Bijlmer Arena Station Starting point
The Bijlmermeer lake was drained in 1627. It was then used to graze cows until the city of Amsterdam began to expand so much in the 1960s that a large-scale new residential district was planned here. The progressive concept for that time included a strict separation between living, working and recreation, and between car, bicycle and pedestrian traffic. There were also a lot of green areas, where city residents could relax. Zuidoost is still one of the greenest districts of Amsterdam.
- The Nelson Mandelaroute (yellow) runs through the former Bijlmerpark which was renamed the Nelson Mandelapark in 2014, in tribute to the former president of South Africa. Originally there were a lot more trees, but after the renovation in 2010 the park acquired a more varied character with more sports fields, playgrounds and water features. The Kwakoe Summer Festival has been organised here every year since 1975.
- The Arenaroute (red) is a longer circular walk that leads along the Ouderkerkplas lake. A nice surprise are the paths through the young forest planting in the De Nieuwe Bullewijk polder.
- The Grubbezeeroute (purple) leads far into the district, along a number of characteristic blocks of flats in the Bijlmer such as Gooioord and Kruitberg. The Bijlmerweide park has retained much of its original design with many trees and grass fields. The route also passes through the Gaasperpark and along the banks of the Gaasperplas.