City or Town?
A place, barely known to tourist. It’s neither a town nor city but is officially called a township named Venray. Venray is in the middle of farmland, which you’ll quickly notice when you get the occasional whiff of a pungent smell. This smell is so potent, it can’t be ignored regardless of how hard you try.
However, history fans, music, nature and art lovers will enjoy meandering around this remarkable countryside. From the tranquil monasteries turned hotels and the nature reserves to the overwhelming hush on entering the war museum or when visiting the only burial ground of German soldiers in The Netherlands. This quirky and historic place is artistic heaven for those who enjoy exploring art in its individual ways.
Venray, a sleepy town or not?
When you first enter Venray it gives you that feeling of a town barely awake. A quiet, peaceful mellow place with scarcely any people around. Barely anyone is shopping making you wonder how these shops can survive. Hang around long enough and you’ll find that this is only a sham. When annual events come to town you’ll be stunned by the sudden appearance of masses of people. Instantaneously, all outside terraces and restaurants are occupied with neighbours and friends catching up with each other while deafened by the booming raucous music. Two days later it’s like nothing has happened and the town is back to its drowsy, lethargic first impression.
Outside these annual music, sports, religious and carnival events, you’ll find Venray is a great hub of artistic expression. There are nature reserves, monasteries, statues, museums, times when classic cars are shown off, artistic events, numerous walk and cycle routes available.
Living Statues not to be missed
One such artistic annual event are the living statues. If you’re not aware and come for a visit on the day, you’ll see amazing lifelike statues. A sudden movement out of the corner of your eye left your heart pounding. Embarrassed you realised that you jumped and outed a girly scream before recognising that these lifelike statues are living people. These street performers are based in Arnhem but visit Venray in April and perform amazing shows, certainly worth watching. They’re a combination of professionals and amateurs. They're not only providing a unique experience for visitors but raise awareness by letting kids participate. Within ten minutes kids get painted, dressed and learn the art of giving the appearance of a statue which they can then practice on their audience.
Venray is certainly a place worth visiting. Tourists will love soaking up the native culture. Drop by and enjoy searching for the eighty statues (not alive) in the surrounding area created by various artists.