11 of the Best Canal Tours in Amsterdam 2024

Have you been wondering about the Best Canal Tours in Amsterdam? I’ve got you covered!

I’ve spent a few months travelling in the Netherlands and always enjoy seeing Amsterdam from the canals. From my travels, I’ve found that the best Canal Tours in Amsterdam offer their guests a truly unique experience of exploring this wonderful city.

Not only do they provide an unforgettable outing, these tours also offer peace of mind, as their operators are trustworthy and experienced. Furthermore, passengers can gain insight into local history and culture from knowledgeable guides who accompany them on the journey.

Whether you’re looking to take a romantic ride or an adventurous exploration of the city, there’s something for everyone. Make sure to ask fellow travellers which tours they recommend – chances are you’ll find someone who has been on one before!

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My Top 3 Picks: The Best Canal Tours in Amsterdam

#1 Top Pick
Spring scene in Amsterdam city. Tours by boat on the famous Dutch canals. Colorful evening landscape in Netherlands Europe.

Amsterdam Open Boat Canal Cruise

  • 1 hour
  • Small group
  • Drinks avail to purchase
#2 Pick
Amsterdam, Netherlands -  Orange boat of the Lovers Canal Cruises with tourists boating through the famous Keizersgracht canal intersection in Amsterdam

All Inclusive Amsterdam Evening Cruise

  • 1.5 hour
  • Small group
  • Drinks avail to purchase
#3 Pick
Amsterdam, Netherlands - Luxury boat navigating by Amstel River

Amsterdam Luxury Guided Sightseeing Canal Cruise

  • 1 hour
  • 3 departure points
  • Drinks avail to purchase

11 of the Best Canal Tours in Amsterdam

Spring scene in Amsterdam city. Tours by boat on the famous Dutch canals. Colorful evening landscape in Netherlands Europe.

1. Amsterdam Open Boat Canal Cruise With Live Guide And Onboard Bar

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour | ✅ Book it!

If you’re looking for a must-try activity in Amsterdam, consider taking this Amsterdam canal cruise.

Cruise gracefully along Amsterdam’s picturesque canals in luxury and relaxation, all aboard an entirely electric, environmentally-friendly boat. Sink into plush, cushioned seats and stay cosy even on cooler days with the offered blankets. 

If you fancy a beverage, there’s a cash bar available. With multiple departures daily from three distinct locations in Amsterdam’s city centre, fitting this experience into your sightseeing plans is a breeze.

“Such an amazing time Dara and Reuben were so much fun and informative. They shared facts and personal anecdotes that kept us engaged.” – DeShon_G

When you join the tour, you embark on one of the best Amsterdam canal cruises, starting and ending in the charming Jordaan neighbourhood. These are known for their garden-like streets and canals. 

During the trip, you will glide past attractions like the Amsterdam Cheese Museum and historic Bloemgracht. Continue your journey with views of the renowned Rijksmuseum, and we’ll share insights into the Amstel River’s historical significance. 

Sail along the 17th-century Singel canal, nearing the romantic Magere Brug (Skinny Bridge). As you pass the Hermitage Amsterdam and Amsterdam Museum, absorb Amsterdam’s rich history and vibrant culture.  

You’ll travel in an electric-powered boat, so expect the tour to be peaceful. There’s a whole lot more to see during this canal cruise, making the best out of your time. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen schedule at your chosen departure location  (Prins Hendrikkade 33A,1012, Prinsengracht 263, 1016 GV or Museumbrug 4, 1017 RZ)
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes: Private skipper and live guide, Luxury boat ride, Blankets, Drinks (additional cost)

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

Amsterdam, Netherlands - Orange boat of the Lovers Canal Cruises with tourists boating through the famous Keizersgracht canal intersection in Amsterdam

2. All Inclusive Amsterdam Evening Cruise By Captain Jack

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1.5 hour  | ✅ Book it!

If you’re up for a romantic journey, try this evening canal cruise Amsterdam aboard an open boat powered by a silent, eco-friendly electric engine.

Experience the enchanting magic of Amsterdam at night as the city’s streetlights and buildings cast a mesmerising reflection on the tranquil canal waters. 

As you drift along, enjoy the convenience of an onboard bar while taking in the sights, from the charming Jordaan district to the Houseboat Museum, Amstel River, and the iconic Westerkerk. Create lasting memories on this unforgettable nighttime adventure in Amsterdam.

“We had a wonderful canal cruise. The Captain/Guide of our boat was really informative, knowledgeable and funny. He interacted with all the guest and made it a really fun tour. The included beverages and snacks were very nice too. Recommend this open boat canal tour over the larger boats. Much more personal experience.” – Karen_M

This evening cruise gives you a romantic vibe as the city lights up to its fascinating silhouette. The tour starts at a dock just in front of the Rijksmuseum. 

You will pass along hundreds of exceptional areas during this canal tour in Amsterdam. Some of the various amazing sights you’ll see are the Houseboat Museum, Bourbon Street Music Club Amsterdam, Moco Museum Amsterdam, St. Nicholas Basilica, Van Gogh Museum, and the Waterlooplein Market. 

Prepare your curiosity because this tour will be informative and entertaining. Also, you can try different snacks and drinks in the onboard bar. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen schedule at Flagship Amsterdam – Canal Cruises – Rijksmuseum Museumbrug 1, 1017 RW Amsterdam, 
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes: All fees and taxes, Canal cruise

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

Amsterdam, Netherlands -  Luxury boat navigating by Amstel River

3. Amsterdam Luxury Guided Sightseeing Canal Cruise With Onboard Bar

⭐️ RATING: 5/5   | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour | ✅ Book it!

Witness the beautiful scenery of Amsterdam as you board a luxury canal boat. What makes this one of the best canal cruise in Amsterdam is that you can choose between three different boarding areas and pick the most convenient time for you. 

Not only that, but you can also go through areas the larger boats can’t pass through in your luxurious, eco-friendly electric boat. 

During the cruise, a local skipper and host provide live commentary about the sights you’ll pass by. 

“We had a great time on this canal ride. Both of our tour guides were wonderful. They were very informative and shared interesting facts about what we saw. The drinks were very good and very well prices.” – Mary_K

Try this Amsterdam canal cruise if you want to see and learn a lot within an hour. It’s also more convenient because it offers three different boarding locations; choose the best option. 

During the first part of your cruise, you’ll pass by Leiden Square, the busiest centre for nightlife in the city. As the voyage progresses, you’ll pass the Emperor’s Canal, one of the three main canals. 

Nearing the end of the cruise, you’ll encounter the Cat Cabinet, an art museum dedicated to cats. Other notable areas you’ll pass by are Rembrandtplein, Willet-Holthuysen Museum, and the Museum of the Canals, to mention a few. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen schedule at your departure location selected (Museumbrug 1, Prinsengracht 263, or Prins Hendrikkade 33A,)
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes: Luxury canal cruise, Private skipper and live guide

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS -  Urban landscape in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, view of streets and canals in the famous Canal District, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site

4. Amsterdam 1-Hour Open Boat Canal Cruise From Anne Frank House

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour  | ✅ Book it!

Exploring Amsterdam the traditional way is made better in this open boat tour Amsterdam. Your traditional cruise is enhanced with a modern touch because you’ll be boarding an electric-powered boat. 

You’ll make your way through Amsterdam, passing by various historic buildings. Your captain will talk about the city’s historical anecdotes. 

Great experience! Guide was great. Nice tour of the canals. A bit of history and local culture. Very peaceful low key cruise. Just what we were looking for.” – Mike_M

Your one-hour canal cruise departs from the front of Anne Frank House, a biographical museum dedicated to the wartime diarist Anne Frank herself. You’ll then continue to cruise along Amsterdam’s famed canals. 

Cruise past the Hermitage Museum, the biggest satellite of the Hermitage Museum of Saint Petersburg, Russia. You’ll encounter the Westerkerk, a reformed church in central Amsterdam. 

Enjoy all these as you have a peaceful toast as the small open boat cruises along the canals while listening to your guide narrate the city’s interesting history. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen time at Anne Frank House Westermarkt 20, 1016 GV Amsterdam
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes:  Electric silent boat, All fees and taxes, Skipper-guide

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

Amsterdam, Netherlands. Canal houses of Amsterdam reflections.

5. Amsterdam Open Boat Tour With Live Guide And Unlimited Drinks

⭐️ RATING: 4.5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour  | ✅ Book it!

Amsterdam is known for its UNESCO-listed Canal Ring, and the best way to explore it is by going on Amsterdam canal cruises.

Avoid the hectic crowds on land tours in this relaxing open boat tour and enjoy the perks of having unlimited Heineken beer, wine, and soft drinks for a budget-friendly price.

Several departure times are available throughout the day, so you’ll have the comfort of choosing the slot perfect for your schedule. 

“The guides were amazing and so was the service. This is the way to view the real Amsterdam! Thank you so much!” – Peter_R

If you’re looking to tour Amsterdam from a unique perspective, avoiding the crowds, and getting unobstructed views of the canal-side attractions, consider trying this tour. It will only take an hour, so you can fit more activities into your schedule for the day. 

Like other boat trips in Amsterdam, you’ll pass by Prinsengracht and the Jordaan. Also, there are many must-see museums along the way, like the Amsterdam Cheese Museum, Museum of the Canals, and Museum Het Rembrandthuis.

This tour provides unlimited drinks, so be sure to take advantage of that as you take in the picturesque scenery from the canals. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen schedule at Amstel 51F, 1018 EJ Amsterdam 
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes: Unlimited Heineken beer, wines, and soft drinks, Local guide, Electric boat, Coffee and tea

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

Amsterdam, The Netherlands - Tour boat in Rokin Canal

6. All-Inclusive Amsterdam Canal Cruise By Captain Jack

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour and 30 minutes  | ✅ Book it!

Exploring Amsterdam’s canals is an essential activity for first-time visitors to the city. This family-oriented cruise is one of the best Amsterdam boat tour that offers an intimate atmosphere with an open boat and a limited capacity of up to 20 passengers. 

There are complimentary drinks and snacks, along with a live commentary. Navigate the UNESCO-listed canal ring, where you’ll spot notable landmarks. 

“The ride down the canal and all the wisdom from the captain was amazing. Enjoyed it and would definitely do again” – Broderick_T

This boat trip Amsterdam is fun and engaging, suitable for all ages, so if you have your family with you, this one is a good option. There are 2 pickup options, so you can choose whichever is the most convenient for you. 

Starting the trip, you’ll see the Magere Brug, a romantic and iconic bridge in Amsterdam. You’ll then see views of Spiegelkwartier, an area filled with galleries and antique shops,  Noordermarkt, a church built in the 1600s and De Poezenboot, a shelter for stray and abandoned cats. 

Many iconic sights are up for viewing, giving tourists an unforgettable experience. If you’re up for a memorable tour in Amsterdam, consider booking this tour. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): 1 hour and 30 minutes
  • Duration: Your chosen time at your chosen departure location (Station Stationsplein 18, or Museumbrug 2)
  • Includes: Boat tour, Heineken beer, Wine, Snacks, Live commentary

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - Boat tours in Rokin canal in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Amsterdam is the capital city of The Netherlands.

7. Amsterdam 90-Minute Private Family Canal Cruise

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour and 30 minutes | ✅ Book it!

Embark on a delightful boat cruise through the picturesque canals of Amsterdam, where you’ll glide past the city’s most iconic landmarks. The captain will provide insightful commentary as you journey along the canals. 

This tour is an ideal introduction to Amsterdam, offering recommendations for places to visit later on your own. What sets this apart from other Amsterdam canal boat tours is that it boasts a longer duration compared to many similar canal tours.

“Mark and Cynthia were so knowledgeable, personable and clearly love what they do. The experience was perfect for us as two families traveling together and it being our first day in Amsterdam. They were very accommodating and made us feel very welcome. Highly recommend.” – Tal_J

A highlight of this cruise is that a maximum of only 10 people are allowed per boat, making your canal tour experience more intimate and perfect for families. Your captain provides commentary onboard, so you’ll learn about the unique Amsterdam way of life. 

Expect to see a lot of tourist destinations from your view at the canal and hear recommendations from your captain about those destinations you could visit after your cruise. This tour is customizable, so you can request places to pass by during the cruise. 

A package perfect for those wanting a private and fully customizable experience in a canal tours Amsterdam. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen time at Prinsengracht 375, 1016 DN Amsterdam
  • Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes
  • Includes: Live commentary, Eco-friendly sightseeing cruise, Local certified skipper 

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

Amsterdam, Netherlands. The Keizersgracht (Emperor's) canals and bridges.

8. Amsterdam Classic Boat Cruise With Live Guide, Drinks And Cheese

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour  | ✅ Book it!

This cruise is among the preferred canal tours Amsterdam. During this 60-minute tour, you’ll be treated to a complimentary cheese platter and enjoy unlimited servings of beer, wine, and soft drinks. 

Relax on board the classic wooden saloon boat as you take in the stunning cityscape. Admire iconic landmarks while savouring Dutch cheese and your choice of beverages.

“The commentary was interesting. It is a lovely way to spend an afternoon and see Amsterdam ftom the water. The wine and cheese added to the experience.” -Leanne_M

Your 1-hour journey takes you through the UNESCO Heritage-listed canals of Amsterdam Golden Age. First, you’ll pass by the Jordaan neighbourhood, following the renowned Prinsengracht canal towards the Magere Brug (known as the Skinny Bridge). 

Treat yourself to the tasty Dutch Gouda cheese and unlimited drinks during the cruise. Also, enjoy the friendly atmosphere and take pictures of the historic sights you pass by. 

You’ll also cruise by the scenic Amstel River, pass by the iconic Seven Bridges, admire the splendid Golden Bend, and then return to the Anne Frank House, winding our way through the picturesque Nine Streets.

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen time and boarding location (Prinsengracht 263 or Prins Hendrikkade 33A)
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Includes: Skipper and live guide, Luxury boat ride, Two different Dutch Cheese, Unlimited wine, beer, and soft drinks

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS -These are the embankments and bridges of the Oudesijds Voorburgwal canal in the historic center of the city.

9. Amsterdam Canal Cruise On A Small Open Boat (Max 12 Guests)

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour and 30 minutes | ✅ Book it!

Experience the beauty of Amsterdam’s iconic sights without the hustle and bustle of crowds. Enjoy an intimate and cosy setting within a small group, limited to just 12 individuals, as you drift through the UNESCO-listed Canal Ring (Grachtengordel). 

You’ll pass by iconic city landmarks like the Red Light District, the Magere Brug (Skinny Bridge), and the Zuiderkerk (Southern Church).

“Gliding quietly along the canals. Jamie was a great guide. History and beauty. Amsterdam is best seen from the water. Loved the story about the bottom two steps for tax avoiders.” – Henry_E

This canal cruise lets you have personalised attention since you’ll be enjoying the company of a small group. Appreciate the beauty of Amsterdam away from the crowds as your boat flows along the canals. 

You’ll explore the city side along the Amstel River, where you’ll discover the renowned dancing houses and share intriguing stories about the tilted buildings. Then, cruise through the cosy and tiny canal, Kromboomssloot.

You’ll see beautiful architecture along the way, so take snaps of it and cherish the memory forever. The tour ends back from where you started and goes under the most iconic bridge in Amsterdam and one of the few wooden bridges left in Amsterdam, the Magere Brug.

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen time at De Schaduwkade, monumentNieuwe Keizersgracht 1, 1018 DS Amsterdam,
  • Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes
  • Includes: Open boat tour, Blanket, Life vest (upon request), English-speaking guide

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS -A group of unidentified residents hold a pleasure boat party on the urban canals.

10. Amsterdam Early Morning Canal Cruise

⭐️ RATING: 5/5  | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour and 30 minutes | ✅ Book it!

If you’re unsure what to do early in the city, you should try one of the best canal cruises Amsterdam. This top-rated tour starts early in the morning before the city becomes busy. 

Enjoy the morning fog and sunlight while cruising through the calm canals—delight in the drinks and snacks provided with the tour in the cosy atmosphere with your small group. 

“Beautiful boat lovely comfortable seats and charming host. Dave is great and makes everyone feel welcome and included. Would definitely recommend this to anyone who can be there for 8 as it is soooo quiet outside then, especially a Sunday morning” – Denise_W

This tour won ‘Best Boat Tour 2020 in Amsterdam’ and is definitely worth experiencing. During the relaxing cruise, you’ll pass through the city’s most enchanting areas. 

Unlike other tours with a predetermined path, you’ll experience varied routes and hear engaging stories about the surroundings with a touch of humour. Some places to see are the ARTIS Amsterdam Royal Zoo, the Jordaan, and De Poezenboot. 

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): 8:00 AM at Prinsengracht 397, 1016 DN Amsterdam 
  • Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes
  • Includes: Live commentary, Small group  90-minute boat trip, Coffee and tea, Heating and blankets 

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - Water canals in Amsterdam. Traditional colorful houses and canals in Amsterdam town

11. Romantic Small Boat Tour – The Original

⭐️ RATING: 5/5   | ⏳ LENGTH: 1 hour and 30 minutes | ✅ Book it!

Take the opportunity to enjoy the picturesque views along Amsterdam’s canals during this cosy small-group boat tour, designed for a maximum of 10 participants. 

Perfect for couples seeking an intimate experience, this tour offers a private boat and a dedicated guide who will amuse you with captivating facts and stories as you navigate the city’s canals.

Immerse yourself in the peaceful ambience while sipping on your beverage, indulging in Dutch snacks, and enjoying the company of your partner.

“A lovely trip around the canals with nice cheese and wine, stories and music; the boat was a nice small boat with 10 passengers (+ sailor and guide).” -Frederick_J

Start the romantic tour by sailing under the Magere Brug and learn why you must kiss your partner under the iconic Skinny Bridge on the Amstel River. Enjoy each other’s company away from the crowds. 

Cruise along the Emperor’s Canal and observe the picturesque view of the houses. Pass by Herengracht, the Amstel, and see the stunning tower of Montelbaanstoren. 

Then, continue the canal sightseeing at the Grachtengordel, a heritage site showing glory from the 16th and 17th centuries. Witness other recognised historical buildings and explore the old inner canals of Amsterdam, the Singel.

Important details 

  • Start Time (and location): Your chosen time at Herengracht 124, 1015 BT Amsterdam
  • Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes 
  • Includes: Romantic storyteller, Alcoholic beverages, Snacks, Solar-powered boat, Blankets and electric heating

🤩 Check Prices and Availability!

FAQs About canal tour of amsterdam

is the canal tour worth it in amsterdam?

Yes, the canal tour in Amsterdam is definitely worth it! The city is home to 165 canals and the 1.5-hour tour offers you an amazing opportunity to explore them all.

You’ll get a chance to see many of Amsterdam’s most famous landmarks, like the Magere Brug bridge and the Skinny Bridge, while learning interesting facts about the city.

Plus, with its world-famous nightlife, you could even extend your canal tour into a fun-filled evening of partying!

what is the most beautiful canal view of amsterdam?

The most beautiful canal view of Amsterdam is undoubtedly the view from the Grachtengordel.

This famous ring of canals is lined with centuries-old iconic architecture and lively houseboats that create a picturesque scene.

A visit to Amsterdam would not be complete without seeing the enchanting Grachtengordel in all its glory!

what is the best time to do the canal tour in amsterdam?

The best time to do the canal tour in Amsterdam is any day from April to October. The months of April and October tend to be quieter, with the weather being milder and less crowded boats.

During the summer months, from June through to August, the canals are more crowded with tourists, so you may want to book your trip in advance if you plan on visiting during these times.

Amsterdam, Netherlands. Basilica of Saint Nicholas and canal houses of Amsterdam.

Final Thoughts: best boat tour amsterdam

The best canal tours in Amsterdam will give you a wonderful insight into the beauty of this vibrant city. From taking in the spectacular architecture to learning about local history and culture, a tour along Amsterdam’s canals is something you won’t soon forget.

With so many different companies offering amazing experiences, it’s difficult to know which one to choose. We’ve gone ahead and picked out some of the best canal tours available for anyone looking to experience Amsterdam in all its splendour.

So why wait? Go ahead and take a step into the past with one of these incredible canal tours! Whether it’s for a romantic date or an adventure with friends, there’s something here for everyone.

Get ready to experience everything that Amsterdam has to offer from the comfort of your boat, seated along its mesmerizing waterways. Make lasting memories with your loved ones with one of these amazing canal tours!

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  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

    View all posts https://www.tiktok.com/@travellingkng

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