dot 5) and walk to the pedestrian ferry.
  • Roadmap 22, at the Keent nature reserve, there is a temporary dog ban at the grazing areas for the primeval cattle. You can walk through Keent, but stay on the main (quiet) road and don’t wander. At dot 5 you don’t turn left onto the footpath, but keep walking straight ahead on the road. You will then pass an information center and a café/terrace. Keep following the road, which turns into the Keentseweg (dot 6).
  • Route map 27, at dot 10 you are not allowed to go left through the hedge. Dogs are not allowed in the Elzent. Therefore, keep walking straight ahead on the Elzendweg. The route ends here again at route map 28, dot 3.

Overnight stays with the dog

In the digital list of host families that you will receive after registration, it is regularly indicated at which address a dog is welcome. Don’t have one? Please send an e-mail to [email protected] stating your registration number as a pilgrim.

If you have Facebook: join ‘pilgrims of the Walk of Wisdom’. Here you can read about previous experiences or ask pilgrims who have already walked questions.

Photo in the Stevenskerk

Many pilgrims want a photo of themselves in front of the 2.2-metre-high statue of our symbol that is nailed to the inner wall of the Stevens Church. Officially, dogs are not allowed in the church, but some volunteers turn a blind eye. Ask politely and if you can’t, be respectful of the dutiful nature of the volunteer on duty: thanks to him or her, the church is open at all!


The Walk of Wisdom is meant to be a pilgrimage route: what is going on inside you is more important than what can be seen outside of you.

That does not alter the fact that, according to many, we have a beautiful route. You will go through three provinces and two countries, from new wilderness in the Ooijpolder to un-Dutch height differences in Berg en Dal, a vast forest (Reichswald), one of the most beautiful forests in the Netherlands (Jansberg), the Mookerhei, the marshes of the Hatertse Vennen and old fortified towns such as Grave and Ravenstein and the seigneury of Leur and Hernen.

One of the few castles in the Netherlands that has never been besieged (Hernen) is located on the route, as is a special open-air cloister by artist Jac Maris (Bergharen). The starting and ending point is the self-proclaimed oldest city in the Netherlands: Nijmegen. The face of that city is our starting point: the medieval Stevens Church. Be sure to look for a canonized woman with a beard (Sint Ontcommer) and a large version of our symbol Pilgrim, which is screwed to a wall.

More information about the route.

There are pilgrims who, because of restrictions or for comfort, ask for luggage transport. Here are a few tips:

  • Stay with a B&B or host family in Nijmegen for a week. From many places on the route you can easily take the bus back to the center of Nijmegen. Saves luggage and you have a feeling of coming home. In the guide, each map shows where a public transport stop is.
  • BnB Veldzicht in Horssen near Bergharen and Maria van den Heuvel in Hernen will pick you up anywhere on the route. You can also eat with them. At other B&Bs, a pick-up service is sometimes also offered.
  • Set up a tent or caravan at campsite de But in Groesbeek. This is easily accessible until late in the evening by public transport, bus 5 Nijmegen-Groesbeek, get off at the Dekkerswald stop.

Luggage transport

For a small fee, some B&Bs will take your luggage to the next address. Please note that it is not a right, but a service when it suits you! So coordinate in advance, also about the costs.

  • Beek (route map 5) B&B Pastorie Beek.
  • Mook (route map 13 and 14) Herberg ‘t Zwaantje.
  • Mook and Malden (route map 14-17) B&B Aan de Bagijnstraat.
  • Malden (route map 15 and 16) B&B Malden forest edge.
  • Ravenstein (route map 23) City inn the Elector.
  • Beuningen (route map 31) B&B de Sprokkeltuin.

Other questions

Our first chapter of the new Book of Hours On the Road to Wisdom is a PDF. This file format often cannot be read on an e-reader. However, it is possible:

The Stevenskerk is not only a church building, but also an inspiring and cultural meeting point in one of the most beautiful monuments of Nijmegen. Concerts are given and Radboud University holds its ceremonies here. Once you’ve been there, you’ll probably understand why we chose it as the center of the route.

We were looking for something that connects across the boundaries of culture and country and at the same time invites us to deepen our knowledge. That has become wisdom. Everyone has a source of wisdom: your intuition and experience, the ability to learn from others or nature. Wisdom transcends pure self-interest and at the same time is not woolly. No one can decide for another what wisdom is, it depends on the person and the situation. You can’t force wisdom, it needs space. A pilgrimage is such a space.

We use an English word, because of our ambition to grow a global route. English is the lingua franca of our time. We don’t yet know what wisdom is in Chinese.

By the way, we have a solid English subtitle: ‘path of your own wisdom’.

We are sometimes asked if the route is safe to walk as a woman alone. Some women are particularly reluctant to walk alone in the vast Reichswald (route map 10-12). As a foundation, we can only give tips on how to deal with this. Walking the tour is your own responsibility and you will have to act as you see fit as you do on other occasions. So far, we are not aware of any major incidents.

Tips for when you don’t feel safe:

  • Bring a whistle.
  • Bring a walking stick or find a temporary, large stick in the woods.
  • Keep a cell phone in your pocket.
  • Ask a friend to walk with you for a while.
  • ask in our facebook group ‘pilgrims of the Walk of Wisdom’ if you can walk with others.
  • Join us through the series of silent walks ‘the Walk of Wisdom in a year round’ or a guided walking week (see agenda, below).
Nature is beautiful, but not only sweet: around Nijmegen you also run the risk of being bitten by the small leech called tick. A tick can be infected with Lyme and make you sick if you don’t remove it within 24 hours.
A few tips
  • Ticks do not fall from trees, but climb up from the ground to tall grass and bushes. Check yourself carefully if you have walked through this.
  • Wear long pants and tuck the legs into your socks. The tick climbs up over your pants, finds no meat to bite into and lets go (bye!).
  • On the WoW route you will encounter tall grass, especially in the Ooijpolder, after the Duivelsberg (Groesbeek) and in the Reichswald

Where there are oak trees, the processionary caterpillar can be found and that is also on many parts of the Walk of Wisdom.

You can find a lot of information on Wikipedia: link.

Keep in mind that not everyone is equally bothered by it and that the chance of nuisance is greatest when the wind blows, because then the hairs spread through the air. Here are a few tips from B&B in den Elsen in Kranenburg, near the Reichswald:

  • Where the nests are, walk as much as possible with body-covering clothing
  • Before you take a break, check if there are any oaks with nests nearby. Also take the wind into account. The hairs are also dispersed by the wind. Abandoned nests also contain stinging hairs. These remain active for up to 7 years.
  • If you do get itchy, don’t scratch but use tape to remove the (invisible) hairs and shower afterwards. Rinse clothes as well.
  • Still itching despite tape and shower? Then use menthol ointment.

Photos Wikipedia.
Below oak leaf by Roger Griffith (Wikipedia)