Deltagids is your Delta Guide

Water sport in the Delta region

The Delta area stretches a long, long way. From Antwerp up to Hellevoetsluis and from Cadzand in the south-west across to Woudrichem (‘Vorkem’ to insiders) in the far east. No mean delta this, it is more than the sum of its many parts, especially for water sports and sailing. That water’ll always be tugging tidally at you to admire its ebbs and flows, to take another trip down river or across lake. Or to slumber awhile where tides stay away.

The very intuitive www.deltagids.nl website does skip some English (sorry!) but it will soon be enticing you to pick your place, map your route, dive and snorkel, go surfing and supping, canoeing, kite surfing, angling, or kayaking. Pedal there, plod there, yes, you can even paddle there – the destination absorbs you amongst its old polders, its sinuous dikes (flowered by appointment to the seasons), its unfolding vistas of landscapes and endlessly iconic beaches. All yours.

Further inland, beyond the banks, the upcountry of the delta awaits you, brimming with restaurants, historic towns and villages, unsurpassed nature areas, fun spots and rich layers of history.

Feel the delta waters

Water sport lovers know the way to a delta’s heart, so diverse is this one with coastal and upstream bits, available for use as incubator, playground or leisure centre. Like, how many ways do you fish? Lying alongside a gentle stream, or standing sturdily abeam a yawing fishing boat or sail yacht? And how do you like to brave things? Skimming the wind-and-the-waves together under your kite surfer? Or do you prefer to stare down a cruise or a paddle route along a roving river? You should get to know yourself better!

From Del to A

You’ve got more options for sailing and water sports with our delta than an interior decorator with a paint fan. Rivers, streams, canals all tumble into the sea, in a fine fusion of flows. Sheltered stretches of lakes invite your riparian rites, while shoals of sandbanks contorted by currents and choppy froth grab your attention.

The Delta overall comprises these regions:

Delight to the delta

The Delta is where land and water shape each other endlessly, as deltas do. Our Delta is where you’ll see seals and porpoises, where the struggle with water only ever began, never ever to end. Feast your eyes on the cusp of nature and water, in the country’s largest National Park of the Oosterschelde Estuary. To the north, the dynamics of the Biesbosch, almost a delta within a delta. And beyond the banks, serried ranks of dunes, beach, polder, forest and coast await your arrival. Come, discover the Delta and her nature.

Delectable Delta

The seas bear the seafoods, the fields and polders and orchards the fruits of the soil. Across the Delta region you’ll find a wide choice of fresh, tasty foods, sustainable and healthy. Topping the list, our renowned Michelin-starred restaurants but they rub their shoulders, in good taste, with our creative bistros (we often emphasise their Dutchness by calling them ‘eetcafés’), the beach pavilions and our proud but unstarred diners. A bounty of something ‘lekker’ for everyone. Find out more here.

Voulez-vous coucher au Delta ce soir?

When sleepytime comes, as she shall, the nearby sea and waters of the Delta will look out for you. Lay and rest your head in the dunes, on the beach, on that reassuring dike or in a marina. Your comfort blanket tonight is called Nature. And when you wake to those soft sounds of a ripple rap, smile. Where’s your Delta bed to be? These sites will inform you, or take your pick from these restful yacht harbours.

Your charter for starters

Want to unlock the Delta’s rich collection of place to chill, have fun and feel free? They’re on the interactive route map – all on one handy sheet. Chart your course, save your handy work in one cool file.

Tides

Time and tide wait for no-one, so here’s your schedule: the tides vary by place, and sailing the surf is best on the flood, about two hours before high tide. That’s the best time to swim, when the water is warmest (from our sun-drenched sands). The downside is there’s less space for your beach volleyball contest. Dang! Recover with some sea fishing – best done at low tide. 

Blue flag

Seen all those proud blue flags, like beacons on our squeaky-clean and beautiful beaches, and above many marinas? The Blue Flag certifies that the facilities there are tip-top, safe, and respectful of the environment and nature. Awarded annually, on international criteria on merit.

VHF-marine radio channels

The Dutch term for marine radio is ‘marifoon’. This important tool puts you in touch with the lock-keeper, or gets you a storm forecast, tells you about wave heights and swell and water temperatures, helps you find a berth in a marina or harbour, and, above all, lets you put out an emergency call. Here, download the list of VHF-marine radio channels (‘marifoonkanalen’).

The Deltagids Guide

This handy work lists all the harbours, marinas and sailing and surfing schools you’ll need, and endless hints for being out and about. Crammed with tips, it’ll open up the Delta for you. You can consult its crisp design and content (much in NL) online or download it. Or order a print copy here.