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Oud land en nieuw land
The Middelsee used to divide Friesland into two parts: Westergo and Oostergo. It was a sea inlet that passed Leeuwarden and then leaned towards Sneek and Bolsward. The funnel-shaped inlet is still clearly recognizable on the map. The road from Leeuwarden to Stiens, the Brédyk, follows the route of the dike that protected Oostergo against the Middelsee. Deinum, Marssum, Engelum, Beetgumermolen, Beetgum, Berlikum, Wier and Minnertsga lay on the western bank of the sea arm.
The area has a nice contrast between the ’old’ and the ’new’ country. The old country is characterized by the characteristic mound villages on the banks of the former sea arm. In the lower area of the Middelsee itself, apart from the Leeuwarden airbase, there are only scattered farms.