When we left Kortgene we intended to go to Vlissingen and stay the night there, ready to leave for Calais in the morning which would have been a good plan. However, that’s not what we did….
We wanted to stock up on some of the great food stuff we liked in Holland to bring home. That meant stopping at an Albert Heijn supermarket in either Middelburg or Vlissingen. But as we wanted quite a lot of stuff we wanted to stop somewhere near the shop. The intention was to drop Kath off with the buggy so she could get heavy stuff, whilst I either floated about or tied up for half hour. In Middelburg there is nowhere to stop except perhaps north of the canal just before Stationsbrug but it’s still quite a walk.
A much better option is to stop just south of the opening bridge, Sloebrug, which is the last bridge before Vlissingen coming from Middelburg. Immediately after the bridge is a mooring place on the east side of the canal then just walk across the bridge to a big Albert Heijn Supermarket (I’m not sure if you can moor here so best to leave someone on-board just in case).
Unfortunately, because we were stopping in Vlissingen we decided to carry on. However, upon reaching Vlissingen the conditions were so benign we decided to carry on and get 20 miles of the next days journey under our belt. This turned out to be a mistake on two fronts.
Firstly it meant we were unable to stock up on the stuff we wanted to take home and secondly we ended up fighting the tide all the way to Blankenburge, and at 5 knots against you it means we were travelling at 3 knots. It took 3 hours just to travel 10 miles. So after leaving at 10:30 am we did not arrive at Blankenberge until 6:30 after doing 2 locks, 6 bridges and only covering 25 miles in total.
Goodbye to Holland
This meant that after about 5 weeks we had left Holland. It felt strangely sad putting away the ropes, fenders and fender board that had literally lived on the guard rails for the 5 weeks we were in Holland, and it made Goose look a bit bare! However, it felt good to be out on the open sea again. Below are some places we want to go to next time, hopefully next year.
- Visit the town of Veer
- Spend more time in the Veerse Meer
- Visit the Grevelingen Meer
Blankenberge – Belgium
We did not want to stop in Belgium on the way to Holland due to their stupid habit of testing UK boats for red diesel (which is all we can buy in the UK) and fining them and marching the owners down to the cash-point to pay the fine. But having filled up with fuel in Holland we decided to stop in Blankenberge on the way back and take the risk.
The marina in Blankenberge is being refurbished and there was no electricity but that was no problem for us. Also due to the refurb they couldnt provide wifi, which they usually do.
Not long after we arrived and tied up, Paul went downstairs for a snooze as he hadnt had one all day. During this time the heavens opened and I was thanking our lucky stars that we’d arrived when we did and hadnt had a drenching! It didnt last long and then the sun came out again which produced the most spectacular rainbow. Unfortunately I wasnt able to get it all in the picture, it was so big.
When in Blankenberge it’s definitely worth walking along the promenade which is to the east of the marina. We had some great pasta in “Le Grand Cafe” which is on the promenade. There is also a fantastic Thai restaurant here called L’Exotique which we’ve been to before. We tried getting in this time but they were rammed and couldnt even do us a takeaway, which actually turned out in our favour as we got to experience Le Grand Cafe.
Cost : 26 Euros no electricity