Oct 7, 2016

Top 3 River Cruises in Amsterdam

Ever considered a European river cruise? Consider going to Amsterdam!

Taking a boat tour on the city’s waterways is one of the best things to do in Amsterdam. Amsterdam has one river and many canals cut from it. The canal belt is an urban architectural masterpiece that has served as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2010. Cruising along the canals is one of the best ways to see Amsterdam’s picturesque bridges and buildings.

However, some canals are better than others. Below are the top three river cruises in Amsterdam:

Day Canal Cruise

The Lovers Day Canal Cruises usually departs every 20 to 30 minutes, giving you several flexible choices of departure. It focuses on sightseeing thus making it ideal if you want to explore the major sights of the city. Its time of operation is between 9 am and 10 pm. Although the cruise takes about an hour, you’ll experience plenty of things along the way. The Skinny Bridge, the docks, and the audio system with commentary in 16 languages will make your cruise enjoyable. Based on your preferences, you may also have a customized itinerary that lets you decide on the best sights.

Why you should go

The skipper will tell you about the city’s history and show you the most important parts of the town. You’ll have the opportunity to take pictures of the city. Moreover, you’ll have a chance to relax away from the busy sidewalks while you observe the town. The cruise has a welcoming environment for your family, so bring along your kids and let them have a memorable river cruise vacation.


  • Two free drinks
  • English commentary
  • What to expect
  • Impressive canal houses
  • Headphone based tour with the headphones provided freely
  • Open glass tops that close when it’s rainy and open for the sunshine
  • Great value for money

What you’ll do

  • Glide gracefully on the narrow canals
  • Cruise like a local
  • Enjoy the complimentary drinks along the canal route
  • Admire the canal houses on the course belt
  • Consult with your skipper on the best way to take

Champagne Canal Cruise

The Friendship Company broke the barrier of drifting towards the Red Light district. The boats are modern, giving you a new riding feel of the city. Children under three years will sail free of charge, making this cruise quite affordable for families. Apart from the Red Light District, you’ll pass through the Amstel, the Skinny Bridge, and other inspiring attractions. You’ll compliment the feeling with a glass of Most & Chanson or a beer purchased onboard.

Why you should go

The Friendship Company has some of the most modern and unique boats in Amsterdam. Moreover, the timetable will probably suit your schedule. During the summer, the boats are the best place to enjoy the sun and the beauty of the city. The Botanical Garden, the Amstel River, and the Hermitage are some of the best things you will experience.


  • A local guide
  • Bottled water
  • Champagne glass
  • Unlimited drinks

What you can expect

Cruise the waters with a retired captain and choose from different departures. Cruise the popular De Jordan neighborhood on a small Salon Boat. Explore the city from the water and see what makes it so marvelous. You’ll enjoy the luxury feel of the 1920s on an electrically powered boat. Also, expect to sip Champagne with your group out of little glasses!

Additional Information

  • You receive confirmation at the time of booking
  • No drinks for people under 18 years
  • Minimum numbers apply
  • You can present your voucher in either a paper or electronic format
  • You can get a full refund for products with Viator standard terms without charge, up to 48 hours before your cruise.

What to do

  • Plan to do this cruise on the first day of your arrival
  • Taste the cheese and the champagne
  • View the magnificent scenery
  • Ask questions about the city

Candlelight Dinner Cruise

Amsterdam Jewel Cruises dinner cruises give you some of the best magic in the city’s air. It is particularly popular among couples because of the beautiful romantic setting it provides. As guests, you will sit on the cozy boat amidst candlelight, and there is plenty of wine and snacks. Step out on the wooden boat that dates back to the 19th century and enjoy the best of Amsterdam’s waters.

Each boat takes about 20 passengers. Although there’s fewer narrations than in most cruises, you’ll get the highlights from the captain along the way. The best attraction on this cruise is the three-course feast that lasts about two hours and 45 minutes. The schedule for the dinner cruise varies from week to week, and the costs depend on your inclusions.

Why you should go

  • You’ll enjoy the pinnacle of splurging with your partner
  • You’ll have plenty of choices for the food
  • The time is convenient for your schedule
  • You’ll have a good way to relax after a long day of hustle and bustle on the city’s streets

What to expect

  • Traditional Dutch dishes make your dinner unforgettable. They offer an excellent dinner served hot to keep you warm. You’ll also enjoy a welcome drink, but the wine will cost you extra coins. Special diet dishes are not a problem and will be served upon request.
  • The cruise achieves a romantic feeling befitting the canal by using old boats. It guarantees each couple a private window table. The saloon boat features romantic touches such as copper bars and rich mahogany.

What to do

  • Make your choices from the menu while the beautiful yacht is cruising
  • Eat the three-course dinner
  • Take time to savor coffee after dinner
  • Admire the scenery from your table
  • Enjoy the journey through the famous canals

You’ll find that besides providing a stunning backdrop to the city’s history, cruising on the canals offers you an excellent opportunity to experience the city. It doesn’t matter how many times you’ll cruise on the waterways as everything seems magical from the boat. You now have a reason to consider a European river cruise in Amsterdam. Good luck!

Samot / Shutterstock.com

Samot / Shutterstock.com

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