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IJsselmeer shores

Welcome to the beach of Waterland. The Frisian IJsselmeer shoreline stretches all the way from Makkum to Lemmer. This is not just a beach for a breezy walk or sunbathing, as it also features old Hanseatic cities, water sports villages, beach clubs to celebrate the good life, and very unique countryside. Spectacular coastlines with three small cliffs and nature areas such as the 'Bocht van Molkwar' and the 'Warkumerwaard' attract the most beautiful birds. Feel like getting active? Why not try kitesurfing, for example, at one of the 7 kitesurf hotspots. A playground, or boarterplak as we say in Friesland, for sporty people!


Kitesurfing is a combination of kite flying and surfing. Want to get the hang of it? Then Southwest Friesland is the perfect place, as the water here is shallow in many places. With no less than seven kitesurfing hotspots in Lemmer, Mirns, Stavoren, Hindeloopen, Workum, Makkum and Kornwerderzand, Waterland van Friesland is the place to be. Moreover, wind conditions are often better for kitesurfing here than in the rest of the Netherlands. Kiting is an exciting sport to do, but also fun to watch from the beach. All those airborne and coloured kiters – it’s just great to see.

Learn to kitesurf

swimming beaches

'De Holle Poarte' is a popular fun and family beach. There are playgrounds, a volleyball net and the water is nice and shallow. This means the little ones can play in the water carefree. After an afternoon on the beach you can stroll along the shops on the boulevard, right behind the beach.

All beaches

The bend at Molkwar

There's a sturdy wind blowing in the 'Bocht fan Molkwar', a stretch of countryside managed by It Fryske Gea, the provincial association for nature conservation in Friesland. From the birdwatching shelter called De Swan near the village of Molkwerum, you can clearly see the influence of the wind. Is there a westerly wind? It will push up water levels to flood the sandbanks, reducing the size of the islands and limiting the space for birds. The cormorants, seagulls and common terns then all jostle for the remaining spots. As soon as the wind turns to the east, water levels subside and the silt and sand banks reappear. The birds can once again relax and enjoy the space. Around April, as many as 15,000 ruffs sometimes arrive here to spend the night in the 'Bocht fan Molkwar'!