FOR MOST people port-hopping up the Belgian coast, the quickest way into Dutch inland waters is via the Roompot Sluis (see coastal passages). Once inside the Roompot the nearest convenient stopping place is Colijnsplaat about 6 miles east of the lock on the south side near the Zeeland Bridge. If the sea is at all frisky it’s a relief to get inside the lock. These large areas of water in the south of the Netherlands are a sailing paradise. The wide open spaces, flat water and attractive landscape give you everything a sailor could want, but you do need up to date local charts in the shape of the 1800 series published by the Dutch Hydrografisch Bureau (available from Imray) to make sure you avoid the numerous shallow areas. Fortunately the area is very well buoyed.
If this is your first entry to Holland you may be startled to see the roofs of houses gliding by just above the dyke at about eye level. Yes, these really are the low countries.
Entry to Colijnsplaat is marked by buoys (don’t be tempted to cut the corner) and, though narrow, presents no problem. Once inside turn right through the small fishing harbour and tie up at the waiting pontoon in the marina. A stern notice tells you not to linger and to contact the harbour master via the intercom on the pontoon. If, however, you are too late to catch him just stay on the pontoon, which is supplied with water and electricity, and pay in the morning. There are adequate showers and loos in portakabin type accommodation on the pontoons nearer the shore (no code required).
It’s an attractive marina and perfectly sheltered. Five minutes walk brings you to the village which is typical of many in the area: neat two-storey houses with brick facades and a pretty tree-lined main street. There are several restaurants—we took the first we came to which proved satisfying and good value—and a limited number of shops.
© 2008 Yachtpilot.