Stavoren/Starum is the oldest city of the Frisian Eleven Cities, also a Hanseatic city and it was once the home port of Frisian kings and seafarers. Shipping and trade with overseas territories brought Stavoren a lot of prosperity. Many a Viking and Dutch count gladly took advantage of that. After the 18th century, Stavoren faced many setbacks, the greatest of which is expressed in the legend of ‘The female of Stavoren’. She still peers over the old harbour.

Still, Stavoren managed to flourish again. In the summer months it is now lively and cozy. The town is a popular place for many because of the unique location between the IJsselmeer and the Frisian Lakes. The ships of the brown fleet and the fishing vessels are located in the Oude Haven. The impressive ‘JL Hooglandgemaal’, which drains the Frisian reservoir water to the IJsselmeer, runs tirelessly all year round.

And the ferry service between Enkhuizen and Stavoren carries thousands of tourists and cyclists every year.

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Get a stamp?

From March 15 to November 15 you can pick up your stamp at the harbor office of Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven. From November 15 to March 15, the harbor office is closed and the stamp is in a box at the entrance of the harbor office. You can then put the stamp on the card yourself. This box also contains extra stamp cards, you will find the code for the barrier here and in this box you can also leave the payment of € 15 per night in an envelope. This makes getting your stamp a breeze.

From November 1, 2022 to April 1, 2023, the Marina Stavoren motorhome area will be completely closed. All lighting and power connections are switched off and the sanitary facilities are closed. It is still possible to get a stamp at the secretariat of Marina Stavoren inner harbor (Middelweg 15). This secretariat is open from 8.30 am to 4.30 pm. You can also pick up the Stavoren stamp at Camperplaats Leeuwarden. You can find it in the Trustbox.

RV Park Stavoren

The camper place of Stavoren is Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven . The camper places are located at marina Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven. A unique location, outside the dikes and a stone’s throw from the IJsselmeer. The beautiful panoramic view over the IJsselmeer radiates towards you from all sides. The motorhome is 500 m from the center. The place has a few power points, there is free wifi and there are sanitary facilities. There is also a playground, a beach and an indoor swimming pool and a croissanterie for the morning. Beach pavilion De Potvis is close to the campsite. You can come here for a tasty lunch, a nice drink with snacks, coffee with cake or an extensive dinner.

The indoor swimming pool and the croissanterie are open from April 1 to October 31. If the main toilet block and the beach block are closed during the winter months, the disabled toilet, at the back of the large toilet block in the middle of the harbour, will be open.

What to do in Stavoren?

Nowadays there is a lot to do in Stavoren. We have listed the best things!

1. Fountain

The Visfontein of Stavoren is also part of the 11 fountains. This fountain represents the changing times that Stavoren has known. The fountain was made by Mark Dion and is a nod to Pieter Bruegel’s symbolic print ‘How big fish eat little ones!’ Just as Stavoren is often eaten by the ‘greats’.

From the fountain you can take a walking tour that takes you along all the highlights of Stavoren.

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2. Museum Toankamer 't Ponthús

Toankamer ‘t Ponthús . should not be missed during your visit to Stavoren. Because although Stavoren is the oldest city in Friesland, much has been lost due to floods, wars and economic decline. Fortunately, a number of unique sights have been preserved and restored where necessary. In the Ponthús, the illustrious history of Stavoren is brought back to life. You will find various exhibitions and a fixed timeline. When you walk by here, you can read all about the sights that Stavoren still has to offer and about the events that took place in this city. Walking around Stavoren will be even more fun afterwards!

The address of Toankamer ‘t Ponthús is Hellingspad 10-12, 8715 HT Stavoren. The musuem is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 1.30 pm to 5 pm. The museum is closed from November to April. The entrance is €4 for adults. Children up to 12 years are free. The museum is also accessible with the Museum Jaarkaart. The museum is closed from November to April.

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3. Lady of Stavoren

The statue of the Vrouwtje van Stavoren is standing in the harbor, gazing over the IJsselmeer. Legend has it that she was very rich, but also very dissatisfied. She had asked one of her skippers to come back with a hold full of gold. He returned with a hold full of grain, because he thought it much more precious than gold. After all, you can make food out of it and fill a lot of stomachs with it. The female didn’t want to know anything about it and asked her skipper to throw the grain overboard. Slowly an island of waving grass arose on that spot. The islet kept more and more sand, until a sandbar formed that was so large that the ships could no longer reach the harbor. This is how the glorious times in Stavoren came to an end.

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4. The Port

The port of Stavoren is now easily accessible again. Because the city is surrounded on three sides by the IJsselmeer and the Johan Friso lock, Stavoren is the perfect place for a beautiful boating holiday through Friesland. If you prefer to spend your holiday in the camper, you can also choose to spend an afternoon on the water.

In the fishing harbor you will find beautiful houses, which resemble the houses in Copenhagen. You will also find beautiful harbor lights and the lighthouse of Stavoren on the harbor head.

The railway harbor is also worth a visit. The train arrived here with which you could easily take the ferry between Stavoren and Enkhuizen in the time when the Afsluitdijk did not yet exist. You could board the next train in Enkhuizen. The steam ferry that transported goods and livestock was also moored in the Spoorhaven. The loaded train carriages did not have to be emptied, because they were towed to the steam ferry via a bridge with rails. In Enkhuizen they could also continue by rail. After the construction of the Afsluitdijk, the ferry was no longer needed. The remains of the harbor have now been restored and a replica of the bridge has been made. You can read all the information about the ferry and the port on the information boards.

Today a ferry still sails between Stavoren and Enkhuizen. It is no longer used for goods. Unfortunately, the camper can not come, the bicycle can.

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5. Monuments

In Stavoren you will find a few other monuments in addition to the railway harbor. One of these is the Blokhuis. A military defense in a strategic place. It was built by Emperor Charles V. to control the Frisians in 1525. The Blokhuis stood there until about 1580. Today, a large work of art made of steel, concrete and glass can be seen on the old foundations.
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6. The St. odulphus path

the st. Odulphus Pad is a 260 kilometer long path right through Southwest Friesland. This trail is named after St. Odulphus who came to Friesland from Brabant to convert inhabitants to Christianity. He founded a monastery near Stavoren, but unfortunately that has disappeared in the Zuiderzee.

The walking path is an old pilgrimage route that you can still (partly) walk. The path is divided into parts. Part number 3 is 17 kilometers long and passes the monastery in Hemelum. This is where the monks went when the other monastery disappeared into the sea.

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7. Walking

Would you like to discover all the beauty of Stavoren on foot? From the Camperplaats Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven you can walk past the Hoogland Gemaal via the Watersportwinkel. This pumping station has the largest capacity in Europe. Then you walk over the main entrance gate towards the Frisian Lakes; the Johan Friso lock. The lock connects the Johan Friso Canal with the IJsselmeer. Walk further via the Schans, along the canal of Stavoren. There are several nice shops here, including ‘De Binnenhaven’ fashion – living & gifts and ‘Buuf Jelly’ the nicest shop on the IJsselmeer. Arriving on the Hellingspad you walk past Bianca’s Kinderkleding and ‘t Ponthús. If you haven’t been there yet, you can visit ‘t Ponthús directly, but you can also continue your way to the Oude Haven where the Vrouwtje van Stavoren is still gazing over the harbour. You will also find the fountain here. Further in the harbor is the Staverse Fishing Fleet. Via the seawall with a beautiful view over the IJsselmeer you walk back to the camper Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven via the Johan Frisoluis.

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8. Cycling

Do you have the bikes with you? Discover the area by bike. Within cycling distance you will find three other Eleven Towns. If you don’t have time to ride the entire route, you can still get your stamps on your bike. Hindeloopen is only 11 km away, Workum is 17 km from Stavoren and the town of Sloten can be reached via a beautiful trip through the Gaasterland forests 24 km away. Didn’t bring bicycles? No worries! You can rent bicycles through the port office of Marina Stavoren Buitenhaven.

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