We left the Fluessen on Wednesday and had a good sail down the remaining lakes and waterways until we arrived at Stavoren on the IJsselmeer coast. Stavoren claims to be a very ancient town, in its heyday before the Zuiderzee was formed back in the twelfth centuary, upon which much of it was lost. Today it is a small town with a pleasant tree-lined canal.
On Thursday we had an excellent gentle sail under cruising ‘chute north eastwards along the IJsselmeer to the village of Hinderloopen, or Hylper, as it is known in its own unique Frisian dialect. Hinderloopen dates back to 900AD and is a delightful picturesque place with a maze of small canals, such that virtually every house has both road and water access. We tucked into the old harbour, and spent time exploring the village and sampling excellent appelgebak with canberries.
On Friday we unpacked the bikes and cycled to nearby Workum, a larger town, also ancient with its waag (weigh house), church, tower and town hall. We sat taking tea in the main square and watched wedding parties arriving and departing from the town hall.
On Saturday we had another great sail further north along the coast to arrive back in Makkum, where we have met up with Daan and MariAnne again, who invited us to supper – a very pleasant evening. Ynskje has been reading a book about the shipbuilding history of Makkum, which was largely set up by the Amels family, and we paid a visit to the churchyard and found the grave of her Friesian grandparents Douwe & Ynskje Amels.
On Monday we set off from Makkum and had a stiff sail southwestwards across the IJsselmeer into a Force 6 to Den Oever, where we locked through and up (it was high tide) into the Waddenzee. This was our first return to tidal salt water since mid-August. We then had another even stiffer sail westwards to Den Helder, a naval port on the northern tip of Noord-Holland and the gateway out into the North Sea.
We are sitting the weather out here, and hope to sail out into the North Sea and down to IJmuiden, due west of Amsterdam, on Wednesday. We will wait there for Nick, Ynskje’s son, who plans to join us from the UK for next weekend.
love to all
Tony & Ynskje