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September 2014 - Germany, Helgoland and Netherlands

Germany | Heligoland Archipelago | Heligoland coastline

September 21, 2014

Dear Family and friends, We had a great week cruising in Germany with easterly winds throughout! The prevailing wind is West and would have been fighting our way to the Netherlands. We left Brunsbuttel, Germany and the Kiel Canal last Sunday and had a fast trip with tide to Cuxhaven, Germany.

Monday we had a nice trip from Cuxhaven to Islands of Helgoland sailing half the way. Helgoland is a Tax Free/Duty Free Island off Germany. We bought duty free diesel for 1.05 Euro a liter. Alcohol was duty free but not a great savings so didn't bother with much. We enjoyed a nice walk around the island trail and had a picnic. Lovely day. The town is one duty free store after another so mainly a tourist trap.

Wednesday we had a fantastic 78 nm sail to Borkum Island, Germany. Borkum is the last of the German Frisan Islands where we stopped last year before going into the Dutch canals. Last year we never left the harbor and our impression was "dumpy". This time we took our bikes and rode 8km into the town on bike trails winding through the nature reserve. Very nice and they had a Lidl's supermarket (our favorite).

Netherlands | Frisian Islands | Vlieland | bike ride on the island

Friday we motored 72nm to Vlieland, NL another Frisian Island but off the coast of Netherlands. Vlieland is a small nearly car free island with just one town. Miles of sandy beaches and great cycling paths. We rode 11km out to the end of the island to Posthuis Restaurant and had a nice lunch. Cranberry harvest was last week so they were still serving their special dessert. We shared a yummy apple pie/cake topped with a warm cranberry sauce and whipped cream (calorie free:-) But then we had another 2.5 km to the end of the island and the 11km to ride back to the marina. It was low tide so fun bird watching on the return trip. Lots of oyster catchers. We went back into town to a concert last night. Piano, cello, flute and soprano. Very enjoyable music and talented musicians.

Our weather window to leave for the Ijsselmeer was yesterday but we wanted to enjoy the island. So we'll stay another day to catch the tide early morning toward Harlingen and then to the locks at Kornwerderzand to enter the Ijsselmeer. Our friends Val and Bob from Duluth, MN are coming to visit August 5th. That gives us a couple of weeks to enjoy towns on the Ijsselmeer and Markermeer before meeting them in Amsterdam. Still haven't gotten a definite YES or NO from London for a winter berth. We hope to finalize that in next few weeks too. Hope all is well and you are enjoying some nice Fall weather. Love and God Bless Sally and Al


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