Giethoorn Boat Rental: Best Way to Have Fun on Canals

Giethoorn Boat Rental: Best Way to Have Fun on Canals

Giethoorn boat rental: Immerse yourself in the "Venice of the Netherlands" and navigate its captivating canals with a whisper-quiet rental boat.
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Picture yourself gently gliding along the shimmering waterways of Giethoorn, a charming village often dubbed the “Venice of the Netherlands.” With its maze of picturesque canals, quaint thatched-roof houses, and verdant gardens, Giethoorn beckons visitors to set sail and explore its enchanting beauty.

One of the most captivating ways to experience this fairy-tale village is by renting a boat in Giethoorn. As you gracefully navigate through the winding canals, you’ll uncover the village’s hidden gems and become fully immersed in the serene atmosphere that makes Giethoorn truly unique.

Giethoorn Tekne Kiralama Gol Gezisi
Giethoorn Kanal Turu Aktivite Etkinlik

How to rent a boat in Giethoorn?

Giethoorn, a village famous for its serene canals, invites you to explore its mesmerizing beauty from the water. Renting a boat is the ideal way to uncover the charm of this enchanting place at your own pace, soaking in the picturesque views along the way.

Boat rental companies abound in Giethoorn, offering a variety of vessels to suit your preferences. From small, intimate boats to larger, motorized options, you’ll find the perfect craft for your aquatic adventure. Simply approach one of the many rental companies in the village, or research in advance for the best deal. Some companies, like Zwaantje (Dutch-language website) and Giethoorn Village (English website), even offer discounts for online bookings.

Giethoorn Boat Rental Cost
Rent a boat in Giethoorn village cheap costBrigitte

For an unforgettable experience, follow the popular sailing route that meanders through the entire village. This leisurely journey takes approximately half an hour, but feel free to extend your trip if you’d like to explore the surrounding areas. Remember, the beauty of renting a boat in Giethoorn lies in the freedom to discover its charm at your own pace.

In addition to renting a boat, you also have the option of joining a guided canal cruise operated by local tour companies. These tours offer a more structured experience, complete with insightful commentary about the village’s history and highlights.

Where can I rent a boat in Giethoorn?

In the heart of Giethoorn, boats are lined up along the canals, eagerly awaiting visitors. To rent one of these vessels, simply approach the owner, discuss the price, and if you both agree, embark on your aquatic adventure through the enchanting village.

Giethoorn Kanal Turu Tekne Gezisi
Giethoorn Kanal Turu Tekne Misafiri

What kind of boats are available for rent?

Giethoorn offers a diverse selection of boats for rent, ranging from small boats accommodating up to four people to larger vessels that can seat up to twelve. Electric boats and pedal boats are also available, with prices varying based on the boat type and rental duration.

What is a whisper boat?

A whisper boat is an electric boat equipped with a silent motor, allowing you to glide quietly through the canals without disturbing the tranquil atmosphere. This eco-friendly option is popular among visitors for its ease of use and minimal noise pollution.

How much does it cost to rent a whisper boat?

When renting a boat in Giethoorn, bring your ID or passport, a credit card, and some cash for payment. Some companies may require a deposit. Rental costs for a whisper boat typically range from €25 to €35 per hour. Pedal boats, on the other hand, cost around €15 per hour, while canoes can be rented for €10 per hour.

Giethoorn Tekne Turu Gezisi
Giethoorn Tekne Gezi Yazisi

How long does it take for a boat trip through Giethoorn?

Boat tours in Giethoorn offer various routes to suit your preferences. The shorter route takes approximately 1 hour, while the longer one lasts for about 2 hours. Rental companies will provide you with a map and instructions on where to go and return, ensuring you make the most of your journey through the village’s captivating waterways.

Things to know before starting the Giethoorn tour

Embarking on a journey through Giethoorn’s enchanting canals can be an exhilarating experience. However, first-time visitors may find it a bit overwhelming to navigate the labyrinth of waterways. Fear not, for with these essential tips, you’ll soon master the art of steering your boat and making the most of your Giethoorn adventure.

Giethoorn Tekne Turu Kisa Rota
Giethoorn Boat Tour Map and Routes

  • Familiarize yourself with the map: While the canals may appear similar, a map will help you stay on track. If you have an internet connection, you can also use Google Maps to follow the route.
  • Get comfortable with boat controls: Operating a boat is straightforward. Simply turn the handle attached to the engine left or right to control direction and speed. Remember, it’s normal to bump into the sides occasionally, but with practice, you’ll soon find your rhythm.
  • Pay attention to the one-way system: Giethoorn’s canals follow a one-way system, and each canal is numbered. After renting a boat, turn left and keep an eye out for landmarks and signposts to guide your journey.
  • Look for the windmill without blades: This unique structure marks the spot where you should turn 90 degrees to the right and enter a wider canal.
  • Head towards Bovenwijde Lake: At the end of the wider canal, you’ll reach the vast Bovenwijde Lake. Turn 90 degrees again and follow the shoreline until you see signpost number 5.
  • Follow the numbered signposts: After reaching signpost 5, turn right and continue until you see signpost 3. Turn left there to retrace your steps and return the boat to the rental company.

Giethoorn Tekne Gezisi Yel Degirmeni
Giethoorn Tekne Gezisi Numara Tabelalari

Giethoorn Boat Rental FAQ

How do I avoid the crowds?

If you’re looking to avoid the crowds, there are a few things you can do.

  • To avoid the crowds in Giethoorn, consider visiting during the off-peak season (late autumn, winter, or early spring), when the village is less busy.
  • Try to go during the week if possible. Weekends tend to be the busiest times at Giethoorn, so avoiding them will help you steer clear of the crowds.
  • The best time to rent a boat in Giethoorn is in the early morning. Foreign tourists start arriving in Giethoorn around 11:00 and then most tourists rent tour boats. Rent your boat early to avoid crowds and have a more enjoyable time with fewer boats.

Do I need to have boating experience to rent a boat?

No, you don’t necessarily need boating experience to rent a boat in Giethoorn. Electric boats are beginner-friendly and easy to operate. However, if you choose to rent a traditional punter boat, some basic skills and understanding of how to navigate the boat are helpful. Rental companies often provide brief instructions before you set off

Giethoorn Gezilecek Gorulecek Yerler
In Overijssel Province, locals use boats as public transport. Of course it is great to walk over the wooden bridge in this beautiful village, but electric boat is the fastest way and easiest way.

Giethoorn in winter

As the first snowflakes descend upon Giethoorn, the village transforms into a mesmerizing winter wonderland. The frost-kissed canals and snow-capped thatched-roof houses paint an enchanting scene that captivates the hearts of those who visit during the colder months.

One of the most magical experiences in Giethoorn during winter is ice skating on the frozen canals. As the waterways solidify into glassy, smooth surfaces, visitors can lace up their skates and glide through the serene landscape. The crisp, wintry air nips at your cheeks as you carve elegant patterns into the ice, creating memories that will warm your soul for years to come.

Giethoorn In Winter
Winter Giethoorn NetherlandsJan F

However, the winter season does come with some limitations, especially for those looking to rent a boat. Many rental companies use this time to maintain and repair their boats, taking them out of the canals for necessary upkeep.

Furthermore, when the canals freeze over, navigating by boat becomes virtually impossible. As a result, it may be challenging to find rental services during the winter months.

But fear not, for the charm of Giethoorn in winter extends beyond its icy canals. Wander the snow-dusted footpaths, explore the village’s cozy cafes, and marvel at the frosted beauty of its bridges and gardens.

Though boat trips may be off the table, Giethoorn’s winter allure offers a unique and unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling enchanted and inspired.

How to get to Giethoorn from Amsterdam?

There are several convenient options for traveling from Amsterdam to Giethoorn, which is approximately 120 kilometers (75 miles) away. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the available methods:

  • By car

The most straightforward way to reach Giethoorn is by car. The journey takes about 1.5 to 2 hours, depending on traffic. Simply take the A1 highway from Amsterdam, then follow the A6 and A32 to Steenwijkerland.

From there, take exit 6-Steenwijk and follow the signs to Giethoorn. Keep in mind that parking may be limited in the village, so plan accordingly and arrive early during peak season.

  • By train and bus

Public transportation is a convenient and eco-friendly option for reaching Giethoorn. First, take a train from Amsterdam Central Station to Steenwijk, which takes approximately 1.5 to 2 hours. Trains run regularly throughout the day, and tickets can be purchased at the station or online in advance.

Once you arrive in Steenwijk, catch bus number 70 or 270 to Giethoorn. The bus ride takes about 15-20 minutes, and buses run frequently during the day. Be sure to check the schedules for both train and bus services to ensure a smooth journey.


Selecting the perfect boat to rent in Giethoorn, be it an electric boat, a traditional punter, or a canoe or kayak, will undoubtedly enhance your experience in this enchanting village. As you glide gracefully along the canals, you’ll create lasting memories in the charming “Venice of the Netherlands.”