Tuesday, 31 July 2012

A Full Boat In Haarlem

I think that Haarlem is my favourite place we have visited so far. It helped that the weather finally changed and we had glorious sunshine for the whole stay.

As the canal goes right through the centre of Haarlem, a large and busy town, you have to go through in a convoy, so that the disruption to road traffic is kept to a minimum. We were part of a convoy of 17, mainly made up of yachts, so that in itself was sometiming great to see.

Part of a convoy, going through Haarlem

I had my birthday in Haarlem and my parents, my sister Helen and my niece Lily all came to visit. None of them had visited Haarlem before either, so it was great to be able to explore it together.

The town market was in full swing in the main square and we were able to stock up with some fabulous bread and dips for lunch. Lily and Emma tried every food sample available from the stalls and then tucked into a cornet of chips and still had room for lunch back on the boat.

In the afternoon we left Haarlem and sailed to a nearby lake so our visitors could see a bit of the surrounding area. We dropped anchor in the lake, which we hadn't tried before and were all pleased to find the anchor held and we were in exactly the same place in the morning as we were last thing at night.

Lily acted as Stephen's lookout, shouting instructions about the lights on bridges (there is a red - red/green - green system to tell you when the bridge is opening and you can pass) and my Dad getting a chance to handle the boat

Next day we sailed back to Haarlem and with the weather still great were able to go back into town.
Helen, Lily, Dad & Mum on board

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