Best time for Canal Cruise Amsterdam

Amsterdam Canal Cruises runs from 9 am to midnight. 

The best time for Canal Cruise in Amsterdam is the evening after 4.30 pm. 

During this time the weather is pleasant and the city is more happening. 

6 pm to 10 pm is ideal for the cruise, where you can enjoy dinner, sightseeing and nightlife all in one trip. 

If you want a crowd-free, calm experience, the best time for the cruise is the morning from 10 am to 3 pm.

Best Time of The Year to do a Canal Cruise

April to May is the best month for an Amsterdam Canal Cruise and to sail past the city blooming in spring. 

This is the best weather for the Amsterdam Canal Cruise. 

It is when Amsterdam enjoys a prime climate and the famous tulips are in full bloom. 

Special cruises like the Keukenhauf garden cruise to the famous tulip garden are available in spring. 

To enjoy dinner cruises and the annual Amsterdam Light Festival, winter is the best time for the Amsterdam Canal cruise. 

Cruises have extended hours of operation during the winter months of October to January. 

You can also find special light festival cruises to enjoy the artistic festival.

Amsterdam Canal Cruise Day or Night

One of the best ways to visit Amsterdam is by taking a cruise along its many canals. 

Many options are available- the daytime and evening or nighttime are popular. 

The daytime cruise is the best option for when you are looking to see the city’s architecture and historical landmarks. 

And the evening canal cruise to Amsterdam is more intimate and romantic.

Let’s find out which is best for you: the Amsterdam Canal Cruise day or night.

Amsterdam Day Cruise

Day Canal Cruise Amsterdam is a popular way to explore the city’s canals and beautiful architecture. 

Amsterdam has many different options for day cruises, from short sightseeing tours to longer, more in-depth excursions.

On a day cruise, you can see famous landmarks, like the Anne Frank House, the Rijksmuseum, and the Royal Palace. 

Why Take a Day Cruise

A day cruise is best for those looking forward to visiting Amesterdam’s famous historical landmarks and stunning architecture!

Here are a few things you may get during the day cruise:

Stunning views

A day cruise is a great way to get a unique perspective of Amsterdam and its picture-perfect scenery. 

Relaxing experience

One of the best ways to relax is by taking a day cruise along Amsterdam’s many canals. 

Sit back, relax, enjoy the gentle sway of the boat as it glides through the water and take in the many beautiful sights. 


Most day cruises in Amsterdam offer informative commentary, which can be a great way to learn more about the city and its culture while enjoying your time on the water.


Amsterdam weather can be quite unpredictable, but you can stay dry and warm inside the boat while still experiencing the beauty of Amsterdam.

Sights on a Day Cruise 

An Amsterdam day cruise is a fantastic way to visit some of the famous historical landmarks of the city. 

These are some sights you can expect to see on an Amsterdam day cruise:

Anne Frank House: A museum dedicated to Anne Frank, who wrote a diary during World War II while hiding from the Nazis.

Rijksmuseum: A national museum that houses an extensive Dutch art and history collection.

Van Gogh Museum: A museum dedicated to the famous Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh.

Westerkerk: A Protestant church located in the Jordaan neighborhood of Amsterdam.

Magere Brug: A historic bridge over the river Amstel, known for its picturesque design.

Royal Palace of Amsterdam: A former city hall now serves as a palace for the Dutch royal family.

Amsterdam Central Station: A historic train station in the city’s heart.

Canal houses: Amsterdam is known for its beautiful canal houses; a day cruise is a great way to see them from the water.

Dam Square: The main town square in Amsterdam is home to the National Monument and the Royal Palace.

Amsterdam Evening Canal Cruise

The evening or night canal cruise in Amsterdam is a great way to experience the city’s charm and beauty in the moonlight.

You can relax on a boat, glide through the city’s canal, watch a beautiful sunset, and enjoy a delicious dinner, drinks, and live music.

During the cruise, you will see iconic sights like the Anne Frank House, the Rijksmuseum, etc.

The best Night Canal Cruise Amsterdam will take you under the illuminated bridges and across traditional Dutch Architecture. 

Why take an Evening or Night Cruise

Here are a few reasons why you shouldn’t miss an evening cruise in one of the many canals of Amsterdam: 

Stunning views

Amsterdam’s canals are lined with beautiful architecture and lit at night, creating a magical and picturesque experience.

Relaxing atmosphere

An evening canal cruise provides a peaceful and calming atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Informative commentary

Most canal cruises include commentary from a guide who can provide interesting insights and historical facts about the city.

Unique perspective

Seeing Amsterdam from the water provides a unique perspective of the city that cannot be experienced from the streets.

Romantic setting

An evening canal cruise can be a romantic experience, making it a popular choice for couples.

Sights on an evening/ night cruise

An Amsterdam evening cruise is a great way to see the city from a different perspective, with the famous canals lit up with beautiful lights. 

Some sights you may see on an Amsterdam evening cruise include:

The iconic Amsterdam Canals: You’ll get to see the city’s famous canals, including the Herengracht, Keizersgracht, and Prinsengracht, all lit up beautifully at night.

The Anne Frank House: One of Amsterdam’s most famous landmarks, the Anne Frank House is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in World War II history.

The Magere Brug (Skinny Bridge): This beautiful bridge is one of the most photographed spots in Amsterdam and looks stunning at night.

The illuminated bridges of Amsterdam: The city is home to over 1,000 bridges, many beautifully lit at night, making for a breathtaking sight.

The waterfront buildings: Many of Amsterdam’s historic buildings are on the water, and you’ll see them from a unique angle as you cruise along the canals.

So, Amsterdam Canal Cruise Evening or Day?

Amsterdam canal cruise- day or evening? It is a popular question.

Daytime and evening canal cruises in Amsterdam have unique charm and attractions. 

It depends on your preferences and what you seek in this experience. 

A daytime cruise offers the opportunity to see Amsterdam’s iconic architecture and historic landmarks in bright daylight. 

You can also learn about the city’s history and culture while enjoying the beautiful scenery and bustling city life.

The evening canal cruise offers a different experience with the city’s magical, illuminated skyline.

It provides a cozy ambiance with soft lighting and music while savoring wine or snacks with friends or family.

So, it depends on what you’re looking for. 

A daytime canal cruise is ideal for exploring the city’s landmarks and history. 

An evening canal cruise is perfect if you’re looking for a romantic or relaxed evening experience.

But, our suggestion? Take time for both of them!

FAQs – Best time for Amsterdam Canal Cruise

1. How late do canal cruises run in Amsterdam?

Generally, the last of the canal cruises typically depart around 9 pm or 10 pm during the peak tourist season (April to October). 

During the off-season (November to March), the last canal cruises usually depart earlier, around 5 or 6 pm.

Learn more about the Amsterdam Canal cruise timings to plan your visit.

2. Does the Amsterdam ferry run at night?

Amsterdam has several ferry services, and most of the ferry services in Amsterdam do not run at night.

That being said, there are some exceptions. 

For example, some ferry services may run later into the evening or even all night during special events such as the Amsterdam Light Festival. 

It’s best to check the schedules of the specific ferry services you want to use to see if they offer nighttime service.

3. What is the best time to take a Canal Cruise in Amsterdam?

Amsterdam Canal Cruise day or night is a very difficult choice, as both are experiences that you shouldn’t miss.

But, some popular times for canal cruises are during the day or in the early evening.

During the day, you can see Amsterdam’s historic architecture, iconic bridges, and picturesque canals in the natural light, making for some stunning photo opportunities. 

And during the night, the city’s famous landmarks are illuminated, making this more appropriate for a romantic and intimate affair!

Featured Image : Sascha Sturm on Unsplash

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