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WWII bunkers on North Sea beach could house surf enthusiasts

Velsen waves huge draw

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

VELSEN, the Netherlands - A local entrepreneur who manages a group of four WWII bunkers built for the German Wehrmacht in the dunes of this North Sea resort, wants to turn them into a surfers’ paradise of sort. Surfing enthusiasts from all over Europe highly rate the waves off the coast near this community just north of the port of IJmuiden, where the pier creates a perfect surfing and kite-surfing environment.

The largest of the bunker complex already serves as a bar and restaurant, aptly named the Bulwark. Three smaller bunkers could become hostel lodgings for surfers who now often spend the night in their cars or tents. Outfitted with bunk beds, and bare amenities, the bunkers thus could become economic lodgings for the surfers, who usually are very easy to please.

Manager Richard van Beek has taken his proposal to the local municipality, which is reviewing the idea.