https://www.duolingo.com/Snoogie_

Difference between Wandelen and lopen

I've been seeing this a bunch lately and have a bit of confusion. If I want to say, for example, "I like walking" It's not "Ik hou van lopen" it's "Ik hou van wandelen".

I thought wandelen meant to hike or something whereas lopen was walking. What am I not understanding?

1 month ago

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Dutchesse722
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I had to do a bit of research on this myself. I found that lopen is walking out of necessity whereas wandelen is walking for pleasure. So yes, if you say "I like walking" then the best translation would be "Ik hou van wandelen." You can say something like "Ga je mee wandelen?" to someone you know, and it would mean "Do you want to go for a walk?" It could be a slow walk or more fast-paced.

Also be aware that in Flanders 'lopen' means running, whereas the word for that in the Netherlands is "hardlopen" (as a sport) or "rennen" (for just the act of running).

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Snoogie_

Thank you so much! Can wandelen also be used for a hike? or is that something else?

Would you also point me to where you found this out?

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dutchesse722
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As far as I know there's no actual word for "hiking" in Dutch. The online Van Dale dictionary describes it as a "lange wandeling" or "trektocht": https://www.vandale.nl/gratis-woordenboek/engels-nederlands/vertaling/hiking. It can be referred to as "trekken" as well, but if you told a native Dutch speaker "Ik hou van trekken" you'd get some weird looks, I think.

Btw, it wouldn't be wrong to say "Ik hou van lopen" or "Ik loop graag" if you're just a person who prefers to walk rather than drive or ride or cycle to places. Wandelen is generally slower-paced and done for pleasure.

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LunjoTO

Aha! Thank you for answering a nagging question of mine.

I was surprised to learn that, in Dutch, "lopen" meant "to walk".

My Flemish grandmother used to sing a song (rendered here phonetically) that went "Loop, loop, loop, de gardeville ist dou!"

I figured this meant "Run, run, run, the police are here!" Which, in Flanders, at least, it apparently does. ;-)

(My grandmother knew a bunch of odd and impolite songs in Flemish that she would sing after a couple of drinks.)

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tpajor17

But, like, English also has the word “to wander”. Is it equivalent to “wandelen”?

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dutchesse722
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If I'm correct 'to wander' is walking without a purpose. The Dutch equivalent would be 'zwerven' and 'to wander about/around' is 'rondzwerven.'

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tpajor17

My question was purely based on the similarity between the two words, so I didn’t know for sure. Thanks!

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dutchesse722
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Not a problem! I'm generally interested and willing to find out for myself as well.

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/weerwater
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Adding the concept of general<>typical to this research:
In Dutch, lopen is just the more generic word for any personal forward movement on foot. It covers walking, strolling, running, racing, trotting, hiking, stepping, rambling, marching. I guess you could entertain yourself 'pleasantly' with any of those too. Note that engines and fluids can also run. In Dutch this is similar.
'Een loop', can be either a circuit, a cross- or runningtrack, or the course of running water. Een 'omloop' would be used for any circular movement: goods, money, cyclists.

Wandelen is to walk/walking or strolling. But you could use walking also more generic to describe the typical way, or speed in which you have been moving on foot: When you hike, you also do this by walking.
'Een wandeling maken' is going for a stroll.

Note: As with the English 'to go', you could consider applying the word 'gaan' here too.

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dfijma
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"Wandelen" can (indeed) mean "to hike" but also "to stroll". I would not say "i like walking" is a wrong translation of "ik hou van lopen". It depends:

  • "I like to walk (instead of driving my car)" -> ik hou van lopen (in plaats van ...)"
  • "I like to hike in the mountains" -> ik hou van wandelen in de bergen
  • "I like to stroll through the city (and do some shopping )" -> ik hou van wandelen door de stad (en een beetje te shoppen).
1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hansvanden267838

Wandelen is: walking around (pleasure). Lopen is: from A to point B I walk to the supermarket. Ik loop naar de supermarkt. Shall we walk around a bit? Zullen we gaan wandelen?

1 month ago
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