Johans Kayak Site

Braassem - Drecht

Braassem-Drecht route.

Distance from Woubrugge 25.5 km or from Leimuiden 22 km.

Kayak rentals:

De Veense Bukker, Hazenpad 1, 2371 AA Roelofarendsveen. Tel: 071-3312673. Closed on Sundays.

Braassem Drecht route

There are two lakes in this route: the Braassemermeer and optional, the Langeraarsche Plassen. At the south side route goes through the Hemmen. In springtime the eastside of the Hemmen is sometimes closed by a gate and traps for water rats. This is not indicated when you enter the canal on the westside. The Braassemermeer is pretty large. In the summertime it can be rather crowded by motor vessels. It's not pleasant to kayak then. It's better to go there outside the season, or in the early morning.

Starting point Woubrugge

This is at the bridge next to restaurant Het Gerecht, Raadhuisstraat 2. Leave the N207 in the direction Woubrugge. At the roundabout you turn right and then turn left. Go straight on into the dead end. There is a parking place on your right 50 meters before the canal.

Starting point Leimuiden

The booklet mentions Leimuiden as a starting point. Exit the A4 The Hague - Amsterdam in the direction Alphen a.d. Rijn. Follow the N207 and turn right at the traffic-lights in Leimuiden. Follow the main-road to the left and then the bend to the right and then turn left. The starting point is on your right just before the bridge. There is a small parking-place.

From Woubrugge head north. The canal gets wider and you go straigt on. After the footferry you turn right and head for the dike. At the dike you turn left into De Hemmen. There is a wooden log in the water that markes the entrance of the area closed for boats. You can pass it with a kayak/canoe. The canal leads behind the Braassemermeer. In the past the Hemmen was the dike protecting the polder from the Braassemermeer. But in a storm the dike was damaged and it was decided to build a new dike south of the old one in stead of repairing the old dike. You paddle along the canal between both dikes. The canal becomes narrower, but finally ends in the Leidse Vaart.

The greater part of the Leidse Vaart is only accessible for motorized boats with a special permit, so this also is a nice quiet canal for kayaking. It is very impressive to see how much lower the polderland behind the dike is. The water-level is 0.60 meters below sea-level, the land behind the dike is 4.60 meters below sea-level! Just past the bridge at Langeraar you can carry the kayak across the dike towards the Langeraarsche Plassen. The main route in the booklet goes straight on towards the Aarkanaal, but I can advise to see the Langeraarsche Plassen as it is very pretty. Head for the drawbridge under the bike-road. Then turn right. At Papenveer there are several entrances. Take the canal just before the island. There is a small ANWB-sign at the entrance. After the bridge turn right, and then left. At the end of the canal there are locks. You have to operate them by yourself. Carrying the kayak passed the locks is not easy as you have to carry it under the low bridge. At the Aarkanaal turn left. At the end of the canal you see locks when turning right. You turn left however and paddle the Drecht for 3.5 km towards Leimuiden.

GPS Leimuiden: Lat.: 52.2209 Lon. 4.6714.


Paddegat withe the entrance to De Hemmen on the right.

De Hemmen.

Leidsevaart with the church tower of Langeraar.

Self service locks at Papenveer.

Locks to the Veenpolder and restaurant De Haven.

Langeraarse Plassen

The Langeraarse Plassen were swamps until the mid 19th century. Then people settled around the area and started digging out the peat. Soon the lakes came to exist and the few remaining islands disappeared over the years. You can see the history in maps on the site

The Langeraarse Plassen exist of the Geerpolderplas, the Noordplas and the Zuidplas. Access by kayak is at the portage place at the Leidse Vaart, and through the self-service locks near Papenveer. To the Geerpolderplas you pass a self-service weir. There's no difference in water level. The weir is made to prevent birds-polluted water from the Geerpolder to enter the other lakes. The water quality of the Langeraarse Plassen is not so good. Measures are being taken to improve it.


In Roelofarendsveen you can pass the locks and make a round trip in the Veenpolder.