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Henk de Velde

Henk de Velde

Solo sailor and Arctic traveller
Languages : English, Dutch

  • Categories

  • Sports, Adventures and Expeditions
    • Adventure & Expedition
    • Coaches & Trainers
  • Arts & Culture
  • Motivation & Inspiration
    • Teambuilding
  • Employability

  • Subjects

  • Amazing journeys
  • Route innovation and 'appropriate technology'
  • Reaching your goals
  • Ecological counterpoise
  • Artistic reconnaissances

Henk de Velde is the best known Dutch circumnavigator. He sailed more miles than Captain Cook. Born the 12th of January 1949 in a village far from the sea. But he knew what he wanted and went to sea as an ordinary sailor at the age of 15. He educated at the Amsterdam Nautical College and got his Master license. In 1978 he became the commander of a seagoing cargo vessel but did quit the same year to as he calls it “to fulfil the dream”. From 1978 till 1985 he circumnavigated the world with his

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Henk de Velde is the best known Dutch circumnavigator. He sailed more miles than Captain Cook. Born the 12th of January 1949 in a village far from the sea. But he knew what he wanted and went to sea as an ordinary sailor at the age of 15. He educated at the Amsterdam Nautical College and got his Master license. In 1978 he became the commander of a seagoing cargo vessel but did quit the same year to as he calls it “to fulfil the dream”. From 1978 till 1985 he circumnavigated the world with his (now ex) wife Gini. His son was born on Easter Island. He visited more than 1000 islands but finished the dream alone after his marriage breakup in 1984. Returning to the Netherlands he made his next choice; sailing solo and non-stop around the world. It took him 158 days in 1988/89 with the catamaran “Alisun J&B”, formerly Sir Robin Knox Johnston’s boat “British Airways”. In 1993 he tried again with the newly built 60ft “Zeeman”. The voyage was slowed down by many technical problems and 3 days before arrival he had a collision with a floating container which left him with a broken mast and a scullfracture.

He was rescued by a Russian freighter which took him to Madeira where he had an operation. After his recovering the “Zeeman” was salvaged and rebuilt to the 70 ft “C1000” and Henk left again in 1996. The world record was 109 days. It took him 119. Being a discoverer he departed in 2001 with the steel built monohull “Campina” to sail north of Russia, the so called North East Passage. He wintered over in Siberia and returned to the Netherlands in 2004 after his vessel was almost destroyed by moving ice and he got help from a Russian nuclear icebreaker. In 2007 he left the Netherlands for his Never Ending Voyage. He his still on his way with his trimaran Juniper, visiting the most off-laying islands possible.

Never give up, everything is possible as long its your own will. Free will, arguable, is the strongest force in human being. Setting your own goals does not have to make you an egoistic person. There is nothing new under the sun. Know what you want and act according; are some of Henk’s strong points in his very personal passionate talks.

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