Sailing on the IJsselmeer lake
The Netherlands has a few beautiful regions to rent a sailboat for a sailing holiday:
North Sea, Zeeland, Friesland, Wadden Sea and the IJsselmeer.
Every sailing area has its own characteristics, the North Sea is a lot rougher for sailing. The waves are higher, the wind is stronger and there is a lot of freight traffic in the shipping lanes. Sailing on the North Sea therefore requires a lot of (sea) sailing experience.
Friesland is the opposite. Friesland has many small lakes where you can sail wonderfully sheltered. Think of the Fluessen, the Heegermeer, the Pikmeer, the Langweerder Wielen, etc. Draft is again a problem. To be able to sail well on all lakes in Friesland, it stops at about 1.40 mtr draft. An option is to sail into Friesland with one of our yachts through the fairway, and then a Valk or the like. to rent to explore the lakes and ditches. Friesland is a wonderfully sheltered region for sailing, but it is quite small.
Both Zeeland and the IJsselmeer are the perfect middle ground; not too big, not too busy and no current (in parts of Zeeland it does flow).
Zeeland is a beautiful region with many possibilities. The Veerse Meer and the Grevelingen are beautiful sheltered lakes without a current, with beautiful islands (bumblebee foot, Archipel, rammerplaat) where you can anchor. The water is salty and clear, and with a bit of luck you can even see a seal! The Westerschelde and Oosterschelde have to do with freight traffic, currents and sandbanks, but this is well marked with buoys.
The IJsselmeer is the most popular region for sailors. It is large enough to fully enjoy nature without being close to the coast. It is a bit exciting because it can be quite fierce with a lot of wind, but if you want there is always a harbor that is on a broad windward course. Because the water is fresh, you can enjoy swimming behind the boat. There are enough shallow spots with a beautiful sandy bottom to anchor and enjoy the sailing holiday to the fullest!
You can also sail to the Wadden Islands within a day from the IJsselmeer. For example, Texel is only a few hours by boat from Den Oever, and Terschelling or Vlieland can be sailed from Kornwerderzand or Makkum within 5-6 hours. (just pay attention to the current….)
The IJsselmeer is divided into 2 regions by the dike between Enkhuizen and Lelystad. Both the northern and the southern IJsselmeer have many fishing villages where you can moor in the Center! Almost every city nowadays has the options to moor in a beautiful new marina just outside the city or to sail all the way into the center and moor at the restaurants and bars.
The marinas are very modern with good sanitary facilities, and playgrounds with grassy areas. Mooring in a marina means that you are in your own box with water and electricity on the jetties. If you moor in the city center, you are more often alongside other ships and you have to be creative to get the power cable ashore. Sanitary facilities are everywhere, but often more sparse than in a Marina. However, the fun of mooring a sailboat in the center cannot be surpassed by a marina!
Read below what to experience in the ports around the IJsselmeer:
Read here about the plans for developing islands in the IJsselmeer and the MarkerWadden!