De Groene Ster is a recreational area of approximately 1000 hectares on the east side of Leeuwarden. The area has been developed since the 1960s into a large recreational area, which was initially located in the municipality of Tietjerksteradeel, and was added to Leeuwaarden in 1984. In the area there are sunbathing areas, beaches, ponds, forest and hiking trails. On beautiful warm, sunny days it is busy here with holidaymakers.
De Groene Ster is also known by many as “De Kleine Wielen”, named after the original lake in the recreation area. De Grote Wielen is located on the other side of the Leeuwarden – Groningen road.
Nude recreation in the Groene Ster was officially permitted in June 1980 on a small lawn on the south side of the recreation area. The nudist beach was far away from the other beaches and was accessible via Woelwijk.
When the Groene Ster was expanded in 1991, a much larger, more open and centrally located location was chosen. The nudist beach was located on the southern part of an island and was accessible via two bridges on the east and west sides. The site was visible from the public road. The nudist beach was taken into use in 1995. Over the years, the whole island was used by naturists.
In the autumn of 2008, the municipality of Leeuwarden came up with the plan to redecorate the Groene Ster. The emphasis in this refurbishment is on improving the bathing water quality by planting the banks with lots of reeds. The nudist beach should disappear, because the bathing water is no longer accessible due to the planting of reeds. As an alternative, the municipality came up with a tiny, unattractive location in a wooded area. Due to the many protests of visitors to the beach, supported by the NFN, the nudist beach was allowed to remain at its current location.
The renovation began in September 2012 and the nudist beach was completely overhauled. The island was connected to the east and west by a dam. A new bike path now runs over this dam. Almost all bushes have been removed. The new nudist beach has become much smaller and is separated from the new cycle path behind it by an earthen wall and ditch. Some trees have been transplanted, so that there are (limited) shady spots. Unfortunately, the trees are not doing very well, two trees are dead and the rest is not very prosperous either.
There is a sandy beach on the waterfront, which is well maintained and regularly milled. Unfortunately, a lot of sand is washed away with rain showers.
There are also sunbathing areas. The gentle slope of the earthen wall can also be used as a sunbathing area on the beach side.
Dogs are prohibited on the entire beach.
The nudist beach has not yet been demarcated with nude beach signs, so that visitors cannot see exactly where nudity is allowed. However, there is a reference sign on both sides of the nudist beach. It is the intention that the nude recreation takes place on the beach area behind the earthen wall. There are no facilities on the nudist beach. There is a kiosk with toilets 700 meters from the beach.