Standard Canal Cruise in an Open Boat
A standard canal cruise in an open boat: how does that work?
More and more traditional canal tours are offered on large open air lifeboats or longboats. Some of these are completely renovated, others are newly built for this purpose. Compared to standard canal cruises in large tour boats, the seating in these open air boats is less rigid and the sightseeing information is more personal, though sometimes also more difficult to understand.
In order to compare the standard canal cruises in small open air boats please check the overview below. Further below are short profiles of all individual companies, including pictures of their boats. You can find the locations of these companies on Google Maps at the bottom of this page.
Pros of a standard canal cruise in an open boat
- Efficient: good impression in a short time
- With skipper and guide
- Drinks on board
Cons of a standard canal cruise in an open boat
- More expensive than a large tour boat
- Dependent on the season
- No fun in the rain
Overview of standard canal cruises in open boats
|Company||Location||Times||Duration||Guide||Rates (Ad./Ch.)||Online booking||Online discount rate|
|Boat Amsterdam||Hermitage||11.00-21.30||70||Live English||20,-||yes||17,50|
|Lovers Small Boat Cruise||Anne Frank||10.00-21.00||60||Live English||18,-||yes||no|
|Stromma Open Boat Tours||CS, Rijksmuseum||10.00-17.40||75||Live English||19,50 / 9,75||yes||no|
|Blue Sky Boat||Leidseplein||10.45 – 17.15||75||Live English||18,-||yes||15,-|
|Friendship||Red Light||10.00-23.00||60||Live English||15,-/8,50||yes||no|
|Those Dam Boat Guys||Anne Frank||11.00 – 21.00||90||Live English||25,- / 23,-||yes||no|
NB 2: Scheduled times are the regular peak season times. Always check the current schedule at the tour company itself.
The companies offering standard canal cruises in open boats
This one-hour canal tour on Flagship’s open boat is very popular and highly rated. The location is close to the Museum Quarter, Vondelpark and Leidseplein. The view from the open boat is always good, the cushions are comfortable, and the guides are extremely nice and informative. There is a bar on board where you can purchase drinks and snacks. Truly relaxing and comfortable!
Flagship also offers trips with their open boats directly from Central Station. With live commentary and a bar on board, this one-hour tour is both relaxing and informative. From the open boat, you have a great view of all the highlights on your way, including the UNESCO area and the Skinny Bridge over the Amstel river. Highly recommended!
Boat Amsterdam offers relaxed 70 minutes open boat tours from its central location in front of the Amsterdam Hermitage. Free drinks and a guide on board are included.
Friendship Amsterdam offers canal tours in a relaxed atmosphere on four distinctive open boats. Each boat can take up to approximately 50 people. The location of Friendship stands out: their boat tours start and end in the Red Light District.
The Blue Sky Boat is owned by Blue Boat Company. This is a refurbished lifeboat that goes out several times a day during summer. The 75 minute tour starts and ends at their dock near Leidseplein, Museum Quarter and Vondelpark.
Those Damn Boat Guys are the most unconventional and slightly rebellious canal tour company. They offer an entertaining, humorous and relatively long (90 minutes) boat tour that starts and ends near the Anne Frank House. Open boats in summer, covered in winter.
The Stromma Open Boat Tour departs near Central Station and takes 75 minutes. On top of the main canals it also includes some smaller canals. The skipper is your guide, providing interesting information about the Amsterdam canals in English.
Flagship’s open canal boats also depart from the Anne Frank House. From the open boat, you have a beautiful view of the canals in the city center. Along the way, the guide shares funny and informative tidbits. You can order your favorite drink and a snack at the onboard bar. So sit back, relax and enjoy!