Harbour Cruise Amsterdam
Amsterdam Harbour Cruise – What to Expect?
A harbour cruise takes you on a fixed route combining the busiest part of the IJ with a quieter section of the port area to the west of Central Station.
You’ll experience Amsterdam from a completely different perspective: rugged, spacious, and industrial in some areas. Recently, many new buildings have been erected on both sides of the IJ. Beyond that, on the south side, you’ll catch a glimpse of the silhouette of the old city center. The northern shore offers an interesting mix of industry, cultural venues, office buildings, residential areas, and hospitality venues.
In addition to regular freight ships and ferries, there’s a chance of spotting a large sea cruise ship. However, don’t expect to venture far into the industrial part of the harbour, as access is highly restricted.
In our view, a harbour tour isn’t a replacement for a proper Amsterdam canal tour; rather, it’s a valuable supplementary experience. If you have the time, consider doing both!
Amsterdam Harbour Cruise – Pros:
- Experience the unknown side of Amsterdam
- Interesting contrast to the old city center
- Escape from the crowds
Amsterdam Harbour Cruise – Cons:
- Cold, rain and wind have more impact here
- The Amsterdam canals are not included in this tour
- Not a proper replacement for an actual canal tour
Harbour Cruises in Amsterdam
The Pancake Boat sails up and down the IJ, the large open water behind Central Station. During the 75 minute tour there’s an unlimited choice of pancakes. A real treat for families with children. They will also enjoy the ball pit on board. The tour starts and ends at the former NDSM shipyard. You can get there by free ferry from Central Station. At fixed times from Tuesday to Sunday. There is a nice discount rate for kids.