Magnetic Attraction
Roger and Margaret Pratt
Mon 4 Jul 2011 20:41



This afternoon to Wemldinge  (“Een Bijzonder Dorp”) at the head of the big canal between the Westerschelde and Oosterschelde.

In addition, the longest trip since arriving in the Low Countries: from Veere to here was a massive 17miles(!) down the Veerse Meer and through the big sluice at Zandkreeksluis into the Oosterschelde.  All of sudden, the scenery changed from inland lake with reed beds and dikes to the broad sweep of saltmarshes and estuaries.  For most of the way the wind was from behind, and we drifted down under jib in 10 knots of wind and hot sun. 

On reaching Wemldinge there was a welcome pontoon just as in Breskens, where you ask the harbour master for a berth through a form of walkie-talkie.  I was fine pressing the left-hand button which engaged the phone; and once Roger had helpfully pointed out that the right hand button was labelled “sprechen” communications were established.  We were directed to berth K29 in the inner harber (the Binnenhaven) through an open lock where children were swimming.  It was a difficult berth: a single berth between two metal pontoons with sharp edges, about 600mm wider than the boat.  The fenders were down, which more than mopped up any spare.  There was a side wind blowing which made access yet more tricky.  Roger took two goes to get in and most fortunately the paint remains undamaged.  He felt that the berth was WORSE than a box berth because of the sharp edges!  The boy done good!

The marina is formed from two former sluices on the canal, with the Oosterhaven formed from the entry to the big lock, and the binnenhaven from the smaller lock.  Between the two is the Sluisplatz, with the offices, chandlery, restaurants etc.  We went out to supper at the Bom Dia Brasserie on the Sluisplatz, and had some exceptional seafood – big, creamy creuse oysters, and fat orange mussels.  All local to the Oosterschelde, all very fresh and tasty.  Expensive but well worth the treat. 

Watch this space tomorrow for the pictures.  We’ll be off on the bikes to Goes, and to tour the Dorp here – famous apparently for its cherries and strawberries that one can buy at the roadside at this time of year.