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Vlieland

 

Whoever sets foot ashore the island of Vlieland should realise that only a hundred years ago the island was on the edge of extinction.
In short this is what happenend: in the early1900's Holland already had a vivid environmental movement with strong support in the then government. The movement's main point of view was to let nature have its course. Which in the end would inevitably lead to the island's decline. The same destination former civilisations like on the islands of Griend and Richel went earlier.


Thankfully one institute turned deadly against those intentions and for the price of 1 guilder the National Forest Administration (Staatsbosbeheer) took over the care of the island. Until today everyone can buy a house on the island but the ground stays property of Staatsbosbeheer.

 

Vlieland: view from the lighthouse (click to enlarge)

 

Vlieland: Staatsbosbeheer hunts for illegal foxes (click to enlarge)

 

Vlieland marina

 

The island of Vlieland has two harbours: the ferry port next to the (only) village Vlieland-Oost (East) and the marina, about 900 m. easterly of the village.
The entrance to the marina is probably the smallest in the world with the extra complication that the outside current is perpendicular to the entrance.


In recent years the marina has been thoroughly modernized and renovated and now equiped with all conveniences: supermarket, launderette, cafetaria and, on the first floor, restaurant De Dining with a spectacular view over the Wadden Sea.

 

Vlieland: renovated marina with brandnew harbour building (click to enlarge)

 

Vlieland: marina entrance with double red flag: full! (click to enlarge)

 

Where the action is...

 

Practically all tourist and commercial activities on the island are concentrated on the very long-stretched Dorpsstraat in Vlieland-Oost. Here are hotels, restaurants, bars and shops in all measures and sizes. Enough choices for every budget.
There's very little motorized traffic as visitors are not allowed to bring a car or motorcycle to the island.
Despite that the Dorpsstraat can be a perilously busy street in the summer at the arrival or departure of the ferry.

 

Vlieland: Dorpsstraat Oost (click to enlarge)

 

Cycling on Vlieland

 

About 8 kms along the bottom of the island to the Posthuys (Mail House)/Kroonpolders and about 8 kms back through the dunes in the northern part of Vlieland: even with a few detours it's hard to cycle more than 25 kms. Therefore it's astonishing how few fellow cyclists one encounters even in midsummer. And because of the lack of traffic Vlieland is a true cyclist paradise.

 

Vlieland: Cyclists along the Wadden Sea (click to enlarge)

 

Nature on Vlieland

Past the Posthuys in western direction the Vliehors starts: an immense sandbank where on weekdays the airforce shoots written off army tanks to scrap.
Whoever feels the irresistible urge to stumble through loose sand for a couple of hours, is welcome in the weekends. Wet feet are sometimes hard to avoid as the place floods regularly.

 

Vlieland: Vliehors (click to enlarge)

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