Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Up the Schlei

From Maasholm we made a massive journey of 2.8 miles upriver to Kappeln, another place we last visited two years ago. This time the price has gone up, from €15 to €17. The town moorings are in a good spot, opposite an almost traffic-free quay leading up to the town, with a wonderful view across the river to the rural south bank. The only problem is that the moorings are between the fish quay and the ferry quay, and close to the opening bridge, so there's a certain amount of wash from passing boat traffic. 

We took Sam ashore for a lunchtime pizza. We wanted to take him to the magnificent facilities, which include a disabled loo and accessible shower, but unfortunately they are down 11 steps with no handrail - am interesting bit of German inefficiency. Other than that Kappeln is obviously efficient at attracting tourists, with the picturesque  town centre filled with gift shops and cheap clothes - ideal for passing Danes. 

This morning we arose relatively early to get the 0845 bridge opening, and headed upriver on a really glorious morning. The Schlei is a river not a fjord - on average about 9-10m shallower than the Flensburg fjord - with a mix of narrow sections and wider lakes. It's very reminiscent of the Netherlands south of Amsterdam, where we stopped in the Brassermeeer four years ago, and also very pretty. 

We are now in Schleswig at the head of navigation. I agonised over the best stopping place - the Stadt hafen is very full, the next one round, the Schleswig hafen slightly too shallow for us, and the easy (biggest) option, the Wiking hafen, too far out of town but very convenient for the museum in the Scloss Gottorf, which the Rough Guide describes as well worth a full- day visit.

We're in the Wiking hafen which is in a lovely spot, somewhat blighted by an enormously high apartment block which I knew about, and more blighted by traffic noise from the main road which I didn't know about.  When we arrived we were all hot and cross, and I was feeling rather ill, and it felt like a total disaster. I had a rest, then a walk to find the Schloss and a supermarket, an then came back for a swim in the water which is almost fresh, peaty brown, and 24°C. I felt a lot better about everything. 

We gave Sam a solar shower to make up for the disappointment of Kappeln, so he feels better too. And we plan to devote tomorrow to Culchure. Better get an early night! 

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