Sunday, May 6, 2012

Zeeuwse Strand en Landroute - Day 3

Beach bloomers

Now on the bridge, or dike, across the Veerse Meer to Noord Beveland. Another incredible hot summer day. Strip of beach all along the north side of the dike--deserted, separated from it by grassy dunes. Yellow flowers and orange berries amongst the dune grass foliage. On the south side, below, is the road and a waterfront recreation area along the top of the Veerse Meer, which the dike encloses.

Harvest time
I had breakfast in the trailer and then observed some of the farm animals: turkeys, geese, chickens, cats. A bit awkward trying to chat with Franziska in my lame Dutch. Her man was bouncing around the yard early. I was startled when I looked up and saw his face in the window, grinning, surveying the trailer without saying a thing. I offered, "Good morning, how are you?" No response. I realized he is quite tall.
Quackin' up

Zeeuwse Strand en Landroute - Day 3
Now at a perfect terrace cafe overlooking the beach near the east end of the dike/bridge. A delight to sit here and look over the beach activity. The beach is vast and can accommodate hordes of people without feeling crowded. Everybody can get their bit of deserted beach. You can also see the eolic windmills on the Oosterscheldekering, a major flood barrier that serves as a bridge to Schouwen, one of the isolated components of the scattered province of Zeeland. These are not islands but peninsulas, as they are minimally attached to the mainland. The dike/bridge is the longest (9km) barrier of the Delta Works project, which protects the lands of the delta from the sea. 

Oude Banjaard beach, with Delta project in distance

Later, I'm riding along the Oosterschelde, the inland sea that is hemmed in by the Oosterscheldekering. It is very still, many sailboats. I followed the wall along it for a while but it was difficult riding over paving stones. The shores of this manmade body of water are favored by such waterfowl as curlews and redshank.

But I feel blue and in no mood to appreciate the bird life: hottest Saturday of the year and I realize I should've just stayed on the beach in Vrouwenpolder instead of riding along a stagnant sea in the heat. As every good traveler knows, sometimes you've got to dispense with the plan.

I continued along the banks of the Oosterschelde to the little harbor of Colijnsplaat. Here is another dike/bridge, the Zeelandbrug (8.3km), which connects Noord-Beveland to Duiveland (actually the south east portion of the Schouwen land mass). Of course all of these dikes have bike paths running along them so it's easy to get around Zeeland.

Past Colijnsplaat, I head south, skirting the N256 back across the Veerse Meer to South Beveland. I arrive in Kloetinge, a village east of the large town of Goes, where I will spend the night.

(Another excellent route could be made: tour Noord-Beveland, then cross back over the Veerse Meer by ferry from Kamperland to Veere, then follow the Walcheren canal back to Middelberg via Klarenbeek.) Continued ...

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